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EA EXTENDS INTERACTIVE VIDEOGAME AGREEMENTS WITH NFL AND NFL PLAYERS

Exclusive Agreements Renewed Through 2012 Season

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – February 12, 2008 – Electronic Arts (Nasdaq: ERTS) today announced an extension of its exclusive licensing relationships with the National Football League and NFL PLAYERS to develop, publish and distribute interactive football video games.  These agreements – which were negotiated separately and are extensions of contracts originally signed in December 2004 – provide EA continued rights to NFL teams, stadiums and players for its critically-acclaimed and best-selling football videogames through the end of the 2012 season, which culminates in February 2013.

Both agreements include all aspects of the interactive experience, including console and handheld games as well as console-based online features.  The agreements also provide EA access to both NFL Films and the NFL Network to enrich its game experiences.  Financial terms of the agreements were not disclosed.

"This is all about bringing authenticity and realism to NFL videogames," said Eric Grubman, President of NFL Ventures.  "EA SPORTS continually works to maintain the cutting edge for NFL products across a variety of gaming platforms.  We like the fact that they never rest."

“This is great news and it means we can continue to produce the best interactive experience possible.  It also allows NFL PLAYERS, the NFL and EA to continue to build our brands,” said Gene Upshaw, Chairman of NFL PLAYERS and Executive Director of the National Football League Players Association.  “We offer a very unique experience. “

"We are excited about the opportunity to extend and expand our relationships with the NFL and NFL PLAYERS," said Peter Moore, President of EA SPORTS™. "For nearly two decades, EA SPORTS has been bringing sports fans closer to the great game of football through the breakthrough interactive experiences of our videogames.  Game quality is our top priority, and we’re committed to pushing our gameplay innovation, connecting football fans via rich online experiences and delivering the most visually stunning sports games on the market.”

Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2008, EA’s Madden NFL franchise has consistently been one of the videogame industry’s best-selling and top-rated products, generating more than $2 billion in retail sales. Madden NFL 08 earned awards from the 2007 Game Critics Awards at the E3 Media and Business Summit, The SpikeTV Video Game Awards, and the GameSpot Readers Choice Awards last year.  The game is available on the PLAYSTATION®3 and PlayStation®2 computer entertainment systems, Xbox 360™ and Xbox® videogame and entertainment systems from Microsoft, Nintendo DS™, Wii™, PC, PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) handheld entertainment system, mobile handsets and Mac.  EA also produces the arcade-football game NFL Tour which hit stores in January 2008, and NFL Head Coach, which was released in 2006.  EA SPORTS recently hosted Madden Bowl XIV in Scottsdale, Ariz., as part of Super Bowl XLII festivities.

Both agreements grant exclusive rights for action simulation, arcade-style and manager games on the PC, handheld game devices and consoles.


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Member Comments
# 1 ewto16 @ 02/12/08 12:37 PM
I was just reading that and wondered where it went.

This is terrible news in my opinion. Madden has been terrible the last three years and I don't see that improving in this case. The only hope is that some company releases a good football game that is totally customizable.

Madden 08 was so bad this year, I'm really going to hold off until I see some user impressions of 09 before I buy it. I was totally duped by IGN, Gamespot, etc this year and I won't make that same mistake again.
 
# 2 buttsakk @ 02/12/08 12:38 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TJdaSportsGuy
Guys,

I screwed something up when trying to move this thread and thus, it's gone. We'll start it over here. To be fair to all parties involved, please discuss this news within this thread and not in the Madden or 2K forums. Thanks!

The Wall Street Journal has the scoop.

I think TJ wanted the big scoop all to himself! j/p


Really i don't know what to think about this now, only time will tell.
 
# 3 bkfount @ 02/12/08 12:39 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by TJdaSportsGuy
Guys,

I screwed something up when trying to move this thread and thus, it's gone. We'll start it over here. To be fair to all parties involved, please discuss this news within this thread and not in the Madden or 2K forums. Thanks!

The Wall Street Journal has the scoop.

"Mr. Moore's mission to boost EA's sports business could play an important role in a push at the Redwood City, Calif., company to increase sales after several years of little growth. At an EA briefing for analysts today, Mr. Moore plans announce the extension of a deal with the National Football League and the NFL Players Association through 2012 that will continue EA's position as the exclusive maker of NFL videogames, including Madden. EA's previous exclusive NFL deal was due to expire next year. Financial terms of the new agreement won't be disclosed."


What do you think about this?
noob...

 
# 4 Cardot @ 02/12/08 12:41 PM
The news wasn't too suprising to me. Now I just hope 2K will drop their whole "we don't want to upset the NFL" song and dance, and will make a fully customizable game. With the groundwork laid by CHoops "2K Share", recreating the NFL will be easier than ever...no need even for an Action Replay or transfer kit.

Without having to pay for the NFL licence or Legends, they should be able to make a decent football game, sell it for $30 and make a profit.
 
# 5 Rocky @ 02/12/08 12:42 PM
Sucks........bad.

Just a completely selfish move on the part of the NFL. I guess they are really serious about screwing over their fanbase (DirectTV, NFL Network, etc.). Can't say I'm suprised in the least but I was willing hoping that the NFL did something positive for it's consumers. I guess I was wrong.

Everything bad about EA has already been said and almost everything is valid. If they put out a great product, few would complain.....they don't. Instead they remain years behind the competition in animations, presentation, and general gameplay. THIS is the only choice we have.

