In its call with investors following Q4 and 2008 fiscal year results, EA executives revealed that Harmonix/MTV's Rock Band
has sold more than 1.5 million copies during the quarter, commented on the state of the PC games industry, and gave some direction on where its attempted Take-Two acquisition stood.
In its coming year, EA execs said the company plans to release some 55 games, including 30 for PS3 and Xbox 360, over 20 for the Wii, 18 for the DS, eight for the PSP, 30 for the PC, and 15 for the PS2.
That includes the previously reported new Sim Animals
franchise, and a 20th anniversary edition of Madden
, which will utilize what CEO John Riccitiello called a "holographic interface" -- but added no further details on what precisely that meant.
Asked to comment on the state of the PC gaming industry, Riccitiello admitted that "the box side" of PC gaming is "soft," and has been soft for some time. "Were it not for Sims
and World of Warcraft
," he added, "it'd be a pretty dismal sector."
However, he was quick to add that subscription, microtransaction, and casual based businesses are centered on the PC, and with that factored in, the platform has been "growing for several years," but was being somewhat ignored and "categorized wrongly by looking at the box side."
Finally, asked to comment on ongoing negotiations to acquire Take-Two, Riccitiello added that while there was very little he could say, the current $25.74/share, roughly $2 billion valuation, contrary to Take-Two's statements, "fully took into account Grant Theft Auto 4
," which he praised as a "spectacular game."
As far as next steps went, Riccitiello said EA is currently working with the Federal Trade Commission on the deal, adding that "we don't believe our proposal is anti-competitive," but said the "timing is in their hands."