Scott Lewis

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tf

With the release of EA Sports’ NCAA Football 14, gamers have their first opportunity to immerse themselves in the popular card collecting Ultimate Team mode with some of college football’s all-time greats. The inclusion of Ultimate Team mode in NCAA Football 14 allows college football fans to assemble a roster from over 1400 of the game’s greatest players.

Gamers can play against the CPU in solo challenges, or go head-to-head online in Seasons Mode. By collecting “coins”, players can help build their own powerhouse lineups, comprised of greats like Desmond Howard, Doug Flutie, and Eddie George.

ESPN and EA Sports asked fans to vote on the #UltimateTeam of the last 25 years, and the Nebraska Cornhuskers emerged victorious on the strength of their back-to-back National Championships of the 1990s. As a part of the celebration of the great Cornhuskers teams, Tommie Frazier has been included as a playable character in NCAA Football 14‘s Ultimate Team Mode. Frazier is best remembered for leading the 1994 and 1995 Cornhuskers teams to back-to-back National Championships. Frazier’s 75-yard run versus the Florida Gators in the 1996 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl is still considered one of the greatest plays in college football history.

EA Sports is giving away a Tommie Frazier card to anyone who logs into NCAA Football 14’s Ultimate Team mode from Friday, August 16 to Thursday, August 22. Frazier lent Franchise Mode a few minutes of his time to discuss all things NCAA Football 14.

Franchise Mode: How much of a role did you play in bringing Nebraska fans out to vote on EA Sports’ #UltimateTeam?

Tommie Frazier: I didn’t really have to play an active role in that because the fans of Nebraska are going to do what’s right. They were always going to go out and support their program and the University of Nebraska. I don’t think any former players had to do much lobbying. If you know the true passion of fans of the Nebraska football program, then you know that anytime they have a chance to go out and support the football program, then they’re going to do it.

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warrior

It hasn’t been all that long since 1990s’ wrestling superstar the Ultimate Warrior has appeared in a video game, but the former WWE Intercontinental and Heavyweight champion will be included in the WWE 2K series for the first time as part of pre-order exclusive promotion for WWE 2K14.

Limiting Warrior (now the legal name of Jim Hellwig) as a pre-order exclusive is a bit of letdown, but 2K Sports is pulling out all the stops by dropping a 90-second promo featuring the man himself. It appears as though the Ultimate Warrior’s physique is as natural looking as it ever was… right?

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ncaa14

For many college football fans, EA Sports’ NCAA Football title has come to represent something of a disunion when it comes to gaming. The lone college football franchise grew stagnant with last year’s release, which offered little in the way of updated gameplay and design. The same old running and blocking problems plagued NCAA Football 13, and the continuing disarray on the defensive side of the ball was enough to push a lot of devoted gamers to the brink of breakup with the title.

EA Sports would have to deliver something new with NCAA Football 14 in order to retain its audience, and if the game’s demo is any indication, then it appears as though college football fans may finally receive the game they have desired for so long.

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Tradition Football got an early look at ratings for every team in NCAA Football 14, as well as ratings for the game’s top 15 players.

Alabama, unsurprisingly, earned the game’s top rating with a 99. Other teams with a rating of 90 or more include: Baylor, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Louisville, Miami (FL), Michigan, Michigan State, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Oregon, South Carolina, Stanford, Texas, Texas A&M, USC, Virginia Tech, and Washington.

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coloradoralphie

From Ralphie and his wranglers leading the Colorado Buffaloes on to the field to the racially insensitive undertones of the Florida Seminoles’ traditions, pre-game runouts have been one of EA Sports’ NCAA Football franchise’s presentation staples over the last couple of instalments. Whether team specific intros were something you liked to sit through before kickoff, or you opted to skip them, it doesn’t really matter anymore. EA has dropped pre-game runouts in favor of music video ‘hype pieces’.

Ben Haumiller, a producer on NCAA Football 14, spoke to XXL about life after runouts and other presentation tweaks you can expect from the upcoming release. Via XXL:

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EA Sports has released a trailer for the all new ‘Enforcer Engine’ that will be featured in NHL 14. As you can see from the video, the franchise’s fighting engine has undergone and complete overhaul. Gone is the “mini-game” experience of fighting that we’ve known for the last few titles.

The new engine allows for fights to happen more organically, if that’s an effective way to describe face punching. It looks like a solid addition to a great sports gaming franchise. Follow that code, or blood will be spilled.

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EA Sports is set to hold down its exclusive license with FIFA until December 31, 2022, the two outlets announced earlier this morning. For EA Sports, this means that they’ll retain exclusive rights to produce a soccer video game under the FIFA banner.

The FIFA offers benefits to both sides, with EA Sports watching revenues grow on the strength of 14.5 million copies of FIFA 13 sold this year.

FIFA General Secretary Jérôme Valcke on the parternship:

“The FIFA games are an essential part of our communication efforts around the FIFA brand and its values. To measure the strength of our partnership with EA, it is enough to remember that more than 2.5 million football fans took part in the FIFA Interactive World Cup this year.”

Arguably the best in sports gaming, FIFA and EA Sports will continue to pump out the popular title for the next decade and probably beyond.