EA is not shying away from being flexible with game prices.
Those who follow games industry news likely already knew, from earlier reports, that Star Wars: Squadrons wouldn't be a full price, $60 game.
Motive's project didn't spend long in development, and it was a perfect candidate to bolster EA's line-up in the fall. Enter Squadrons: a multiplayer-focused $40 game. That lower price essentially tells players that they shouldn't expect a massive game, and that was indeed EA's intention.
In a call following EA's Q2 FY2021 earnings, the publisher was asked why it went with that price, as opposed to either of the more common extremes ($60, free-to-play).
"Games all have different scales and most of our games right now have huge scale," said COO Blake Jorgensen.
"We designed this game to really focus on what we heard from consumers, which is one of their greatest fantasies and that's to be able to fly X-Wing fighter, TIE-Fighter and be in a dogfight and so it doesn't have the breadth of some of our games but it is still an incredible game and so that's why we chose to price it at a slightly lower level to also allow access to as many people as possible who had that Star Wars fantasy."
Jorgensen also pointed out that this isn't the first time EA priced one of its big games below $60.
"We've differentiated pricing on things like Plants vs Zombies games because we knew that they were skewed to younger audiences for example or maybe didn't have the depth of all of the game modes that you might see in Ultimate [Team] or a FIFA or Madden," he added.
CEO Andrew Wilson further explained that it was also important that EA set the appropriate expectations.
"This is a very deep and immersive game and that $40 felt like the right price point given the breadth of the game, very proud of what we are doing," Wilson said. "We wanted it to be a wholly self-contained experience that was deeply immersive in that fantasy."
Star Wars: Squadrons is due out October 2 on PC, PS4 and Xbox One.