Sports video games are one of the dominant forces in the gaming landscape today, and that will come as a surprise to nobody. The gaming industry has been consistently growing for years thanks to the popularity of streamers as well as the boom of eSports. Sports games have managed to adapt with the times and are at the very top of the list when it comes to providing an action-packed experience… and surprise surprise, they also top a number of revenue charts as well.
Whether you’re a fan of football, basketball, soccer, tennis, or chess, or you’re regularly looking for some useful online poker tips on the internet, chances are you’ve played one of – if not all – of these games at some point over the years. These money-spinning behemoths have made a massive impact on the gaming world and have generated huge amounts of revenue for a number of decades. But which one of them tops the list when it comes to making cold hard cash?
Let’s take a look at some of the biggest sports video game franchises on the market today and attempt to determine which one has made – and is likely making – the most money in 2023.
The Market Leader: FIFA
At the top of this list is FIFA. This long-running soccer franchise from EA Sports has been a household name since the early 1990s and has continually broken records with each and every new installment. With over 325 million copies sold since its inception back in 1993, FIFA stands alone as one of the most successful sports video game franchises ever created.
One major factor behind its success is its global appeal. Soccer, or football to everyone that isn’t American, is the most popular sport on the planet and has followers from the majority of countries the world over. The most recent installment in the franchise, FIFA 23, sold over 14.4m copies worldwide in its first month alone, making it the fastest-selling FIFA game of all time.
The game continues to generate massive amounts of revenue through both units sold and in-game purchases. Such is FIFA’s popularity and marketability; its fans often camp out to purchase new releases and participate in in-game events. FIFA regularly features celebrity endorsements and partnerships with professional soccer clubs – yet another factor contributing to its overwhelming success.
The year 2023 will be an interesting one for EA Sports, however, and for FIFA – world football’s governing body, not the game. That’s because it was announced last year that FIFA 23 would be the final game released by the Los Angeles-based game producer bearing the name FIFA. The pair’s three-decade-long partnership will come to an end as they couldn’t come to terms on a new rights deal, with FIFA president Gianni Infantino seeking around $1bn for a new four-year contract.
The Runner-Up: Madden
Coming in second place is Madden also created and produced by EA Sports. The popular football franchise first debuted back in 1988 and has since become a staple of gamers everywhere. Taking advantage of licensing deals featuring real NFL players and teams helps make Madden an incredibly realistic experience that appeals to both hardcore fans and casual players alike.
The franchise is certainly a force to be reckoned with in the gaming world. Over the past few decades, Madden NFL football video games have become huge moneymakers for EA Sports. The creation of the Ultimate Team game mode, which features a loot box-like in-game purchases that can be purchased with real money, has also seen the revenue of the franchise increase no end.
Given how the game has managed to capture the energy of a real-life football game and translate it into a wildly popular virtual experience, it’s no wonder that the beloved simulation has become such a hit with gamers. Madden has generated millions over its lifetime and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon, unlike the aforementioned FIFA. With innovative new updates every year, Madden continues to stay at the top of its game and will feature on this list for decades to come.
The Wildcard: NBA 2K
Last but not least is NBA 2K from 2K Games. This basketball simulation game has been around since 1999, but it wasn’t until recent years that it started raking in serious cash for its publisher. Thanks to annual releases featuring current players and up-to-date rosters along with an incredibly deep MyCareer mode, NBA 2K continues to be one of the most popular sports video game franchises on the market today.
What began as a niche basketball game has become an empire that brings in millions of dollars from revenue every year. From teaching basketball fundamentals to giving NBA fans an entertaining escape into the world of their favorite teams and players, NBA 2K is responsible for helping basketball become more popular than ever. Now with more than $1 billion in revenue since its introduction, NBA 2K continues to remain popular amongst gamers who want to simulate the biggest basketball games.