×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

332 comments

15 years?!? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390757)

This sort of thing shouldn't be legal.

Re:15 years?!? (1)

timmyf2371 (586051) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390787)

A 15-year contract should be illegal? Shame that would outlaw most mortgages.

Re:15 years?!? (1)

extra the woos (601736) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390815)

Hate to use the stupid "apples to oranges" cliche but flawed analogy. Plus you can always re-finance your loan through someone else for a better deal!!! /anyway (but yeah, it shouldn't be illegal, but the whole exclusive licensing of something that if you think about it, should REALLY be public domain for that kind of thing)

I mean you shouldn't be able to use their "logo" and say it's official but you should be able to include the names and stats of the NFL teams and whatnot.

Re:15 years?!? (1)

ArsSineArtificio (150115) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390868)

but you should be able to include the names and stats of the NFL teams and whatnot.

The names of the NFL teams are valuable registered trademarks. Part of the revenue stream for an NFL franchise is the right to sell merchandise with the name of the team on it (i.e. hats, jerseys, video games, etc.).

Re:15 years?!? (2, Interesting)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390893)

Don't bother explaining. Typical slashdot user - I suppose it's easy to dismiss claims of trademarks and IP when you produce nothing.

Hell yeah - straight to -1 flame bait for me baby!

Re:15 years?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390940)

Anonymous' Law of Moderation:

Any Slashdot post containing "go ahead, mod me down!" will be modded up.

Re:15 years?!? (2, Insightful)

swv3752 (187722) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391112)

And these teams have strong armed local, state and federal goverment into funding thier stadiums and enforcing thier trademarks. There is definately an argument that the public should get something back.

Re:15 years?!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390810)

This sort of thing shouldn't be legal.

One question: Why not?

Typical Slashdot moderation idiocy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11391019)

"This sort of thing shouldn't be legal."

Yeah, REAL "Insightful" post there. Care to explain WHY? To anyone that moderated parent as "Insightful", care to explain just what the hell is "insightful" about that post? I dare you... Or is it modded up simply because EA is an unpopular big corp in the Slashdot hivemind?

Re:Typical Slashdot moderation idiocy (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391070)

Because he doesn't like it. So it should be illegal. He probably does like downloading the games for free via suprnova, so that should be legal, right?

Also, because he thinks that TV channels like ESPN are government agencies, and aren't free to licsense whoever the hell they want to use their image.

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390763)

I feel special.

EA and Microsoft? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390765)

Seems like a match made in heaven to me. Nothing like some good ol' fashioned monopolising.

Re:EA and Microsoft? (1)

PoprocksCk (756380) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390857)

Damnit, another company to steal my consumer surplus.

I like consumer surplus and I want my share. So stop hogging, Microsoft and Electronic Arts and all you other monopolists out there! Jeez!

Unholy Trinity (4, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390959)

Not only that, but The Walt Disney Company owns ESPN. If you'll remember, Disney was behind the copyright term extension acts [losingnemo.com]. This makes an Unholy Trinity of Disney, EA, and Microsoft (whose MSN network hosts ESPN's web site).

Re:Unholy Trinity (1)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391107)

According to an interview (w/ President of EA) I read in Business 2.0 a year or two ago, EA would like to become the next Disney.

It wouldn't suprise me then if EA takes a similar stance on coyright - afterall, Disney still bases most of its sucess on old characters (Mickey, Donald) opting not to create the new. EA is doing the same with their games (Prince of Persia, Medal of Honour, Need for Speed, SIMS.....).

what's next? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390766)

Release a smallpox infected Madden 2006 and call it manifest destiny?

Microsoft (0, Redundant)

jnguy (683993) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390767)

*sigh* It looks like we have another big bully that is more interested with making money, instead of delivering good products to consumers and competing with other companies. I smell antitrust.

Re:Microsoft (1)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390842)

...

Just don't buy EA sports games? Does a game [say football or hockey] strictly need real "pro teams" to make it fun?

Of course like windows most consumers are serfs that buy whatever commercials tell them to so they will buy into EA games...

Tom

Re:Microsoft (1)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390924)

For the majority of players, yes.

A lot of sports fans like sports games, because they already know the strategies, the teams, and the players. Being able to use real team names, logos, and data is a HUGE sales boost.

