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Sega Sports/Take Two to get exclusive MLB licence?


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From IGN Sports

January 18, 2005 - I can't ever remember a more tumultuous time in the history of sports video games. And just when you think you know it all, another bomb is dropped on your lap.

EA buys the NFL exclusive. EA buys the ESPN exclusive.

But now, here comes the counterpunch.

Rumors are circulating that the Take Two/Visual Concepts team is in negotiations to buy the exclusive MLB license, and negotiations are almost final. Visual Concepts is the company I had mentioned in a previous column as the ones who went out and locked up a long term deal with Major League Baseball after the NFL exclusive was announced, and now it looks like they were not only granted a long term deal, but are about to make it an exclusive. Word is, it could be an exclusive third party contract, meaning first-party publishers like Sony (989), Microsoft, and Nintendo will still be able to publish games using the real players and teams, but surprisingly, it's mega power EA who will be cut out of the loop.

On the NBA front, rumors are spreading throughout the industry that the league is now looking to sell genre-specific exclusives once current deals expire, meaning they want one company to publish sims (NBA Live, NBA 2K5), one to publish street-style games (NBA Street V3, NBA Ballers), and one to publish portables. Sources tell IGN Sports that there is already some major money on the table for each deal, and it will be interesting to see how it all shakes out. The NBA has rejected initial bids for the all-encompassing exclusive, taking the competition from the courts to the negotiating table.

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So if things were reversed and Sega had gotten the NFL and ESPN licenses and EA had gotten the MLB license, would people be a little happier about things?

Personally, I enjoy MVP Baseball as well, but it's been four years since I bought a baseball game.

The NBA arrangement is a little curious, but kudos to them for wanting their product a little more spread out. Now, the question is, would everyone rather see ESPN NBA 2K survive with NBA Street, or NBA Live stick around with NBA Ballers? I'd love to see NBA Street be the only arcade-style in town, but I hope Sega could improve the 2K's a bit.

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Guest Muthafawkkinmatt

No I wouldn't be happier, NFL 2K5 was a good game but I need my Madden and I need my MVP baseball. I don't mind buying both footbal games but if I have to chose one its going to be Madden.

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Guest Bluesman

Let's see: Madden...shit. Live...shit. MVP...shit. NHL...shit. Hopefully this means EA will stick to what they do well, and make half-assed arcade games with stupid features and game modes to try and hide their horseshit gameplay.

Of course EA realizes what I said above, hence them trying to monopolize markets to the best of their abilities. And then to counter this, Sega has to come back and try get exclusive licenses as well. Why can't it go back to last year when you spent less money to buy a superior game?

Oh yea, and God Bless the French.

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This is getting ridiculous. I've sworn allegiance to the Sega sports series for all games EXCEPT baseball. MVP is the best baseball series of all time and if EA can't make it anymore I'll be pissed. This exclusive shit is just stupid. If you want more people to buy your games, MAKE THEM BETTER! Don't just hog the rights to yourself, fuck!

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Bluesman obviously has shitastic taste when it comes to video games if he thinks it's crap.

Why, because I don't agree with you? Because I don't like having every outfield catch be of the "Web Gem" variety? Almost impossible to draw walks? Throws that rarely bounce? Almost impossible to bean batters? As is the case with pretty much every other EA game (can't say it about NHL), when it comes to simulation and gameplay the game is shit.

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Damn it...ESPN Baseball blew...with the cursor on I could hit 15 home runs a game.

Hmm while on the topic, does anyone know if MLB 2K5 will be $20? They're still competing with EA and its a 2005 release, all of which were supposed to be $20...

Edited by Maxx
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