The long-running agreement between EA and sports car manufacturer Porsche looks like it may have concluded.
For several years Porsche has been largely missing from the rosters of the market's largest racing games – that's why you tend to often see cars from German company RUF, which bases its models on unmarked Porsche chassis.
Now GT Planet reports that Porsche branded entertainment manager Sebastian Hornung said the following via a translation when asked about Porsche's appearance in recent racing sim Assetto Corsa:
[Porsche] were always following what was going on in the gaming industry aside from EA. The license with EA runs out this year, because together they arrived at the realization that the current situation was not desirable anymore.
The relationship also with other game developers will change after 10 years of absence from pure simulations there is a desire to diversify what is being offered.”
There have been exceptions to the rule over the years despite EA's agreement, however, such as with Forza Motorsport 3 and the Porsche DLC for Forza Horizon 2, but Need for Speed has been the only series to consistently feature the brand.
Way back in 2011 Turn 10's Dan Greenawalt confirmed that effort had been made to secure Porsche for Forza 4, but that EA had ultimately blocked the move.
This kills me. While Forza Motorsport 4 will feature RUF, it will not include Porsche cars,” he said. In Forza 3, we were able to feature more than 35 different Porsche models by offering to collaborate with EA. For Forza 4, we were looking forward to adding even more Porsche cars. In the end, however, EA couldn't see their way towards collaborating again.
We've asked our contacts at EA to reconsider their position frequently and regularly over the last 18 months. We also reached out to various influential people in gaming to lobby on our behalf, and on your behalf, but that was to no avail. While we respect EA's need to run their business as they see fit, we've regularly collaborated in the past and hope we can find our way back to that approach.
Forza had the exclusive license for all Ferrari cars, for example, on the Xbox and PC platforms. But at the end of the day, we've always found that we just weren't willing to block other racing games from having Ferraris outright, as we believed that this would do nothing but hurt the racing ecosystem.
I'm very sorry for all of this. Fans shouldn't have to think about any of this – you should just be able to drive Porsches and Ferraris in the games you love. Porsche makes wonderful cars and I'm sorry that we won't have them in Forza 4.”