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New NFL and 2K Games video game deal has internet freaking out about possible 'NFL Blitz' remake

March 10, 2020

OK, hang on, hang on, hang on. We know we said "NFL Blitz" and "remake" in the same sentence. We know we can't expect anyone to remain calm when we pull a stunt like that. But let's pump the brakes a bit. First we have to get some pesky context out of the way. On Tuesday morning, the NFL and 2K Games—makers of the cult favorite 'NFL 2K' series between 2000 and 2004—announced a new multi-year licensing partnership for the first time in over a decade in a half. What does this mean? On the most basic level, it means that for the first time in a longggg time, we are going to get an NFL game not developed by the good folks over at EA Sports.

There is one major caveat, however: Due to the NFL's exclusivity agreement with EA Sports, it stipulates that 2K Games may only develop "non-simulation football game experiences" for the time being.

Initially this seems like bad news, conjuring PTSD flashbacks to interactive torture experiences like 'NFL Head Coach', but as Twitter helpfully pointed out (then picked up and ran with all the way to end zone despite everyone on the sideline screaming they were going the wrong way), it opens the door to something potentially even more exciting than a direct 'Madden' competitor: The revival of 'NFL Blitz'. OK, now you can freak out.

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If the sight of the those flaming footballs doesn't bring a tear to your eye, then you clearly grew up amish. 'NFL Blitz' was developed and released by the now-defunct Midway Games in the late 90s and early aughts, before EA purchased the naming rights after Midway's collapse. EA Sports released an underwhelming remake under the 'NFL Blitz' moniker in 2012, removing the core tenant of the gameplay—late hits—at the NFL's behest, but that fact hasn't dampened the Blitz remake fever currently tearing across Twitter like a wildfire.

So could we really be seeing the dawn of a blitzful, ahem, new era of football video games? That remains to be seen, but if 'NFL Blitz' doesn't pan out, maybe, just maybe we'll get the next best thing: A new 'NFL Street'. You're freaking out again, aren't you?

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