Video games are a place where anything can happen. You can be a hero, be a villain, be a warrior, be a magician, be a solider, be a tyrant, and many, many more. And yet, some of the most popular franchises in video games today…are sports titles. From Madden to NBA 2K to MLB The Show, the sports games consistently sell well. Heck, even wrestling sells well! But for Americans, there’s an “oddity”, an oddity named FIFA.
For whatever reason, Soccer (aka Football in every other part of the world) never took off here in the US. Sure, it’s played in schools, and there’s MLS, but it just never reached the popularity of the NBA, MLB, NFL, or even NHL. And yet, people buy FIFA, in fact, it’s one of the top sports game franchise. But why? Why does it matter?
Because, it’s the WORLD’s game.
That seem like an odd declaration, but it’s actually true. Unlike basketball, where the US dominates more times than not, or even baseball where the only real competition is in the younger leagues, any country can be good at Soccer, there’s just something about it that brings every country to the table. And not just the men! The women’s soccer leagues around the world are filled with contenders too. So much so, that recent FIFA games have featured the women as well.
And though the US may not appreciate it in some ways, there are FIFA fans everywhere, and just like every sports league, the fans want to see their teams win all the time, even if it’s only when they’re in control of them virtually. FIFA does matter, it matters a lot. If you want proof, look at the recent Nintendo Switch reveal conference, where one of the heads of EA came on stage, in Japan, to announce that FIFA was coming to Switch. Not Madden, or NBA 2K (which was honestly revealed latter), but FIFA, because EA knew that FIFA mattered to Japan, and to the world, and when you have a franchise that matters worldwide? You’re darn right you unveil it first.