Re:Microsoft (3, Insightful)

hal2814 (725639) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390963)

I thought that Madden 64 did a good job without NFL logos or player names. I'm pretty sure that most people buying an American fooball game know that Red, Back, and White team called "Atlanta" is the Atlanta Falcons. They also have a pretty good idea that the "7" guy lined up at quarterback is Michael Vick. You can keep the strategies, teams and players without the logos.

Trademark law has changed (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391067)

I'm pretty sure that most people buying an American fooball game know that Red, Back, and White team called "Atlanta" is the Atlanta Falcons.

Except trademark law has changed in the four decades (of Internet time) since Madden 64 came out; with the expansion of the scope of trade dress, it's possible to trademark a color scheme now. NFL and the Atlanta Falcons probably have Red+Black+White+Atlanta, GA, trademarked.

Re:Microsoft (1)

ifwm (687373) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391060)

Does a game need real teams? No, not necessarily. But there is a certain something to playing your favorite teams, as your favorite player. A game can be successful without a license, but it won't be the same.

Re:Microsoft (4, Insightful)

EvilSS (557649) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390951)

Don't blame EA for this. They are looking after their own interestes (as any company should do in a matter like this). Blame ESPN and the NFL for agreeing to these deals.

Re:Microsoft (1)

Jozone (835038) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390987)

I agree, at the end of the day EA only proposed these deals, ESPN and EA were the ones who signed on to them, and as always money talk$.

Re:Microsoft (1)

jnguy (683993) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390998)

The same way Microsoft simply proposes to computer vendors that they not sell anything else... or else...?

Nobody... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390768)

...gives a shit.

Did EA also buy Slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390770)

Because they sure seem to get a lot of coverage here. Is this really front page material?

eh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390772)

Isn't this some kind of anti-competitive practice?
i.e., when does this become illegal?

Ehh (5, Interesting)

damicatz (711271) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390773)

Sounds like they are using Microsoft-esque tatics now. How long will it be before the DOJ gets on their case? Oh well, this doesn't change my stance on EA. They haven't produced a decent game in over 5 years.

Re:Ehh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390906)

EA will tell you that's because for the last five years they haven't risked doing any innovative games -- more money to be made with clones, rehashes, and sequels.

At least, that's what they told me.

Re:Ehh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390909)

Burnout 3 is teh r0x0rz

Re:Ehh (3, Insightful)

prockcore (543967) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390921)

Oh well, this doesn't change my stance on EA. They haven't produced a decent game in over 5 years.

If you mean published a decent game, you're wrong. In fact, I'm playing Burnout 3 right now, and loving it.

If you mean developed a decent game.. well that's another story.

Huh? (2, Interesting)

DrKyle (818035) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390776)

Okay, I'm not a sports fan, but why can't they just make games that don't have actual player names or teams and just make a "fantasy league" and bypass any need for licencing? Is it really that much better of a game when it has the ESPN name on it?

Re:Huh? (5, Insightful)

demosthenes247 (805399) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390805)

sports fans usually have favorite players and teams, and love the fact that they are able to play as their own specific team/player. the espn games aren't simply branded as ESPN. they have the look and feel of ESPN telecasts as well as ESPN announcers and commentators. this just adds to the overall experience of the game which is supposed to be a recreation of the NBA or NHL or whatever. the fantasy league game would be utterly boring.

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390869)

Nah. Well, let me rephrase: it may be boring if you actually like sports like football, watch it on television, and can think of n teams more than the 49ers and the Patriots, and can name a single football celebrity. However, I can't, and have little interest in buying ESPN sporting games. On the other hand, when I was a teenager there was a Sega Genesis game by the name of _Mutant League Football_ which I enjoyed considerably because while football didn't interest me, cartoon hyperviolence filled with aliens, the undead, and much humor was quite entertaining. The probability of me purchasing another title like Mutant League Football is 1, whereas the probability of me ever buying an ESPN title is 0.

So whatever small market I fall into would like a "fantasy league game" where that means something probably slightly different than the original poster had in mind.

EA jumped the shark when []()/\ ended (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391031)

On the other hand, when I was a teenager there was a Sega Genesis game by the name of _Mutant League Football_

That game was made by Electronic Arts back when EA didn't suck. Many Slashdot readers would agree that EA jumped the shark when it stopped using the box-ball-cone logo [kmoser.com] and started putting the EA Sports logo [play-point.de] on non-sport games [tvnz.co.nz]. Sorry, but you're probably not going to get a sequel, as EA would rather sell more Madden games so as not to have to maintain an extra SKU using the Madden engine.

