Sony scrambles without NFL

Tech Culture

Video game industry watchers expected a few determined competitors would carry on with professional football games even after Electronic Arts signed an exclusive deal with the NFL. And now we have an idea how much they'll have to contort themselves to get around a complete absence of real-life teams, players and stadiums.

Sony's 989 Sports game studio recently announced plans for "Road to Sunday," a football game that can be viewed either as innovative or desperate in its moshing together of conventions from "Madden NFL," "Grand Theft Auto," "Fight Club" and the World Poker Tour.

The narrative-heavy game casts the player as the debt-strapped new owner of a team in the fictitious (and redundantly named) National American Football Association. To pay off your mob debts, you have to win games, enter players in underground fighting contests and win at cards. Oh, and you keep your players in shape by playing "Dance, Dance Revolution"-style rhythm games.

Hmm--is it too late to negotiate an exclusive deal with Pop Warner?

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