NFL and Skillz partnering to create a new mobile esport game can be a blessing and a curse

The NFL and Skillz are partnering together to find a future mobile esport. The two organizations are coming together to sponsor development of a mobile game with the aim of creating a competitive scene for that game. The new title will be pulled from a group of developers competing to create this title. The game is going to be NFL themed, but stay away from similar branded games currently out there. Not much is known about what the game is going to be. However, with the resources of the NFL and Skillz marketing it, it could become a big player in mobile esports.

NFL and Skillz

NFL and Skillz deepen the comittment

The NFL and Skillz are coming together to create a new esport. They are crowdsourcing this game, bringing together a lot of competing developers. The winner will produce a mobile game themed around the NFL. The game will be promoted by the NFL and Skillz together, with a lot of power going into making it an esports success. The move comes more then a year after the NFL made their initial investment into Skillz back in November 2019.

Their mobile game concept is a little vague at the moment. Not too much has been said about what the game will be, or how far down the idea/development process it is. However, we know the game is going to be a mobile title. Mobile esports are growing area, with games like Arena of Valor, Brawl Stars and League of Legends Wild Rift showcasing the esports potential. The NFL and Skillz game will have a pretty different audience than these titles however.

The game is being primarily built to appeal to fans of the NFL. As a mobile game, it will likely be a lot easier as an entry point to esports.

The new release is set to tap into a growing market for competitive mobile games, but it also brings a new crowd to this world.  The developer are going to be progressing with pitches for the game in the second quarter of 2021. It might be a while before we see a finished product.

Will this NFL and Skillz Co-Production Succeed?

A big question on the launch of a new game like this is will it actually succeed? It is hard to say. Esports scenes tend to grow organically, and attempts to force one into a poor title will yield poor results. There are reasons to think this NFL and Skillz collaboration is going to come out in a decent state though.

The first thing to consider is the heft of promotion available behind this eventual game. While the game itself is being produced in a pretty detached way, the NFL and Skillz have the ability to really promote this project. Even at launch, it will likely grow a sizeable audience of NFL fans. That new audience for the game is the second thing working in its favor. Those who aren’t already gamers will be engaged by the mobile title, given its branding. This kind of audience is key to the growth of mobile esports. Skillz has a good background in more casual games to appeal to this crowd:

The specific target demographic that this game is tapping into gives it good prospects for succeeding as a mobile esport. The capabilities for the NFL to market and push the game similarly gives a good impression. The game can likely  utilize these advantages to grow a decent sized audience, a big positive for its short term health. With mobile esports growing, it will be interesting to see which games become the major esports title. This NFL and Skillz addition isn’t sure to succeed, but it could be one of the emerging games taking up that space.

If all else fails, we will have a good case study on how to not make your mobile esports entry.

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