EA earnings 2022: taking “a long view” on Battlefield 2042 updates

EA earnings 2022: a silver-bearded soldier in Battlefield 2042 looks at the camera, wearing a green helmet

In EA’s latest earnings call, the publisher says it’s going to “take a long view” on Battlefield 2042 updates and the franchise as a whole. The FPS game has been plagued with issues since its release, but fans can seemingly rest assured that EA isn’t about to abandon it.

When questioned by investors on whether the publisher has changed its view on “invest[ing] more” in Battlefield 2042 for the long term given “the lack of resurgence from the last update,” EA CEO Andrew Wilson said: “No… We take a long view here. This is one of the great franchises in our industry, built by one of the great teams in our industry. And our expectation is that we’ll continue to grow and be a really important part of our portfolio for many, many years to come.”

Wilson cited the change in leadership within the Battlefield team, referring to former Respawn head and Infinity Ward co-founder Vince Zampella’s appointment late last year. Wilson says the team is “rethinking the development process from the ground up,” with a focus on “getting the core game right.”

Battlefield 2042’s last major update finally brought voice chat support to the game. It also overhauled weapon attachments and patched a considerable number of bugs. Yet the game still has extensive issues, including the lack of any major content updates since launch and persistent complaints about the existing maps being too open and barren.

Hopefully EA’s recommitment today means those issues will be resolved at some point, but the question is whether the community’s patience will last. The game’s player count has dropped significantly, with just 2,618 concurrent players on average this month on Steam, down from over 100,000 at launch.

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Nevertheless, EA’s last financial year overall was its best ever. The publisher made over $7.5bn USD (approximately £6bn GBP) in net earnings, with underlying profits up by more than 20%. You can read EA’s earnings statement here.

EA Sports titles were a big contributor to these revenues, with FIFA growing to over 150m online accounts this quarter, and FIFA mobile growing by nearly 80% year-on-year. Apex Legends is also standing strong, with season 12 setting records for the “highest engagement since launch.” EA also highlighted the critical success of the indie title It Takes Two, which won over 90 awards this quarter including two BAFTAs.