EA signs deal with Live Gamer; doubles down on microtransactions
Paying nickels and dimes to buy additional content in games isn't going away anytime soon, and, in fact, it looks like EA may be doubling down on microtransactions by announcing a new partnership with Live Gamer, which will run all of EA's "microtransaction projects" and will help "accelerate the company's online gaming strategy."
The press release doesn't mention any specific games, but just off the top of my head, this deal seems particularly relevant to EA's social gaming arm, Playfish, responsible for Pet Society and FIFA Superstars on Facebook, as well as its casual gaming portal Pogo, which has had microtransactions for a while now. EA has also started to integrate more microtransactions in its blockbuster console games as well: Madden NFL Football debuted microtransactions in the 2010 edition, Dragon Age and Dead Space (among other EA console games) also rolled out additional downloadable content.
A recent study says microtransactions will grow to $7 billion globally by 2015, so it's no surprise that Live Gamer's picking up new clients, which includes THQ and Real Networks' GameHouse. I'm sure we'll be hearing similar news from other traditional game publishers in the near future -- the success of selling virtual goods has everyone seeing dollar signs.