Lack of NFL License News Raises Questions

Posted January 16th, 2014 at 2:30 pm


Almost two years have passed since the NFL extended the exclusive video game license with EA Sports. At the time the events made it obvious that the satisfied partner in the relationship was the NFL and not EA. It was evident that EA would later seek to secure much more favorable terms come negotiation time.

An extension to the exclusive license has still not been announced. In the past that news has come in February (2008 and 2011) each time two years in advance of expiration. Now though the current deal is set to expire next month and there have been no updates from either side on how things will proceed. 

EA had the leverage going into the process. The NFL has been happy with the partnership to date. The exclusive deal has brought in four times as much money each year as when multiple licensees paid in and they’ve been able to enact a level of control over the product that projects the image the league desires. The NFLPA loves the arrangement too because it brings in the most money possible. For the league to turn to a different company would mean likely no NFL game on the market for at least two years and that is an unthinkable scenario.

Unlike partnerships related to apparel, uniforms, beverage, and the like there is a turnaround time and a greater sense of uncertainty that would come with switching video game developers. Though now they are expected to extended NFL Sunday Ticket with DirecTV at one point they strongly considered going elsewhere with it when DirecTV questioned its value. That is similar to how EA Sports has felt as development costs increased coupled with shrinking sales. The common thread however with how the NFL handles its brand is exclusivity. It would go against their M.O. to open up a license to multiple parties.

That doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen. EA Sports has no reason to pay a premium for the exclusive when the threat of competition is thin even if other companies had the opportunity to buy in. The investment for a new company to begin from scratch would be enormous beyond whatever enter fee there would be for the license and then there would only be the potential of splitting the pie with EA who has one of the strongest brands in gaming history with Madden. Still it’s a more realistic scenario than new serious competitors entering the field in other sports.

EA Sports continues to develop Madden NFL 15 and there have been no indications that the license is in question for this year. At the very least they seem to have secured a limited extension yet there has been no official announcement of details. That they have avoided addressing the topic suggests there very well could be a change to the status quo and the news on that being held until the completion of the NFL season and the expiration of the previous deal. Neither side gains from the perception of uncertainty so if an agreement for extending the exclusive has been reached there would have been no reason to hold an announcement back.

No one should get their hopes up too high of a change to the way the NFL license is handled and who will be involved developing officially licensed games. However there is reason to believe that a change of sorts is plausible. February or early March would be the time when details will have to be shared regarding any parties attached through a deal.

  • Chiryder

    They really should end this game. I’m still playing Madden ’12 on the 360 with updated rosters, schedules, and coaches. Much better than the mess they put out the last two years.

    • TreyIM2

      I beg to differ but enjoy 12. Then again, I’m on next gen.

  • lamar870

    i haven’t bought madden since 2003 and i will never purchase it unless 2ksports makes it.

    • Guest

      then why are you here

    • Keith.

      When you stop and think about it, it’s pretty crazy knowing that a game that came out in 2004 (2K5) had better tackling, penalties, replays, ball physics, half-time show, modes (First Person Mode), announcing, etc., than a game released almost 10 years and 2 console generations later (M25). Why more people aren’t “disappointed” if not appalled by that, I’ll never know. We’re never getting those years back. And yet we collectively let EA get away with it.

      • Cody

        People aren’t “disappointed” because it’s not true. It’s merely your opinion.

        • mpristave

          what? people have been disappointed with madden since it entered the 360/ps3 generation of consoles. What are you smoking? Seems like nobody agrees with you anyways….

          The game still doesn’t have all the features it had last on PS2. Disappointment defined, then again you don’t care about quality and would thank Ford for the Pinto.

      • Yep

        the defensive back mechanics were so broken… the tap for speed shit was retarded and the only thing they did right was offseason and even that wasnt all great…. hands down the gameplay was shitty

    • Casor_Greener

      Pasta selling you chumps snake oil. NFL and EA will re-up and you will get that same trashy Madden or you chumps will get what you have been asking for the last 10 years… another NFL game….AND GUESS WHAT….IT will be no better than Madden.

