By all accounts, we won’t be seeing Battlefield 3 on Steam, to many gamers’ dismay (including ours). Game analyst Michael Pachter, whom we’ve heard from several times here on BF3Blog, answered a question during his latest Pach-Attack! show, concerning Battlefield 3 and how much in sales it would cost EA not to offer it on Steam.
Pachter predicts total sales of 8 million for Battlefield 3, with 10% of the sales happening on the PC platform. That’s 800,000 units, and he believes that Steam would have accounted for half of that — 400,000. Since it’s not on Steam, EA’s Origin will be offering BF3, but Pachter still believes that EA will take a hit if about 100,000 copies — 100,000 copies less sold if Battlefield 3 is not on Steam.
This isn’t a big deal, financially speaking. Many expect BF3 sales to top 10 million, and a loss of 100,000 represents only 1% of the total sales. We can imagine the vast majority of PC gamers who are disappointed about lack of Steam support will eventually buy the game, either via Origin, or another download service, or get in retail.
One things that surprised us about Pachter’s prediction is that PC would only account for 10% of the sales — this seems quite low, as Bad Company 2 has seen somewhere around 2.5 million units sold on PC, out of 9 million in total. In other words, PC sales represented a 27% take. With the anticipation and marketing money behind Battlefield 3, it’s easy to see it sell far more then the 800,000 units on PC that Pachter estimates.