The Star Wars Battlefront 2 loot box controversy hit EA hard on the markets but analysts at Merrill Lynch expect things to improve next year.
According to analyst Justin Post on CNBC, EA’s shares have “materially underperformed” and physical game sales of Star Wars Battlefront 2 were down 53 percent compared to the original Star Wars Battlefront. He also predicts that the Star Wars Battlefront 2 sales will fall 2.5 million short of expectations.
Analysts are now hoping that EA will reinstate the microtransactions on the game and have come up with their own list on how EA should reinstate them. These include focusing on cosmetic items only, purchase and unlock “supporting heroes” (less important characters), and single-player downloadable content.
All of these are reasonable suggestions and Battlefront 2 players are unlikely to have a problem with cosmetic items and new single-player content.
Justin Post expects controversy over loot boxes to subside adding, “As controversy subsides post-holidays, we expect investor interest to pick up ahead of a stronger FY19 title slate, renewed digital optimism, and operating leverage potential. Battlefront MTX relaunch and FIFA World Cup content launch are key 1H events.”
The loot box damage has been done and gamers have long memories so EA will need to be very careful if they do plan to reintroduce microtransactions in the future.