  • jr

    Finally. Something for Keith to actually discuss and not be so bias. Praise you pasta

  • SJ13_BILLS

    I honestly have thrown in the towel. Let’s all be honest, we have pushed and begged 2K to make a football game and at least extend what they were doing with All-Pro, instead they ignored us and pretty much turned their back on every football fan they have. I notuce us die-hard fans gave more and fought ( including our fellow gamers) defending this companies right to make and game

    I am not confident in EA, I have hopes they can make a stellar product representing what we see on Sunday’s at some point, but I don’t expect it anymore and have pretty much accepted that I will hold out and pick it up for $20 on a Black Friday sale for my football fix.

    2K truly did this to themselves not staying with any type of gridiron game they could have just slapped NFL textures and players in along with a few other bells and whistles when and if the opportunity came around, but they are so far behind EA still holds the cards.

    In closing, I couldn’t care less what 2K does anymore, but I still despise EA fan boys who made it hell to even try to have a fair discussion about the state of football gaming.

    • Boilerbuzz

      Being mad at 2k for not making football is kinda silky. Why would they make a game that want sell for jack. Unless you got 250000 cousins, cry to the NFL.

    • yep

      you want them to make a football game after that complete bull crap they passed off under the name nba 2k14? really are you serious… everything u just complained about is the exact same thing wrong with nba 2k14…. so if they cant get it right with nba what in sams hell makes u think they would do it better in nfl?

  • Iown You

    “For the league to turn to a different company would mean likely no NFL game on the market for at least two years and that is an unthinkable scenario.”

    That scenario is highly unlikely. Expect an NFL game from 2K or Sony by Summer of 2015 if the exclusive license is not renewed with EA and becomes open to either party. Both companies have remained preparing for this moment for quite some time and will be ready.

    2K Sports has actually been hiring new staff for a new “secret” project since late last year, some of the information has been leaking for a bit and now it’s become almost impossible for them to hide that they are preparing, and a few key jobs spots have been posted publicly for this project. They won’t confirm that it’s for football, but we know it’s not for NBA 2K since they’re fully staffed for that project, especially in the department they’re specifically hiring for.

    • Skopin

      I doubt there would be anything so quick. I find it hard to believe that either company would be allocating resources on the chance that the exclusive license isn’t renewed. They may have a plan in place, but I just don’t think they would actually be working on anything until the license is officially open.

      • Keith.

        2K can update what they already had and put out a better game than Madden next year. The best part is, it’s gonna happen.

        • Skopin

          They already tried that. It was called APF 2k8. We see how well that did.

          • Jesus

            Well to be fair 2k8 in terms of gameplay absolutely blew away madden 08 on last gen. I mean to be honest It’s better then Madden 25. Imagine 2k8s gameplay but
            With the NFLs brand. It would be the second coming of 2k5/madden 2005.

          • hungryandrew

            All Pro proved that consumers only want to play a game with current nfl team/rosters. All Pro had better tackling animations, better passing, and a.i.

          • Iown You

            If that’s concretely true, why did Blitz The League sell 1.6 Million copies?

            No, All-Pro Football proved that when you put zero effort into building a league, a story, and a fleshed-out concept, your unlicensed game is going to fail. Midway understood that and nailed it. 2K just fucked up, plain and simple.

          • Keith.

            Big difference between selling a game featuring retired players like Bubby Brister and Merril Hoge and a game featuring the NFLPA.

            The last time 2K had a licensed NFL game competing against EA’s, 2K drastically cut into EA’s market share and, well, we saw what happened from there. EA got scared, overpaid for the exclusive licenses, and we all ended up losing as a result. Without a monopoly to turn to this time, however, it very well could be curtains for EA — just like with Live.

          • Skopin

            2k also released that game at 1/3 the price of Madden, and had released a game the prior year on the same consoles. They would essentially be building the game from scratch. 2k’s NFL game would actually be in a similar situation to Live 14, without the cancellations between releases.

      • Iown You

        But it’s not really “quick”. You’re looking at it that way from the perspective of a company having to start from scratch, but neither company will have to do that since they already have working stock engines, meaning that updating and translation is the only hurdle and not a big one for talented and experienced companies like the ones we’re discussing. For them, this is just routine work.

