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EA admits Battlefield 1 might fall short of previous games in one department

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2016 is set to be a potentially historic year for the Battlefield franchise.  With the tremendous hype surrounding the WWI-themed Battlefield 1 and shaky press for Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, it seems Battlefield may finally be set to eclipse COD as the shooter of the year.

Despite this, EA’s expectations are … well, middling.

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According to EA’s Chief Financial Officer, Blake Jorgensen, Battlefield 1 is projected to sell around eleven million copies.  To date, most other games in the series have sold 15 million copies or more.  Even Hardline managed to reach that bar, and it was arguably the most poorly received installment in the entire series.

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Why is the sales estimate so conservative?  That is unclear, though the company does believe that the game may outperform the projection, stating, “Typically a Battlefield does 15 million in a year. Our guidance is slightly under that and we hope that excitement builds and it’ll go through that number, but for now it’s slightly under that number.”

Meanwhile, the company seems more optimistic about Titanfall 2.  Titanfall was quite a respectable game, though it had numerous imperfections.  The action was great, but it wasn’t varied enough to maintain a lot of gamers’ interest.  Maps and customization were lacking, and there was no single player campaign.  Titanfall 2 promises to resolve all of these problems, so anticipation is high.

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Battlefield 1 will release on October 21st.  Titanfall 2 is due for release just days later on October 28th.  Could this explain why EA projects lower sales for BF1?  Maybe—but the company indicates that it believes that there are players who are looking only for one mechanic or another, and who would not be interested in both games.  As a result, cannibalization is not a major concern.

Regardless of the explanation for the modest sales estimates for BF1, it will be fascinating to watch and see how both games perform in the FPS market.