Re:Huh? (2, Insightful)

odano (735445) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390826)

The only response to this I have is: It just isn't the same. If I am playing an NFL game, I want the actual players are teams.

I understand it really seems stupid, but it makes the game more fun if you know the players and the teams, and who to give the ball to; to run the actual plays the team runs. It adds an extra level of excitement to playing the game.

I did like Sega branded ESPN Sports games, but I must admit, I doubt I am going to buy a football game that doesn't use the NFL player names and team names.

What worries me most is the fact that sans competition EA sports games aren't going to get any better, which sucks for the consumer.

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390929)

Yes. It's the same as with games based on movies and similar. The characters are in there, and that fact alone makes the game playable even if the gameplay is bad.

It's funny, in a way...

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390956)

Im a HUGE sports fan and I gotta say that it isn't the same for NBA and NFL games. But on the Playstation 1 the best baseball game I ever played was a Japanese import called "World Stadium EX" I didn't understand what they were saying but it was fun!

EA Sports...
Well they seems to have their ups and down and right now they are down. I purchased Madden 2005 and NBA Live 2005 at full price on the release date. What a disappointment!

I purchased ESPN NBA 2005 shortly afterwards and then ESPN NFL 2005 after EA dropped their price to match ESPN (Plus most reviews favored ESPN)

Out of protest, I will purchase anything but EA titles even if NFL teams are not on it.

Re:Huh? (3, Funny)

josh3736 (745265) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391006)

You're talking about the kids who buy Abercrombie & Fitch when you can get better quality from K-Mart and buy Starbucks when you could get it for $5.50 less from the gas station. The same kids who will listen to the latest shit put out by $RIAA_CASH_COW but scoff at anything independent, no matter how much better it is.

Of course it matters what name is on the front.

Re:Huh? (1)

randallpowell (842587) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391041)

ESPN NFL 2k5 is the best football game I played. Madden 2003 is the other one.

Anyways, as a recent convert to football (thanks to gf), a football with fantasy teams would be nice. Imagine American Founding Fathers vs Russian Soviets. Nobel Peace vs Nobel Chemistry (Gandi gets unessary roughness). Best yet, Linux Programmers vs Microsoft Drones.

A fantasy football game wouldn't do well unless it had a gimmick that could be worked into a niche like historical fans, LOTR, RPG-football mix for example. It depends on what people would want and how well it was made. I still want a football game with elves, dwarves and goblins.

Doesn't really matter. (3, Insightful)

Sheetrock (152993) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390778)

These sports games are getting really stale anyway. These deals actually free Sega up to do something creative with the genre, ala Mutant League Football/Hockey.

RPGs are the most important thing on any console anyway.

Re:Doesn't really matter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390806)

I would love to see a return of Mutant League Hockey. It was the only hockey game I ever enjoyed. Hopefully it would get a bit more attention than Sega's other titles got. Since the fall of the Dreamcast, Sega just hasn't been getting much attention anymore it seems.

Re:Doesn't really matter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390861)

Whoah... More MLH fans! I only know one guy who like sit apart from me!

*sigh*

It'd be awesome with more polished gameplay and better graphics...

Re:Doesn't really matter. (4, Funny)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390904)

RPGs are the most important thing on any console anyway.

Hm... a hockey game where you can use Rocket Propelled Grenades... I think you've got a great idea there!

Really matters (5, Insightful)

siskbc (598067) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390944)

These sports games are getting really stale anyway. These deals actually free Sega up to do something creative with the genre...

It matters. The reason why EA did this is because last year ESPN came out with a pretty damned good football game and priced it at $19.99. EA priced theirs at $49.99, figuring that their brand recognition would allow them to charge double. They were wrong. EA had to drop their price, and evidently didn't like it because they got pissed enough to shell out for an exclusive license.

Result is they have a monopoly on NFL-licensed games for a long time. For sports fans - clearly not you, but there is some gamer/sports overlap - this sucks because we only have one choice, and it's guaranteed to be overpriced.

More than likely, no other significant NFL games will be made. Even creative games like NFL blitz etc typically need licenses to survive.

RPGs are the most important thing on any console anyway.

You are kidding right? Console sales of RPGs are almost negligible.

Re:Really matters (2, Insightful)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391102)

You are kidding right? Console sales of RPGs are almost negligible.