        Also, the license being open is not as relevant as you may think during this stage of development. In fact, it’s not relevant at all. Here is why: When you build or update an engine you’re establishing a technical base from which the actual game will be developed from, and this is the most critical part. Things pertaining to a license like logos, uniform designs, colors, player faces, etc are all unimportant during the building of that base because those things are superficial and can be worked on separately as they usually are; but the code base is purely technical and indispensible of course since without it there can be no game.

        Now let’s take a look at recent history to understand where we are at this moment, because we know what history does… it repeats itself…

        Fact: The updated engine that ran All-Pro Football was being worked on intermittently beginning in 2005 before they themselves were even sure there would be an All-Pro Football in 2007. Why? Because 2K wanted to have a football engine available for the then upcoming new generation (360/PS3), and because the NFL license was due to be up a short time after 2007, in fact 2K actually purposely designed a number of restrictions into APF to curb the possibility of gamers just remaking the entire NFL (so as not to upset the NFL) and those words were told by an APF dev to OS Mod Aholbert32 at a special access unveiling of APF prior to release in 2007. 2K made sure to be prepared for if the NFL license came open again; that resolve has never changed, and we’re once again in a similar situation. The last time, the license didn’t open but this time it’s FAR more likely.

        I realize that there is always going to be skepticism until the game is in our hands. But this 2 year situation is highly unlikely to happen. If the license opens 2K for certain will not be unprepared to release next year, so I’m not even worried about that part at all. What I’m worried about is the possibility that 2K doesn’t even put out an unlicensed game with the stock they’ve been working with if the NFL license doesn’t open. That worries me a lot because I just want them to do SOMETHING regardless of the NFL license.

        • Skopin

          The only difference is that they have already tried it. Sure, it sounds easy enough in theory. It just doesn’t seem feasible financially to be working on an engine for a game that may not have the NFL branding, which is a major selling point. And they would definitely need to majorly update or overhaul the engine, or it would seem like a cash grab (using a roughly 10-year-old engine from 2k5, that was updated for 2k8). But considering their last effort that didn’t have the NFL brand on it was pretty much a flop (from a sales perspective), I just don’t believe they would be willing to take that chance again.

          Not to mention when APF was released, gamers were more receptive to another game since Madden 06/07 were such poor efforts in the minds of many, and NFL 2k5 was still relatively fresh in some people’s minds.

          Who knows? Hopefully I’m wrong. I would love to see competition back in the football gaming market.

          • Iown You

            >>>>The only difference is that they have already tried it.<<<>>>>Not to mention when APF was released, gamers were more receptive to another game since Madden 06/07 were such poor efforts in the minds of many,<<<<<

            And history has repeated itself again there as well. Check the sales numbers of Madden 25 and you will see they are very low, lowest since Madden 08, and people are once again probably receptive to something new. If 2K decides to go unlicensed if the NFL deal doesn't swing their way, they'd better not repeat the mistakes of APF because I think the backlash will be even worse this time.

    • grammernasi

      Citation needed.

    • Keith.

      I don’t think there’s any way EA gets another exclusive. First of all, EA can’t afford it financially. Second, the Pecover lawsuit made EA promise not to get an exclusive NCAA license again so that they wouldn’t have a monopoly on video game football. Since that case was settled, the NCAA has stopped giving out any license. Another NFL exclusive would land EA right back in the same hot monopoly water.

      Supposedly 2K has also been scanning NFL players’ faces. The writing’s on the wall that 2K football is back. The only question in my mind is whether we’ll see any other competitors jump back in as well.

      • jh00

        EA can’t afford it financially? Are you serious? Let’s get real here, yes they absolutely can if they wanted it.

      • Joedw

        Competition is good for business. Let the good times roll.

      • bltzkrieg666

        The NFL will only give the license to one company. EA has a lot more money than 2k does. Also, do you really think 2k is ready or even willing to get back into that fray. Do you really think that after 25 years of Madden that 2k in a single development cycled could even amass a game that anyone would want to play? You can quote all the useless financials you want Kruk. The bottom line is that none of that matters. 2k is down to only 1 sport which has many problems year in and year out and Wrestling which is not a sport and is very niche. Its not even really worth talking about. EA continues to dominate the sports scene PERIOD. The NFL absolutely has no reason to want to give 2k the license. They want money and they are getting money from EA. 2k could never outbid EA nor do I think they would even try. You don’t see EA rushing to jump back into baseball do you? Football is by far more popular and more complicated than baseball. Sorry Kruk but you will be playing Madden for the foreseeable future, so you best wrap your giant head around that.

