SBD/October 19, 2011/Media

EA Sports Planning To Revive "NFL Blitz" Title As Download-Only Release

EA Sports today announced plans to revive the classic and once-hotly debated late '90s and early '00s video game franchise, "NFL Blitz," with a download-only release slated for early January on the XBox 360 and PlayStation 3 platforms. The original iteration of "NFL Blitz" featured a highly exaggerated level of simulated violence, leading the league to eventually pull its license from franchise creator Midway Games. But EA Sports worked extensively with the NFL to tone down the game slightly while still seeking to retain its original spirit (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal). Video game blog PASTA PADRE noted the game will feature the "ability to customize rosters through a card-like system, on-field 'power-ups,' and expansive online modes." EA's "most recent attempts at arcade football" were "Madden NFL Arcade" and "NFL Tour." Both were "fun games but lacked the necessary widespread appeal and never really caught on." "NFL Blitz" is the last of "three mystery titles that had been kept under wraps for the January through March fiscal quarter" -- the other games are "Grand Slam Tennis 2" and "FIFA Street" (, 10/18).

OLYMPIC FEVER: AROUND THE RINGS' Ann Cantrell reports the '12 London Games represent "a series of firsts for ISM Ltd., the IOC's worldwide exclusive licensee of Olympic-themed video games." Publishers beginning next month "will release a series of Olympic-themed games for virtually every platform from Xbox 360 to mobile phones to web browsers." "Mario and Sonic at the Olympics Games" hits retail stores Nov. 18 and is "featured as part of a special edition blue Wii console bundle in European markets." For the "first time ever, there will also be a Facebook game in which people can build an Olympic Park online." ISM will "work with sponsors to give away real-life prizes for winners." ISM also will "work with Olympic sponsors and National Olympic Committees to create 'minigames' or simpler, flash-based games for free that can be played through a web browser" (, 10/19).
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