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Now Till October – EA Goes After Activision “Leaving Nothing Behind”

by Ernice Gilbert on June 14th, 2011, under Activision, EA, Hot, News, PC, PS3, Xbox 360

So the battle’s begun in earnest, then. Activision has held the number one spot in the shooter department for a very long time – years without mention, however EA held that spot first. The firm wants it back. It tried last year with Medal of Honor but that didn’t work, as the game merely sold 4 million copies. Now in other fights, 4 million would be stunning, but in Call of Duty’s playbook, it’s just a baby still sucking its mother’s breast.

But things have changed, right? Battlefield 3 has wowed virtually everyone who’s seen it, and EA’s planning to spend upwards $100 million in advertising the game. It has more destruction than you’ve ever witness before.

“Destruction is another big deal. We haven’t really shown off the full extent of destruction yet, but you can take whole houses down, drive a tank through them. When you place them in the competition’s titles, you will be shooting and you run behind a paper billboard and you will put holes in the paper billboard and the bullets won’t go through the paper billboard. Battlefield allows you to knock the whole billboard over. You may knock down a wall, knock down a door so it opens up different ways of playing the game,” EA’s Frank Gibeau told Venture Beat.

Battlefield 3′s also using DICE’s new Frostbite engine, one that’s “a generation” ahead of anything out there according to the publisher.

So this is a fair war now, then. Although EA acknowledges that it’s the underdog, it’s going in full throttler, leaving nothing behind:

“I can tell you from the top down that we’re going after them, we’re leaving nothing behind. We’re going all out. Whether it’s PES vs Fifa or Madden versus 2K Sport, we take these things very seriously – frankly, we enjoy them. We like to compete. It’s good for customers – they get innovation that might not have been there otherwise. They get more buzz, more choice, and it will grow the category,” Gibeau told The Guardian.

“The interesting thing about Battlefield versus Modern Warfare is, they’re very differently shaded games, they’re very different experiences; it’s not like buying two football games, where it’s all the same teams. You can buy and enjoy both experiences. We’re proud of what we have in Frostbite – it’s a generation ahead of anything else that’s out there right now. Dice has been together for 10 years, it’s a tight team and they know what works.”

But what about Activision, what’s the company’s response to EA’s Pit Bull mentality? Keep working. Be mindful of the competition, but keep doing what we do best.

“We’re going to put a lot of marketing behind [Modern Warfare 3],” Eric Hirshberg, CEO of Activision Publishing told Gamespot. “We’re going to put a lot of investment behind it, starting with the development itself. You know, we’re throwing more innovation and investment into this game than ever before.”

“I don’t want to answer your sales question directly, but I will say this. By any metric, if you just step back and just passionately look at this franchise, by any measurement, whether that’s sales of the last iteration, DLC sales, time spent in the multiplayer environment, YouTube views, Facebook fans, there’s only evidence that there’s still more appetite for this and that it’s a brand still on the rise. I know that’s hard to imagine because it’s reached such incredible heights already, but we’re confident that if we continue to deliver great product, that there’s still more appetite.”

Now to the fans. Call of Duty has over 30 million of them out there, while Battlefield would have to settle for single digits. Can all this change in one November? Maybe, maybe not, but we’ve seen more incredible things happen in the past, in November.


  1. Tue, 14th Jun 2011 at 12:39 pm

    I’m actually eager to see how this all pans out. With the addition of TDM to BF3 I think they can go even further now. To me this was a key missing component. Look how many play TDM over everything else. I’m sorry, I just can’t get into the other modes… But I said that about Zombies and now play the piss out of it when I am on.

  2. Tue, 14th Jun 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Yeah. It’ll be a very interesting fight come Oct/Nov. But will Battlefield 3 topple MW3 in sales? No…at least not yet.. I’m rooting for both.

  3. Tue, 14th Jun 2011 at 12:45 pm

    I think, if anything, BF3 will gain momentum like Modern Warfare 1 did.

  4. Tue, 14th Jun 2011 at 12:48 pm

    Good point. But then comes in the next Generation of consoles: – and by then Call of Duty games will have the same level on destruction and all the other stuff EA’s boasting of… Surely Acti’s working on a new engine….

  5. Tue, 14th Jun 2011 at 12:57 pm

    In walks Frostbite 3.
    It takes years to develop a Game Engine. Look how many are still using the Unreal Engine.
    Publishers are about milking a product. It costs money to develop a new Game Engine so why not just continue to modify one that works?
    It looks like Infinity Ward has done a lot of tweaking with theirs.

  6. Tue, 14th Jun 2011 at 1:09 pm

    Yes, that’s true. But I would not buy another Call of Duty game on that same engine. Simply will not – especially on next gen consoles.

  7. Wed, 15th Jun 2011 at 4:08 am

    as antivisions CEO said……. thanks for the free advertising!

  8. Wed, 15th Jun 2011 at 6:25 am

    They’ll pay us someday!

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