        • Skopin

          I wouldn’t go that far. With Madden’s sales numbers being considerably lower this year than in recent years, I could see them not wanting to fork over the money to the NFL without a pretty hefty price cut. And the NFL (I would imagine) would rather have money coming in from multiple developers at a reduced rate than no developer at all if EA opts not to renew.

          If that happens, I absolutely could see 2k jumping back in to the football market. I just can’t see it happening in one year.

    • Guest

      It’s highly doubtful that they would hire staff to work on a football game project that has no guarantee. It would be a waste of resources on their part. Also you do realize that 2K works on other video games other than sport games right? Such as Bioshock, Borderlands, and XCOM: Enemy Unknown. To be honest this secret project of yours if I would guess would be more likely to be another game like Mafia 3 which has had rumors circulating for quite some time now. Also the secret project your claiming i believe is an article from 2012 which was clearly stated to be their Czech Mafia branch…

      Other than that no information exists about 2K hiring for some “secret” project….

      • Iown You

        “Other than that no information exists about 2K hiring for some “secret” project….”

        That statement is inaccurate. And I know nothing about a Czech Mafia situation or that site you referenced.

        And you’re using the term “secret” seems to be jabbing as if I have something to do with it, lol. I’m calling it secret because they haven’t said exactly what it is. Furthermore, 2K Sports is a development team that ONLY develops sports games. That has nothing to do with other 2K dev teams, we’re solely talking about the 2K Sports/Visual Concepts dev team, which I thought was obvious…

        Also, this concept of “guarantee” and “resource wasting” illustrates a fundamental misunderstanding of how games like these are developed and that misunderstanding is shared by most gamers, so I won’t fault you for that, but I will reiterate that your understanding is wholly inaccurate. I’ll state again that 2K specifically did this starting in 2005 with no guarantee whatsoever that the NFL license would open in 2008 (and it didn’t), so that alone negates this concept you’re lamenting.

        If the license opens, 2K Sports will be ready to release next season because they have been preparing in piecemeal for this moment. If the license is open and they are able to go into full final development this year, they will have a little over a year to take what they’ve been updating to final and for 2K that is more than enough time when you understand how shortly they developed All-Pro Football when adding up total dev time (you should read up on that, it’s really quite remarkable what they were able to pull off without a full dev commitment for APF). If 2K Sports had to build the entire engine from the ground up with no base to work from, then I’d say yeah don’t expect anything until mid 2016 at the earliest, but that’s not the position they’re in and therefore their timetable will not have to be as long.

        If the license opens, you’ll see.

        • Guest

          You say my information is inaccurate yet you provide no proof as to where you are pulling these rumors from as to there sports branch hiring/working on a secret project. I referenced that article because that was the only thing I could find similar to your claims.
          You saying I lack fundamental understanding of how games like these are made makes no sense because the resources being wasted that I’m pointing out from your post would be hiring new employees into their sports branch to work on a “secret” game, which could be true, but not a game that has no guarantee of availability, hence why they are wasting resources: why would they hire people and pay these people to work on a game that they have no rights to yet?? Regardless of 2K’s back up plan in hopes of the chance at making a football game they wouldn’t expend money on something with no guarantee in profit.

          Also it just wouldn’t be a good idea for them to make a football game for 2015 with such a short timetable because no matter how much praise you give to APF 2K8 it had a lot of issues and bugs to it, and for them to just throw out a low quality game for NFL 2K15 that makes them no better than EA, and it would be a bad idea for them to start with a poor game risking future versions to come.

          • Iown You

            Guest (why don’t you just sign up? This is a great site!),

            I’ll break this final post into 3 main parts:

            1.if you take a look at my previous postings you’ll see that I actually addressed most of what you mentioned there, but let me reiterate if it wasn’t already crystal clear:

            Every single major development carries some risk even one as long-running as Madden. Games being made completely from scratch with no considerable code base are the riskiest, while the less risky are the ones where a mature code base is being worked with like in 2K’s case would be with football. Nevertheless, at any given time something can falter during a dev cycle causing all kinds budget issues, delays, and even cancellation. But none of that stops major devs from pressing on. When you understand all of that, then you’ll begin to understand a bit about how they think, and then you’ll understand that major developers develop for possible opportunities and positive projections that present themselves in the market, not guarantees.

