Last month EA Studios boss Patrick Soderlund initially rejected DICE’s pitch for Battlefield 1. However EA CFO Blake Jorgensen explained there were concerns that EA’s younger audience didn’t even know World War 1 happened.
Jorgensen went on to say there was ‘some debate’ inside EA about the games setting. During the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2016 Global Technology Conference, Jorgensen spoke on these concerns.
“World War 1, we were worried that many of the younger consumers out there didn’t know that there was a World War 2 or Vietnam, so World War 1…” Jorgensen said. “I think what people don’t understand about World War 1 is the technology shift that went on during the war,” He continued. “People started the war on horseback and ended the war with airplanes and tanks and battleships and submarines. And that’s a huge opportunity for us to be able to do a video game around.”
A main factor in Soderlund originally rejecting DICE’S Battlefield 1 pitch was because he thought trench warfare couldn’t be fun. Once the developers showed him all they could include and the huge geographic opportunity, Soderlund gave it the green light. Since World War 1 spanned from Europe to northern Africa, EA has the chance to produce a war game like no other.
The trailer for Battlefield 1 quickly became the most liked trailer for anything on YouTube. Jorgensen says this speaks to the ‘excitement’ around the game, even if it might not necessarily be indicative of future sales.
Battlefield 1 launches on October 21, although people with EA/Origin Access membership can snag their copy three days early. There is also talk of a beta to be held sometime before launch. To top it all off EA will be broadcasting a livestream of a 64 player match E3 2016, as part of the company’s EA Play event.