Analyst firm Cowen & Company has raised first-year sales estimates for EA's Battlefield 3 from 8 million to 11 million, after noting vigorous pre-order numbers. The firm said that the game is already benefiting from an extensive marketing campaign (some estimate that EA is spending around $50 million to promote the game prior to launch) ahead of its October release on Xbox 360, Ps3, and PC; and it is seeing pre-orders for Battlefield 3 "comparable" to Call of Duty Black Ops' numbers from last year.
The firm also commented on Star Wars: The Old Republic and the market’s reaction to a planned beta test. Yesterday Electronic Arts began taking pre-orders for the game and announced a beta for sometime in September ahead of its expected holiday release. For some reason this caused shares in EA to take a small hit.
"We would have expected this to be greeted as good news, since a 2012 launch appears unlikely, but the mildly negative reaction by ERTS shares yesterday suggests investor expectations for the game are quite high," commented Cowen & Company.
They go on to predict that the game will launch in December, rather than October.