            2. I repeat… Fact: in 2005, 2K began work to translate and update the 2K Football engine into the then new generation of 360/PS3. Fact: The NFL license was not even due to have the possibility of being open again until 2008. Regardless, 2K continued to update the engine. That is a fact.

            Are you still with me? Cool.

            Fact: In 2006, 2K spent a lot of time negotiating deals with retired NFL players. Fact: This lasted up until the first Quarter of 2007.

            Are you still with me? Great.

            Fact: In 2007, 2K decided to take this work that they’d been doing intermittenly since 2005 and release All-Pro Football. All-Pro Football exists and that’s a fact. Fact: Once again, the NFL license was not even up for the POSSIBILITY of being available until 2008.

            Do you understand???

            Your concept: “There must be a guarantee for 2K to update and translate their football engine!”

            Historical fact: 2K performed update/upgrade/translation work on their football engine intermittenly from 2005 to 2007 with NO GUARANTEE WHATSOEVER of them having a shot at the NFL license in 2008. Why? Because that’s how you’re supposed to do it when you already have a mature engine to build from. It’s all about preparation and that’s what 2K smartly before in 2005 through 2007 did and it was worth every bit of whatever risk they took on. Every bit.

            So, you can’t continue to say “it makes no sense” when they JUST DID IT, man. They just… DID IT, and in a very similar situation at that. And you have the resulting game that came from that calculated risk in your hands (APF)!

            That’s it. There is nothing else to say on that.

            3. As for job postings, you can probably still find a few at the 2K sites. A few months back I saw a posting on one of the 2K sites for a motion capture position at 2K Sports but this was a “designer” level position and they were and still are fully staffed for that spot on NBA 2K. And last week I saw another opening at (Visual Concepts site) for a position in presentation development at 2K Sports, another position that they were and still are fully staffed for on NBA 2K. There was no mention of NBA 2K either. They have no other sports games in development that we’re currently aware of for sure, so what else could it be for? That’s the “secret” part, we don’t know for sure. I don’t see the presentation position there anymore though so maybe they filled it. Please stop trying to make this MY secret or something man. I’m simply telling what I’ve seen and I think people would want to know about it so I’m relaying it in a thread where the subject is applicable. I don’t get paid to post here.

            Finally, I’ve said it and I’m sticking to it based on the known history of how 2K Sports keeps ready their in-house code bases: If the license becomes open expect a game from 2K Sports in 2015.

            That’s all. Good luck to all of us.

    • Buddy Milkshake

      Yes, we’re going to need some evidence. Don’t play with my emotions.

    • DetRichardMoore

      Yeah, that sounds a-little crazy. I’d love for an SCEA or 2K football game to come out, but for any company to allocate resources where the result isn’t 100% certain for those resources to even yield ANY revenue (in the case the license is renewed) is pretty crazy.

      • Iown You

        Nope, not “crazy”. This is routine. As I pointed out earlier, they just did this exact same thing in 2005 building/updating their football engine that eventually resulted in All-Pro Football even though in 2005 they weren’t even doing it FOR APF; they were doing it in anticipation that the NFL license would be open again after 2007 and they wanted to remain ready for that, and they were uncertain that it would at the time… and it didn’t open, EA and the NFL renewed. So what did 2K do with the work they’d been doing on the engine? They decided to release All-Pro Football with it. If you need evidence that APF exists, then, well, I don’t know what to tell you, lol.

        Gamers are generally not aware of the reality of how common it is for major devs to develop small/secret projects in anticipation of future situations. For another football example, look up the work Retro Studios was doing. It’s really quite interesting. You’d be amazed at how often projects die before the public ever hears anything. APF just happened to make it, but many others didn’t, like Sony’s Road To Sunday football game which got cancelled.

        Guys, you have to pay attention to history. You’re saying that something doesn’t make sense even though it’s been done before and you have the results in your hands (All-Pro Football). It’s all a matter of historical record at this point. There is nothing wild about it.

