Many players have always had fairly unfavorable views of EA, but as of late, it seems that those negative sentiments have heightened. Last year’s launch of Battlefield 2042, by all accounts, did not go well. Various issues, including its downright crippling glitches, resulted in a middling reception from critics and a considerably worse one from fans. EA CEO Andrew Wilson’s support of NFTs, which have received widespread opposition from many players and developers, only made the company look worse in the public eye. It appears that EA has acknowledged its dwindling PR, as not only did Wilson express disappointment with the launch of Battlefield 2042, but he also appears to have walked back his support of NFTs.
As reported by Seeking Alpha, Wilson’s comments came from a call held to discuss EA’s earnings during the third quarter of the company’s fiscal year. He noted that EA “did have a challenge in Q3 as the launch of Battlefield 2042 did not meet expectations.” He specifically brought up the game’s technical issues, as well as the fact that many players did not take kindly to the newly introduced mechanics and some of the title’s approaches to design. Although Wilson did tease more updates to come, it remains uncertain whether the company will fully address players’ core problems with the game.
What about the NFTs?
In regards to NFTs, Wilson noted that the company is “not looking at anything at this juncture.” Additionally, he states that although “collectability” remains an integral part of EA’s games and the industry in general, he does not know whether NFTs will make up a part of the company’s approach. This marks quite the reversal from a statement he made last year, in which he referred to both NFTs and the blockchain as “the future of our industry” [Cheers, PC Gamer].
The fact that EA recognized the lackluster launch of Battlefield 2042 does not come off as surprising, but the backtracking of its endorsement of NFTs this early on seems much more unexpected. Plenty of individuals and smaller companies have abandoned NFTs. But this occurs less often with major companies like EA, which has a particularly sour reputation among many players. It demonstrates how robust the opposition to NFTs has been, and it could mean that more big gaming companies could follow suit.