Why EA thinks the FIFA name is a thorn in the side?

As if tied hand and foot, EA says the FIFA name is more of a hindrance than a blessing for the video game franchise.

A few months ago, EA officially announced that the name of the franchise Fifa could soon change, starting this year. Indeed, we then learned that the contract with FIFA ended in 2022, and that the negotiations between the federation and the studio were particularly stormy. Today, we learn that the boss of EA, Andrew Wilson, made rather radical statements during an internal meeting which took place last November.

“Four letters on a box” hard to bear

He would then have explained that the name of Fifa was just ” four letters on a box » and that this appellation was a « obstacle for the franchise. Indeed, EA had already mentioned the fact that to call its game FIFA was to call the franchise by a very small part of what the studio can represent in its game. It would therefore need a name more evocative of the diversity of competitions , leagues and teams that really make up FIFA.

A World Cup year, of course, we have access to the World Cup, but in the wider context of world football on an annual basis, the World Cup is important but it is not the most important. We have 300 other licenses that give us the content that our players engage with the most and deeply. »

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In the words of Andrew Wilson, this currently constrains EA and prevents it from exploring “ broader digital ecosystems or to represent the great diversity of game modes possible in football, beyond the traditional 11 v 11 matches. He even goes so far as to say that the video game franchise has far exceeded the popularity of FIFA in itself. same. He then explains:

We have had an excellent relationship with FIFA over the past 30 years. We’ve created one of the biggest entertainment properties on the planet. I would say – and maybe this is a bit biased – that the FIFA brand makes more sense as a video game than as the governing body of football. »

It is surely for this reason that, during the negotiations, FIFA demanded from EA almost double the contract price for each World Cup season. The amount requested was then $1 million every 4 years. One more reason for EA to get rid of this oppressive name, but which still needs its identity today.

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