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Volume 26 No. 227
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Apple's New Hockey Game Features Athletes From Across Sports

The game landed licensing agreements with nine leagues and players unions on the mobile game
Photo: APPLE
The game landed licensing agreements with nine leagues and players unions on the mobile game
Photo: APPLE
The game landed licensing agreements with nine leagues and players unions on the mobile game
Photo: APPLE

Apple Arcade is launching a hockey game titled "Ultimate Rivals: The Rink," which is "available exclusively in the tech giant's game-subscription service" and lets fans "pit NHL players against athletes from other sports," according to Todd Spangler of VARIETY. The two-on-two hockey game "lets players combine athletes across hockey," as well as basketball, football, baseball and soccer into a "single officially licensed video game." According to Apple, this is the "first time a game has brought together multiple sports like this." The game is developed by Bit Fry Game Studios, which "landed licensing agreements" with nine major pro sports organizations: the NHL, NHLPA, NBA, NBPA, MLB, MLBPA, NFLPA, WNBPA and USWNTPA, as well as Hockey HOFer Wayne Gretzky. In the game, players can "choose from among more than 50 superstar athletes for their two-person squad." The different "combinations of players will unlock unique ways to play and win against the game's AI or other gamers in online multiplayer matches" (VARIETY.com, 12/12). THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER's Patrick Shanley noted the game gives players "access to stylized digital avatars of some of the sports world's biggest stars, from LeBron James to Alex Morgan to Sidney Crosby to J.J. Watt." The first title in what "aims to be a series of specific sport games, 'Ultimate Rivals: The Rink,' places star athletes on the NHL ice in three different, futuristic-aesthetic arenas" in S.F., DC and N.Y. (HOLLYWOODREPORTER.com, 12/12).