Battlefield Will Never Become A Yearly Franchise, Claims DICE

I can't shake the feeling that this a not-so-subtle shot at Activision and its policy of releasing new Call of Duty games annually, but in an interview with Gamerzines Patrick Bach from DICE has claimed that they won't follow suit.

"The business goals for us are not to release a game every year," he claimed.

"EA would never force us to release a game every year. I think that would dilute the vision of the franchise, and you will eventually kill the franchise by doing that."

Yet part of EA's business model involves annual sports updates, which is different market to an extent, but still...

And as easy as it is to target Activision, it looks like its policy is paying dividends - recent figures released by Activision state that Call of Duty: Black Ops has sold 25 million units, with Modern Warfare slightly behind at 22 million. Big numbers indeed.

You can't help but feel, however, that Modern Warfare 3 will be the true litmus test for the brand - created by a stripped down, makeshift Infinity Ward, with a core audience tiring of the formula, and stiff competition in the face of Battlefield 3. It's going to be an interesting Christmas period, that's for sure.

Annual Battlefield 'would kill the franchise' - DICE [Gamerzines]

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Comments

    "I think that would dilute the vision of the franchise, and you will eventually kill the franchise by doing that.”
    When people started calling their games "franchises" is when the industry started to go wrong.

      That's a ridiculous statement. By the third game, of course it's a franchise.

      Then again, realistically, it's actually around the 7th or 8th Battlefield game. BF1942, BF1943, BFVietnam, BF2142, BF BC, BFBC2, BF2, BF Freeversion, BF3... I've probably missed one.

      So what would you call it? An unconnected series of games? It IS a franchise. It's just how you TREAT that franchise. The Battlefield series hasn't been raped and pillaged yet. Each game has been respectfully made and is noteably different from the last (maybe not Vietnam...)

      It's not like we're talking the yearly raping of CoD here.

        It's not ridiculous, you just don't agree with me. ;-)

        I just think when creative industries start using business terms to describe their properties then it really does become more about the business side of things as opposed to the creativity side.
        And we get more of the same everything with only the rare completely new thing to get excited about. It's why movies suffer from unneccessary sequel-itis and a great deal of top 40 music is autotuned throwaway pop, and also why everything needs to be shoehorned into an already existing genre; the business people never want to take a risk on creativity, they just want to keep on going with what has worked before.
        I didn't mean they shouldn't be CALLED franchises, I just think they suffer from becoming so.

        Also, just in case you thought I was a Call of Duty fangirl weighing in on this, I actually don't like either "franchise".

          Yeah I hate the term "franchise" applied to games too. It reminds me of EA recently saying about Mirror's Edge "We love that franchise"..really? That single game is a "franchise"? If you replace the term "franchise" with "money" it seems more honest.

            +1
            Urgh, imagine looking at every game you publish and seeing the ghostly images of the next 4 games laid out in time infront of it, slowly getting worse until the 'franchise' metacritic rating and sales drop to the point where you no longer see it as viable.

          I agree with this. There are so many words that have sneaked from the business world into our everyday lexicon that subtly change the way we perceive everything around us.

          The word franchise turns a 'series'* into a money-making hamster wheel, for which creativity is not a necessary ingredient, and turns loyal fanbases of gamers into mindless consumers of recycled product.

          See the excellent book "Death Sentence" by Aussie Don Watson for much excellent elucidation on this point.

          *I would tentatively suggest that a bunch of shooters without continuity of character or story should perhaps not be even called a series, but that's neither here nor there...

            Ah, thank-you for that. I'm often unfortunately at a loss for the correct words to get my point across but you've said what I meant in a non-confusing way. And for the life of me I couldn't recall the word 'series'. :-D

        I think Strange was referring to companies expectations that every single IP needs to become a franchise as opposed to the literal sense... :)

      yeah, the term "Franchise" really cheapens the whole thing. It's not a word the evokes quality. Like they are suddenly to quality gaming as McDonald's is to fine dining.

    this is good, nice to see someone respect their own games enough not to whore them out.

