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EA: This isn't a make-or-break year for NBA Live

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Rumor has it that Electronic Arts is approaching the final year of a licensing agreement with the NBA, but even if that is the case, EA chief operating officer Peter Moore says continuing the game doesn't depend on some miracle breakthrough for the beleaguered series this year.

"It's disappointing that we have allowed ourselves to get into this situation, and we're totally to blame," Moore told Game Informer at E3, "but we've got a great executive producer in Sean O'Brien. We're a company that has the resources to rally around it."

Moore reiterated that "we're committed to the license. We're committed to the sport."

NBA Live's troubles date to the cancellation of what was planned as a total remake, NBA Elite 11, in 2010. The series took a year off to sort out its troubles, tried to return with NBA Live 13 in 2012 but was abruptly canceled again. EA Sports cleaned out the senior creative leadership on that series and started over with O'Brien, a longtime veteran from the time the series was developed at EA Canada.

NBA Live 14's release, on PS4 and Xbox One only, was roundly panned in reviews but the development team continued to support the title with online content, dynamic roster updates, and a large patch in February that addressed some of the most glaring criticisms. Last week NBA Live 15 released its first screenshots, six closeups of player faces that look much better than their appearances in NBA Live 14.

NBA Live 15 will launch on Oct. 7 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.