Screenshot from »Fifa 22«
No video game sells as well as »Fifa« in Germany year after year, the soccer simulation is also very popular worldwide.
Nevertheless, the game series could now face a radical change.
It's about the name.
The game's manufacturer, EA Sports, has apparently not yet been able to come to an agreement with the world football association Fifa - and without an official “Fifa” license, EA Sports is unlikely to offer a video game with the same title in the future.
It's, how could it be otherwise, about money.
EA Sports, which belongs to the EA company and, in addition to "Fifa", also releases "Madden NFL", has massively increased its sales over the past few years.
This is also due to "Fifa", and especially the most popular mode in the game, "Fifa Ultimate Team" (FUT).
In it, the players put together their own teams.
Top stars are not easy to get, however, they either have to be earned at great expense or you invest real money in addition to the "Fifa" purchase price - the current Playstation 5 version costs around 70 euros.
The microtransactions in "FUT" now account for a considerable proportion of EA's total sales.
They bring the company in more than a billion dollars annually, and the number is rising.
The current annual report states that last year 16 percent of new players discovered »FUT« for themselves.
The world football association therefore apparently wants to have a much larger share of the cake from now on.
The current ten-year agreement is about to expire;
and the New York Times now reports that the association wants to receive more than twice as much money in the future.
There is talk of more than a billion dollars per World Cup cycle, i.e. more than 250 million dollars annually.
According to the New York Times, the negotiations are at an impasse.
The developer company announced last week that it was "considering renaming our global EA Sports soccer games."
EA has concluded license agreements with a number of associations, with the European Uefa, with national rights holders.
The loss of the Fifa license would not be synonymous with the end of the series, only a few areas would probably be affected: special content for world championships, for example.
Games with FC Bayern or Real Madrid with Robert Lewandowski and Toni Kroos as well as the »FUT« mode would still be playable.
And yet the loss of the name would mean a potential risk for the developers.
A change is likely to irritate many buyers and unsettle some.
The football association, on the other hand, gets something with the game that is usually denied it: that the name »Fifa« has positive connotations.
It is far from ruled out that an agreement will still be reached.
However, if EA and Fifa do not come together, the game would need a new name.
There is already an indication of what this could be.
EA recently secured the rights to a brand name.
It is "EA Sports FC".