News & Updates
  • The Line Drive for November 3
    Posted November 3rd, 2019 at 1:30 pm No Comments »

    The Line Drive is a weekly collection of news, links, deal alerts, and updates that didn’t necessarily warrant their own postings.

    ♦The door has been opened for NCAA Football to finally return in the next 3-5 years.
    ♦Many questions remain however making it not a sure thing that it’ll happen smoothly.
    ♦Reminder of just one more day for PS+ subscribers to grab MLB The Show 19 for free.
    ♦Details on the latest patch adjusting gameplay and more out now for FIFA 20.
    ♦New kits have been added to FIFA 20 for AFC Ajax and AS Roma.
    ♦Unskippable ads have been encountered in NBA 2K20 despite backlash from 2K19.
    ♦The public beta being held for Football Manager 2020 is now up and running.
    ♦Details on the Heavy Hitters Event for HUT ongoing now in NHL 20.
    ♦Details on the latest content added to Diamond Dynasty in MLB The Show 19.
    ♦The mobile version on iOS and Android of PES 2020 is now available.
    ♦Details on the latest Most Feared content and more now found in Madden Mobile.
    ♦Details on the first patch out for the much-troubled recently released WWE 2K20.
    ♦Golden Tee Golf is out now for iOS and Android based off the popular arcade game.
    ♦EA and Valve have partnered to bring EA Access to Steam beginning next spring.
    ♦Blu-ray releases headlined by Hobbs & Shaw and Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.

  • Madden NFL 20 mid-season roster update
    Posted November 1st, 2019 at 3:00 pm No Comments »

    The roster update for Madden NFL 20 factoring in performance and other transactions through the first eight weeks of the season is now available to download on all platforms. This update arrives at just about the mid-point of the season and includes some dramatic ratings movement.

    Christian McCaffrey leads the way with a huge +3 taking him to 96 Overall. He is now the highest rated running back in the game by a full 3 points over Dalvin Cook, who himself got +3 this week putting him at 93 Overall. At the same position going the opposite direction is Todd Gurley plummeting 6 points down to 88 Overall.

    Other notables of significance this week include Bobby Wagner (-1 to 98), J.J. Watt (+1 to 97), Michael Thomas (+1 to 96), Von Miller (-1 to 96), Odell Beckham Jr. (-1 to 95), Terron Armstead (+5 to 94), George Kittle (+2 to 94), Quenton Nelson (+2 to 92), Tyler Lockett (+2 to 89), Byron Jones (-2 to 89), Aaron Jones (+2 to 87), Philip Rivers (-3 to 87), Nick Bosa (+2 to 86), Malcolm Jenkins (-3 to 86), Justin Coleman (+4 to 85), Eric Kendricks (+4 to 85), Xavier Rhodes (-8 to 77), and Patrick Robinson (-7 to 75). For all the changes that have been made and the current ratings check out the spreadsheet on the official website.

  • Press Row Podcast: Life for NCAA but none for NBA Live
    Posted October 30th, 2019 at 8:00 am No Comments »

    Two huge news stories have dropped as the NCAA appears ready to open up to college athletes profiting off their likenesses and NBA Live 20 has predictably been canceled.

    The the ramifications of both are discussed on a brand new Press Row Podcast. Why does the NCAA news make it more likely that EA Sports brings back NCAA Football video game and when could that happen? Why has NBA Live been canceled for the 4th time in 9 years and does it have any chance of success releasing on the next generation of consoles?

    Check out the podcast through Apple Podcasts for iOS, on Android with the Stitcher app, or with Pocket Casts on iOS, Android, and Windows. The show can now also be found on Spotify! Subscribe and give the podcast five star reviews to help support the show. You can also listen with the streaming player found below.

  • NBA Live 20 has been canceled
    Posted October 29th, 2019 at 2:15 pm No Comments »

    Four months ago EA Sports announced a delay to the release of NBA Live 20. The game coming out late this year or early 2020 would not have seemed beneficial for sales but a “different approach” was being teased that could have related to either the game’s design or its distribution. Despite that there was obvious reason for skepticism that NBA Live 20 would actually end up reaching the market given the history of the series over the last decade.

    Today EA made it official that NBA Live 20 has been canceled. This makes it four times in the last nine years that NBA Live/Elite was “delayed” only to later be canceled. The publisher claims they may relaunch in the new console generation that begins next holiday season.

    The NBA Live brand no longer has any value on consoles however it has been a draw on mobile. Whether EA brings back the NBA with a rebranded series, tries something new like an NBA Street, or simply bury their relationship with the sport and focus on their other products (such as a return of NCAA Football) is anyone’s guess at this point.

  • The barriers to the return of college video games have nearly been cleared
    Posted October 29th, 2019 at 1:00 pm No Comments »

    When California passed a new law to allow college athletes to capitalize on their name and likeness it became an inevitability that eventually, whether through their own relenting or exhaustion of legal challenges, the NCAA would have to accept the change to the organization’s way of operating going forward. More states have started to work their way through a similar process since then putting even more pressure on the them.

