Every year, shortly after the commencement of the new soccer season, EA Games delivers their latest version of the FIFA video game. Sales have remained strong with FIFA 13 selling 14.5 million copies in its first year, and FIFA 14 remaining one of the top five games sold worldwide.
This week we take a look at FIFA 15, listening into the social conversation generated in the first two weeks since the game’s release (23 September 2014 - 7 October 2014), to see if FIFA 15 is faring as well as its predecessors on social media.
DataRank gathers data from a variety of sources, collecting a diverse set of comments for more accurate analysis. Using data gathered from social networks, eCommerce sites and forums we are able to create a fuller picture of the sentiment surrounding a client’s brand. To illustrate the diversity of conversation we gather, we compared the FIFA 15 conversation we found on Instagram to the data we gathered from Twitter.
3.6% of conversation was gathered from Instagram with an overwhelming 98% positive mentions for FIFA 15. An interesting culture difference emerged on Instagram, with 92% of Instagram shares mentioning FIFA 15 uploaded by Italian users. #finalmente (finally), #mio (mine), and #love were the most popular hashtags used to accompany Insta pictures featuring the FIFA 15 game. While it is not a revelation that Italians love soccer, it is useful for companies to know where conversation about their product is being shared online. Mentions of FIFA 15 from Italians on Twitter was virtually non-existent, despite the greatest share of FIFA 15 conversation coming from this social network. In the future if EA Games needs to discover what Italians think of their product they will know to look to Instagram to find feedback.
Instagram data also held a demographic surprise, with 30% of FIFA 15 pictures shared by females. This was a stark difference to Twitter demographics, which had only 13% of FIFA 15 conversation generated by females. Information like this is invaluable for a company whose products are usually purchased by males. Further research could be conducted to see what else female FIFA 15 players are saying about their product.
Twitter users were far more critical of FIFA 15 with 41% of all tweets consisting of negative mentions. Pricing, and game performance were issues brought up in Twitter conversation.
Mentions using the dollar ($) currency were more prominent than mentions using pounds (£) but mentions including currency were concurrent with an average 80% negative sentiment. This information reveals that FIFA 15 owners using Twitter were more displeased with the game’s price across several countries including the United States, Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom, than the 20% of people who positively mentioned the FIFA 15 price.
Of all negative comments 80% complained about performance issues. The most common problem was the servers, with gameplay disrupted due to slowness, game crashing, and inability to complete tasks like redeeming packs, and coins. Comments were most negative when the performance issues interfered with running the game.
30% of all Twitter comments mentioning FIFA 15 also mentioned Madden, with 57% trying to decide which game to purchase. Sentiment surrounding mentions of the two games was more positive for FIFA 15, with 50% of mentions contemplating purchasing both games, or stating a preference for the soccer game.
Living Up to the Hype
It’s still early days for FIFA 15, but it appears that while people are excited to purchase the game, server issues are holding the game back from receiving better reviews in online conversation. Pricing complaints will likely subside in the holiday season as retailers offer discounts or packages to go along with with consoles.
Using our analysis, we project that the reception of FIFA 15 in the future will improve as EA Games resolves its server issues, and ensures that packs and coin transactions go smoothly.