Stop the presses, there's some real news out today! No, it's not coming out of Cupertino, and has little or nothing to do with the iPad. No, this news is in the form of a press release from Electronic Arts (perhaps you've heard of them) which makes official the existence of an officially licensed game to tie in with the big FIFA World Cup tournament set to kick off in South Africa. Cleverly named 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa, it seeks to grab the world's largest sports audience and get them hooked on winning world acclaim a full two months before the World Cup begins.
Although EA has been making licensed FIFA games since 1993, this year's World Cup South Africa marks the first time that gamers will have the opportunity to play a full and authentic online World Cup tournament. Additionally, as in previous iterations of the games, players will have the chance to take on the role of their home nation from the qualifying matches straight through to the Cup Finals. This means that if you live in, or are a fan of, a nation that didn't make it into this year's tournament, you can vicariously live out your national dreams by taking your team the distance.
The game will release on April 27th for PS3, 360, Wii and PSP, giving you almost a two-month head start on the actual festivities in South Africa. Okay, so maybe this news doesn't exacly trump anything that Steve Jobs is going to say today, but for fans of soccer (or "football", if you prefer) it might register. Then again, maybe it won't. Now leave me alone. I've got to get back to the Apple LiveBlog. Read on for the full press release.
EA Celebrates 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ with Exclusive Release of Officially Licensed Videogame
Event Game Features First Full and Authentic 2010 FIFA World Cup Online Tournament Mode
REDWOOD CITY, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:ERTS) will celebrate the single largest sporting event on the planet with the only official and exclusively licensed videogame for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. Now everyone can play in the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ on the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, Xbox 360® videogame and entertainment system, Wii™, PSP® (PlayStation® Portable) and mobile in April 2010 in anticipation of the real-world tournament which begins in June.
EA SPORTS™ 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa will feature all the emotion and passion of the fiercest national rivalries battling on the world’s biggest stage, with all 199 national teams that took part in qualification, all 10 official stadiums to be used in South Africa and stadiums from each qualifying region. Gamers will be able to play as their home nation from qualification right through to a virtual reproduction of the FIFA World Cup Final™ and feel what it is like to score the goal that lifts a nation. Everything fans love about the World Cup will come to life in spectacular detail, including confetti rain, streamers, & fireworks—just like the official tournament.
For the first time ever in a videogame compete in a full and authentic online World Cup tournament. Carry the hopes and dreams of a nation into battle against fans from rival countries, from the group stage through the knockout rounds to the chance to be crowned 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa TM champion. For fans of nations that failed to qualify for South Africa this is the chance to replay and re-write history. Plus, gameplay innovations capture the journey from qualification to the final tournament with home and away strategies for every nation, situational tactics in-game, and altitude effects that fatigue players faster and even impact the flight of the ball.
Presented in an art style that celebrates the cultural vibrancy of the first FIFA World Cup TM to be held in Africa, EA SPORTS 2010 FIFA World Cup on the Wii is an action-packed soccer game that brings friends together in their living rooms to compete for the 2010 FIFA World Cup TM. Travel around the world virtually to take on all 32 nations competing in South Africa in head-to-head challenges in Zakumi’s Dream Team mode. Start the journey with random players and then build your team by stealing an opposition player after each victory. Win a challenge and pick a player until you have conquered the world. Plus, take your team to a friend’s house on your Wii Remote.
Visit http://www.easports.com for more information about features for each available platform, which will be revealed over the coming months.
2010 FIFA World Cup, developed by EA Canada in Burnaby, B.C. will be in stores throughout North America on April 27, 2010 and in stores throughout Asia and Europe beginning April 30, 2010. The game has not yet been rated.