Getting Madden Anyway?

Ok, I’m upset as the next guy about EA scarfing up the NFL license for 5 years (and, I would argue, likely forever). Rather it is or isn’t good business practice doesn’t matter to me. It sucks. This will screw the consumer in terms of price, quality, and innovation.

I’ll be sorry to see NFL 2K5 go. I’ve enjoyed the series since the Dreamcast. Likewise, it pained me to see Papyrus get swept under the rug in a similar, heavy-handed deal. I still place NASCAR 2003 Season regularly.

I’m extremely irritated at EA for such ugly tactics and I’m pretty pissed that my choices will be limited when I hit the store next August.

That said, I’m going to make the (probably) unpopular statement that I will buy Madden 2006 anyway. I admit it. Shoot me. A copy of the Madden has sat on my shelf every year since 1992, often sharing space with the Sega NFL games (much like it did this year). Next year won’t be any different. My addiction to football games has been medically diagnosed. I can’t help myself.

Yes, there are things EA could to further discourage this behavior (e.g. charge $65) but barring the apocalypse, I’ll be playing a new copy of a football game in my living room when the NFL season kicks off next September.

Who else shares my misgivings but won’t let their gaming dollar speak for them like they should?


You need to wait until the next Madden ships, the one with zoomy new features and amazing graphics and blah blah blah. Hopefully, all of the people so upset will stick by their guns and not buy it, causing it to drop in sales by about 10.

Steve you are a funny guy. However it isn’t just going to be Madden that is going to drop in sales, I personallly am going to avoid all EA games because of this. I buy a crapload of games, if others like me follow suit there could be a nice backlash waiting for EA. Even if it is 5-10% of the people who buy their games now that could be millions of dollars lost to them. I hope they factored that into their calculations.

– Xaroc

Do you really think tens of millions of people will not buy EA games because of this? Now that’s funny.

If it’s the only NFL game out there, I’m betting money that Madden’s sales will increase, not decrease. Most people just want to play some football with their buddies. A lot of today’s anger will be long-gone by next season.

Do you really think tens of millions of people will not buy EA games because of this? Now that’s funny.

If it’s the only NFL game out there, I’m betting money that Madden’s sales will increase, not decrease. Most people just want to play some football with their buddies. A lot of today’s anger will be long-gone by next season.[/quote]

Really? Because everytime I see Madden or the EA symbol I am going be reminded of this and it is not going to make me want to buy their games. Maybe casual gamers won’t care but do you honestly think that there are no other people who think the way I do? The questions remains will it be enough for EA to notice or care. I think there could be.

– Xaroc

Steve’s right. Madden sales will increase and a handful of well-meaning but self-righteous fans won’t be playing sports games next year. This will suck for me because I like playing sports games online with these well-meaning but self-righteous fans. I mean, avoid all EA Sports games? Didn’t you read? Fight Night 2 is going to have clinching and be Live capable!

I have no doubts you would stay angry. But you have to understand, for the millions of people that line up on its release date, Madden IS football. They could care less about any of these issues. They don’t read gaming websites, they don’t pay attention to message board chatter. They’re sports fans. Or more importantly, Madden fans.

Now ESPN covering the issue, that might cause some to pause. But chances are, they’re already fans of Madden, so they’re saying, “So what?” They might have even liked the Sega game, but if their 5-10 buddies are all playing Madden, which one will they play more frequently so they won’t get humiliated?

It’s time for the Open Source community to band togeth, aw fuck it I’ll just buy Madden. But I’m waiting till it drops below $20.

ESPN uses Madden as a telestrator for their NFL Matchup show and there were far more Madden commercials on that network than ESPN NFL 2k5 commercials. ESPN is just a license, there’s never been a connection with the network really. Berman and Kolber might be unhappy, but they won’t mention it.

I think every gaming messageboard on the Internet is becoming gay about the whole subject. The future of sports gaming clearly relies on some kind of substantial Speedball sequel.

It was on the homepage; that’s what I was referring to.

And Madden is on ESPN because Disney owns both ABC and ESPN.

Do you really think tens of millions of people will not buy EA games because of this? Now that’s funny.[/quote]
How many copies of Madden sell every year? 10 million total? It would only take a couple hundred thousand to knock percentage points off of EA’s bottom line on that. I agree with Xaroc, this could severely impact them to the negative. Were there people before who specifically didn’t buy EA football games (because there was competition) who will now? In other words, what sales did they gain by this decision?

I probably won’t buy Madden for more reasons than just my dissatisfaction with EA as a company. The real problem for me is that Madden just isn’t that good in my opinion compared to ESPN. In just about every area, Madden is the lesser game. Since I’m not a die hard console pigskin player, I can easily go without rather than play a game I just don’t believe to be that good.

I second every word of that. I’ll just add that I LOVE football (watching it), but I won’t buy Madden anymore, and I’ll at least hesitate to buy any EA products ever again. Will that affect them financially? Probably not, but that’s not the point.

I don’t get it. Why not just play last years game instead? It seems quite possible to boycott EA and still play football.

Is the game truly substantially improved every year?

That’s what I’m going to do basically, just hang on to the last year ofSega that comes out (i’m hoping somehow they get one more out but who knows… hell I’ll buy 3 just to uber vote with my wallet). The problem becomes when I make the jump to the XBox 2, I probably won’t want to keep an xbox around just for football.

  1. Boycotting is the adult equivalent of a temper tantrum.

  2. jpnard’s whining campaign is trying to use the old trick of repeating something often enough people think it’s true. NFL2k5 was not better than Madden 2005. I liked Madden more. This wasn’t EA responding to Sega’s superiority, Sega isn’t the superior product.

Quite frankly, Madden has never been about innovations(neither has Sega). They’ll add something every few years, but generally it’s just upping the polish level. So loss of innovation is going to be caused by this? Shit, innovation was already gone. The business model precludes it.

And yes, I’m a shameless rebuyer of sports games, though I have no loyalty to a company , I will buy 3 sports games per year(NFL, NCAA Football, and NBA: EA, EA, and Sega the last few years).

I really disagree with this, boycotting seems more like the logical thing to do, but I guess it can be done with a temper trantrum-y attitude I guess.

If I think EA sucks as a company, it seems pretty reasonable to make a point to not buy their stuff. To me an adult temper tantrum involes a group marching and using the chant: “What do we want… [insert cause here]. When do we want it… Now!” Or on the other end of the adult tantrum spectrum, a full blown riot.

No, boycotting is the most powerful weapon in the consumers (limited) arsenal. It’s just very hard to organize and more or less only happens spontaneus (ie no call to arms and no petitions).

It won’t matter in this case, because the only people angered about this is the people that read and posts on sites like this, and compared to the sum total of EA’s customers (or all football gamers) we’re a minority. Sales will increase, and probably repay the investment by EA tenfold.