GameStop held an investor call earlier this week, and took the opportunity to complain about Star Wars Battlefront. The retailer’s high sales expectations turned to low as the game neared, according to their COO – and even those managed expectations proved too much for DICE’s Star Wars shooter. So damning were GameStop, in fact, that Peter Moore has felt the need to step in and reassure EA’s own investors.
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“[GameStop’s] comments were interesting and little bit of a surprise to us, particularly as the CFO in the call then started to correct the COO as the call went on,” said Moore.
“There is no weakness that is perceptible yet in the title. I want everybody to understand that based on where we think this title is and based on the marketing beats ahead of us, in particular the movie launch over the next two weeks, we feel very comfortable we’re going to hit the guidance that we’ve given analysts, investors and Wall Street alike.”
EA have estimated sales of 13m units for Star Wars Battlefront by the end of March next year, which GameStop COO Tony Bartel had appeared to call into question.
“We’re not going to quantify it in terms of actual numbers,” Bartel told investors. “But we had high expectations that diminished somewhat as it got closer, and it failed to hit those lowered expectations.”
GameStop surely hoped that Battlefront’s movie links would pull in a larger audience of occasional players; this week DICE are releasing their free Force Awakens prequel DLC, The Battle of Jakku. But perhaps online multiplayer is simply too intimidating for that audience?