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EA: Industry Learning To Release Top Titles Year-Round

For what seems like an eternity, gamers have been screaming at publishers to stop releasing all the best games within a 2-3 month timespan at the end of the year. However, things have been changing as of late - Grand Theft Auto IV and Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots last year and Killzone 2 and Resident Evil 5 this year - and EA has, evidently, learned their lesson.

Why? Because in late 2008, EA released the stellar Dead Space and Mirror's Edge, and while both did relatively well on the sales charts, neither met the lofty expectations. This is because they both launched during the downright insane October/November period, which was loaded with tons of highly anticipated titles. Now, according to GamesIndustry.biz, EA Redwood Shores general manager Glen Schofield says EA won't make the same mistake twice. Said Schofield:

"The one big thing we learned was, we came out with a bunch of new IP, actually with a bunch of new games at the same time. Some people are calling this last year one of the best years in the history of videogames. You just had one great game after another, so we were just right in the middle of it, and you have to have a lot of money behind you to shout out.

He went on to say that there were still "far too many games" released during the holiday period, and given the current economic condition, publishers can't afford to do that this year. We're willing to bet that most gamers would agree, as it's very unlikely that avid fans were able to purchase and play every great title that released between October and December of 2008. Schofield continued:

"I think the industry has finally gone, 'Wow, we could probably just come out just like the movies do'. Movies launch on Christmas day, they launch blockbusters during the summer, and we're now learning that we could probably launch a game at any time, and if it's a good game it will be well received. I think that we traditionally thought that people only buy games at Christmas or around holiday time, and now we're looking back and going, 'You know what, GTA launched in May; Resident Evil comes out in March'."

Last but not least, Schofield all but confirmed Dead Space 2 by saying that although they haven't made any official announcement, "you don't take a game that's rated 89 and just go, 'Well, that was a failure.'" No, Dead Space most certainly wasn't a failure. And we entirely agree that fantastic software should release at a steady rate throughout any given year.

2/25/2009 Ben Dutka

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Comments (30 posts)

LegendaryWolfeh
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 12:46:25 PM
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nice

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Tim Speed24
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 12:52:56 PM
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Dead Space 2....now deadlier and spacier.

Dead Space was awesome going from tight spaces to (partially) wide open space itself. Love that zero G atmoshpere...very cool.

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convergecrew
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 1:07:16 PM

haha. agreed. it was a solid game all around.

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King James
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 6:01:08 PM

lol...spacier

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Scarecrow
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 12:58:06 PM
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For once I agree with the money hungry EA

Though it's a good thing that they're finally learning.

Not all games can be thrown in October and Novemeber, it just hurts them.

*cough* Valkyria Chronicles *cough*

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Kiengo
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 3:07:45 PM

It's pretty sad too; VC is amazing.

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Dr_Frodo
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 1:10:11 PM
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That's always bothered me about the game release tradition.

I still believe late June/early July would be an awesome time to release games. Many young gamers have holidays then, students don't have nearly as many (if any) pressures and can get some gaming in over the summer.

Releasing around October/November, when I start studies again, is a pain in the backside, games all year round would be nice, but throwing a few(more) for summer would be very welcome.

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Cpt_Geez
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 1:23:58 PM

II agree right around summer time is where games don't really come out EA should consider that timeframe like may june & july cuz every year in the summer all that ever comes out is a new madden and college football that would be the best time to release new IPs kids are going to be out of school and nobody will be releasing to many games they ususally heat back up during september.

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LimitedVertigo
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 1:10:38 PM
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Dead Space > RE5

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Arvis
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:07:19 PM

Really? You've played RE5 already?

-Arvis

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Frenchy17
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:18:06 PM
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Yeah I am happy about this, I am still trying to get caught up on all the stuff I bought over the holidays. Gamestop has a good trade in promotion going on for Resident Evil 5. There are a ton of games in which you can trade in 2 of them and get Resident Evil 5 for $20. So I am trying to get caught up on those from the holidays so I can trade some in. :)

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ZubraZap
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:19:55 PM
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"you don't take a game that's rated 89..."

