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Electronic Arts hopes that the Force is strong with its first Star Wars game.
The publisher revealed that it expects to sell around 10 million copies of its upcoming shooter Star Wars: Battlefront, which developer DICE is building based on the beloved sci-fi franchise. EA also expects all of that to come during fiscal 2016 on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. This may be a reasonable expectation for EA’s big fall shooter — especially considering that the hype for the December release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens will reach a zenith around the time of Battlefront’s Nov. 17 launch. Shooters along the lines of DICE’s Battlefield series, which typically launch in the fall, are often among the top-selling games of the year, and the money from Battlefront will factor significantly into EA’s bottom line.
“That’s probably the right number,” Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter told GamesBeat. “It really depends on whether next-generation console sales stay this high, but it implies about a 20 percent attach rate. That is well below GTA, and seems pretty reasonable, given the early adopter installed base.”
In 2005, Star Wars: Battlefront II from the then independent LucasArts sold around 1 million copies in the U.S. alone and was the sixth best-selling game of the year, according to the NPD Group.
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But the new Star Wars: Battlefront’s success could easily outpace that of its predecessor depending on its critical reception. Similar games have proven that shooters can sell — especially if they’re attached to a popular brand.
In 2012, Call of Duty: Black Ops II sold 7.5 million copies in the United States in about three weeks. It went on to sell 24.2 million copies over a 12 month period. In November 2011, EA launched Battlefield 3, and it went on to surpass 15 million copies sold. Battlefront could easily match those numbers if it satisfies the pent-up demand for new Star Wars-related content.
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