An analyst from KeyBanc Capital Markets has come out in defence of EA this week. Amid the controversy surrounding Star Wars: Battlefront II, its microtransactions and perceived ‘pay-to-win’ economy analyst Evan Wingren has defended the publisher.
Writing in a note to clients, Wingren claims that gamers anger isn’t justified and they are overreacting. “If you take a step back and look at the data, an hour of video game content is still one of the cheapest forms of entertainment.
“Quantitative analysis shows that video game publishers are actually charging gamers at a relatively inexpensive rate, and should probably raise prices.”
Wingren goes on to claim that the controversy has been manufactured as it involves EA, Star Wars, Reddit and a campaign by gaming media against microtransactions.
Gamers aren’t overcharged, they’re undercharged (and we’re gamers). … This saga has been a perfect storm for overreaction as it involves EA, Star Wars, reddit, and certain purist gaming journalists/outlets who dislike MTX
Wingren estimated the average cost-per-hour for a Star Wars: Battlefront II player. He based it on an initial $60USD outlay for the game, $20 USD per month of microtransactions and 2.5-hours per day played. This equates to 40 cents per hour. Wingren compares this to 60 cents per hour of Pay Television, 80 cents per hour for movie rental and $3 per hour for a movie watched at the cinema.
According to CNBC EA’s shares fell sharply in the wake of the controversy and have now dropped 10% month to date.
In his note, Wingren added to clients “Despite its inconvenience to the popular press narrative, if you like Star Wars and play video games at an average rate, you’re far better off skipping the movie and playing the game to get the most bang for your buck.”
Star Wars: Battlefront II is available now.