Battlefield 3: Battlelog Elite? EA Games eyes subscription-play for future installments

Electronic Arts is looking into the possibility of augmenting key franchises such as Battlefield or Medal of Honor with subscription services similar to Activision's Call of Duty Elite. EA Games label head Patrick Soderlund confirmed the possibility in an interview with Venturebeat, saying his work launching Battlefield 3 paved the way for the launch of Star Wars: The Old Republic. He adds that the latter's live-supported, team-integrated launch “forever changed things for us.”

While BF3 launched with the free stat-tracking service Battlelog, Soderlund says the company's undergone “a mental switch” after launching BF3 and ToR back-to-back. He says the company now sees its work on properties like Battlefield as “a 24/7 service. We have people... that are on this every single hour of every single day. 365 days a year.” Now the company's viewing A-list properties like Battlefield and Medal of Honor – not to mention Need for Speed, Dead Space and the like – as constant services.

Is subscription-play the next logical step? “I think it’s fair to say that we’re looking at that,” says Sunderland: “Like all other companies, we’re looking at how we can maximize our investment in this and... get more people playing this product.” Sunderland's fellow label, EA Sports, last year introduced a Season Ticket program as the company's first foray into subscription gaming; Battlefield 3 is soon to get its second big DLC update, the Close Quarters pack, our preview of which you can read here.