FIFA 23 has delivered the biggest launch of any FIFA title to date with over 10.3 million players dipping into the soccer sim during its first week on sale.
EA said that total represents "the biggest launch period in EA Sports FIFA franchise history," which is somewhat fitting as the U.S. publisher prepares to sever ties with long-time partner FIFA to establish a new soccer series called EA Sports FC.
EA committed to creating a new franchise earlier this year, with CEO Andrew Wilson seemingly hesitant to permanently tie its soccer sim to the FIFA brand.
"Our players want us to expand into the digital ecosystem more broadly [...] our fans are telling us they want us to go and participate in that space. Our FIFA license has actually precluded us from doing a lot of this stuff," Andrew reportedly told staff this year, signalling the company's intentions to change direction.
A few months later, EA confirmed the move, announcing plans to create a new series called EA Sports FC alongside over 300 licensing partners. The decision means that FIFA 23 will be the final entry in the perennial series.
"Everything you love about our games will be part of EA Sports FC – the same great experiences, modes, leagues, tournaments, clubs and athletes will be there. Ultimate Team, Career Mode, Pro Clubs and VOLTA Football will all be there," said the company.
FIFA, meanwhile, now intends to create a "major new simulation football title" following its split from EA, and said the series will retain the FIFA moniker. The non-profit organisation said it has already begun speaking with publishers, studios, and investors with a view to moving the franchise forward under new stewardship.