IN many people’s minds the name FIFA is not related to the football federation.
For many people when they say FIFA they are referring to EA Sports’ game series, which continues to top best-seller lists year after year.
The FIFA series is being rebranded as EA Sports FC.[/caption]
From this year the series will continue under the name EA Sports FC, thanks to the two’s very public divorce.
GLHF sat down with David Jackson, VP of brand at EA Sports, to talk about where the series will go from here.
We asked if he thought people would still refer to the new series with the name FIFA that EA Sports is so well known for,
Jackson replies: “It wouldn’t surprise me, yes, that in the short term, there’s still a little bit of overhang with the amazing experiences delivered in the past.”
He didn’t seem disappointed that the new name might take a while to catch on.
He continues: “We think over time people will call the platform FC.
“Then, via osmosis over time, it’ll become very obvious that this is an FC product. Or this is an FC experience and it comes from EA Sports.”
The new brand EA Sport FC was recently revealed, alongside a number of new partnerships, and cross media promotions.
Jackson reveals: “To see it come to life in the world of football, and have it be showcased through the lens of hundreds and hundreds of our partners all over the world.
“All the way from La Liga and Real Madrid, all the way through to League Two here in England, so the rebrand means the world to us.”
The game is likely to launch around September, though EA Sports has promised a first look at gameplay in July.
Despite focusing on the launch of FC, EA Sports has not forgotten FIFA 23, which continues to see new updates every week.
Jackson explains: “We know we have a responsibility to make sure that there’s no confusion in the space around what was a FIFA product and what that will look like in the future.
“We also know that we exist in the context of global football, and the seasons at the moment in some of the major leagues are really heating up.”
By Jackson’s admission EA Sports’ split from FIFA was planned for “a number of years now”, but that the team had to prepare to make its own brand work for players.
Jackson confirms the split wasn’t just a question of money and politics.
He says: “It’s the freedom for us to be able to consider anything that we want to do in the future and not have it be limited or curtailed by any third party.
“This brand is ours and ours alone, to build on behalf of partners and players all over the world.”
The new brand identity is already being forged with the release of FC’s triangular logo.
Jackson describes the fan response saying: “We’ve heard some really positive reactions to the visual identity, and we’ve equally heard some challenging feedback as well.
“That’s okay. What we didn’t want is any middle of the road sort of easy to ignore feedback.
“There’s at least something memorable in the identity that we’re looking to deliver and all of that feedback is really welcome”
There has been some controversy surrounding EA Sports bringing the realistic football experience into people’s homes.
However, Jackson denies that people who would be out playing are staying at home instead.
He explains: “Some research that we did sort of neuters or counters maybe a perception that our game detracts from people playing football in the real world.
“We found that 63% of people, if they play our game, are disproportionately more likely to play football in the real world.
“It’s super, super important for our teams and our partners to know that we are investing in young people’s access to the world of real football and their fandom of the sport.
“And it’s really genuinely important to me as well.
“I have three young kids, I see what it’s like when you do have access [to quality facilities to play] in Canada and where you don’t, in previous places we’ve lived.
“It’s night and day in terms of their love for the sport once they can play and once they can play with facilities that are adequate for you know their needs.”
We will find out more about EA Sports FC when gameplay launches in July.
Written by Alex Bugg and Georgina Young on behalf of GLHF.
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