For years, the Madden game has served as the only NFL-affiliated video-game option. That will soon be changing.
Via Michael Rothstein of ESPN.com, a virtual-reality football game licensed by the NFL and the NFL Players Association will debut this fall.
NFL PRO ERA is the name. It will be available on Meta Quest and PlayStation VR.
“The biggest difference is we are purely from the players’ perspective, right,” StatusPRO executive producer Jay Juneau told Rothstein. “You’re not a coach. You’re not a G.M. You’re not the owner. You are an NFL player, and that’s what we focused on.”
The game has been developed by StatusPRO, a company co-founded by former NFL receiver Andrew Hawkins.
“In the experience, you’re able to play quarterback in an NFL game,” Hawkins told Rothstein. “You’re able to make the decisions.”
“When we think about this experience, you’re finally immersing yourself as the professional athlete for the first time ever and seeing it in a way that you’ve never seen it,” StatusPRO co-founder Troy Jones, a former college quarterback, told Rothstein. “It is the future, and we look at it as the new era of gaming and the next step in the way people will consume sports.”
The proof will be in the virtual pudding. But the NFL saw enough to license the shield and the various team names and logos to the effort. Without that connection, it’s virtually impossible for any football video game to make it.