    1999 Codename Eagle
    2002 Battlefield 1942
    2003 Battlefield 1942: The Road to Rome
    2003 Battlefield 1942: Secret Weapons of WWII
    2004 Battlefield Vietnam
    2005 Battlefield 2
    2005 Battlefield 2: Special Forces
    2005 Battlefield 2: Modern Combat
    2006 Battlefield 2: Euro Forces
    2006 Battlefield 2: Armored Fury
    2006 Battlefield 2142
    2007 Battlefield 2142: Northern Strike
    2008 Battlefield: Bad Company
    2009 Battlefield Heroes
    2009 Battlefield 1943
    2010 Battlefield: Bad Company 2
    2010 Battlefield: Bad Company 2: Vietnam
    2010 Battlefield Online
    2011 Battlefield Play4Free
    2011 Battlefield 3

    I'm sorry, but this is a lie:
    2002 Battlefield 1942
    2004 Battlefield Vietnam
    2005 Battlefield 2
    2006 Battlefield 2142
    2008 Battlefield: Bad Company
    2009 Battlefield 1943
    2010 Battlefield: Bad Company 2
    2011 Battlefield 3

    Looks yearly to me. Yes it's not the core Battlefield game, but offshots developed by DICE still count.

    That list above also doesn't include the expansion packs that have been released for those games.

    The difference between BF and COD is DICE actually put some effort into making and designing their game whereas Activision employ seperate dev companies to copy/pasta in order to make a yearly release date.

    Also Mark, Twilight made a tonne of money at the box office, like Black Ops selling 25 million units, does that actually make it good? Successful /= Good

    I think the main reason Battlefield isn't an annual franchise is because DICE is working solo, while there's 3-4 studios working on COD games - besides which I only consider the Infinity Ward games good and the Treyarch games filler. If that's considered diluting the franchise, I can live with it.

      the main reason is BF evolves, Acti just churns out the same game on the same engine every year and i don't count cosmetic changes as they SHOULD be expected. single player CoD is flat out boring as shit, i feel like i am just going through the motions. this area hasn't changed since CoD1.

      even 1943 was an improvement over BFBC1 engine wise.

    So very glad to hear this. I have a lot of respect for DICE as a studio. Battlefield would just get messed up if it went down the CoD path.

    It already kinda is though if you count things like Heroes and Vietnam

    Sure they aren't all the Blockbuster installments each year but they have had a release with Battlefield in the name every year since '02

    hey guys... what's the best Pre-order bonus out there?

    Every second year then? I would imagine we might see a trend of

    Battlefield
    Medal Of Honor
    Battlefield
    Medal Of Honor
    Battlefield
    etc...

    in the coming years.

      "Impress them, lower their expectations, impress them then lower their expectations... rinse and repeat."

      Dear god...

      I'm pretty sure this is EA's plan - to alternate Battlefield with Medal of Honor - having said that the lists above - woah!

    Sorry to be a cynic, but it's a little naive for DICE to be saying "EA would never force us to release a game every year."

    EA are a mega-company like Activision, profit driven and hungry, and they rape the hell out of every sports franchise they own with yearly updates.

    If BF 3 is the success that's predicted, I would say its possible that EA could buy/hire another studio to rotate BF games or variations of them yearly.

      EA is more likely to rotate Battlefield and Medal of Honour.

      EA couldn't do that (correct me if I'm wrong)

      Activision owns Infinity Ward and the Call of Duty IP.

      EA publishes Dice games, but Dice owns the Battlefield IP.

    Meh, as long as they keep making good games, then I couldn't care how often they bring them out. I do like the MoH/Battlefield rotation they have going though

    I think most of the BF v COD debate is pointless. Their both great, well made games, that are the pinnacle of their fields and most gamers I know plan on getting both of the franchises new releases later this year.

      THIS

      Haters gon' hate, though.

      Two different FPS, two different styles/audiences, and even CoD has differences between Treyarch and IW versions.

      Everyone should make themselves an effin sandwich and chill the eff out!!!

    Wont this game bugger off & die already?
    Whats that? Its not even out yet?!
    Oh f**k!

    I think they're all fun games, but nothing that I'm rushing out to buy - although I might go for Battlefield 3, given how they seem to have upped the realism and engagement with the player (at least according to the trailers!)

    What I'd love though? Battlefield 2143, with the same sort of singleplayer they're building upon in Battlefield 3. Now that'd be the dice (some sort of makeshift pun intended)

    Expansions don't count you fucking dummies -_-

      Thank you for pointing that out, was starting to get tempted to troll in frustration.

    What's wrong with everyone? Nothing wrong with releasing a game yearly if it's good. And COD MW can keep releasing games as good as they have been and I'll keep buying them - it's for the single player campaign every time. I love how it's like you're in a bad action movie - buildings exploding, tanks crashing through walls, manning mounted machine guns, etc. etc. And they always seem to upscale the action a little bit each time.

    Not happy to hear about Infinity Ward being stripped down - doesn't make sense. We're on to a good thing and we'll put less money into it? Geez.

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