There they go referencing Metacritic again. Is that "review-site" really important to devs and publishers? I hate metacritic! When it comes to reviews I'm the first and final word. I do read others OPINIONS, but its just to see what you got out of the gaming experience!

Last edited by ZubraZap on 2/25/2009 2:20:24 PM

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TGG
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:28:09 PM
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At least EA has noticed this, they've actually been doing a lot of things right recently.

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SerichA
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:30:36 PM
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At least they tell you what to do in Dead Space.It boosts the horror aspect to new grounds, you know, with a goal and all.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:30:43 PM
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They've already have enough titles to equal one or more of those blockbusters...if you add them together.

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LimitedVertigo
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 2:42:37 PM
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@ Arvis Yes I have played RE5 already and as has already been mentioned in Famitsu RE5 is very similar to RE4 in terms of game play. Having beat RE4 atleast 20 times on gamecube and another 10 times on PS2 and owning DeadSpace I'm VERY confident in my earlier comment of "DeadSpace > RE5"

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Arvis
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 3:54:10 PM

......fair enough, but I maintain skepticism. Co-op (in theory) takes RE5 to a whole new level of awesome.

-Arvis

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Fabi
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 3:11:54 PM
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I hate it when a real good game gets ignored only because it was released right next to big name game.

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CH1N00K
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 3:38:54 PM
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It will be funny if everyone develops that mentality...then you have a bunch of games launching year round...except Christmas because no one wants to compete...and then the holidays hit....and there's only crap out on the shelves.

Probably won't happen but it would be kind of funny.

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LimitedVertigo
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 3:48:20 PM
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I would love it, it would mean I can buy my younger cousins crappy toys and save money.

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Victor321
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 4:18:26 PM
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First David Cage, now Schofield. It seems that this rough economy has taught these people valuable lessons in terms of gaming. Well, there's always a silver lining =)

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Dustinwp
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 4:38:59 PM
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Thank god someone came to this realization! I bought twenty-seven games last year and Eleven were bought within September through December.

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Fane1024
Thursday, February 26, 2009 @ 5:02:49 PM

...so you only had a slight increase in your frequency of games bought:

16 games / 8 months = 2 g.p.m.
11 games / 4 months = 2.75 g.p.m.

Was that your point?

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Geobaldi
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 5:54:43 PM
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Dead Space was a great game. If only it was a bit longer though. And more pitch black areas. Those were the most intense. Just as DOOM 3 showed with that one long unlit section it had. The prequel movie was also pretty good. Have high expectations for part 2 of the series.

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LimitedVertigo
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 7:04:35 PM
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I agree, I enjoyed the Prequel movie and loved its intense gore. Playing Dead Space reminded me of the uneasy feeling I had the entire time I watched the movie Event Horizon (which I regard as the only GOOD movie Paul Anderson ever directed).

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Geobaldi
Thursday, February 26, 2009 @ 12:05:57 AM

Event Horizon is one of my favorite Sci-Fi/Horror films. System Shock 2 is another game that comes to mind matching the atmosphere. And it came out before the movie did.

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Sir Shak
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 @ 7:04:39 PM
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I hope others take this advice .

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LimitedVertigo
Friday, February 27, 2009 @ 12:54:55 AM
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I remember System Shock, it was a great game. It was leagues ahead of what was out at the time and the atmosphere was amazing. Glad to hear you enjoy Event Horizon, it has its flaws but I've always found it to be a very deep and scary movie.

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Geobaldi
Friday, February 27, 2009 @ 12:59:38 AM

It's too bad both were kinda overlooked :( System Shock 2 remains one of my favorites of all time.

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shaydey77
Friday, February 27, 2009 @ 10:50:48 AM
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Heres hoping that this is all they take from Hollywood.

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