Ten years ago, I wrote one of the most wrongheaded articles of my career. In a review of 2005’s Blitz: The League for Slate, I predicted that Madden NFL’s then-new monopoly on the National Football League’s license for video game football would restore variety to the virtual gridiron. Surely the single-minded pursuit…
It is one of the oft-old tales in the three-decade (!) history of Madden NFL: When Trip Hawkins, the founder of Electronic Arts, approached John Madden, the Hall of Fame coach and broadcaster, about collaborating on a new version of video game football, Madden stipulated that any game with his name on it would include…
Heading into this console transition my opinion was that, of all the genres that could possibly sell a new Xbox or PlayStation, sports would come in last. Despite the richer visuals and refined experiences I've seen so far, that opinion still stands.
This is the rara avis of outcomes in Madden NFL—the career-ending injury. It is the sports video game equivalent of permadeath, and yes, it'll actually happen in your living room, although I have never seen this myself.
A jury today found that Electronic Arts used code and features developed by the designer of the first John Madden Football throughout Madden games published into the mid-1990s without crediting or paying him royalties, and required EA to pay damages that could start at $11 million and potentially reach much higher.