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During an internal company meeting in November, Wilson stated that the FIFA license had been “an impediment” to EA’s plans for the series. That’s according to anonymous comments provided to VGC. Supposedly, Wilson claimed that FIFA had prevented EA from expanding its games into modes away from traditional 11vs11.
Wilson went as far to say that the only value EA got from the license in a non-World Cup year was “four letters on the front of the box”. While Wilson said that “we’ve had a great relationship with FIFA over the past 30-odd years,” it could be coming to a close. Wilson added he believes “the FIFA brand has more meaning as a video game than it does a governing body of soccer”.
Elsewhere in the meeting, the CEO also added that players “want more cultural and commercial brands relevant to them”. He suggested they wanted such brands to be “more deeply embedded in the games”. Nike was cited as an example, but Wilson pointed out that “because FIFA has a relationship with Adidas, we are not able to do that”.
In recent times, it has been suggested by some sources that EA would end its relationship with FIFA. In October, the company said it was “exploring the idea of renaming our global EA SPORTS football games”. Following the news, FIFA suggested it was open to working with new games companies. The announcement was seen to be a direct attack toward’s EA’s earlier attitude towards the footballing body.
A New York Times report last year suggested that negotiations had stalled due to EA wanting more rights. FIFA also supposedly doubled its fee for the license to $2.5 billion over the next decade.
EA’s current 10-year naming deal expires after the World Cup in Qatar later this year. EA’s football series could potentially change quite substantially after that time.
In other gaming news, a Twitter bot is posting every frame of Doom. Co-creator Steve Nass said “it might actually help distract people from the endless void of depressing information” on the service.