Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter has claimed that Criterion is working on a military shooter that may become a Battlefield spin-off.
In an analyst note issued today, Pachter responded to suggestions that the next Battlefield game could be delayed following the issues with Battlefield 4. “We believe this speculation is unfounded,” he said. “Although EA has as yet to announce a Battlefield extension for FY15, we believe Criterion Games is working on a military shooter that may become a brand extension for the Battlefield franchise in FY15.
“We spoke with management on Thursday afternoon, and although they have not yet announced a version of Battlefield for FY15, they confirmed that our understanding is spot on and that if a version of Battlefield were to be released in FY15, it would be developed by a studio other than DICE,” he added.
Back in September U.K.-based Criterion was downsized to just 15 people, with creative director Alex Ward stating that the team was moving away from the racing genre and was working on something new. Swedish studio Ghost Games is now in control of the Need for Speed franchise after inheriting it from Criterion.
Battlefield developer DICE is currently working on several games spread across its two studios (in Sweden and Los Angeles), including Battlefield 4 expansions and patches, Mirror’s Edge 2, and Star Wars: Battlefront.
EA could be looking to fill the gap that Call of Duty takes advantage of every year due to Battlefield’s two year development cycle. Criterion would be a good choice as they have experience in the genre, having released popular shooter Black back in 2006—the mystery title could also be Black 2.