EA Sports cricket game series was a huge success but despite of that the giant gaming company decided to discontinue it due to its lack of global appeal . EA Cricket 2007 was sold over 50 million copies in England, Australia, New Zealand and South Asia. However with the increasing popularity of the FIFA game series globally made EA choose this drastic decision . The last cricket series game we saw from the company was ' EA Cricket 2007 ' and it was definitely a success . We cannot totally blame EA for the discontinuation as many of the cricket boards did not support the hard work done by the company . The game did not have player rights and only Boards of England, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand availed the player rights for the game.
Even today more than 15 million people play ' EA Cricket 2007 '. After the discontinuation cricket lovers were left with Brian Lara Cricket and Don Bradman cricket to choose from but none of them were as good as ' EA Cricket 2007 ' .
After a long break EA is all set to release a new edition of the popular EA Cricket Series with adequate player rights from all boards especially from BCCI . Sources close to EA Sports states that “Yes, the board is currently contemplating on how to move forward with the cricket game. We did a market study and realised that close to 15 million people still play the game, even after we stopped producing in 2007. Hence, it only makes sense for us to acknowledge a strong potential there. We are also aware that there are hardly any competitors within this market. But, our primary objective if the game comes out in 2019, will be to acquire ICC and BCCI rights for the players."
“It's no secret that India will be our primary sector of sales, and this time if we do venture back into the market, it will be with player rights. Our representatives have already had meetings with BCCI members, let's see how talks progress.”
EA also states that the latest version of the game will include top T20 leagues such as Indian Premier League and the Big Bash League along with various other modes and features . "The game will be distinctly different from the previous editions, and will include a narrative similar to The Journey, where a budding player will begin his career in a country of his choice. All domestic competitions including Big Bash, Indian Premier League (IPL) will also be included."
The gaming giant doesn't want to repeat the mistake that they did 10 years back and hence they are taking every possible steps to overcome that . “We are currently talking to all parties who can help us acquire these rights. For the India deal, we have an office in Hyderabad which is coordinating this matter. As I said, it’s very important for us to get the player rights, only then will we move forward. EA doesn’t want a repeat of 2007”
Electronic Arts CEO , Andrew Wilson believes that the move can only go ahead if the sub-continental boards cooperate with the firm. “Andrew strongly believes that the governing body in the sub-continent have to be supportive of the game. Hence, we are currently attempting to figure that out” .
Now all we can do is wait and see whether the company can deliver in time and live up to our expectations . All the cricket lovers hope that the wait will be a worthwhile one and the company can deliver the dream game of cricket .