What does the future hold after FIFA and Electronic Arts part ways after illustrious 30-year-partnership?

EA would be rebranding the game as “EA Sports FC" from next year.

Abhishek SandikarAuthor

Updated - 29 September 2022 06:19 PM


With the release of FIFA 23, US videogame developers Electronic Arts (EA) end their illustrious 30-year-partnership with global footballing body FIFA. The split between the two entities was confirmed in May when FIFA said they would be seeking other partners for the game. Hence , EA stated that they would be rebranding the game as “EA Sports FC" from next year.

For the latest version, EA has included women’s club teams for the first time, only from England and France, after several years after the introduction of women players. Australian superstar Sam Kerr, who plays for Chelsea, is on the game’s cover along with French World Cup winner Kylian Mbappe.

The partnership that started in 1993 and over the next 30 years, FIFA has sold more than 325 million copies which have reportedly generated more than $20 billion in sales. The video game industry has an estimated worth of around $300 billion a year because of which there has been a lot of competition between the biggest companies.

EA made a turnover of $5.6 billion last year, making it one of the biggest game makers outside the grasp of the four giants — Tencent, Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. The end of the deal with FIFA came after the football body reportedly raised its licensing fee demand from $150 million a year to $250 million making the total for a four-year contract worth $1 billion.

But after the split, FIFA could be the one struggling as it would be difficult to bring in potential partners after its reported $1 billion demand, according to Tom Wijman of Newzoo. It would be a “risky endeavour in any circumstance, but especially if you then have to compete with EA to build the most popular football game”, he said.

Addressing the gaming community, avid fans of the game are extremely happy with the final edition as they say goodbye to one of the most iconic gaming franchises in history.  Swedish gamer Olle Arbin live-streamed his first attempt for 12 hours on Wednesday. 

Similarly,  Ben Wilson of GamesRadar wrote,  “FIFA 23 sees the series bow out on a high, and provides encouraging signs for the debut of EA Sports FC this time next year."

The Guardian ranked "FIFA 23" four out of five as critic Keith Stuart completed the game for having an improved, fluid and fast-paced feel than 'FIFA 22'. Stuart wrote, "Now it feels like the physics, AI and animation have come together in a way that makes even these ridiculous moments feel naturalistic and pleasurable." However, Stuart concluded that "FIFA 23" is the series at its peak.


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