Warner Bros. is focusing on creating live service games for its biggest franchises
Warner Bros. CEO David Zaslav has revealed that the company is now working on transforming its most popular franchises into online live service titles rather than traditional single-player releases.
During the company's most recent earnings call (via Seeking Alpha), Zaslav detailed WB's plans to transform "$1 billion gaming properties" including “Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, DC, which is mainly Batman today, and Mortal Kombat,” into "always on" live service titles. “Our focus is on transforming our biggest franchises from largely console and PC based with three-four year release schedules to include more always on gameplay through live services, multiplatform and free-to-play extensions with the goal to have more players spending more time on more platforms,” Zaslav said.
The shift to live service games is becoming more common among larger corporations as updates and in-game battle passes keep players returning over time, which WB sees as a "significant opportunity to generate greater post-purchase revenue."
WB has had little success with the live service model thus far, with its fighting game MultiVersus being pulled offline and planning to relaunch in 2024 due to low player numbers. Mortal Kombat: Onslaught, the company's most recent attempt at a major franchise adaptation, was released on mobile at the end of October, and Rocksteady's Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League is set to release on consoles and PC in February 2024 after being delayed following a lukewarm reception from fans.
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