Ranking The Most Influential Sports Video Gaming Franchises Ever
I love video games, you probably love video games too, the question here is, who doesn’t love video games? Ever since the first video gaming consoles came out, a whole new era of entertainment ushered in and it has not stopped growing in popularity since. The global popularity reaches that the video gaming industry has obtained has even led to sports betting news platforms to take to full notice, with coverage of all things related to eSports betting taking center stage, all while putting other mainstream sporting activities to the side.
But while we can talk about the best games for eSports purposes, the best first-person-shooter games, the best adventure-ridden games, or other categories, let’s focus on the world of sports video games. Pro sports and video games are a match made in heaven for fans of both worlds, which is why here we bring you our picks for the most influential sports video gaming franchises ever.
EA Sports FIFA
Soccer might not be the most popular sport in the United States, although I’m pretty sure it’s a close second or at least top 3 next to football and basketball. But everywhere else in the world, soccer rules are king above all other sporting disciplines. Being that this sport is the most followed, most practiced, and most important when it comes to revenue grossing, it would only be fitting that we start our list of most influential sports video gaming franchises ever with the king of sports video games, EA Sports FIFA.
While some people would much rather have Konami’s eFootball, formerly known as PES as the reigning champion when it comes to soccer-related video games, history, fandom, and overall dominance of the market have shown that there is no bigger soccer video gaming franchise that EA Sports’ FIFA. The game has anything and everything any soccer player would want, from intricate career and franchise modes to a fun and laid-back feel where anyone without any level of expertise can pick up a controller and get down to a good session of soccer gaming. FIFA has also become a fan favorite in the eSports world, with pro-FIFA gaming competitions becoming some of the most popular amongst eSports fans and with prize money pools topping over the million-dollar mark.
Another great EA Sports-ridden sports video gaming franchise makes our list in second place, because, who doesn’t love some NFL action here and there, and thanks to this game, anywhere and everywhere? Madden NFL, which has been a perennial fan favorite for sports fans and video gaming fans ever since debuting back in 1988 has become a pivotal part of football culture not only in the US but all around the world. Every year that the Madden NFL franchise debuts its new edition fans flock to get it, play it, love it, and sometimes hate it, but still give it the recognition that it deserves as the most popular NFL video gaming franchise in the land.
Given that it has sold over 100 million copies since it first debuted, it’s no wonder why fans continuously flock to Madden to get their football fix. NFL fans are treated to play throughout all aspects of what being in the NFL is like, with thrilling in-game action, a franchise mode that while lagging in the past has made a jump for serious improvement in their 2022 edition, and many other in-game aspects that continuously help the game cement its gigantic status amongst the sports video gaming world.
Just like with Madden, gaming fans have always had a love-hate relationship when it comes to EA Sports’ NBA 2K franchise, but once you’re able to get over some of the game’s flaws and glitches, there is no better basketball-themed gaming franchise than NBA 2K. Ever since 1999, NBA 2K has been the perennial go-to for NBA fans who are avid gamers as well. Their management of everything concerning pro basketball action, from the moves players can pull off, to their “MYGM” mode, where you’re basically in charge of your own team through thick and thin make this franchise the perfect option for b-ball fans.
While some older fans could argue that NBA Jam stands tall as the true pioneer of what an amazing NBA-themed basketball game is, NBA 2K holds its own in a very dominant way. Just remember, as long as you can get past the eventual glitches and sometimes unexplainable grinding gameplay action, there is no better option than 2K.
Before we get going with our list, let’s first take a moment to mention some games that while not as massively important and popular as the ones we’re about to jump into, still have had a very big influence on sports video gaming. Gaming franchises like “MLB: The Show” which has been a fan favorite for all baseball and gaming fans since 2006 have made their way into becoming the premier option for baseball-ridden video games out there. For fans of extreme sports, especially skateboarding, there is no game or franchise out there that will ever top the “Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater” franchise. Be it because it allows you to live out your biggest skating fantasy, which almost everyone had while growing up, or because of the smashing soundtrack, that mixed with the thrilling action and settings made this game a cult favorite, this franchise is just like wine, it only gets better with age.
Last but certainly not least and while staying on the topic of cult-favorite games, yes, pro football has the Madden franchise, which we’ll talk about in a minute, but what about EA Sports’ NCAA Football” franchise? This game, which had a smashing run from 2003 to 2013 before being canceled, became an instant fan favorite that still holds up to its hype and adoration to this day. With EA Sports planning to come out with a new edition of their famed college football gaming series once again in the approximate future, we can’t wait.