For values of "consoles" limited to "In the US" and RPGs approaching "Not Final Fantasy" you're right.

Japan is a different story. There's a reason that Dragon Quest games can only be released on weekends over there.

Re:Doesn't really matter. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390948)

These deals actually free Sega up to do something creative with the genre, ala Mutant League Football/Hockey.

If that happened, I'm sure everyone would respect Sega's creativity, but when it came time to hand the hard-earned money over to the cashier, I predict most fans would toe the official (ESPN or other license) line because sports fan(atic) devotion is fundamentally about celebrity worship and Big Name(tm) team franchise loyalty.

Re:Doesn't really matter. (1)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391042)

As a sports fan myself, I can attest to the once-great sports genre that has become terribly stale. Why is it that folks complain about 3D First-Person Shooters being generic, but don't bat an eye when it comes to Yet Another Generic Football video game?

Other than updated players and some minor improvements in the engine from year to year, are there any justifications for spending another $50?

I still enjoy Sega Genesis Tecmo Bowl and the early NCAA games for the PS2.

That reminds me... (1)

Pollux (102520) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391096)

Back when I was a good ol' Nintendo player... I never really liked sports games. They were all the same...you had over twenty baseball games alone to choose from for the NES, they all got stale rather quickly...let's see here, there was "Baseball", "RBI Baseball", "RBI Baseball II", "Bases Loaded", "Bases Loaded II", "Bases Loaded III", "Bases Loaded IV"...

Then I found a friend who rented Baseball Simulator 1000. Baseball was unreal to the point where it was fun. Bunt on a "tornado pitch" that goes over 200 mph and you could get a home run! Choose to hit a "missle ball" and whoever was dumb enough to get in the way of the ball was carried all the way to the outfield fence, smacked against the wall, and knocked out cold for two seconds of play. The game added creativity to an otherwise stale game.

The other fun baseball-spinoff was Base Wars. Unless it was a force-out, you got to battle your opponent to determine if the base runner was out or safe (all the players were robots). When you won games, you got extra money to purchase for faster movement on the field, armor, or weapons that you could really use to waste your opponent with.

But I find sports games to be a lot like first-person shooters. Every year, you get about 50 new titles. On average, 49.5 of them are recycled from previous titles; the gameplay is always the same, just with different "maps" (a.k.a. "stadiums" in the sports genre) and different players to play with.

Idiot (3, Funny)

kaedemichi255 (834073) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390782)

"We don't anticipating changing anything significantly from what we are currently doing," Larry Probst, chairman and chief executive of EA, said in an interview.

Not only is EA's CEO an evil monopolist, he's not very good at grammar either...

Great for the industry (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390785)

I personally feel that this will only help consumers and the industry. Now we won't have to worry about which title will be the better, because there will only be one. Also, the programmers at EA won't have to work extra long hours any more, because they won't have to make any changes to the games other than adding new seasonal data. Everyone's a winner!

Re:Great for the industry (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390889)

Except for the entire programming, AI, UI, Art, Design, QA and Play Test divisions of Tiburon...

After all, the create-a-player feature already allows you to make any existing NFL player, so why pay all of those people when they can get minimum wage data-entry people in India?

Mixed Feelings (5, Funny)

pHatidic (163975) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390792)

On one hand the evil alliance is getting more powerful by the day. On the other hand, ESPN pretty much only covers boring invented-for-tv/radio sports. I guess since I don't play sports games or EA games this doesn't really bother me, although the day they try to buy out the Nethack [nethack.org] dev team I'll be outside corporate headquarters with my torch and pitchfork.

Re:Mixed Feelings (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390840)

Nethack? Are you serious? I don't think there are millions to be made with "Nethack" (just like there aren't millions to be made with choose your own adventure books).

Let go of the 1980's gaming and welcome a polygon into your life. Your opinion isn't even close to the majority and is probably so small I wouldn't even want to insult the minority and call it the "minority" opinion.

Re:Mixed Feelings (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390910)

There are a few polygons in NetHack. I assume you took Geometry and learned what a polygon is.

But really I suspect that the original poster was a troll. I mean, would someone really consider NetHack as a marketable game? Unless it was Slashbot elitism --"I'm too cool for mainstream games!"--it has to be a troll, right?

