Late in the week EA Sports held a live stream to go over Connected Franchise in Madden NFL 15 which comes on the heels of fairly successful streams focused on gameplay and presentation. This one for Franchise acts more asÂ a summary of all the details that were released than an expansion on them, and important areas like the Draft are curiously skipped by, but there is also opportunity to see more gameplay and Franchise-specific presentation which hasn’t been talked about as much as it probably should have been.
The judge in O’Bannon v. NCAA has ruled that the NCAA violates anti-trust laws by preventing players from being paid for their name and likenesses.
This does not appear to be a ruling however that threatens the core of the NCAA – one in which some surmised a more devastating ruling could bring down the organization entirely. It’s certainly far from the worst case scenario for them. That could be a good thing for the future of college sports video games depending on how the NCAA attempts to proceed.Â Read more
EA Sports has been largely quiet in regards to NBA Live 15. The game skipped E3 and outside of some examples of enhanced visuals the campaign to promote the new game seems to be more about apologizing for the last one.
YesterdayÂ Game Informer posted an article noting some of the ways the company hopes to improve with Live 15. What’s evident is how gameplay is the priority though it was said to be last year as well. Certainly that needs to make a dramatic jump for Live to even be a consideration with consumers, but a lack of attention to modes affects potential longevity and value. Ultimately when spending $60 consumers expect both gameplay and depth of modes to be there. The most disheartening mention is related to Dynasty mode which the company seems to believe isn’t important going forward.Â Read more
Social gaming company Zynga today announced a new brand to be known as Zynga Sports 365 with football and golf being the first projects under the umbrella. The NFL and NFLPA licenses have been secured for the football game and Tiger Woods has been partnered with for golf.
One of the names behind these games will be immediately recognizable to many Madden fans. Ian Cummings, who was the creative director for Madden NFL 10 through a good portion of ’12, is a design director at the new Zynga studio in Orlando along with other veterans of EA Sports.
The game is a manager-style mobile-first simulation game that offers sports enthusiasts a unique social experience that delivers authenticity, accessibility and competition. The game puts you in the thick of the action, letting you engage with your favorite teams and players 365 days a year, taking on the roles of Coach, General Manager and Owner as you manage your team to victory.
Golfâ€™s massive global appeal and innate social nature lends itself well to mobile games and fosters the on-the-go competition we know you want. By combining Tiger Woodsâ€™ unparalleled golf insights with Zyngaâ€™s ability to create meaningful connections between players, we can develop truly unique social golf games that bring authenticity and accessibility to sports enthusiasts. We are looking forward to making our Tiger Woods golf game available to all of our players globally this year and giving our players and Tigerâ€™s fans a new way to interact with their favorite golfer.
NFL Showdown is the immediate releaseÂ with the expectation of goingÂ live worldwide by the start of the NFL regular season. It’s already available in some territories. The NFL has licensed out to various companies over the years as mobile and social have not been part of the exclusive agreement with EA Sports. The Tiger Woods game is planned for 2015. EA cut ties with Woods last year making him a free agent.
2K Sports today announced a mode for NBA 2K15 called MyLeague exclusive to the Xbox One and PS4 versions. Operation Sports has a detailed interview that goes over everything and offers a few other pieces of relevant information.
MyLeague is essentially a more customizable version of the Association mode that was lost with the transition to the new systems where MyGM replaced it.Â Unfortunately the mode is offline only but on the plus side the number of options are staggering and it doesn’t involve the Virtual Currency that severely harmed the entire 2K14 experience due to its implementation in all the major modes. It’s likely that MyGM remains, andÂ the assumption should be that VC still plays a part there and elsewhere unless the company specifies otherwise, but at the very least there would be this one respite from all that.
Other things noted that suggest positive changes potentially extendingÂ elsewhere include the return of Create-a-Player and the ability to save roster files locally to hard drives instead of having everything stored in the cloud. The focus on revenue from selling VC and “always online” nature of 2K14 was why those options were absent.
2K Sports generally releases an official trailer for the upcoming NBA 2K games in late August. They got a jump on that today by pushing out a clip (PS4/XB1) likely pulled from that future trailer through cover athlete Kevin Durant’s Instagram page. Unfortunately that means it’s limited to 15 seconds and isn’t great quality, but it still represents the first look at the game which doesn’t even have a screenshot out with just over two months until release.
There’s not much to go on from the footage except for the presence of “big heads” in the crowd.Â Gamescom is next week where some actual gameplay footage tends to emerge from each year. Leave any observations on the brief video in the comments!
In an announcement yesterday EA Sports confirmed an extension of the agreement with the Premier League as “official sports technology partners” and a few ways in which the company has taken advantage of the access for FIFA 15.
All 20 Premier League stadiums will appear in the game, additional effort has been put into crafting the player likenesses, special broadcast presentation will attempt to replicate the television viewing experience, and audio has been captured from actual matches. In addition the new “Goal Decision System” makes its debut.Â Read more
After a long wait for information on Connected Franchise mode EA Sports today sent out full details and video going over the new features and improvements in Madden NFL 15. Typically Franchise is promoted early on in the marketing process but this year was held until late which created concern over how much work had been put into the mode.
The two biggest new additions are Game Prep and Confidence which were noted in the retailer product summary last week. Game Prep takes the place of practice, and Confidence replaces hot and cold streaks. Other changes include adding the IR-Designated to Return, new Pro Bowl team selection process, the ability to hire and fire staff during the season, streamlined process for spending points on improving player attributes, multiple commissioner control, and a new option for simming forward.Â Read more