The only positive I see in this that it will force Backbreaker, Tecmo, 2K, Blitz, or whomever else to step there game up big time. No more excuses for these guys, they should feel free to do anything in there power to make the best game. APF2Kx NEEDS to be fully customizable now....anything else would be unacceptable IMO.
 
# 6 Mrcabone @ 02/12/08 12:45 PM
Atleast I get to save $60 a year,unless 2K develops a game that fully customizable which I don't see happening.
 
# 7 Steelerfan2k1 @ 02/12/08 12:50 PM
I haven't read the whole thread, but the question I have is - after seeing this, what is stopping TT from releasing APF2K9 as a completely customizable game?

If you think about it, TT could make a huge dent by releasing APF with everything customizable (rosters, music, seasons, conferences/divisions, schedules - the works).

Then - people on here would turn the game into a better recreation of the NFL than what is available on Madden.

If this was highly accessible and easy to update/customize, the game would have a huge following and TT would have strong sales.

They could also keep their costs down, as they wouldn't have to pay licensing fees to the NFL (and - if the game is customizable - they wouldn't even have to waste the time/money on the former NFL players).

At this point, this just seems to make sense. In fact, from what little we have heard of Backbreaker, they seem to be following this plan.....

Can you imagine the groundswell of support on here if TT announced that APF2K9 was going to be fully customizable?
 
# 8 Sausage @ 02/12/08 12:51 PM
This is terrible. No competition equals a bland product with no real substance.
 
# 9 ForeverYoung @ 02/12/08 12:58 PM
Madden was by far the best NFL game in each of the last three years.
 
# 10 buttsakk @ 02/12/08 01:03 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ForeverYoung
Madden was by far the best NFL game in each of the last three years.
Good stuff.
 
# 11 Spectre @ 02/12/08 01:09 PM
I might be reaching, but I think a reason APF stayed so far away from even coming close to resembling the NFL was the hope of staying in the NFL's good graces. Now that that hope is gone, I see no reason for them to provide a game that allows us to recreate the NFL.
 
# 12 ForeverYoung @ 02/12/08 01:10 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by buttsakk
Good stuff.
... nearly as sarcastic as Peter Moores answer:
"IGN: Speaking a little more on the creative side and gearing your answer towards the consumer: how does this exclusivity deal benefit them to make Madden...

Peter: ...as good as it was this year!"
 
# 13 rudyjuly2 @ 02/12/08 01:10 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steelerfan2k1
I haven't read the whole thread, but the question I have is - after seeing this, what is stopping TT from releasing APF2K9 as a completely customizable game?
There was nothing stopping them from doing it last year. They used the NFL license as an excuse because they didn't have time to make APF fully customizable.

The EA exclusive extension was a foregone conclusion. Anyone that held out hope that 2K was going to get the NFL license again was naive. I accepted this reality years ago. There's nothing we can do about it. No point getting upset anymore.
 
# 14 gtm @ 02/12/08 01:16 PM
Money talks (short and sweet). The end.
 
# 15 Cardot @ 02/12/08 01:20 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steelerfan2k1
If you think about it, TT could make a huge dent by releasing APF with everything customizable (rosters, music, seasons, conferences/divisions, schedules - the works).

They could also keep their costs down, as they wouldn't have to pay licensing fees to the NFL (and - if the game is customizable - they wouldn't even have to waste the time/money on the former NFL players).

Can you imagine the groundswell of support on here if TT announced that APF2K9 was going to be fully customizable?
I agree with everything you said....except the part about making a huge dent.....but again, they wouldn't have to make a huge dent to make a profit.

2K already has a game in place. They already have a uniform editor. They really just would need to:
1. Tweak the gameplay.
2. Add franchise mode.
3. Add a logo editor.
4. Enable a sharing system ala CHoops.
5. Gloss up some of the graphics.
 
# 16 green94 @ 02/12/08 01:37 PM
Awful news...

Once again we all lose out.
 
# 17 SteelerSpartan @ 02/12/08 01:41 PM
This is horrible news, and Moore's comments on making it more "casual" pisses me off to no ends..
 
# 18 mgoblue @ 02/12/08 01:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cardot
I agree with everything you said....except the part about making a huge dent.....but again, they wouldn't have to make a huge dent to make a profit.

2K already has a game in place. They already have a uniform editor. They really just would need to:
1. Tweak the gameplay.
2. Add franchise mode.
3. Add a logo editor.
4. Enable a sharing system ala CHoops.
5. Gloss up some of the graphics.
I question whether APF made a real profit...is a fully customizable football game going to sell to the general masses? Sure, guys here would buy it, but we're like 0.1% of the gaming community.
 
# 19 SageInfinite @ 02/12/08 01:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by rudyjuly2
There was nothing stopping them from doing it last year. They used the NFL license as an excuse because they didn't have time to make APF fully customizable.

The EA exclusive extension was a foregone conclusion. Anyone that held out hope that 2K was going to get the NFL license again was naive. I accepted this reality years ago. There's nothing we can do about it. No point getting upset anymore.
Tru story. Also any game that comes out no matter how good it is, to me, its just going to make me wish it had the NFL license that much more.
 
# 20 ninjamonkey @ 02/12/08 01:51 PM
I already thought the contract was until 2012. That's what peopel on this forum seemed to be saying even months ago. Am I remembering incorrectly or were people just speculating?

If Madden fixed the turnover issues, I'd be pretty happy with it. That being said, no-competition is terrible for games, and thus, this is terrible news even if Madden fixes its issues.
 

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