Throughout all of his indiscretions, Tiger Woods has been able to count on support from EA, publisher of the phenomenally successfully Tiger Woods PGA Tour videogames. Despite early speculation that EA was reviewing Woods’s association with the games, the golfer was quickly backed up by the company and got to keep his deal to front the lucrative franchise.
But was it a deal worth saving? According to sales data, first month sales of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11 have fallen 68 per cent compared to the launch of last year’s game. The Wii edition saw an 86 per cent decline, a significant drop unheard of in previous years.
The question must be asked: Has Tiger Woods’s penis killed an entire videogame franchise?
One man thinks it may have. Doug Creutz is an analyst with Cowen Group, and opined to Gamasutra that Woods’s scandal may be linked to plummeting sales:
“Although this is probably due in part to the fact that last year’s version shipped bundled with Nintendo’s new Motion Plus controller, we are concerned that Woods’ scandal woes may have permanently damaged the sales potential of what we believe to be EA’s third most important sports franchise, behind Madden and FIFA.”
“Permanently damaged” – ouch. I suppose there’s no way of testing this theory, but it’s fascinating that this could have had such an impact. On the plus side for EA, they may already have an heir lined up.