EA shifts focus to online and mobile gaming

EA CEO John Riccitiello has told Reuters that his company envisions a future where its online and mobile games are just “as critical” as Madden NFL and other console titles.

Riccitiello explained that EA plans to shift its focus to building core franchises, while simultaneously reducing the number of titles it releases.

Although EA currently publishes over 50 titles on an annual basis, it is expected to decrease the number to 40 over the next fiscal year.

“Thirty wouldn’t shock me at some point in the future,” said Riccitiello.

“We’re the world’s leader in packaged goods games, we make more of them than anybody. We’re not suggesting that business is going away … (but) there’s this other thing that’s growing.”

Riccitiello emphasized that there would always be a market for games such as the “Madden NFL” franchise, but forecasted that online and mobile games would increase to account for half of the industry in 2010.

“It’s our goal for that business to be as important as, and over time maybe more important than, our packaged goods business,” he added. ??

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