On Cowher, Coaches & Couches

Posted by joefunk :: Industry Trends | Retail-Products | Sports & Video Games

Why EA Sports’ New NFL Coaching Game is a Signpost for a Maturing Industry

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When EA Sport’s unveiled their latest title last week, “NFL Head Coach,” it marked more than the announcement of just another intriguing product.

The game, in many ways, represents the generational shift in gaming that is underway, and also serves as another symbol marking the evolution of videogames as an ever more diverse and immersive medium.

Featuring Super Bowl XL winning coach Bill Cowher, the game, scheduled for a June 20 release. It challenges gamers to build and manage every aspect of a football team from the ground up, and allows users to develop and execute a team strategy, manage players and rosters, and try to build a winning organization.

“NFL Head Coach” is basically a much more advanced and in-depth version of the career and franchise in the “Madden” and other EA Sports games. Not coincidentally, it comes at a time when those first generation “Madden” players, those who played on the Sega Genesis and are now nearing or in their 40s, and don’t quite have the twitch reflexes or bandwitdh to invest themselves in learning the button-mashing mastery required of may current sports titles.

Before now, such “sim” games were almost exclusively the turf of PC geeks. But now, with the next gen consoles upon us, and with first generation gamers now becoming fathers and soon grandfathers, expect to see many more types of games like this as the demographics of gamers continue to broaden.

“With ‘NFL Head Coach’ there is finally a game that gives true football fans the chance to strategize and become the head coach of their favorite team,” Cowher himself says. “Coaching is about leadership and everyone will now see how difficult, but also how rewarding coaching can be.”

Heck, it can’t be any more difficult than trying to find my third receiver in “Madden” when the defense puts on the zone blitz and I just audibled.

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