Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson said he felt the FIFA license was “an obstacle” for the company to develop the franchise.
Speaking during an internal company meeting in November, information was shared with VGCWilson is reported that while the company has had “a great relationship with FIFA over the past 30 years”, it has been “a battle” for FIFA to acknowledge what the company wants to create. According to Wilson, this is because FIFA says EA’s license “covers only certain categories.”
“As we looked to the future, we wanted to grow the franchise, and ironically, the FIFA license was actually an obstacle to that,” he said.
“Our players told us they wanted more cultural and commercial brands that were relevant to them in their market, deeper into the game… brands like Nike. But because FIFA has a relationship with Adidas, we can’t do that.”
“Our players told us they wanted more game modes, different things beyond 11v11 and different playstyles. I’ll tell you, it’s a fight for FIFA to acknowledge the types of things we want to create, because they say our license only covers certain types. “
Wilson went on to say that players wanted the game to expand into the “broader” digital ecosystem, but the actual FIFA license “prevented” it from doing what the players asked.
“FIFA was just the name on the box, but they ruled out our ability to branch out into the areas that the players wanted,” he said.
It is believed that this year’s FIFA game will still carry the brand, but Wilson seems unsure if EA and FIFA will be able to extend the current deal.
“At the end of the day, I don’t know if we’re going to get there,” he said. “And ironically, if we don’t, and we can rebrand our game and take control of the global football ecosystem that we’re going to build, then ironically we have will probably generate more revenue and have more fans, and more interactions over time.
“Because we will be able to work with more partners, we will be able to build more game modes, we will be able to expand deeper and wider into the digital ecosystems around. around football and beyond we’ll be able to move really, really fast.
“We’re going to work this out, we’re going to think it over and we want to be a good partner with FIFA, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we ended up going in a different direction. At the end of the day, I think that might even be better for us gamers than continuing with those four letters on the box. “
EA also suggests that if that and FIFA can’t come to an agreement, EA will still license the leagues, players and stadiums separately from FIFA.
While, FIFA replied by stating that it is currently interacting with “many industry players, including developers, investors, and analysts.”
https://www.vg247.com/the-fifa-license-has-been-an-impediment-to-growing-the-franchise-says-ea-ceo The EA executive said the FIFA license was an “obstacle” to the franchise’s growth.