You’ve been saying it for the past three summers: “I’d do anything for another ‘NCAA Football’ game.”
Well, now is your chance. We profiled Alabama-based IMV Gaming last month after it announced plans for a new version of everyone’s favorite college-football game. The company hoped to include full use of Division I logos, uniforms, stadiums and everything else that made “NCAA Football” such a hot commodity.
Friday, IMV launched a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter.com, bringing the dream of its co-founders, cousins Alex and Kameron Lewis, one step closer to (virtual) reality.
The current goal? $850,000, which IMV hopes to attain via donations by Kickstarter’s Oct. 31 deadline.
Supporters can donate here, and those who chip in any amount from $5 from $5,000 will receive a variety of gifts in return. That prize list includes dozens of options: Copies of the game (currently titled “Gridiron Champions”), t-shirts… even your own character in the game’s “Story Mode.”
Alex Lewis said the movement will require some patience as he and his cousin build the IMV staff, which currently includes two developers and a pair of YouTube marketers.
The game is projected for release in 2019.
“Some people don’t care about how the logistics on the business side of this works,” Alex told SEC Country in August. “They’re just like, ‘Put out the game!’ I think people just have to understand the complete logistics of this process, because a lot of people want something to compete with [EA Sports’ NFL franchise] Madden, but they’re not willing to support it and be patient with it.”
The cousins say that community feedback will be an integral part of process; something that they believe Electronic Arts often ignored when designing the old college game.
“We don’t want you to be in the dark at all,” Alex said. “We’re gonna show you as much as we can so you’re not bored out of your mind. We’re gonna keep you entertained each day or each week, so you know there’s going to be some update going on.”
There are clear legal hurdles to get over before the game hits shelves. Licensing is a particularly expensive one — IMV likely must come to separate agreements with schools or conferences — and then there’s the “player likeness” question that got “NCAA Football” shut down in the first place.
The company spent much of early 2016 researching the feasibility of making a game, and they believe the current Kickstarter campaign will provide enough capital to get the project off the ground.
Eventually, they believe they will need millions to finish “Gridiron Champions,” and it’s not crazy to think a starved EA Sports fanbase — or a group of impressed investors — can come through.
“We’re willing to listen,” Alex said. “And I think that’s what makes us different.”
— IMV Gaming (@IMVGAMING) September 2, 2016