Kotick: EA will not profit from The Old Republic

CEO of Activision Blizzard

Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick has taken a stab at rival company Electronic Arts, stating that the competitor’s upcoming MMORPG and challenger to World of Warcraft, Star Wars: The Old Repbulic, will not make money for the enemy publisher.

Kotick downplayed the subject of SWTOR potentially stealing subscribers away from WoW and taking over the game’s dominance of the MMO market, instead suggesting that only George Lucas will profit from the game’s release thanks to licensing rights owed to LucasArts.

“Lucas is going to be the principal beneficiary of the success of Star Wars,” Kotick said. “We’ve been in business with Lucas for a long time and the economics will always accrue to the benefit of Lucas, so I don’t really understand how the economics work for Electronic Arts.”

The head of Activision went on to mention how hard it is for an MMO to thrive.

“If you look at the history of the people investing in an MMO and achieving success, it’s a small number,” Kotick said.

Though EA has declined to respond regarding the story, a statement by CEO John Riccitiello back in February, which claimed SWTOR would be profitable with at least 500,000 subscribers, suggests that the publisher would be inclined to disagree.

“At half a million subscribers the game is substantially profitable, but it’s not the kind of thing we would write home about,” said Riccitiello. “Anything north of a million subscribers–it’s a very profitable business.”

Kotick did not address the slow decline of WoW, where the game recently lost 800,000 subscribers in the last quarter, capping off a 2-million subscriber drop over the past year. According to Lazard analyst Atul Bagga, that’s just the beginning as he expects SWTOR to nab an additional 3 million to 4 million WoW subscribers when the game releases.



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Author: Mike Murphy View all posts by
Mike has been playing games for over two decades. His earliest memories are of shooting ducks and stomping goombas on NES, and over the years, the hobby became one of his biggest passions. Mike has worked with GamerNode as a writer and editor since 2009, giving you news, reviews, previews, a voice on the VS Node Podcast, and much more.

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