EA Reaping Tremendous Windfalls from Digital Sales

BOOM widget 76336Speaking at an industry conference, Electronic Arts CFO Eric Brown proclaimed, "we've at least in part kind of cracked the code of how to extend the revenue derived from a physical disc to the digital world," Gamasutra reports. As proof, Brown pointed to the $16 million in revenue earned by Battlefield 1943, a game he said cost only single-digit millions to make using talent that was "between projects" as he put it. And who knows, if they ever get around to releasing it on PC that figure may yet rise.

Battlefield's ability to sell game content online carried over to Bad Company 2 as well. Brown said that the waves of downloadable content released for the game kept its revenue stream producing. And they still have the Vietnam DLC pack due up this month, targeted specifically to go after the Call of Duty: Black Ops market.

It's not all shooters, either. Even FIFA got in on the act with gamers spending, "$500, $600, $700 on digital card packs," Brown said.

Based on these successes, expect EA to continue its push using regular releases of its core brands as the springpad from which to launch additional content online. As Brown says, "We think we're growing most rapidly in DLC for the console ... we think digital starts with the disc and the high-definition platforms."