Need for Speed developer Criterion Games will mostly focus on Battlefield going forward

Need for Speed developer Criterion Games will mostly focus on Battlefield going forward

Kris Holt

Electronic Arts is “all-in on Battlefield” as it tries to bolster the first-person shooter series. To that end, it has shifted Need for Speed developer Criterion Games over from its sports division to the EA Entertainment unit. Most of Criterion’s team will be working with DICE, Ripple Effect and Ridgeline on Battlefield games, while “a core group” will continue with Need for Speed.

Criterion already has experience with Battlefield after working on vehicles for those games over the years. As such, the studio is a logical fit to help out with the franchise. “Criterion’s experience with Battlefield, our technology and building engaging experiences will have an immediate positive impact as we continue to work on Battlefield 2042, and as we continue pre-production on a connected Battlefield Universe,” Vince Zampella — who leads the Apex Legends, Star Wars Jedi, Battlefield and Need for Speed teams — wrote in a memo.

Battlefield 2042 wasn’t exactly received well. It had a buggy launch and it took DICE several months to fix some of the core issues before the game’s first season started. Soon after it released Battlefield 2042, EA added Battlefield to the portfolio of franchises that Zampella (a FPS veteran who previously worked on Titanfall and Medal of Honor) oversees.

EA is arguably in need of another majorly successful franchise it can rely on in the long run alongside EA FC, Madden, Apex Legends and The Sims. Battlefield is one of its best bets for that, given the series’ mostly strong track record. Competing with the likes of Call of Duty will remain a tall order. However, it seems like EA has a clearer plan for how to do that and it’s beefing up the ranks of developers to help it get there.

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