For nearly 30 years, EA Sports and FIFA have worked together to bring soccer fans FIFA video games every year. That relationship is now ending, however, as the last ever FIFA branded game from EA is set to arrive later this year.
Electronic Arts (EA) announced its plans to drop the FIFA name in a press release earlier this week. Going forward, the new name for the franchise will be EA Sports FC. The first title with the new name will be coming in July of next year.
But that does leave time for one more FIFA game coming this fall. And EA says it will be the biggest one ever. The company says this year’s FIFA title will feature World Cup content, and more game modes, players, and leagues than ever before.
“The introduction of EA SPORTS FC will not impact any current EA Sports global football games, and EA and FIFA are excited to deliver the greatest, most expansive EA SPORTS FIFA ever later this fall,” EA said in a statement. “Our final FIFA product will also include more game modes, features, teams, leagues, players, and competitions than any previous edition.”
Speaking of the World Cup, that is likely the biggest licensing agreement that EA Sports will lose out on in future soccer games. FIFA holds all of the licensing rights to the World Cup. That means that the international competition likely won’t be featured in EA’s games going forward.
But the World Cup is only a fraction of what EA brings to FIFA games. The company says it will retain licensing for hundreds of teams, thousands of players, and 30 different leagues. Essentially, EA will have plenty to work with without FIFA’s World Cup licensing.
As for FIFA, this could mean a new partnership is in the works. FIFA could pen a deal with another publisher to create a new line of games based on the World Cup.
But that’s just speculation at this point. What we do know is that the partnership between EA Sports and FIFA is ending this year. But fans of the game shouldn’t worry too much. Next year’s EA Sports FC will be reminiscent of the decades of FIFA games that we all know and love.
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