Take 2 Interactive Negotiation with MLB

Take 2 Interactive is in talks to ink an exclusive deal with Major League Baseball, similar to what EA did with the NFL.

An interesting note the article mentions is that this won’t really affect EA because EA doesn’t use MLB in their brand name. I thought that the exclusivity would extend towards the inside contents as well. In otherwords, EA couldn’t use real-world team names, stadiums, player names, etc… If this isn’t the case, then how come SEGA couldn’t use NFL teames, stadiums, players, etc… in their games and just not call it ESPN NFL2KX?

Here’s the article:

Seems like a silly thing to do-- baseball games don’t sell anywhere near as much as football or basketball games do. Then again, this is the comapny that paid 40+ million for the rights to Max Payne.

So basically… Take-Two is forcing Sony to rename their baseball game…?

I think understood it wrong…

MLB doesn’t own the rights to the player names or likenesses. They may own the rights to the stadiums, though.

In fact, ESPN just did an article on how licensing for the use of MLB players/stats for fantasy games (which is different than console/PC sims) has recently changed.

The MLBPA (the player’s union) is the group that controls rights to the use of player names and likenesses. There’s some legal gray area about the ability to use statistics, because there was a 1997 ruling in the NBA that said that they couldn’t restrict use of game statistics.

I’m pretty sure that the thrust of this deal would just mean that Take Two’s game would be the only “Officially Licensed” MLB game.

Does Take2 even -do- sports games?

ANY kind of sports games?

They published the last round of Sega sports games, and I believe they are looking into/have the option to purchase Visual Concepts (the developer). In addition, they also recently bought Microsoft’s sports game division.

Yes. The ESPN ones this year. You know, the only real competitor to EA? They’re publishing with/for Sega/Sammy, whatever. I don’t know the exact details, but they’re the ones behind all the $20 sports titles this year.

As for the licensing, I’m pretty sure I remember the articles about NFL exclusivity for EA including mention of securing exclusivity with the players association there, that’s the big difference. This MLB deal doesn’t extend to the players association.

Is there any chance that they got the rights to High Heat Baseball in that purchase? Or that they would use them if they did?