Criterion will return to the racing series next year.
Electronic Arts has announced that Criterion Games will be working to support DICE on the next Battlefield title. As a result, the next Need for Speed title will be delayed by a year. Speaking to Polygon, EA’s chief studios officer Laura Miele said that Criterion isn’t off of Need for Speed and neither franchise is facing issues.
“[Battlefield] is shaping up great, the team has been working incredibly hard, they pushed hard last year, and yes, we have been working from home. And it’s hard; it’s hard to make games from home, and the [EA DICE] team is fatigued a bit. We have a great game and some incredible potential with this game.
“We’re playing to win; we’re playing to put a great Battlefield game out in the market.” With Codemasters acquired and already working on at least one new racing title, it makes sense to delay Need for Speed for the time being.
“There’s no way we would have made a decision like this without including [Criterion] and discussing this with them first, and the impact that they could have on [Battlefield].” This isn’t the first time that Criterion and DICE have worked together either. “They’ve worked on [Star Wars] Battlefront, they’ve worked on Battlefields, and they have a really tight, close collaborative partnership with DICE. I’m really confident that this is going to be a pretty positive win for them.”
Miele also confirmed that Need for Speed won’t be handed off to Codemasters in the meantime and that the series isn’t being shelved. “They [Criterion] own the Need for Speed franchise; that’s why they managed the remaster. Anything that’s happening within the Need for Speed brand, they are responsible for, or things come through them to ensure that they’re on board with it.” The next Need for Speed is currently slated to release PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, PS5 and PC.
As for the next Battlefield, it’s scheduled to launch this Fall with a reveal coming this Spring. It will return to “all-out military warfare” and feature vehicular combat, large-scale maps for multiplayer and improved destruction. Though it will take “full advantage” of the PS5 and Xbox Series X/S, it’s not confirmed yet for previous-gen consoles. Stay tuned for more details in the coming months.