Games Fifa are the games of football the most popular in the world todaybut following several concerns of the producer Electronic Artsthe next game FIFA 23 may never see the light of day in this form, because it would be entitled to a name change arriving after long years of legal setbacks at EA Sports.
FIFA 2023 : Goodbye FIFA!
This is not the first time we talk about the license Fifa to discuss controversies. Last year, the words and attitude of journalist and commentator Pierre Menès earned him his withdrawal from the game FIFA 2022. But much more recently, it’s another drama that shakes the sphere Fifawith the withdrawal of legend Diego Maradona from the game, two years after his death. The reason is mainly legal between the owners of the player’s image rights. El Pibe de Oro’s ex-lawyer and the player’s daughters have asked EA to remove the character until the conflict is resolved. Image rights do not only concern players, since for several years, EA Sports and the Fédération Internationale de Football Association are also in dispute over the authorization of the name FIFA.
And yes, right now, between Electronic Arts and FIFA, nothing is going right. The sports game publisher could be forced to drop the FIFA name according to journalist and Insider Jeff Grubb in his GrubbSnax podcast announcing this. Indeed, FIFA 2023 could adopt the name of “EA Sports FC“with or without the mention of the year 2023. This would have its origins in the conflict between FIFA and Electronic Arts over permission to use the name FIFA. In order to form new partnerships, the football association deliberately inflated the price of the renewal of the exclusive contract concerning the coming decade. Here is what the federation said in a press release last October:
“FIFA is optimistic and excited about the future of gaming and esports in football, and this space cannot be the sole preserve of a party in control of all rights. […] Signing contracts with other game publishers would be of crucial importance for FIFA and its shareholders to maximize all opportunities and offer Football and video game fans the best possible. Gaming and Esport constitute the largest vertical concentration of media on the Planet.”
An opening to risky competition?
Many gossips might say that this will probably be the biggest, if not the only, change between FIFA 2022 and FIFA 2023so much Electronic Arts games have this reputation for consistency. But concretely, the next game “EA Sports FC” will no longer have the right to use the FIFA stamp on its jacket, but also the visual, the skin of the game and the mention of the World Cup. In other words, EA can do without it, as the reputation of their games exceeds the competition. Just remember of the semi-failure of EFootballthe renewal of the license ESP, which became the laughing stock of video game football upon its release for its catastrophic bugs. But it is also possible that nothing will change at all, since the contract is about exclusivity and not about the use of rights. If FIFA opens the competition, EA could continue to buy the right to use for less than before.
However, the opening up of sports games to competition is not uncommon, on the contrary. The NBA and MLB, concerning basketball and baseball respectively, share their rights with multiple developers. One of the only exceptions would be the NFL for American football, which has also signed an exclusive contract with… EA for his Madden NFL series. In other words, this could force EA Sports to improve its license so as not to be caught up by the competition, even if it is still far from reaching its ankles. Otherwise, it can completely rest on its achievements, since the FUT mode earns him almost a billion dollars a year.