FIFA may be synonymous with football videogames, but EA is strongly considering dropping the branding for its long-running Kickabout as it reconsiders its licensing agreements with the Football League.
FIFA 22 after the release. The news fell on a surprising note during blog post. Apparently boasting about reaching 9.1 million players and other milestones, the Post is increasingly in search of where the footy franchise might go next — with a rethinking of its own identity.
“As we look forward, we are also exploring the idea of renaming our global EA Sports Football games,” writes Cam Weber, general manager of EA Sports Group. “This means we are reviewing our naming rights agreement with FIFA, which is separate from all of our other official partnerships and licenses in the world of football.”
The rest of the post goes on to explain why this rebranding may be overdue. Despite having the most high-profile partnerships, FIFA also licenses and partners with dozens of other high-profile leagues and organizations. Additionally, the publisher wants to move further into the grassroots, and better reflect women’s football in the series.
There is also a view raised by past EA executives, such as Peter Moore, that EA has more to do with the success of the series than it did for FIFA’s image. FIFA has done exceptionally well with its deal with EA from this point of view, to the extent that EA should pay FIFA to use the name.
The FIFA license will likely remain in place, as will agreements for delegating clubs and players. But if the EA wants to better represent the broader face of the footy, doing so in the name of a particular association can be a bit daunting.
Hopefully, the identity will be reconsidered by rethinking the series’ PC strategy. FIFA 22 disappointed ahead of release with the announcement that we would essentially be getting a last-gen console version, as EA didn’t want to push players out on older hardware.