News Update


Fifa to EA Sports FC: A significant risk for the UK’s best-selling game

This week sees the release of EA Sports FC, the latest edition of Electronic Arts’ (EA) football simulator.

Following a reported quarrel over the cost of the permission to use the Fifa brand, the games creator is walking out of the football governing body’s shadow.

Since the 1990s, the game has been the best-selling title in the UK, and one expert believes the size of the rebranding effort was “unheard of.”

Few companies choose to abandon their name and emblem in the face of market domination.

According to Ampere Analysis, the Fifa video game franchise was valued $513 million (£332 million) to EA in net revenue in 2010. By 2020, this figure had risen to $2 billion (£1.6 billion).

Moving on from the name and the brand identification that comes with it is a massive gamble that might result in EA attempting the biggest rebrand in entertainment history.

According to Graham Sykes, executive creative director of design and branding firm Landor & Fitch, the decision presents considerable hurdles.

“You are removing the watermark of authenticity from a flagship title, which is a big concern for fans,” he states.

“You can see, as part of the rebrand, there is work being done to try to counteract that.”

Sykes continues: “I don’t think there’s anything that compares to this rebrand in particular.”

Given the game’s extensive economic environment, which includes a plethora of other connected products, the move is “unheard of for an entertainment franchise.”

According to Sykes, the reactions of fans when the game goes on sale will be critical to its success.

“Being so consistent and successful for 30 years, transcending technological breakthroughs like the invention of social media and the rise of the internet, speaks to just how strong this following is… We’ll know if it succeeded [in] week one.”


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