  • Billy mays here

    Hopefully 2k can make nfl2k15 and we will have a choice for once..


    please please pleas end please!!!! i hate monopolies…..i want to see sony or 2k make a nfl game or even 929

    • Tim Bliss

      Yeah me too. That’s the main issue at hand and it all started with EA buying the exclusive NFL license. Other sports saw the price that EA paid to the NFL for the exclusive license and they followed suit with other sporting games. It really opened up a can of worms that nobody wanted to see happen and us the consumer has been the ones to suffer.

  • qwiwheet

    Well my hope is shot in the rear end. Let’s see what m15 brings…. yeah right

  • qwiwheet

    This is really sad. I mean madden isn’t really that bad, but ea really need to have the passion that it needs to make a really good football sim….

  • smsixx

    Even if 2k or SCEA got their hands on the license it would probably take at least 2 years to even get a game out there to compete with Madden…but holy shit…The anticipation of waiting for that said title would be astounding.
    Even if the first title experienced flaws, and some loose ends it would still be great to have a new horse in the race.
    I know the likelihood of this is small…but i’ll keep my fingers crossed like I always do.

  • ACM22

    After NBA 2K14 and all the MLB 2Ks I no longer want 2K Sports back on football. Theyd pack it with MT make it always online and who knows if it would be any good once you got past that.

    • PPerfect_CJ

      Yeah, I hate it, but I’m kinda with you on that. I’m not sure that I TRUST 2K anymore after NBA 2K14 NG. If they’ve learned from their mistakes on that, tho, I’d love to see them give it a shot.

  • Flz_TD

    So the license comes up right when Madden finally gets good. I dont see the NFL going to someone else now or anytime soon.

  • Tetsuo

    I don’t know how excited I’d be for a 2K football game anymore. If it follows the same m.o. as NBA, then pass. Madden may be a shadow of it’s former self in many ways, but at least it’s not a)always online & b)a shell of a game built around forcing micro-transactions. If people wanna pay money for MUT, hey- go for it. But at least I know that I can play franchise without the need to buy some sort of virtual currency.

    Don’t get me wrong though- I’d love to see another developer jump into the ring for football. I’d actually like to see SCEA take a crack at it, though I don’t know if their relationship with EA would suffer as a result (what do you think about that possibility Pasta?). But 2K Sports is the last developer I would trust right now.

    Pasta, say EA were to lose out on the licence in some bizarre twist of events- do you think they would go the All-Pro route and convert Madden into a customisable football game with generic teams, while keeping the Madden title?

    • MistaPerfectJT

      I’d be surprised considering they may have to do the same thing already if they decide to come out with a college football game. A generic sports game that ISN’T arcade style, IMO, is a hard sell

  • insomnizach

    It’s sad this is what the state of football games has come to. Buy a terrible game made by EA year after year or have nothing at all.

  • Willy2535

    Maybe EA wouldn’t of seen a shrink in sales if they didn’t keep putting out a half assed product every year 🙁

  • MoneyMayweather

    What was the Bullshit about NFL players going in and getting their faces scanned at 2k headquarters then?

  • BANE

    The sooner the exclusive license dies, the better. It’s coming. It’s not a matter of if but when. The model is no longer sustainable for the party making the games. The NFL will be forced to open the license up or risk no NFL video game, something they will not do. The end is nigh for EAs tyrannical reign over NFL video games. Now let’s just hope 2K decides to re enter the game, no pun intended.

  • Joedw

    I am all for competition, it drives the industry forward. With that said, if 2K were to release NFL2K15 with the same business model as NBA2K14 next gen, then count me out. There’s no doubt in my mind it will be a better game fundamentally, but I will not purchase VC with my own cash just so I can change my roster.

  • VA

    Every time I get on here all people talk about is Keith Keith Keith. Do y’all love him that much?

  • Cashllama

    I don’t get all the Madden hate. I get bored with any game that doesn’t have great online play and I feel like Madden’s online CFM is awesome. We just completed our second season in my online league and I am just as invested as I was on day one. NBA 2K’s online career mode isn’t nearly as refined as Madden’s IMO, so they would have to get that figured out first and foremost before I would lean toward a 2K NFL game.

