At a recent FIFA event, EA Sports president Peter Moore spoke of the future of games delivery, placing emphasis on the importance digital formats will have for gaming. “As you all know, we’re flat to down in the world of packaged goods. When we look at the latest US numbers for 2009, we’re actually down 10 per cent year on year. The real growth, though, is coming from digital downloads, premium downloadable content, subscriptions, micro-transactions, premium access – all of the things we look at which are innovative and, quite frankly, are upon the horizon; the future of our industry from a growth perspective,” he said.
Of course, Moore isn’t exactly breaking new ground here. Many industry prognosticators have predicted that games will take the form of online offerings with smaller upfront asking prices, but more opportunities to purchase in-game items and DLC add-ons. But, with Mass Effect 2, arguably the most important game release of early 2010, producing very strong sales numbers using the old fashioned disc-in-a-box paradigm, a fair question to ask is when exactly the evolution to digital content delivery will take place.