Something is supremely odd about how Battlefield 4 was outed. It wasn't announced or revealed in the way big-budget, high-profile shooters are supposed to be announced or revealed. Instead, Battlefield 4 was candidly bleated about at the front end of a trailer for another EA game, Medal of Honor Warfighter. That trailer, meanwhile, was unlocked by fans clicking 'like' on a Facebook page elsewhere. Now EA have scrambled to conjure up this Battlefield 4 official page as a sort of interim placeholder until a single shred of information is made public. This can't have been part of EA's marketing plan, surely? If it was, it's mad.
The statement is a faintly apologetic-sounding reassurance that DICE are still committed to continuing their work on Battlefield 3, and that Battlefield 4 is ages away and, if we wouldn't all mind, could we not think about it right now. "We’re not ready to talk about Battlefield 4 yet," DICE insist. "In the meantime, we hope you will continue to enjoy Battlefield 3 and all the Battlefield 3 Premium content still to come."
Pay no attention to that sequel behind the curtain.
The EA press release that followed news of the Battlefield 4 beta confirmed that it wouldn't launch until Autumn of 2013. So with the paid-for Battlefield 3 Premium service having only recently launched - as well as three more expansions in the pipeline - it is absolutely the wrong time to draw customer attention towards the inevitable sequel on the horizon. That's a sure-fire way to asphyxiate interest in the current Battlefield, a shooter EA will want to remain profitable for at least another 12 months. All of which makes this Warfighter pre-order incentive seem a bit drastic and hurried, a last-minute attempt to bolster advance sales of Medal of Honor Warfighter ahead of its October release.
There's little chance that this is how anybody at EA wanted the Battlefield sequel to be announced in ideal circumstances, and even less chance we'll learn anything more about Battlefield 4 until next year.
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