From a sales perspective, not many people have faith in Titanfall 2. Research firm Cowen & Company downgraded EA shares today on their belief Titanfall 2 sales “are going to be substantially disappointing, enough to offset upside from ‘Battlefield 1,’” writes analyst Doug Creutz in a note to clients (via Gamespot).
Why the lack of faith? Analysts point to the same concern most of us had when we first heard the release dates for Battlefield 1 and Titanfall 2. Timing.
“We think the game got squeezed between Battlefield 1 and [Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare],” says the research firm. “We suspect EA believed that by launching two shooters next to Call of Duty it could put a large dent in its biggest competitor, but instead EA appears to have wound up shooting its own foot off.”
Cowen & Co.’s initial forecast called for 9 million units sold. Today, that number shifts to between 5 and 6 million. Battlefield 1’s sales projections were bumped from 14 million to 16.5 million.
Titanfall 2 releases today. And by all indications, it’s a fantastic game. Respawn Entertainment addressed the lack of single player from the first one and expanded its player base to the PS4. Despite this, analysts like Cowen, and all of us armchair analysts think EA screwed up releasing the two games too close together.
One week after Battlefield 1 and before Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare probably isn’t the best idea for a shooter to stand out.
Battlefield 1 is the hit we all expected it to be. A quick look at BF1stats.com show 472,000+ folks playing at this moment.
And despite the number of dislikes on their trailers, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare will still be a sales juggernaut. Maybe not as big as previous games, but still enough to please Activision.
That leaves Titanfall 2 square in the middle. I can’t help but wonder if a February/March release window would have been better. It gives Battlefield 1 and Call of Duty fans time to get over the launch hype from both games. And lets Titanfall 2 stand strong amidst a slew of more single-player focused games (like Horizon: Zero Dawn and Mass Effect: Andromeda).
Or, maybe EA’s gamble will pay off. The decision to go WWI with Battlefield 1 certainly did. EA is making the bet that the shooter genre is big enough for both games to succeed despite hitting store shelves just a week apart. According to EA’s CEO Andrew Wilson, it’s a $4.5 billion slice of the gaming industry. That’s a lot of money floating around. But Titanfall 2 is trying to make noise in a genre where Battlefield 1 and Call of Duty dominate. Other games like Blizzard’s Overwatch are also siphoning potential gamers away.
We’ll see if the positive critical reception can keep Titanfall 2 sales around previous estimates.
Are you picking up Titanfall 2? Or, are you still hooked on Battlefield 1, Gears of War 4, Overwatch and so on?