    The NCAA may have finally come to the realization that they’re not going to win that fight and instead would rather have a hand in shaping the rules. The Board of Governors has unanimously recommended that all three divisions explore new policies to “permit students participating in athletics the opportunity to benefit from the use of their name, image and likeness in a manner consistent with the collegiate model.” Those new bylaws are to be enacted by January 2021.

    “As a national governing body, the NCAA is uniquely positioned to modify its rules to ensure fairness and a level playing field for student-athletes,” NCAA President Mark Emmert said. “The board’s action today creates a path to enhance opportunities for student-athletes while ensuring they compete against students and not professionals.”

    To be clear, the NCAA has not yet made anything granting rights to the individuals to profit off their name and likeness official. They have opened the door however for that to be the eventual outcome at which time development of a new game could begin.

    The other big hurdle that will remain is how EA Sports will compensate the players. Recent news of a potential union associated with the NFLPA would be the ideal solution. The company would then pay to get the rights to all the players rather than having to negotiate individually which would have likely led to a mix of real and fake players.

    After six years without a college football game and even longer without college basketball optimism for a return is finally warranted. The most realistic expectation would probably be for a July 2022 release of NCAA Football 23.

  • The Line Drive for October 27
    Posted October 27th, 2019 at 8:15 am No Comments »

    The Line Drive is a weekly collection of news, links, deal alerts, and updates that didn’t necessarily warrant their own postings.

    ♦Reminder this is the last week for PS+ subs to grab MLB The Show 19 for free.
    ♦Another patch for NBA 2K20 but very few details on changes were provided.
    ♦NBA 2K20’s new mode involves grinding characters for a chance to buy shoes.
    ♦2K Sports’ season simulation picks Lakers over Bucks through NBA 2K20.
    ♦The demo has been updated adding a quick game option to try with NBA 2K20.
    ♦New players and more delivered in season update for NBA 2K Playgrounds 2.
    ♦Details on the new mode HUT Rivals that debuted in NHL 20 Ultimate Team.
    ♦The latest patch made gameplay and presentation improvements to NHL 20.
    ♦Details on the latest content added to Diamond Dynasty in MLB The Show 19.
    ♦Leaked design doc exposes vision for what would’ve been EA College Football 15.
    ♦For latest on possibility of a college game return see recent piece on Sporting News.
    ♦New content has been added for multiple clubs in Pro Evolution Soccer 2020.
    ♦WWE 2K20 opened to some of the worst reviews a major title will ever see.
    ♦Details on the planned content updates for the months ahead in Rocket League.
    ♦NBA 2K20 on Xbox OnePlayStation 4Nintendo Switch for $30 now $39.

  • Madden NFL 20 roster update details following week seven
    Posted October 24th, 2019 at 2:30 pm No Comments »

    The roster update for Madden NFL 20 factoring in performance and other transactions through the first seven weeks of the season is now available to download on all platforms.

    With just one more week until the trade deadline a number of deals were completed and executed in this update: Emmanuel Sanders (89 Overall) to the 49ers, Mohamed Sanu (82) to the Patriots, Quandre Diggs (79) to the Seahawks, and Gareon Conley (78) to the Texans.

    The Patriots defense is the biggest beneficiary of the upgrades with players like Devin McCourty (+2 to 92), Dont’a Hightower (+3 to 87), Kyle Van Noy (+4 to 86), Jonathan Jones (+4 to 84), Duran Harmon (+4 to 81) and several others all getting significant increases.

    Other notables on the move this week include Fletcher Cox (-1 to 95), Calais Campbell (+1 to 94), Stefon Diggs (+1 to 94), Todd Gurley (-1 to 94), Damon Harrison (-2 to 93), Keenan Allen (-1 to 93), Tyron Smith (-2 to 92), Aaron Rodgers (+1 to 91), Dalvin Cook (+1 to 90), Philip Rivers (-1 to 90), Ryan Ramczyk (+2 to 89), Matt Ryan (-1 to 88), Jason McCourty (+2 to 87), Lamar Jackson (+2 to 81), and Darren Waller (+3 to 79). For all the changes that have been made and the current ratings check out the spreadsheet on the official website.

  • Cover athlete and pre-order details for MLB The Show 20 are already here
    Posted October 21st, 2019 at 2:30 pm No Comments »

    Nearly five full months from its upcoming release, and with this season’s World Series Champion still to be crowned, pre-orders have already been opened for MLB The Show 20 with the first initial promotion taking place today.

    Chicago Cubs’ shortstop Javier Baez is the cover athlete. He was runner-up for NL MVP two seasons ago and had a solid campaign with a disappointing club this year. MLB 20 will come out in mid-March but unfortunately the tactic of forcing consumers to pay for higher priced editions to get the game on its earliest release date has returned.

    MLB The Show 20 will be available on Fri. March 13 for those that pay $80 for the MVP Edition or $100 for the Anniversary Edition or Digital Deluxe Edition. Standard Edition buyers at $60 will have to wait until Tues. March 17 to start playing. Check here for the details on the bonuses that are included in all the different versions being offered.

    No information on the game itself accompanied the pre-order roll out. In the past that has generally first taken place in December but more recently those reveals have been pushed back to February. This should be an interesting year for the series given the transition to the PlayStation 5 is just around the corner with MLB The Show 21.