Re:Mixed Feelings (3, Insightful)

phriedom (561200) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390990)

I agree. By itself this isn't a big deal. The ESPN name adds a little bit of credibility, and the ESPN announcer voices add a bit of professionalism to the image, but there is no real substance lost. However, the NFL's decision to sell exclusive rights is a much bigger deal, and when you combine that with ESPN's decision, its a pretty nasty one-two punch to Sega.

It might be the right decision for ESPN, but I really think it was a bad move by the NFL. Yes, it is money in the bank now for the NFL, but I think in the long term it works against them. A vibrant, competitive video game market for NFL licensed games is a HUGE promotion/marketing tool for the NFL. People playing the games get a lot more involved in the players and teams that people who just watch it on TV sometimes. I'll admit I never watched any football until I played Madden on the playstation and learned about the teams and the players and how the play calling influenced the game. I think that video games and fantasy leagues provide the kind of interaction that makes watching football exciting in a way that NO amount of regular advertising and promotion can do at any price. Plus, video games reach teens when they are impressionable and can make them NFL fans for life. Putting all their eggs in the EA basket might be a decision they come to regret.

I guess some of that applies to ESPN too. By taking the deal from EA they are cutting them selves off from Sega and other companies that might be willing to pay for the priviledge of promoting ESPN.

My thoughts by John Madden. (5, Funny)

BitwiseX (300405) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390795)

If you look ahead 15 years, this deal is going to expire. This deal is going to last 5475 days, and we all know that is a long time. This could be a very good deal for EA, but if it turns out to be a bad move, then it's not going to be good for EA.

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (1)

tuxter (809927) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390862)

So what you are saying is if it's good, it's good, but if it turns out bad, it is going to turn out bad? ummmm, Rock on dude! Any other interesting and blatantly obvious observations.

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11390895)

You fool, it's a joke. ... BY JOHN MADDEN. Have you ever listened to the guy?

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (5, Funny)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390913)

My favorite Madden quote (forget about who): "Here's a guy, who - when he runs - he goes faster!"

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (3, Funny)

tuxter (809927) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390942)

Ahhhh, I see, I apologise for my lunacy. Not being american I have only heard of John Madden, not actually heard him. I seem to remember an announcer at the sydney olympics saying about a tennis player...."And before every match, his wife kisses his balls for good luck."

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (5, Funny)

tuxter (809927) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390976)

Here ya go, apologies

Here are the top nine comments made by NBC sports commentators so far during the Summer Olympics that they would like to take back:

1. Weightlifting commentator: "This is Gregoriava from Bulgaria. I saw her snatch this morning during her warm up and it was amazing."
2. Dressage commentator: "This is really a lovely horse and I speak from personal experience since I once mounted her mother."
3. Paul Hamm, Gymnast: "I owe a lot to my parents, especially my mother and father."
4. Boxing Analyst: "Sure there have been injuries, and even some deaths in boxing, but none of them really that serious.
5. Softball announcer: "If history repeats itself, I should think we can expect the same thing again."
6. Basketball analyst: "He dribbles a lot and the opposition doesn't like it. In fact you can see it all over their faces."
7. At the rowing medal ceremony: "Ah, isn't that nice, the wife of the IOC president is hugging the cox of the British crew."
8. Soccer commentator: "Julian Dicks is everywhere. It's like they've got eleven Dicks on the field."
9. Tennis commentator: "One of the reasons Andy is playing so well is that, before the final round, his wife takes out his balls and kisses them...

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11391009)

Thats funny! What's wrong with people around here?

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (1)

chris_eineke (634570) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391016)

This deal is going to last 5475 days
Which is, just accidently, the half-life of slashdot jokes :D

Re:My thoughts by John Madden. (1)

Tsian (70839) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391080)

Geeze, half-life was released, so that jokes totally done for!

Well this is a big poke in the eye... (4, Interesting)

yuriismaster (776296) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390829)

FTA: "'We don't anticipating changing anything significantly from what we are currently doing'... they will potentially include ESPN data, graphics and sportscasters" [Emphasis mine]

Now cmon, if you plan to contract one of the largest names in sports news, then at least integrate it into the game. The only reason EA is buying the ESPN license apparently to use "ESPN properties as potential video games, including the "X Games" extreme athletics competitions, poker and even bass fishing."

Wow, cause I want to spend 50 dollars on ESPN World Poker Tour $year.

Re:Well this is a big poke in the eye... (1)

Bagels (676159) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390922)

You might not, but poker is the latest fad - they might get a year or two of good sales out of making an officially licensed game.

