Today brought reassuring, if not shocking news for hockey fans: the National Hockey League and National Hockey League PlayersÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ Association have extended their licensing agreements with Electronic Arts and 2K Sports, granting the two companies non-exclusive, multi-year rights to create NHL-branded games for all platforms, including next-generation contenders Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo Wii. Electronic Arts plans to release its series latest, NHL 07, across platforms this fall.
2K Sports will follow with NHL 2K7 for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and current-gen consoles this holiday season. Ã¢â‚¬Å“WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re excited to extend our relationship with EA and 2K Sports since they have long been on the cutting edge of the sports gaming category, and are now leading the way in the development of next generation, three-dimensional gaming,Ã¢â‚¬? said Ken Kim, Senior Director of Business at NHLPA. Ã¢â‚¬Å“NHL players are fans of these titles as well, and they, like the gamers, canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t wait to see the year-to-year advances that are made to replicate the intensity of a real NHL game. We look forward to continued growth in the video game marketplace through these agreements.Ã¢â‚¬?