Explaining the Absence of Sports Games at the PS4 Reveal Event

Posted February 21st, 2013 at 11:30 am


Despite features that will intrigue sports gamers there was no presence for the genre at the big PS4 press event. FIFA would have been by far the most likely candidate to appear but even it didn’t have a place there. In fact EA and Take Two weren’t in attendance to show any games. The absence of FIFA, as well as other big sellers sure to hit the launch window like Madden and NBA 2K, can be easily explained however.

EA Sports and 2K Sports have releases to promote prior to the arrival of the PS4 and next Xbox. Priority will lie on selling those first and then turning attention to the versions on the new consoles. Ideally they hope to sell as many consumers as possible on both…buying a 360/PS3 version in the period before they potentially will buy them on next-generation systems.

They do not want to unintentionally disparage the current generation of titles and have anyone thinking about passing on them with the plan instead of getting them later on the next Xbox or PS4. By far the bigger consumer base will remain on the current generation of systems for not just this year but well beyond.

The possibility of blowing anyone away with a presentation of a game like FIFA would have been minimal. Even the response to the new game reveals made there were lukewarm. The graphical jump from the current generation to the next is not near that of when the PS2/Xbox leapt to what we have now. There wasn’t anything EA or 2K could have done to create huge buzz this far in advance that also wouldn’t have hurt what they’ll be trying to sell in the months ahead.

Add to that doing so could have set themselves up for possible misery that wouldn’t have been worth the risk. EA Sports never was able to shake the disaster that was the Madden concept trailer – which they laughably even claimed would be exceeded by Madden 06 when it launched on the 360. Trust in the company degraded rapidly and many still compare the products unfavorably to that single video. It has haunted the company ever since.

With the exception of exposure, as the live stream of the presentation was viewed by over 500K on the PlayStation feed alone and there were several other outlets running their own, there was little to gain for EA or 2K having their games on display at this point in the year. The titles in question are more likely to show up around E3 but even then don’t expect them to take precedence over the promotion of the 360/PS3 versions.