Headquartered in Redwood City, California, EA sports was founded in 1982 and became a pioneer of the computer games industry. They now develop and deliver games to millions of fans around the world and recorded record revenues of over $7 billion in 2022.
They produce a host of successful and well-known titles including Battlefield, Apex Legends, The Sims, Need for Speed, and Titanfall, but they are best known for their sporting franchises which dominate the video game market. These include:
- Madden NFL
- NBA Live
Launched: 1993 as FIFA International Soccer
According to Guinness World Records, FIFA is the best-selling sports video game franchise in the world, and EA’s latest results show that FIFA 23 is on course to be the biggest title in franchise history, but what makes the game such a success?
The game undergoes constant improvements every year in order to improve the gameplay experience and bring it up to date with changes in the sport. This year’s iteration includes two new women’s leagues and even a Ted Lasso option.
FIFA boasts ultra-realistic gameplay thanks to advances in technology and more powerful consoles. FIFA 23 includes several updates, such as advanced motion capture, machine learning and Hypermotion2 technology which provides, “Twice the real-world data capture brings more true football animation, unlocking ultra-realistic gameplay in every match across every mode in FIFA 23.”
License agreements with clubs, leagues and football associations allow EA to include official team kits, stadiums, player images and even the Champions League music, before every game, creating an even more realistic player experience.
With 11 different game modes to choose from, including Career mode, Ultimate Team and World Cup, there’s something for everyone to enjoy, and yet another reason for FIFA’s current title as the king of soccer games.
Hugely popular when it was first released, NBA Live put fans in the middle of the on court action, allowing them to upset the NBA odds and finally lead their beloved Pacers, Pelicans, or Nets, to a long awaited championship.
Due to the success of competitor 2K’s NBA 2K series, the game was eventually discontinued in 2018 with the release of final version NBA Live 2019. Fans will be excited to learn however, that EA sports may not be finished with basketball quite yet, with stories emerging of a next-generation basketball game currently in development.
Madden NFL 23
Since 2004, Madden NHL has been the only officially licensed National Football League video game. Its success has seen it become a part of American culture and even inspire and influence real-life players and coaches.
There’s plenty of variety here for players, with 5 game modes in total, including the popular Franchise, Face of the Franchise and Ultimate Team. But much like EA’s FIFA franchise, Madden’s success can be attributed to several factors:
The game is updated every year to encourage gamers to buy the new addition. Gameplay enhancements and new technology make each release a must-have.
Madden 23 comes with numerous tech updates, including the all-new FieldSENSE Gameplay System that equips players with more control at every position in every mode and is a new foundation for consistent, ultra-realistic gameplay.
As the only officially licenced NFL game, Madden 23 features all the teams, players, coaches and stadiums you’d expect to see, putting players at the heart of huddle with their heroes.
The F1 game series holds the official license of the FIA Formula One World Championship and the FIA Formula 2 Championship, making it the go-to title for millions of Formula One fans around the world. The game is even used by drivers new to Formula One and Two, to help them learn different racing tracks, such is its realism.
There are three game modes on offer, including, Career, Time trials, Pirelli challenges and single races plus Multiplayer options. That means you can dive straight in for one-off races with friends or work your way up through the ranks and aim for the title, depending on your preference.
As ever, the game comes packed with the latest technology to further improve gameplay and recreate the experience of driving a Formula One car better than ever before. F1 23 even promises fans “A bespoke VR camera (that) enables you to get closer to how it feels to drive a Formula 1 car.”
The Future of sporting video game franchises
There’s no denying EA are the King of sports video games, and with other successful titles in their stable, including NHL and UFC, plus the imminent launch of the highly anticipated PGA Tour, their success looks assured for many years to come.