During the last four years, EA has been fighting a prolonged class action lawsuit over the legality of their exclusive licenses with the NFL, NCAA, and AFL. But all the courtroom posturing has finally come to a close—EA has settled out of court for a high price.
According to a press release from Seattle-based law firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, EA has agreed to “benefit” buyers of several EA football titles with a $27,000,000 settlement fund. As a result, many people who filed with the class-action lawsuit will be owed various degrees of compensation.
If you’ve purchased any Madden NFL, NCAA Football, or AFL title for GameCube, PlayStation 2, or Xbox, the settlement could award you $6.79 per game.
Anyone who bought one of those games more recently for Wii, PlayStation 3, or Xbox 360 will receive far less, about $1.95 per title.
Interestingly enough, the lawsuit doesn’t seem to cover any handheld or mobile games, so those of you who play Madden on your iPads are out of luck. More details will be coming up when the settlement gets its final approval on September 27th.
Per the settlement’s terms, EA is also barred from renewing their exclusive contract with the NCAA or AFL for five years, although their NFL partnership remains safe. Considering the sales of the Madden franchise, that’s likely a huge relief for the publisher.