Just this past week, on May 31, ESPN reported that college football and basketball players had finalized a $40 million settlement with video game manufacturer, Electronic Arts (EA) and the Collegiate Licensing Company , the main licensing arm for the NCAA . The settlement was for improperly using the likenesses of athletes. This action could bring up to $4,000 to possibly $100,000 current and former athletes who appeared in EA Sports basketball and football video games since 2003.
This reminded many of the lucrative market for sports video games. As video technology has involved, sport video games have improved and adapted to provide better user satisfaction and to change with the constant changes in the sport teams. ESPN columnist Jon Robinson points years of 2003 to 2005 as the “golden age of sports video games.” Classics such as MVP Baseball 2005 , NFL 2K5, Madden NFL 2005 , and NCAA Football 2004 emerged during this era declares Robinson. Let’s take at look some of the more popular sport video franchises and what some sport fans said about them.
Madden NFL is a popular and long running franchise starting in 1988. Many feel that the best in the franchise is Madden 2005. Tampa video game enthusiast Cody Conoly says that Madden is his favorite sport video game. “The reason is because Madden has always been the most realistic experience when it comes to the sports genre.” Conoly continues that, “since 1988, it was the first football video game to feature 11 players on both sides of the field. It has since been the most realistic experience featuring voices from sportcasters such as Chris Collingsworth and John Madden himself, as well as actual on the field plays from professional playbooks. This helps to keep it on the cutting edge graphically and allowing it to feel like a sports game that doesn’t cut any corners. Most people will never play professional sports, nor will video games ever replace the real excitement of them, but Madden has come closer than any other franchise for 25 years straight.”
The franchise began in 1999 and many feel that the best version was NBA2K 11 featured the classic Michael Jordan cover. A product of EA’s main rival Visual Concepts, basketball lovers claim that NFL 2K1 reached great heights in animation and graphic over its processor, NBA2K. This popular game, according to basketball fanatic and experienced gamer, Daryl Vance Williams, the beauty of this franchise is how customizable it is. Williams said, “I like 2k11 because it incorporates classic teams which I don’t think they did before.”
This EA franchise has many die hard followers who have been addicted for decades. Beginning in 1991, this franchise literally hit the ice in popularity. Many NHL game lovers will point to NHL ’94 as the classic game. Mark Schreiner, and long-time hockey game fan, notes that even the movie “Swingers” humorously points out how EA took the fighting out from ’93 in the ’94 version. Schreiner said that, “The 2 I had that I liked were NHLPA 93 on Sega Genesis and I think NHL 99 on PC. ’93 had good teams and players, as well as fighting and blood.” He continues that, ” ’99, if I recall, had season mode along with create a player and international teams with a tourney mode where you could play the Olympics, or again, if I can recall, NHL teams vs. international ones.”
Car racing video games are a natural for video game technology. After all, car racing is as old as cars themselves. However, this Microsoft Studios product is fairly new. The franchise began in 2005. Its big rival was EA’s NASCAR franchise. Rob McCracken, a Ft. Lauderdale gaming fan, said that Forza stands out for its customization options, great graphics, diverse tracks, and a line up of interesting cars. What more can you ask for?
Needless the say, the world’s most popular sport brings of the rear of the list. It’s so popular that this EA’s last release was April 14, 2014, for the 2014 World Cup Brazil. The franchise began in 1993.
Stuart DeMattia of Deland, FL has FIFA Soccer 10. He says that he loves FIFA because “more recently, you can upload pictures of yourself then download it to the newer game and create a CGI likeness. You can play on your favorite team!” Plus, DeMattia likes the fact of the matter that soccer is a sport literally played worldwide, “Not everyone plays football or baseball and some climates are too warm for hockey, so soccer is the logical choice for a sport,” DeMattia said.