Sega should play this game (1)

cgenman (325138) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391010)

I think it's time for sega to seriously consider luring Madden away from EA with gobbs of cash. Who wouldn't want to play Madden Football 2k6?

Re:Well this is a big poke in the eye... (5, Insightful)

Warskull (846730) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391039)

I don't think EA actually bought the ESPN license for the "X Games" this time. I think the real reason they bough the ESPN license is because they haven't secured exclusive deals the the NBA and NHL. So if you can't prevent your competition from making games, steal their license and name. Sega was releasing ESPN hockey, football, and basketball games that were easily 3 times better than EA game for half the price (at release.) EA knows their business model can't come up with a game to match their quality and matching the price would defeat the whole purpose of their business model (sacrifice quality and your employees welfare for highest possible profits.) Thus they steal Sega's license.

Re:Well this is a big poke in the eye... (1)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391058)

EA wants the market share. ESPN-branded games were released for $20, while EA's were listed at $50. They want to use the ESPN properties, but they really want to stop Sega from competing via the ESPN brand.

Re:Well this is a big poke in the eye... (1)

phriedom (561200) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391089)

ESPN has some rights to the Wold Series of Poker, but the one WSOP computer game I could find didn't seem to have anything to do with ESPN. The World Poker Tour is not affiliated with the WSOP and the WPT has their own video game.

The WPT game is one of those "console in the controller" type things where you don't need any other hardware except a TV.

Perhaps ESPN has since aquired the video game rights for the WSOP?

Blitz (Some Real Creativity) (3, Interesting)

Zeromous (668365) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390833)

Despite what many have said, this may not be such a bad thing.

I mean now with Blitz free to do what they want, and a niche market opening up- I'm excited about sports games for once!

It's really too bad there will likely be no 30$ ESPN Football or hockey again, but for each on of those, there will be an outlaw golf, or baseball stars.

These unlicensed games have been missing from 'popular' libraries for years. I see this as only opening up a market for the smaller, savvy developer/publisher.

What About Madden? (1, Interesting)

illuminata (668963) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390846)

From the article: "At least in the short term, Madden's name will stay on the pro football game, rather than being replaced by ESPN or another brand."

I think it would be kind of silly for them to ink a deal with ESPN but not with Madden's current employer ABC. Hell, they're owned by the same parent company (Disney) and Monday Night Football (and ABC show, of course) has already dabbled in the video game market.

I'd expect it of EA to make sure that they had the rights to use of the ABC properties as well, although it will be interesting to see if they somehow incorporate ESPN Sunday Night Football into the Madden franchise.

And now ALL motivation for EA to innovate is gone (3, Insightful)

samdu (114873) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390867)

"We don't anticipating changing anything significantly from what we are currently doing," Larry Probst, chairman and chief executive of EA, said in an interview.


And there is EA's CEO admitting as much. This is horrible for the industry. EA has cranked out some crap this year, but the pressure from Sega has been keeping the Sports line programmers on their toes. Now with no competition, they're free to churn out crappy sports games, too. Sigh.

That's it. (2, Funny)

djatari2600 (666824) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390896)

EA announces purchase of Skynet.

Challenge Everything (Exept our corporate empire.)

SkyNet... (1)

emjoi_gently (812227) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391002)

I cant even imagine what Video Games will be like in 15 years.
15 years ago... 1990... I remember playing a Football Arcade game. Top down view of little sprites running about. 10 Yard Fight!

The dangerous thing is (4, Insightful)

Solr_Flare (844465) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390938)

What is dangerous is that EA is definitely trying to consolidate the industry. They are doing sports games right now, but how long till they start moving in on your company of choice? They already made an initial attempt at Ubisoft, and they are buying licenses from Nintendo. Who is going to be next on the list?

If EA gets enough control over the gaming industry, even if you never play their games they'll still be able to have an impact. How about, for example, increasing the price on their games to $60 a pop? If EA has enough marketshare in the industry, you don't think every other publisher wouldn't follow suit?

That's just one example. EA is out to win big. Check out this article here:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/4180453.stm

EA's stated long term goal is to become the largest Entertainment Firm in the world. They want to take on the big names in the movie industry via games. They cite Disney as one of their targets to beat in future years.

EA isn't going to stop this, it is just going to keep getting worse until they are either:

A) Forced to stop B) The well dries up on them and they die from bloat.

