Quick Hit scores NFL license

Internet-only, free-to-play football browser game nabs multiyear professional authorization, thanks to loophole in EA exclusivity contract.

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Sporting fans with a proclivity for the gridiron game will soon have an officially licensed option outside of Electronic Arts-produced football titles.

Foxborough, Massachusetts, game developer Quick Hit, Inc. has secured a license from the National Football League, allowing the studio to use the league's trademarks in its browser-based football simulator, Quick Hit Football, beginning with the 2010 season.

Now with more licensing.
Now with more licensing.

The multiyear deal, the first such contract the NFL has signed with anyone except Electronic Arts, will allow Quick Hit access to the league's many trademarks. These branded items include all 32 teams' logos, colors, uniforms, and helmet designs, as well as the NFC, AFC, Pro Bowl, and Super Bowl graphics. Additionally, the deal will allow users to choose plays commonly associated with each specific team.

Electronic Arts was the exclusive licenser of the NFL since 2004. EA's deal with the NFL encompasses PC and console games exclusively, thus allowing Quick Hit, a game residing solely on the Internet, to peacefully exist alongside EA's agreement with the NFL.

Quick Hit Football entered open beta in October 2009 and has since enlisted over a million players. Though today's deal makes no mention of the NFL Players Association, Quick Hit has signed NFL players and coaches, including New England Patriots receiver Randy Moss and Super Bowl-winning coach Brian Billick, to its virtual roster.

Quick Hit will be at the Electronic Entertainment Expo next week, where the studio will debut a new NFL-themed trailer for the title. GameSpot will be at the show, reporting from the floor. Check out GameSpot's complete coverage of E3 2010 to stay current.

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