Electronic Arts’ mixed martial arts video game has barely been out for a week and people are already talking about it like it’s a stillborn baby or brain dead vegetable about to be taken off life support:
EA is likely to back out of the mixed martial arts genre after its debut offering, EA Sports MMA, made a poor start at retail.
That’s according to Cowen & Company analyst Doug Creutz, who thinks UFC Undisputed maker THQ may have scored a knockout blow in the MMA battle between the publishers.
“EA’s recently released ‘MMA’ appears to be more or less DOA at retail, while UFC recently announced an extension of its license with THQ, likely putting an end to EA’s efforts to expand into the mixed martial arts genre,” the analyst said in a research note this morning.
Fighters Only has a bit more of an even keeled assessment of the situation:
If sales of EA MMA are consistently poor, that will probably reflect the fact that the company is suffering the effects of having no UFC association rather than any inherent problems with the title itself. As many rival promotions have found, the UFC simply seems to have a lock on the mixed martial arts market and it can be very expensive trying to challenge them.
On the other hand, the analysts predicting the failure of EA MMA also predicted the failure of DJ Hero, now in its second installment. In the US, the EA MMA game also released on the same day as the new fallout title, the equivalent of staging your own show’s MMA PPV debut on the same night as a UFC show. Not the brightest of moves.
Meanwhile, Loretta Hunt (now reppin the LA Times – you go, girl) has an EA staffer saying their game sold just as well as UFC 2010 up to this point. I look forward to the official sales figures that call him a liar.
Personally I hate the game and think it belongs in a landfill next to all those unsold ET cartridges from the 80s. That being said, if EA MMA is going down, it’s not going to go down without a fight. These are the same people that bombarded us so hard with promo videos, pictures, and press releases that it bordered on sexual harassment. And now some dippy analyst is telling us one week into the game’s release that EA is gonna pull the plug before Christmas season even starts? I don’t think this gentleman has taken into account the ‘Idiot parents who’ll probably buy the wrong MMA game’ demographic.
On other EA MMA news, at least the iPhone version of the game is doing okay on the charts: it’s being listed as the ’12th most grossing app for Apple’, whatever that means. Personally, I’m just interested in seeing what constituted ‘Infrequent/Mild Sexual Content or Nudity’ according to Apple’s rating system. My bet: Josh Barnett’s breasts.