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EA may only do 30 games/year one day

Riccitiello also talks up digital growth.

John Riccitiello has said that he would not be surprised if EA started producing even fewer games in a year than the 40 or so it has planned for 2010.

"30 wouldn't shock me at some point in the future," Riccitiello told a Reuters Media Summit (thanks Kotaku).

The silver-haired fox wasn't just there to acknowledge that EA was shrinking, however - he was also speaking on the broader subject of digital games and their growing significance.

"It's our goal for that business to be as important as, and over time maybe more important than, our packaged goods business," he said.

EA has already made steps in this area, albeit with mixed success. Its early DLC offerings were criticised for perceived cynicism as people were invited to spend money to cheat their way to unlockables in games like Need for Speed.

Like many publishers, it has also had to tune its pricing to fit a market where the expectation gap between four and eight quid is vast - with FIFA 10: Ultimate Team's price point, half that of last year's version, perhaps a good example.

Elsewhere the company has developed its EA Downloader technology for direct sales of PC titles, and produced microtransaction-supported games like BattleForge and Battlefield Heroes, while its PSN and Xbox Live Arcade offerings show signs of improvement, with the likes of Battlefield 1943 generating a lot of interest and positive reviews.