Electronic Arts, forever content with repackaging Madden’s own turds every year, started losing ground to the new contender, SEGA Sports. The underdog, with its arguably superior game, went at EA’s jugular with a low, low budget price. It started to work. EA’s market-share began to slip.
EA couldn’t stand this, so they made a deal: buy two sports games, get one free. No one really cared. Then they lowered their prices, but not as low as SEGA’s. No one really cared. So, naturally, when the competition became tough, they fought back the only way they know how: they beat SEGA to a pulp with their giant, Scrooge McDuck like, money bags.
EA has bought 5 years worth of NFL exclusivity, and in doing so has essentially killed the SEGA’s NFL line, 989’s NFL GameDay line, Microsoft’s NFL Fever line, and overall competition in the marketplace. EA now has free reign to republish the same shit ever year, at a stupid price, without ever needing to up the ante. Everyone else loses big.
The gaming boards, the realms of the more dedicated gamers, responded with a united “Holy Shit“. They see the problems this causes. The sad thing is, come next football season, the casual gamer — the one that buys the sports game here, the military shooter there — will not know or care about what transpired today. They’ll just go to get their annual football game, and they’ll be greeted with one option. The memories of those other choices will become long forgotten (the stuff of legends), and EA’s evil shadow will spread, bringing darkness and terror to all.