If you’ve purchased a Madden NFL, NCAA Football, or Arena Football League game from Electronic Arts since 2005 then congratulations, you’re suing EA.
In California, a judge has approved the creation of a “class,” an official recognition of a subset of people as a group, made up of anyone who purchased EA football games since 2005. With this class officially recognized, lawyers have filed a class-action lawsuit against the videogame publisher for creating a football videogame monopoly.
According to the claim, “Defendant Electronic Arts entered into a series of exclusive licenses with the National Football League … which plaintiffs claim foreclosed competition in the alleged football videogame market,” which allegedly allowed EA to overprice its alleged football products.
So apparently you have been mercilessly robbed, fleeced, and bamboozled by EA for the past 6 years. As a purchaser of the aforementioned products, you are automatically included as part of the class, and eligible to receive any damages won in the case. You are not considered a part of the class if you bought your EA football game on a mobile device, directly from EA, purchased your games used, or are an EA employee. Otherwise, you will only be excluded if you take the steps listed at the plaintiff’s site.
Whether or not the case holds water is obviously up to a judge to decide, but it seems that a large part of the case hinges on EA “overcharging” for the games it has a monopoly on. As far as I can tell, the latest Madden NFL game is retailing for about $60, the usual price for a console game. I suppose you could try and make the case that every game publisher has been overcharging us for years (and there are plenty who would agree with that), but I don’t see this case getting through the massive and expensive battalion of lawyers employed by EA to counter these kinds of suits without some very solid evidence of wrongdoing.