EA Exec: 'PS 3.5', 'Xbox 560' Will Precede Next Gen

Electronic Arts' Chief Creative Officer (pictured), in an interview, said that Sony and Microsoft, "nearly expired crossing the finish line as they launched their consoles", and don't want to build the next generation any time soon.

"I expected we'll see a PlayStation 3.5 before we see a PlayStation 4 and an Xbox 560 before we see an Xbox 720," Rich Hilleman told Dean Takahashi and VentureBeat. "The biggest shift is how fast packaged goods games are changing and going away."

That means online distribution. And by that, he means mobile gaming, and delivery of mobile games. Hilleman pointed out that with the DS, PSP and PSPgo, and iPhone, mobile units outnumber consoles two-to-one. The iPhone especially is part of the "democratisation of game development", both increasing competition for EA, but also lowering development costs.

On the console side, Hilleman blamed piracy and used sale for what he says is the end of games' long tail. But, he said, markets like Korea show there's plenty of growth upon which a corporate behemoth may feed.

"If I want to go to see the past of gaming, I go to Japan," Hilleman told Takahashi. "If I want to see the future, I go to Korea." There, he says, are 28,000 parlours where Internet gamers pay by the hour, and the establishments reap high margins off of concession sales. Hilleman also pointed to Webkinz as a forward-facing brand, less so Burnout, where 2:1 ratio of users to games sold makes apparent the influence of used sales and piracy to a publisher's bottom line.

Also of interest in this piece: Takahashi's back-of-the-envelope calculations based on the idea that EA typically spends two or three times as much on marketing and advertising as it does on developing a game.

That's because advertising is critical to getting a game in the top ten rankings. If you have a $US10 million game, don't be surprised if the the TV advertising costs drive the ad budget to $US30 million. If a $US60 game yields revenue of $US35 for EA, then (according to my math) the company has to sell 1.1 million copies just to break even.

EA'S Chief Creative Officer Describes Games Industry's Re-Engineering [Venturebeat via Blue's News]


Comments

    So this is why they stopped making so much shovel ware?

    i cant wait for xbox 2880 its gonna be so much more awesome than ps6

    I just want to point one thing out... i don't ever want to see a Xbox 720 (or 560) for that matter.

    MS have better brains than to name it that!

    This dude doesn't really explain why he thinks there will be a so-called PS3.5 or Xbox 560 either. What a douche.

    And i don't believe Mobile Gaming is the next thing! Yes the iPhone is selling like hot-cakes and will continue to do so. I mean Apple will learn from their mistake of the 3GS but the next one will be BIG! But it doesn't mean everyone is playing games on their Mobiles.

    Look what happened to the N-Gage, c'mon! Everyone is just going along with this whole App thing. Nokia, Apple and all that. But their only Apps or small games. I don't know anyone who owns any of these type of phones that play their Apps or Games for an hour or more. They just play it a little when bored or on a train, waiting for something etc.. Not like how gamers game on a console, PC or a DS or PSP.

    Is Korea even a big market? I understand it is growing really fast. But will it become a Japan or even a UK? Probably not a US of corse, i mean Japan isnt even the US yet. But will Korea even match that of the Japan or UK! the Xbox has a better chance with Korea, i understand its fairly popular over there and they give all consoles a fair deal of attention compared to the one-eyed Japanese.

    With Piracy.. its developers, publishers and companies fault. They can easily prevent it. Maybe not 100% but they realize a lot of backlash will come their way including people's refusal to buy games anymore.

    Not all people who partake in piracy buy games and not all ONLY pirate games. Some buy games that they really like, lets say for example a Halo fanboy may play pirated games but buy a Halo game as such cause they really like the games. There are a lot of those out there and with them being prevented to play pirated games, they can really affect ones sales.

    Look at some people protesting MW2. A lot are saying they're not gonna buy it. Which means PIRACY all over again for Activion/Infinity Ward.

    "Is Korea even a big market"
    ...
    "With Piracy.. its developers, publishers and companies fault. They can easily prevent it. "
    ...
    "Everyone is just going along with this whole App thing. Nokia, Apple and all that. But their only Apps or small games. I don’t know anyone who owns any of these type of phones that play their Apps or Games for an hour or more."

    You don't know what you're talking about. And your justifications for piracy -- let alone your attempt to blame the victims of it -- are just pathetic.

      "And your justifications for piracy — let alone your attempt to blame the victims of it — are just pathetic."

      And your brash attempt to condemn him and pull the anit-piracy angle on the goddamn internet automatically paints you as an asshole.

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