  • Furious Buddha

    Hip Hop Gamer just put up a pic of “NFL2K The Comeback” on his Instagram account (@hiphopgamer). Not sure if this was a mock up or what, it had Brandon Marshall on the cover. It wasn’t posted on the 2K Instagram account or their site. I hope it’s not a ploy to get more hits, I would lose my mind if this was to happen.

    • JKE

      HHG is known for making stuff up just to get hits. He’s done it for years.

  • knucklesamitch

    Why does everyone seem to conveniently forget that it’s the NFL who wants the exclusivity? Even if 2k took over the license, you don’t think their product would be stale after a decade of no competition? That seems like misguided fanboy love.

    I was a madden guy, never cared for 2k, but I haven’t bought Madden in 2 years, it’s weird not playing a football videogame, but I got used to it.

    • Keith.

      It’s been well documented from the documents that came out in the Pecover lawsuit that it was EA, and not the NFL, that pushed for the exclusive license. EA’s let the gaming media report otherwise for the past 10 years, but the documents don’t lie.

  • EAHater

    This exclusive license nonsense has only been bad for us the gamers. The NFL don’t care, they making money. EA dont care, they have no competition. I would love to see choice in video game football, but given this crap has been going on so long, could another developer actually make a decent game. I’d love to see 2k make a game minus the VC crud and strong servers. I think they’d send Madden to its doom just like they did to Live.
    Alas… All we can do is hope… and be stuck with EA’s horrid game until the NFL sees how horrible Madden has gotten.

  • What year is it?

    Why would I want Madden 15 when I already have Madden 25?

  • GKage

    I used to want 2k to make a football game again….then they started this VC crap. And I wouldn’t trust playing online either. Shame really. I used to love videogame football.

  • Bieberkinz

    Why are people using the “NFL Players got scanned by 2K?” It’s just a rumor, and there’s no credible source. It’s just something started by HipHopGamer (lol.) and there’s NOTHING I’ve seen from any credible looking sources.

    I want more options as the next guy, but after seeing the future of NBA 2K, who knows how NFL 2K ends up to be.

    Not going to be hard knocking on this, but I’m worried about the idea of VC just overblowing the game. We haven’t seen a “new” 2K football game since 2004. (APF 2K8 was really just a port with a modified graphics, IMO, you weren’t missing much if you had 2K5 and a backwards compatible console.) I’m near sure that most of the devs from that era had move on, so who would develop the game?

    I’m worried more on how 2K would make this game. Would it be serious a port? Or would it be a brand new game with a more built engine. Cause there’s a lot of things that 2K would need in my eyes to be better than what they have put out.

    Madden, I expect nothing. 2K, I think we’re just expecting too much from them. That’s why 2K14 was one of the most disappointing games for Next Gen. It took 1 and a half months and 3 patches to get were we are now with 2K14, and the roster are terrible on 2K, like EA terrible, so that’s another thing I’m worried about, will I have to rely on a user to make a realistic sim game actually realistic in game play and sim, or will 2K make me shut my mouth and provide me quality rosters, the base and piece are there, but will they drive it back home and provide accurate player likeness throughout modes?

  • Dustan M. Howell

    “For the league to turn to a different company would mean likely no NFL
    game on the market for at least two years and that is an unthinkable

    I have to disagree with this. The writing has been on the wall for quite some time that EA was no longer interested in the exclusive license as it’s too expensive, and Madden sales have actually decreased since getting the license. EA only renewed the license last time ( for one year ) in exchange for a discount because of the labor unrest during the 2011 off-season. If we know that, 2k knows that, and since it’s also known that 2k approached the NFL regarding licensing in late 2010, for all we know they’ve already signed a licensing deal with the NFL and have been developing the game for several years. The NFL signed apparel deal with Nike before it’s deal with Reebok ended, so why couldn’t they sign a deal with 2k with the understanding that the license would start in 2014 ?

    Now that poses an obvious question: if that happened, then why haven’t we heard anything ? Well, why haven’t we heard anything regarding EA’s license with the NFL. They have a licensing deal in place. They’re currently working on Madden 15, and I doubt they would starting developing Madden 15 without a licensing deal in place. Now it could be exclusive, but the question is why have they waited so long to one, renew it, and two, tell us about it ? They renewed both deals two years before the current deal they were under ran out.

    2k could very well release a game this summer for all we know.