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FIFA and ESPN titles to access broadcast TV content

The chart-dominating EA Sports series is to incorporate broadcast quality TV and radio, with regional variations of programming, commentary, interviews and podcasts set to be accessible directly via the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

The chart-dominating EA Sports series is to incorporate broadcast quality TV and radio, with regional variations of programming, commentary, interviews and podcasts set to be accessible directly via the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.

While demonstrating NBA Live 2007 at the Edinburgh Interactive Entertainment Festival, VP and COO of EA's worldwide studios, David Gardner, confirmed: "We're going to do intergration around FIFA titles with local broadcasters."

More details are expected to be revealed this week at the Leipzig Games Convention, but Gardner discussed the plans as part of the publishers desire to retain multitasking consumers as they become increasingly distracted by multiple media outlets.

"This is a little taste of how we intend to keep gamers connected to the game but still feed the need to multitask at the same time," Gardner said during a question and answer session.

And when asked whether multitasking in-game would distract from the pure gaming experience he stated,"Users are doing it anyway. It is happening whether they have multiple windows open or the iPod is playing. We're trying to bring that experience in a more organised way to people."

In a short demonstration film, Brent Nielsen, senior producer of NBA Live 2007 revealed the inclusion of broadcast content as the next logical step to features already present in some EA Sports games - such as real-world scores running at the bottom of the screen and short radio updates throughout the game.

"If you're listening to a two minute update and you wanted to dive deeper and get more information, it's like having ESPN.com right at your finger tips but on a console in the form of ESPN News," he said.

"But the feature we're most excited about is bringing television broadcasting right into the home console in the form of ESPN Motion. If there's an analysis from one of your favourite personalities, you can watch interviews, listen to their opinions or see programming that is again, right at your fingertips," continued Nielsen.

He added, "Another feature that will be making its debut this year is the radio podcast, which is like having ESPN radio playing directly through your console - so you never have to leave the videogame experience."

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Ellie Gibson

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Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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