Verizon wants to help push mobile gaming into the 5G era, and to do that it's partnered up with the NFL to create a challenge which seeks talent for a new football-themed mobile game that will be able to leverage the power of Verizon's 5G Ultra Wideband network. Verizon officially announced the details of this new initiative at a panel it held during E3 on June 12.
This holds some truly amazing potential for developers, whether seasoned developers looking to move into a new direction in gaming or talented up and coming developers looking to catch a big break. For starters, Verizon is willing to give two winning developer teams $400,000 each to build the game that meets Verizon's guidelines for the challenge.
If that wasn't enough, Verizon is going to showcase those games at Super Bowl LIV events in 2020, stating during the E3 panel that it would be displaying those games to the public for the first time at the Super Bowl down in Miami.
When it comes to advertising coverage regardless of the product, the Super Bowl is perhaps one of if not the most coveted outlets for grabbing attention. It's one of the most watched events every year, which means plenty of eyes on some new games and all that attention has the potential to reach a ton of people who may now want to check out the game.
Companies also spend millions of dollars to grab an ad-spot during the Super Bowl whether its during halftime or any other part of the game. Commercials for products during these time slots are extremely expensive, and free advertising like that is essentially money in the bank on top of the money Verizon is giving the winners of this challenge to make the game in the first place.
Verizon lays down a few rules for the challenge to kick things off. Main guidelines state that the game has to embody the beliefs of the NFL brand and that the game will need to showcase what can be done with games using Verizon's 5G Ultra Wideband network.
Verizon really believes in what its done with 5G up to this point and it sees gaming as a perfect vessel for displaying just how great the high bandwidth and low latency that it offers can usher in a big change for mobile gaming.
Judges from both Verizon and the NFL will be looking at various factors for submitted entries and grading them on those specific factors. These will include things like how scalable the game idea is and how much of an impact 5G will have on it. Verizon is also judging entries based on how innovative the game is. Company maturity and game maturity are also things that developer teams will need to take into account.
Verizon states that anyone interested in submitting a game idea for the challenge will need to send in those ideas by no later than August 11, 2019. It will then look at all entries and decide on the winners by September 5, 2019, after which point it will work with the winning teams to build those games for a showcase next year.
Though Verizon is using this challenge to put the spotlight on its 5G network to some extent, Verizon is right to highlight the importance of 5G in the gaming world both for mobile and non-mobile platforms. Services like Stadia for example would highly benefit from a well-established 5G network for when people wanted to play games through Stadia using a compatible mobile device. Online mobile gaming also serves to benefit here.
In short, Verizon wants to be at the forefront of 5G mobile games and it's taking steps to accomplish that goal.