EA won't be releasing a college football game in 2014 after all

NCAA Football 14

When Electronic Arts failed to renew its licensing agreement with the NCAA, the company said that it would go ahead and develop a college football video game anyways. It turns out that's no longer the case — at least for next year. EA has announced that it won't be releasing a new college football game in 2014, and that it is evaluating its "plan for the future of the franchise." Both EA and the NCAA are involved in several lawsuits filed by former college athletes claiming that the developer used their likeness' without any compensation. EA says that it is currently "working to settle the lawsuits with the student-athletes." Initially, EA said that it would go ahead with releasing a college football game even without the NCAA license, and that the title was already in development for next generation consoles.

"We are evaluating our plan for the future of the franchise."

However since that time several conferences have followed the NCAA and pulled their support for the game. "The ongoing legal issues combined with increased questions surrounding schools and conferences have left us in a difficult position," says EA Sports' Cam Weber, "one that challenges our ability to deliver an authentic sports experience, which is the very foundation of EA Sports games." According to Weber, EA will continue to support this year's NCAA Football 14 and will attempt to move members of the development team to other projects. "At EA Sports, college football has always been a labor of love," says Weber, "and it is unfortunate that these business and legal issues have impacted our ability to make next year's game."

Update: It turns out EA wasn't lying when it said it was working to settle its lawsuits about athlete likenesses — the company has just announced that, along with the Collegiate Licensing Company, it has reached a settlement with former college athletes.

The Verge
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