EA Sports has announced that FIFA 23 will be the very last in its long-running series of football video games – to be replaced by a new franchise called EA Sports FC.
The company previously said it was reviewing its licensing agreement with the international governing body for football, but that it would in any case retain its league, player, and stadium naming rights, which are separate from the agreement with FIFA.
In an announcement on Tuesday, the company said it would be releasing one more game with FIFA as its current naming rights partner, which will feature the men’s and women’s FIFA World Cup competitions in one edition for the first time.
Then the new series will be launching in summer 2023, it said.
The company added that FIFA 23 would be its “most expansive game ever […] with more features, game modes, World Cup content, clubs, leagues, competitions, and players than any FIFA title before”.
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It added: “Our unique licensing portfolio of more than 19,000+ players, 700+ teams, 100+ stadiums and 30 leagues that we’ve continued to invest in for decades will still be there, uniquely in EA Sports FC.
“That includes exclusive partnerships with the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Serie A, the MLS – and more to come.”
The company said its new “independent platform” would offer it an opportunity to “innovate, create and evolve” although it hasn’t yet set out how the game will change.
It stressed “the same great experiences, modes, leagues, tournaments, clubs and athletes will be there” including “Ultimate Team, Career Mode, Pro Clubs and VOLTA Football”.
More choice for football fans and gamers
Following the announcement, FIFA said ending its deal with EA Sports allows it to move to a non-exclusive gaming model and is engaging with publishers, studios and investors on the development of a new simulation football title for 2024.
FIFA says it will launch new games, which will provide more “choice for football and gaming fans in the lead-up to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023”.
Football’s governing body will also launch further games and virtual experiences in the lead up to both the women’s and men’s World Cups.
FIFA president Gianni Infantino said the FIFA name "will remain forever and remain the best"
Gianni Infantino, FIFA president, said: “I can assure you that the only authentic, real game that has the FIFA name will be the best one available for gamers and football fans.
“The FIFA name is the only global, original title.
“FIFA 23, FIFA 24, FIFA 25 and FIFA 26, and so on – the constant is the FIFA name and it will remain forever and remain the best.
“The interactive gaming and esports sector is on a path of unrivalled growth and diversification.
“FIFA’s strategy is to ensure we can make the most of all future options and ensure a wide range of products and opportunities for gamers, fans, member associations and partners.”
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