Analyst: Weak Sales of Mirror's Edge, Rock Band 2 Could Mean More EA Cuts

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Electronic Arts titles such as Mirror's Edge, Rock Band 2 and Need for Speed Undercover are expected to underperform this holiday season, and could spell more product and personnel cuts for the publisher, according to Lazard Capital Markets analyst Colin Sebastian.

"Specifically, we believe several EA titles are tracking below plan at retail this holiday, including Need for Speed Undercover (with disappointing reviews), new franchise Mirror's Edge, and Rock Band 2," said Sebastian, as relayed by Gamasutra.

Lazard predicts that a sluggish season could mean more layoffs for EA--in addition to the October 30 slashing of 600 jobs--and product cancellations, such as the company's recent termination of EA LA's Tiberium.

"Importantly, we believe EA is continuing to review its cost structure and franchise base, and it is possible that management will announce further cuts in headcount and the development pipeline (including existing franchises) over the coming quarters," added Sebastian.

While hard sales data of holiday titles has not yet been released, Lazard's "tracking" bills the aforementioned games as slower-than-expected sellers. However, Sebastian noted that Dead Space, FIFA 09 and Left 4 Dead have seen strong sales in spite of the overall disappointment.

From The Chatty
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    December 8, 2008 7:42 PM

    Rock band 2 was such a disappointment. The new feature are not worth it and I would have rather have spent the 60$ on DLC of my choice for RB1.

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      December 8, 2008 7:45 PM

      Wow, I was just going to post the opposite. $60 for the songs, plus the ability to make custom track lists seem like a bargain to me.

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        December 8, 2008 7:53 PM

        Most of the enhancements and additions seem like they could have been done via a patch or update.

        I bought RB2, but I would have rather had a downloadable upgrade with the same functionality added to Rock Band 1 for $10-20 excluding any new songs. This RB2 disc is still a decent deal if you have no musical bias. $60 for 104 songs- DLC prices that would be over $200, but I really dislike more than half of the tracks.

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      December 8, 2008 7:49 PM

      it was a great deal for me since I didn't have RB1.

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      December 8, 2008 7:51 PM

      rockband 2 rocks, added all the rockband songs onto one game, fixed some of the sorting issues, more fun songs... i see nothing wrong with it. its more goodness., i have like a bazillion tracks now.

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      December 8, 2008 8:54 PM

      Look at how wrong you are. :(

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      December 8, 2008 9:45 PM

      I didn't have RB1 but RB2 is so awesome its like crack for me and my friends. The fact that I was able to add almost all of the RB1 songs to it and the upgraded drums make it a sure fire winner! Maybe if you had the original and only bought the disc I could see your hate but man you are so wrong in my eyes.

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      December 8, 2008 10:13 PM

      I paid $40 for it and it was totally worth it for the songs alone, nevermind the improvements to the overall game.

      I'm surprised it's listed as not doing well. There have been a bunch of stories published saying Harmonix has been getting mad cash from MTV because the games are performing so well. I wonder if it's a case where EA overestimated how many hardware bundles were going to sell this year. It sounds like GHWT isn't doing so hot either, and maybe both companies overestimated demand this year.

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        December 8, 2008 10:27 PM

        I would guess that and how many people didn't decided to upgrade the hardware and just bought the game. Wait did you just say that???

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          December 8, 2008 10:30 PM

          Don't mind me I feel a little retarded tonight.....

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        December 8, 2008 11:53 PM

        I love the thing. so much better for parties the RB1

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        December 9, 2008 12:25 AM

        I think they did crazy well on DLC, which doesn't earn EA anything since they just distribute the game (I believe).

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          December 9, 2008 7:35 AM

          Yah I don't think EA sees anything from DLC, I could be wrong though.

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        December 9, 2008 12:59 AM

        100% agreed. It's a bargain to get those 83 (84?) tracks + those 20 free tracks at $60.

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        December 9, 2008 3:21 AM

        It's probably just me then. I think the song list is weak compared to the first one except for a few ones which are really great.

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          December 9, 2008 7:42 AM

          No, not just you. I'm one of those people who put literally hundreds of hours into Rock Band 1 and I still haven't taken the time to beat all the tracks in Rock Band 2 because there aren't nearly as many I enjoy playing.

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          December 9, 2008 7:46 AM

          Yep. Spot on: most of them are weaker, some are really great.

          That's why I imported the RB1 songs (*shakes fist at Metallica) and play them with RB2.
          The "mystery setlists" often do contain RB1 songs. For the normal setlists, you can shoose RB1 and DLC tracks. That gives you most stars to go on in the game - you can leave out the crappy RB2 songs most of the time.

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        December 9, 2008 9:25 AM

        [deleted]

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      December 9, 2008 12:59 AM

      The set lists are the best idea of all music games!

      We used it for our christmas party last friday and it was great to just put 3-4 tracks in it: "X is singing this, then I'm doing the drums on that,....".
      That would have been a PITA with RB1 - loading screen after loading screen.

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        December 9, 2008 1:35 AM

        Except for the difficulty differences.

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          December 9, 2008 7:43 AM

          Come on, it's just for 2-4 songs - you can plan that.

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        December 9, 2008 3:18 AM

        Oh, I agree with that. That's the only thing I actually like about the new features of Rock band 2. This could have been patched to the first 1 instead.

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