There have been many video game sports franchises over the years. Here’s a look at the top five best of all time.
The Madden video game franchise is a video game where you can play as actual professional American football players. This game franchise has been around for a long time with the first version being released in 1988. It’s first version was titled John Madden Football and was released for various home computers. This version didn’t have any specific players or teams in the game due to the NFL not being apart of the game at this time. It wasn’t until several releases later, in 1993, that the game was officially called Madden NFL and then followed by the year. Interesting fact about the title is that the year for the game was always a year after it was released. Meaning the game that was released in 1993 was titled Madden NFL ’94.
The latest release has since gone through another name change. Released in 2013 was Madden NFL 25, which is the newest release as of right now. As you can see the year is not included into the title anymore and is instead given the number in which the game is in the entire series. I’ve always seen Madden games being heavily advertised everywhere and I know that’s it’s one of the most popular football games out there. It continually sees success with every release and it’s amazing how realistic each release looks. Sometimes it looks as if you are actually watching a live football game because each player, down to each blade of grass, is heavily detailed.
FIFA is a game about European football, or soccer. Interesting enough FIFA and Madden are both created by the same video game developer, Electronic Arts. What’s cool about this game is that it’s officially licensed by FIFA and features teams and players from all around the world. What I personally like about FIFA is the music. They always have a great choice of music from all different types of bands from around the world. The FIFA video game series was first released in 1993 and is still having new releases come out. It’s one of the most popular soccer games on the market and is available for every major console on the market. It’s even available for phones as freeware.
3. Need for Speed.
Some argue that racing cars is not a sport while others truly believe it is a sport. Either way Need for Speed is a great sports video game franchise. Like the other games on this list the original installment of Need for Speed was released in the early 90s as well, 1994 to be exact. Also just like the other games it is released by Electronic Arts as well. It’s safe to say Electronic Arts knows how to make a popular sports video game franchise. This is a beautiful game that lets anyone drive extremely rare and valuable cars. This game has proven to be so popular over the years that a movie based on the series was recently released in 2014. This is a great game for those who want to “drive” a car that they probably will never own. I myself have enjoyed racing games over the years and this one in particular is just really nice to look at because of all the attention to detail.
4. MLB: The Show.
I didn’t want the list to be entirely dominated by games produced by Electronic Arts. Yes they make great sports games but there are other games by other developers that are showing that they can make a great sports video game franchise. MLB: The Show is one of those franchises. This is a Sony made game and the entire franchise, for now, is a Sony exclusive. The first installment wasn’t released until 2006 but has held it’s own quite well with a new installment scheduled to come out next year, even though the newest installment was just released this month. The current installment is a visually striking baseball game that showcases what the PlayStation 4 can do. It’s a very realistic game which has become one of the most popular baseball, and sports, games on the market. Electronic Arts hold most of the licensing with the official sports teams and their organizations so it’s nice to see another developer being able to develop a game that’s officially licensed by a professional sports organization, in this case it’s Major League Baseball.
5. Tiger Woods PGA Tour.
The last game to look at for this list is Tiger Woods PGA Tour. This is actually, as I’m writing this, a defunct franchise due to Electronic Arts and Tiger Woods mutually deciding to part ways. The good news is that it will not be completely defunct but Tiger Woods will not be apart of the game anymore. The first installment was released in 1998 for the computer and PlayStation. Over the years this has been one of the most successful games that featured golf. Unfortunately when Tiger Woods had a lot of bad publicity a couple years ago due to martial problems many wondered if the franchise would continue. It did and still continued for many years after. 2013 was when the last release with his name on the game came out and Electronic Arts has since then confirmed a new version, without Tiger Woods, is in the works to be released in the future.