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SimCity tops 2m sales, Battlefield Premium 4m

Also, EA's biggest retail partner in Q1 wasn't Best Buy or GameStop, it was Apple

SimCity sales have topped two million units since the game's release in March.

Following a turbulent launch, which saw server issues force players offline and render the game near unplayable, EA Labels president Frank Gibeau has called the game a "success".

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"In retrospect, our biggest takeaway is that we are lucky that SimCity has an enormous number of loyal fans," the executive said in a new VentureBeat interview. "That first week after launch was really rough - an experience nobody wants to live through again.

"We've sold more than two million units, and the number of people logging in and playing is holding steady. SimCity is a success. However, underestimating demand in the first month was a major miss. We hope that the game and the service we've provided since then meets the fans' high standards."

The game's latest sales figure was revealed as part of the publisher's reporting of its first quarter financial results. SimCity sales stood at 1.6 million at the close of the fourth quarter of the previous business year.

Among other business highlights revealed, EA said the Battlefield Premium community has grown to over four million members. That's up from 3.5 million Battlefield Premium subscribers three months earlier.

The publisher also said digital sales platform Origin now has over 50 million registered users.

EA said last night that it made more money from its digital channels than from packaged software during the three months ended June 30, and Gibeau told VentureBeat that Apple was the company's biggest retail partner during the period.

"[Digital] is not an experiment," he said. "It's a full commitment. We burned the ships and marched inland. About 76 percent of our revenue this quarter was digital, not disc-based. We're off to the races.

"The quarter was a bit of an anomaly because we didn't put out any blockbuster console titles, but our biggest retail partner, measured by dollar volume, in Q1 was not Best Buy or GameStop. It was Apple. That's never happened before. [Ex-CEO] John Riccitiello started us on this course, but we embrace it, we support it, and we're going to take it to new heights."

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