Following yesterday’s shocking announcement that EA finally caved in and removed (for now) all microtransaction elements in Star Wars Battlefront II, it seems we now know a bit more on what happened behind the scenes.
According to a source that wishes to remain anonymous, Disney talked with top-level EA executives over the growing backlash (something that was corroborated by The Wall Street Journal who reported that Consumer Products and Interactive Media boss Jimmy Pitaro sent a message to EA about their concerns) regarding Star Wars Battlefront II’s bad press when it comes to loot crates, and how some see it as “gambling.”
Based on the info we received, it states that both parties agreed that the Battlefront II microtransactions model needs to be revamped to stave off further backlash. Also, it mentions how Disney was “unhappy” with how long EA took effective action regarding the situation since it has evolved enough that the backlash could potentially harm the Star Wars IP given The Last Jedi is hitting theaters soon.
Possibly the biggest thing though, is how Disney apparently gave a less-than-direct threat that EA could lose the Star Wars publishing exclusivity rights if things didn’t improve. The House of Mouse had concerns about the exclusivity deal with EA due to the press backlash, investigations regarding gambling, and the bad press involved.
MP1st has reached out to EA, with a rep for the publisher stating, “we are not commenting on that” as the only statement so far.
Once we know more details, or if EA issues a more formal statement, we’ll update the story.