EA and ESPN Kick Off Madden NFL 25 Cover Vote

Mon Mar 11, 2013 5:00pm EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

http://pdf.reuters.com/htmlnews/8knews.asp?i=43059c3bf0e37541&u=urn:newsml:reuters.com:20130311:nBw116454a

The Old School Challenges the New School in the Biggest Cover Vote Yet with
Winner to be Revealed Live on SportsNation on April 24
REDWOOD CITY, Calif.--(Business Wire)--
Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) and ESPN today announced the official players
and brackets for the Madden NFL 25 Cover Vote. The vote will include two
brackets, one composed of 32 new-school NFL stars and one of 32 old-school NFL
legends, with the winner of each bracket facing off in the finals for the right
to appear on the cover. The Madden NFL Cover Vote has proven to be extremely
popular with the fans, garnering over 33 million votes since its introduction in
2011. 

The new school vs. old school format is especially fitting for the 25th
anniversary of the Madden NFL franchise, as this edition of the game both
celebrates the past while laying a strong foundation for the future. The name
Madden NFL 25 was chosen in celebration of the franchise`s silver anniversary,
and the game will launch on August 27. 

Throughout the competition, fans can vote for all their favorites by visiting
ESPN.com/MaddenVote starting today with all 32 old-school and new-school
matchups. And, for the first time ever, SportsNation will debut a limited window
of live Twitter voting during their show every Tuesday from 4-5 p.m. ET on
ESPN2. Voting starts now and will continue up until the reveal of the winner on
Wednesday, April 24. 

The first round of the competition promises to offer plenty of excitement, with
several high-profile matchups. In the old-school bracket Hall-of-Famer Curtis
Martin takes on former Pittsburgh Steeler Jerome Bettis in a battle between two
of the top running backs of the previous decade; while in the new-school bracket
feared Broncos linebacker Von Miller will do his best to prevent New York Giants
wide receiver Victor Cruz from salsa dancing into the next round. 

Over the past week ESPN has hosted a special Wild Card Round via Twitter with
Hall of Fame wide receivers Cris Carter and Jerry Rice going toe-to-toe to
decide who would earn the last slot in the old-school bracket. Today Jerry Rice
took the honors, and will test himself against former Jacksonville Jaguars
running back Fred Taylor in the opening round. 

Fans can tune into SportsNation every Wednesday at 4pm ET on ESPN 2 to get the
weekly results of the Madden NFL 25 Cover Vote, and watch hosts Marcellus Wiley
and Charissa Thompson as they provide in-depth analysis and debate the results.
Cover Vote participants and other special guests will also be appearing on
SportsNation and other ESPN programming for the duration of the campaign to make
their case and attempt to earn fan votes. 

"Madden NFL 25 will be a culmination of 25 years of innovation when it launches
in August and there is no better way to honor our incredible history than by
engaging our fans in the ultimate debate of old school vs. new school," said
Anthony Stevenson, Senior Director of Marketing at EA SPORTS. "Our fans` passion
has built the Madden NFL franchise into what it has become, so it`s only fitting
that they decide who should be the face of this special year of Madden NFL;
whether it be one of the NFL`s brightest young stars or an all-time legend of
the game." 

"The Madden NFL 25 cover vote is the perfect marriage between two strong brands
coming together to put fans in control of what they`re most passionate about and
giving them a platform for their voices to be heard," said Brian Dailey,
Director of Games and Partnerships for ESPN. "Engagement has been strong in our
last two Madden cover votes, accounting for some of ESPN`s most successful
social activations to date, and we anticipate that to continue with the 25th
anniversary." 

"The Madden NFL 25 cover vote includes an incredible collection of young NFL
stars and some of the best legends to ever play the game, so it is sure to spark
great debate over the next month on SportsNation," noted Jamie Horowitz, Vice
President of Original Programming and Production for ESPN. "Our viewers are
extremely passionate about their favorite players and teams so we`re looking
forward to seeing how the vote turns out on ESPN.com and Twitter." 

To celebrate the start of Madden NFL 25 Cover Vote, EA SPORTS and ESPN hosted a
live bracket reveal on SportsNation at LA Live. The star-studded event featured
visits from San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and former San
Francisco wide receiver Jerry Rice making their cases for the new school and the
old school, alongside a musical performance by Kendrick Lamar. The event
provided a high-energy start for the Cover Vote and set the tone for an exciting
competition. 

Fans will also have the opportunity to win a trip for two to the Madden NFL 25
Cover Shoot on Wednesday, April 24 and tickets to the first round of the 2013
NFL Draft on Thursday, April 25 in New York City. Starting today and through
March 18 users will be able to click on the Xbox 360 Madden NFL 25 Play and Win
banner on the Xbox Live dashboard to gain access to the various ways to enter to
win. Full rules and details can be found here. 

Embraced by fans and honored by critics for 25 years, Madden NFL is known as the
NFL`s "33rd Franchise" due to its authentic gameplay, the development team`s
unparalleled access to NFL resources and its prominent place in NFL culture. 

Madden NFL 25 is developed in Orlando, Florida by EA Tiburon and will be
available for the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system and PlayStation3
computer entertainment system for $59.99 and can be preordered at GameStop. To
learn more about Madden NFL 25, visit http://www.easports.com/madden-nfl. Fans
are also invited to become a Madden Insider for exclusive information on
Facebook including the latest news, original content and more for Madden NFL 25.


All player participation has been facilitated by National Football League
Players Incorporated, the licensing and marketing subsidiary of the NFL Players
Association (NFLPA). 

EA SPORTS is one of the leading sports entertainment brands in the world, with
top-selling videogame franchises, award-winning interactive technology, fan
programs and cross-platform digital experiences. EA SPORTS creates connected
experiences that ignite the emotion of sports through industry-leading sports
videogames, including Madden NFL football, FIFA Soccer, NHL hockey, NBA LIVE
basketball, NCAA Football, Tiger Woods PGA TOUR golf, SSX and Fight Night
boxing. 

For more information about EA SPORTS, including news, video, blogs, forums and
game apps, please visit www.easports.com to connect, share and compete. 

About Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: EA) is a global leader in digital interactive
entertainment. The Company delivers games, content and online services for
Internet-connected consoles, personal computers, mobile phones, tablets and
social networks. EA has more than 275 million registered players and operates in
75 countries. 

In fiscal 2012, EA posted GAAP net revenue of $4.1 billion. Headquartered in
Redwood City, California, EA is recognized for a portfolio of critically
acclaimed, high-quality blockbuster brands such as The Sims, Madden NFL, FIFA
Soccer, Need for Speed, Battlefield and Mass Effect. More information about EA
is available at http://info.ea.com. 

The Sims and Need for Speed are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. Mass Effect
is a trademark of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd. Battlefield is a
trademark of EA Digital Illusions CE AB. John Madden, NFL, FIFA, NHL, NBA, NCAA,
Tiger Woods, and PGA TOUR are the property of their respective owners and used
with permission. All other trademarks are the property of their respective
owners.

Electronic Arts Inc.
Adam Tanielian, 407-386-5824
Sr. Director of Communications
atanielian@ea.com
Brad Hilderbrand, 407-386-4246
Communications Specialist
bhilderbrand@ea.com
or
Fleishman-Hillard
Matt Faust, 415-318-4073
Matt.Faust@fleishman.com



Copyright Business Wire 2013