Either way, this is bad for the consumer. This is most definitely *not* a healthy monolopy they are trying to form.

Re:The dangerous thing is (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391013)

Yeah, well, welcome to the real world. Where corporations compete.

EA isn't the threat you think it is. I think you'll find that any gaming company has the same stated goals. No one would invest in a company who's long term goal is to be mediocre.

They'll do something stupid and disappear into obscurity for another decade.

Stupid as in pay a ridiculous amount of cash for the ESPN name, which has nothing to do with team names or logos. They just get to use "ESPN" in the game title. Please.

Re:The dangerous thing is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11391051)

What this means is, ESPN is no longer free to contract out and publish any game bearing their name. So, the cheap $20 game with the ESPN logo (for brand-name identification) that was pretty good won't be available for 15 years, but instead something relatively lame and poor will appear.

I'd love to see the fine print on that contract. ESPN marketing people have tended to be smarter than this in past - suppose there's a poison pill hidden in the contract in the event that EA doesn't come out with something that meets ESPN's terms?

Re:The dangerous thing is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11391022)

The $60 is definitely going to happen. It would be no surprise if they put this pricetag on either the 2006 or 2007 Madden.

Just another example of the "Golden Rule" (1)

Coldglow (846952) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390972)

What is the "Golden Rule" you might ask? "He who owns the gold makes the rules."

when asked for comment (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#11390983)

Randy Moss mooned EA and went home in the middle of the third quarter.

And his stupid ass team choked and lost me 20 bucks.

Antitrust anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11391000)

Could all of these deals by EA be considered monopolistic by the FTC? Is there anything that can be done about this (aside from boycotting EA products)?

ESPN execs asleep at the wheel (5, Insightful)

Infonaut (96956) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391021)

ESPN gave someone an exclusive license for FIFTEEN YEARS?!

The industry could radically change in fifteen years. EA could shoot itself in the foot in five years, becoming an also-ran. Fifteen years in the video game industry is like 45 years in the world of broadcasting.

It might be three years from now, or five, or 10 years from now, but ESPN will live to regret this deal.

Here is an idea (3, Interesting)

yorkpaddy (830859) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391023)

If I were sega, I would design a football game that lets users plug in team data. Make everything like the NFL except for uniforms, logos, and names. Then have some anonymous person on the internet post a mod pack that exactly replicates the protected NFL data. Make it very easy for consumers to plug in this data pack.

EA = gaming genious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11391055)

Once again, the knowledgeable consumer loses out. Of my friends who atleast have book smarts, many do not, love all the sega sports games. The others who are basically brain dead, yet still college educated, love EA. It seems to me marketing has such a pull on the public, the only thing consumers can do for themselves is sleep.

Ohh btw, EA will have to update their sports games soon, new consoles are coming out soon, thus a new graphics engine might be implemented.

new slashdot icon (2, Informative)

syrinx (106469) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391077)

So who runs EA? (Wasn't it started by Trip Hawkins?) Currently it seems to be Larry Probst... can we get a Larry Probst Borg icon here for EA stories?

Will The Madden Name Be Dropped Soon? (4, Insightful)

blueZhift (652272) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391084)

Well now that EA has essentially bought up everything that a competitor like Sega might want to use to brand their football games, I wonder if Madden 2006 will be the last game with the Madden branding. Madden himself is getting old and given the way EA puts out a new football game every year, perhaps less relevant. Soon many of the fans playing the game won't even know who Madden is, many probably don't now. So the Madden name itself may not be worth as much as it used to be. Another question I would have is just how much longer does the current deal to use Madden's name last? If that deal expires soon, then what many of us know as Madden may eventually be known as EA ESPN NFL Football 2007.

So maybe EA isn't an evil monopolist after all, they're just planning for the future!

Sad Day (2, Insightful)

dr.banes (823348) | more than 9 years ago | (#11391099)

EA has been making crap lately. The fact that ESPN 2k4 and 5 has been kicking Madden's ass for the past 2 years is not news,the same goes for their hockey and basketball lines. ESPN continued to tweak gameplay and graphics to the point that it looks and feels like a real game--not to forget that videogame magazines,websites and tv shows have noticed and gave more favorable reviews to ESPN despite pressure from the mega publisher. So I may not buy console football for another 5 years f---it. I doubt the doj will get involved unless the smaller companies make a big deal of it.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...