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Volume 24 No. 158
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EA Sports Unveils Details Of Revived "NBA Live" Release During E3 Press Day

Basketball titles held a prominent position at yesterday's E3 Press Day in L.A., with EA Sports unveiling several features for its attempted revival of the "NBA Live" franchise and 2K Sports taking part in Sony's press conference to discuss the upcoming "NBA 2K 14." Cavaliers G Kyrie Irving took part in EA Sports' conference to formally introduce "NBA Live 14," which will release this fall after a tumultuous four-year absence. As part of the relaunch, EA Sports intends to update its game ratings and game intelligence within one hour of the conclusion of every real-life NBA game, representing an unprecedented frequency of game updates. "NBA Live will be a new experience every time you pick up the game controller," said Sean O'Brien, the game's exec producer. Meanwhile, 2K Sports sought to build upon last week's LeBron James cover announcement with a sizzle reel in Sony's press conference featuring a virtual conversation between James and his video game avatar.

NEXT GENERATION PLATFORMS: Both Microsoft and Sony released retail specifics for its next-generation gaming consoles, the XBox One and PlayStation 4. The XBox One will release in November at a base price of $499, while Sony will release PlayStation 4 around the holiday season for $399. However, Microsoft is not phasing out the existing XBox 360. Rather, the platform will still be supported with "hundreds" of games, the company said, and the console itself is being redesigned with a new, smaller form factor similar to the XBox One. Sony took several shots at Microsoft in its press day event, announcing no new restrictions on used games or online connection requirements for PlayStation 4, elements that will be present for XBox One.

PETERSON GETS "MADDEN" COVER: EA Sports yesterday said Vikings RB Adrian Peterson will be on the cover of "Madden NFL 25" for the XBox One and PlayStation 4 edition. Peterson earlier this spring lost in the finals in a cover vote to Pro Football HOFer Barry Sanders, who will still be on the cover of all editions for current-generation platforms when they release Aug. 27.

FIGHT NIGHT: UFC President Dana White made a return appearance to E3 to herald the property's ongoing relationship with EA Sports. The publisher's first entry with UFC will be released next spring for the XBox One and PlayStation 4. Among the newly disclosed development features is an attribute called "Full Body Deformation" showing facial and bodily displacement in ways not seen in prior fighting games. "I believe fighting was the first sport ever on this planet," White said yesterday. "Before a guy threw a ball through a circle, two men were put on this earth, somebody threw a punch, and whoever was standing around went over and watched. I don't care what color you are, what language you speak or what country you come from, we're all human beings, fighting's in our DNA, we get it, and we like it."

PITCH PERFECT: "FIFA 14," the latest incarnation of the world's largest selling licensed sports video game, also will be a launch title for the next-generation platforms. Compared to the three other games EA Sports is developing as launch titles for the next-generation platforms, "FIFA" is receiving a less extensive overhaul. But it also will deploy the new Ignite game engine the company has developed to take full advantage of the XBox One and PlayStation 4.