FIFA Has Lost The Biggest Sports Game Publisher?

FIFA may be in a bit of trouble after it announced its split from EA. The soccer collective may have already lost out on working with the next biggest sports game developer.

By James Brizuela | Published

This article is more than 2 years old

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Just a short week ago, the gaming and sports world was seemingly turned upside down when FIFA and EA announced their split. After a nearly 30-year relationship and a massive slew of titles, the sports collective and gaming giant decided to end their relationship with one another. EA had announced that FIFA 2023, due this year, would be the final game released under their agreement. Starting in 2023, the soccer game franchise would be renamed EA Sports FC. This left everyone wondering what would happen with FIFA. A statement was released by FIFA, with a game roadmap devised by the collective, but who would publish these upcoming sports game titles? The next biggest sports game publisher is Take-Two Interactive, but they have all but shut down the idea of bringing FIFA into their lineup.

FIFA may have prematurely announced a games roadmap for the upcoming year. The soccer collective has announced they will be releasing an additional game that will focus on the World Cup this year. This is strange considering FIFA 2023 plans to add more expansive content that is dedicated to the World Cup as well. However, Take-Two Interactive is the company behind sports titles like NBA 2K, WWE 2K, PGA Tour 2K, and many more. They are the next biggest sports title developer behind EA. However, the CEO of Take-Two Strauss Zelnick recently and candidly shut down the idea of a partnership. According to Zelnick, “We’re definitely interested in expanding our opportunities in sports, and FIFA has a great brand and incredible clout, but we have no current plans to discuss.” For anyone who has ever lost out on a job, this is the nice of saying there is no way that they “hire” FIFA.

Take-Two has a massive slate of games they are currently working on right now which includes The Quarry, Marvel’s Midnight Suns, NBA 2K23, WWE 2K23, PGA Tour 2K23, and Kerbal Space Program 2. There are some 18 titles that the publisher is working on, so there is likely no room to add on another massive title in FIFA. The soccer collective already announced they would be working on a brand-new FIFA entry that would be due out in 2024. Creating a sports game from scratch might not be feasible in two years, especially if no publisher is ready and willing to take on that much responsibility. EA used FIFA for their name, and not their ability to create video games. So, as of now, the soccer collective is on its own when it comes to creating a game.

FIFA might be in a horrible position without realizing it right away. They had planned to charge EA some $1 billion every four years to use their name on the video games they were essentially piggybacking on. That news could have caused a negative ripple effect for other gaming companies that saw a partnership opportunity. Now without landing a developer to continue their franchise, they stand to lose out on millions of dollars as a result. The soccer collective needs to figure out a way to bring their licensing prices down for anyone to want to join this potential sinking ship. Take-Two certainly sounds like they want nothing to do with such a potentially expensive endeavor.