The NCAA appears to be inching closer to allowing one form or another of paid representation for its athletes. And while we’re not quite there yet, the return of EA Sports’ NCAA Football series is one of the most exciting steps we’ve seen. It seems at least reasonably likely that in time players’ names and likenesses will be included (as they are in games concerning professional leagues), and that would mean paid representation.
Another interesting factor regarding the return of EA Sports’ NCAA Football though is the possibility that it could lead to other games about college sports. Fans have adored this series for years, and the announcement of its return was widely celebrated. This alone makes for plenty of incentive for developers to work on additional NCAA football gaming experiences. In particular, any of the following would make perfect sense — and likely garner a great deal of revenue.
A Mobile Version
Where most major sports video games for console and PC play are concerned, there are now mobile accompaniments. These accompaniments tend to be hit or miss. Regarding the mobile Madden for instance, reviews in recent years have essentially indicated that the games are improving, but that they’re also — largely — cash grabs. Mobile versions of the NBA 2K and FIFA series have been somewhat more faithful to their console counterparts, but are somewhat lacking in gameplay. Even so, there’s nothing stopping EA Sports from a more successful attempt this time around. What college football fan wouldn’t love to have a mobile version of NCAA Football in his or her pocket at all times?
A Mobile Management Game
Another interesting possibility is a mobile NCAA video game that is not an imitation of the EA Sports console concept, but rather a different experience altogether. Specifically, we envision a management game in which players could act as coaches for different programs — recruiting players, managing lineups and game strategies, and guiding their teams through seasons. This sort of concept, without an emphasis on actual gameplay on the field, has proven to work very well in a handful of soccer and basketball games for mobile devices. For true NCAA football fans it would likely be a blast — and down the road it would represent one more exposure opportunity for paid player names and likenesses.
If developers really want to branch out with the NCAA concept, they could also explore the online casino space, and especially slot and arcade games. As a leader in this space in the UK (where online casino gaming is particularly popular), Gala Spins demonstrates why this is actually a feasible idea, simply through showcasing the variety of this gaming category. Merely among the featured games on this platform, you can find Starburst (a popular, classic digital slot), Atlantis: City Of Destiny (a game based on mythology), and Vikings (based on the hit TV drama). And when you dig into the game collection a little deeper, you’ll find a number of titles that relate to sports. It’s essentially a corner of the gaming world in which any theme goes, such that a well-made NCAA football slot reel would, oddly enough, fit right in. This is a win-win scenario, too. The game would draw more Americans to slot sites, and would expand NCAA football programs’ international reach simultaneously.
Additional Console Titles
Mobile and casino games would help NCAA football to branch out into new genres and categories. But we also shouldn’t overlook the possibility of a fresh console title as well. This may seem unlikely, but consider the fact that there are actually some in the gaming world who find Pro Evolution Soccer to be favorable to the almighty FIFA franchise. If the return of EA Sports’ NCAA franchise is successful, it’s not outside the realm of possibility that we would see a PES-like competitor emerge.
Whatever ends up happening, we’re excited to see more NCAA football gaming in the near future — not only because we can’t wait to play, but also because it’s inching us toward more representation and compensation for the best young football players in the country.
In the meantime, if you want to keep an eye on what some of those same young players are up to in the real world, be sure to monitor the latest from NFL Draft Diamonds.
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