The closure of Visceral Games last month left many convinced that it had to do with the studio focusing heavily on a linear single-player campaign for its mysterious Star Wars game. Electronic Arts (EA) has often exclaimed interest for the games-as-a-service model but was linearity really an issue when it comes to Visceral Games? Apparently it was to a certain degree.
Speaking at the annual Credit Suisse Technology, Media and Telecom Conference (via DualShockers) earlier today, chief financial officer Blake Jorgensen acknowledged that there were indeed concerns about linearity.
“As we kept reviewing the game, it continued to look like a much more linear game [which] people don’t like as much today as they did five years ago or 10 years ago,” Jorgensen revealed.
He further added that the studio was “sub-scale” and had only around eighty employees, which is insufficient for a project at such a massive scale. Hence, the shuttering of Visceral games was an “economic decision” at the end.
Based on the new statements, EA appears to have had trouble believing that the Star Wars game would recover its development cost with just its largely-focused linear single-player experience. It is all about revenue generation, as Jorgensen pointed out, and multiplayer models with purchasable loot boxes and regularly updated content make that task easier.
For what it is worth, chief executive officer Andrew Wilson previously mentioned that the Star Wars game is changing directions because the company wants “the overall gameplay experience” to be right for players. We can only hope that the direction in the minds of the company is very different for what it pushed with Star Wars Battlefront II.