EA Gains Exclusive 5 Year Contract on all things NFL
Posted by DrHogie :: 3:12 PM
From Gamestop.com (thanks to Ryan for the heads-up)
Electronic Arts has signed the biggest sports free-agent on the market. In a devastating blow to competitors, the software giant has signed an exclusive deal with the National Football League and the NFL Players Inc., a subsidiary of the NFL Players Association. The deal is an exclusive five-year licensing deal granting EA the sole rights to the NFL's teams, stadiums, and players.
The arrangement encompasses action simulation, arcade style, and manager games made for PCs, consoles, and handhelds, giving EA a firm hold on the football gaming market. The deal does not include titles for mobile phones or internet-based games, but does include online features of consoles. With next-generation consoles scheduled for release next holiday season, EA looks to handily dominate the professional football market for the duration of the license. teams, stadiums, and players.
Well, I guess this settles how much of a hurting the $20 price point put on EA, huh? And as Ryan also pointed out, how much longer before EA succeeds in getting the same type of deal for the NBA, the NHL, and MLB.
UPDATE: Ryan also noted this article from IGN that adds a couple of more tidbits:
Brown [Director of Corporate Communications for Electronic Arts] continued: "Look at what else EA has done, look at FIFA, PGA Golf Tour and NASCAR, we have exclusivity rights for all those licenses as well."
On a scarier note for these same publishers, rumors are already circulating that EA is attempting to negotiate similar deals with the NBA and Major League Baseball. When IGN contacted Trudy Muller, spokesperson for Electronic Arts about these rumors, she told us: "We cannot speculate at this time about any further plans these other leagues may have."
That's right. What we joked about earlier could very well be true: The only sports titles that would ever be released from now on would be all from EA. And we think the EA Sports series are stagnant now . . .