No Pre-Release Demo for NBA Live 15

Posted October 16th, 2014 at 9:45 am


Multiple reports have now surfaced that a demo for NBA Live 15 will not be out prior to release and instead will go out on the game’s release day of October 28. This is the case despite EA Sports having implied over the summer that not only would there be a demo but it would go out super early and that the company had other various ways planned for people to get their hands on the game. Whether EA was intentionally misleading (quite possible considering their PR tactics with the franchise in the last five years) or things changed when they decided to delay the game three weeks – it’s another potential nail in the coffin for the series. 

No one is pre-ordering NBA Live 15. Why would they? EA Sports alienated the few remaining brand loyalists with Live 14 and they’ve done nothing to demonstrate that Live 15 is a worthy $60 product. They continue to hide gameplay and general promotion is almost non-existent.

A release day demo, as opposed to a pre-release one, in this case would be offered to avoid losing pre-orders and then later hopefully pick up a few sales from it. If EA thought this demo would generate increased interest in the game it would have been out prior to release. But of course they’ll still push pre-order bonuses in order to trick people into buying before they actually have an understanding of the product.

While EA Access has its detractors at least in this case it’s going to mean that the company can’t completely hide Live 15 from consumers. I’ll be streaming all six hours next Thursday. However EA Access is not a replacement for a demo. The subscription service costs money first of all but beyond that it’s not widely adapted on Xbox One, not available on PS4, and of those who have it only a small percentage would even have interest in trying out Live.

The way EA Sports has treated NBA Live 15 suggests the product is being dumped on the market and it may represent the end of the once strong series. They’re not proud enough to show it off, they delayed it three weeks (not enough time to make much difference but they couldn’t push it farther or they’d be subject to a penalty by the NBA), and now there’s no demo for people to try out before it arrives in stores.

Like I said yesterday, we can ask for and support competition in sports games as much as we want, but when the publishers evidently care less than we do failure is inevitable.

Tags: ,