EA MMA Says License or No "You still have to deliver"

July 28, 2009

The Sports Business Journal looks at the problems and opportunities of putting out a sports video game without the luxury of having an officially licensed product. While EA Sports is usually on the other end of the spectrum, with a surfeit of licenses, the article notes the unusual situation they are in with their EA MMA title:

EA Sports, a target of many independent game publishers given its dominant position within sports gaming, now ironically finds itself in a somewhat similar situation with the development of its mixed martial arts title, slated for release next year. The company does not have a licensing deal with UFC, the sport’s dominant entity, and is now in a war of words with UFC President Dana White over what White perceives as duplicity in EA’s intentions for MMA gaming, a charge the company strongly denies.

EA is pursuing licensing deals with individual fighters, each of whom risks being blacklisted within UFC.

“IP helps you break through the clutter and rise to the top, but having it is not an excuse for making a bad game. You still have to deliver,” said Peter Moore, EA Sports president.

The article notes Midway’s “Blitz” football game achieving moderate success without the luxury of official status. The EA MMA game will be in a much better position than the other listed non-licensed games, having the marketing heft and industry dominance of the EA brand. In-game promotion and cross-title promotion with other EA titles should be a means of EA leveraging their strong market position to push folks towards their MMA title.

Got something to say?

You must be logged in to post a comment.