Namely, we could be seeing the football series undergo a name change, as a press release states that the company is “exploring the idea of renaming our global EA SPORTS football games. This means we’re reviewing our naming rights agreement with FIFA.”
It’s also worth noting that EA’s partnership with FIFA is completely separate from all over partnerships and licenses within football, meaning no other deals will be affected by the potential change.
EA currently has the license for the Premier League, Bundesliga, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, and more. “The future of football is very big and very bright,” says EA Sports general manager Cam Weber.
“Our priority is to ensure we have every opportunity to continue delivering the world’s greatest interactive football experiences. Thank you again for your support and feedback on this year’s game. We look forward to creating the future of football with you,” they added.
Video game industry magazine MCV/DEVELOP‘s editor Seth Barton, speaking to NME, said:
“It’s a bold move by EA. On the surface it looks like a negotiation tactic, that said publicly stating that it’s willing to go forward without its No.1 brand when you’re a publicly-listed company is not to be taken lightly.
“Of course, with the many scandals of the last decade, the (sporting body) FIFA is now a troubled brand in many eyes. And EA is right to play hardball with the organisation, as I’m sure other major partners such as beer and soft drinks brands will be as well.”
Barton added that the main problem is that many people will think of FIFA the game before the sporting body.
“FIFA is the ultimate mass-market game and renaming it would cause a lot of confusion. And what’s the alternative: EA Ultimate Team Soccer? Regional naming UEFA etc? Maybe just EA Football?
“It’s a rock and a hard place for EA, but I think it’s the right thing to be at least considering a change.”
EA has the licenses for 17,000 plus athletes, 700 plus teams, and over 30 different leagues, all across 300 individual licensed partners.
Also included in the press release are some statistics since the launch of FIFA 22. This includes 9.1million players already joining the game, 7.6million Ultimate Team squads and 460million matches played.
Another football title released recently to much less acclaim and success, Konami‘s eFootball 2022. Fans and critics have been decrying the player graphics and general feel of the game, whilst Konami promises frequent updates, the first of which will be releasing in October.
In other news, Twitch has come out and said that the recent hack was done by a “malicious third party,” and that the company is still investigating the leak itself.