EA has announced that Need for Speed studio Criterion Games will focus its efforts on the Battlefield franchise.
In a new post shared today, it was confirmed that Criterion has moved over to EA Entertainment to work on improving Battlefield 2042, as well as to focus on the future of the franchise, while a “core group” will continue to develop games for the Need for Speed series.
“Criterion has a rich history in gaming, having worked on Battlefield, Battlefront, Burnout, and of course, Need for Speed. I’m thrilled to have a studio with such pedigree join the studios I oversee,” said Respawn boss Vince Zampella.
“As we’ve said before, we’re all-in on Battlefield. Today, Criterion is added to our world-class Battlefield studios dedicated to ushering in a new era for the franchise. The majority of the team will be working alongside DICE, Ripple Effect, and Ridgeline [which] are led by Byron Beede, GM of Battlefield. 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.”
Zampella explained that the work will continue on what’s next Need for Speed, saying that he has a passion for cars, “which also makes Criterion a perfect match for me to explore another genre in gaming that I love.”
“I’m really looking forward to working with a core group as we shape what’s next for the franchise.”
Battlefield 2042 launched in 2021 but quickly went on to lose popularity on Xbox two months later. In June 2022, DICE said that despite the rocky launch, it wouldn’t be shifting its focus away from the game and would reorganize, restructure, and improve. The game currently has a “Mixed” reception on Steam, and according to the Steam Charts has seen a large drop in players over time.