The announcement of a new partnership deal between the Take-Two Interactive and NFL in March came to many people as a surprise. The deal is about developing a series of football games, starting from the 2021 calendar year. With this new deal, the majority of investors started contemplating on what it means for the Electronic Arts that already has a deal with the NFL – a deal that has been there since 2004.
Esports have been thrust into the limelight all over the globe and games like Madden are arguably responsible for the recent popularity of competitive video games. CSGO is another game which has undeniably helped drive the current interest in esports and Counter-Strike has been so successful that we’ve even begun to see browser-based games of CSGO coinflip become popular, where people can bet skins and real money to upgrade their items or win prizes.
But it was in late May that the EA came out to tell the world about a fresh multi deal with the NFL. This time, it is geared towards expanding the Madden Franchise to more genres, platforms, and esports programs. Below, we have explained the supposed meaning of this deal for the Madden Franchise.
The NFL Is Witnessing a Growth Streak at the Moment
The ratings of the NFL has witnessed back to back increase in the two years leading to the 2019 season, and this simply connotes that viewership could be grown through interactive entertainment among the people of the new generation.
Talking about this, the NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell posited that this partnership is not only being expanded for the Madden NFL Franchise to continue to succeed, but also to create more avenues for lovers of NFL to connect with their cherished sports.
Coupled with the increase in the viewership of real live NFL games, the Madden Franchise also witnessed its best year in Electronic Arts history last year. Since the Madden NFL 20 was launched in August 2019, there has been a year over year unique players increase of 30% and the average user per month reached an all-time high, according to information released by the EA on the 28th of May.
The Madden player level witnessed a year on year doubling in April, and this shows that the compulsory furlough caused by the occurring events has boosted people’s patronage of the EA.
The EA also reported a 9% year on year increase in digital net bookings for the 2020 fiscal year in May, and this was caused by increased engagement across the premium titles of the firm, Madden inclusive.
Now, the Electronic Arts is being offered more avenues or routes to develop and deliver more interaction for the players, and in the end, this is expected to bring about even more growth for both parties.
Madden Could Grow Tremendously In the Next Five Years
The deal that EA has with the NFL is offering more than the one that the NFL has with ‘Take Two’. In the agreement with ‘Take Two,’ the firm is allowed to develop a series of non-simulation football games for the casual audience. But the contract with EA gives them the right to keep developing simulation football games that are like real football in playbook and strategy. However what EA will gain from the deal does not end here. The games that EA will be making through the deal will come with increased types of self-expression and more forms of gameplay that spans through lots of new genres, including new titles that would be played on mobile devices. In the new agreement, EA is also given the chance to advance Madden Esports by bringing in more competitive events and broadcast content. Live services spending like Ultimate Team Digital card games found in EA’s sports session, which accounts for a third of the total annual revenue of EA, can also be increased with high interests in esports.
This new partnership is coming exactly when it is needed. This is because the new consoles from Microsoft and Sony would be released in the coming months, and it seems that EA has already conceptualized methods of steering more interest in Madden. According to EA in the press release, the major focus of the partnership would be on design, development innovations, and visualization, all geared towards and solidifying the Madden NFL world, and to impact on its gameplay and look and feel. This is also geared towards bringing a positive impact on the level of connection, interaction, and immersion that players feel with the NFL as this goes on.
Talking about this, the NFL’s Vice President of gaming, esports, and partnership, Rachel Hoagland told NFL.com about the actual scope of the partnership in question. In the statement, she also gave the reasons why the league decided to stick with the EA.
She said that it is very essential for the league to place the Madden Franchise in a place where it would be ready for investment in gameplay features and innovation in the future, as the world moves to increased gaming devices, new consoles, and cloud based gaming. For the people in charge, EA was seen as the firm in the best position to spearhead this, considering their history and expertise, coupled with the amount of talent they have in their ranks.
What it means is that the EA basically stands as the NFL’s digital face. It has been described as the biggest and the most far reaching gaming agreement ever undertaken by the NFL since its history by the partners. Revenue from individual titles is never revealed by the EA, but according to this new agreement, the Madden NFL Franchise will now be in a position to continue with its recent momentum, and to engineer a very significant increase in its player base through the next set of consoles.