By Marshal M. Rosenthal

Summer is the hardest time of the year for sports fans. Basketball has crowned its champion. Hockey will skate into the offseason this week. And football is still but a distant dream. There’s always baseball, the quintessential summer sport. But half the teams are already of out of contention, if they ever had a chance.

So if you can’t watch sports, at least you can play them… on your gaming device of choice. And with the pending release of the PS4 and Xbox One, gaming is about to up its, uh, game. Tailgate Fan visited E3, the annual video game expo, to see what sports video games are on the horizon.

Here are some of the upcoming titles:

NHL 14

Photo Credit: EA Sports

EA Sports NHL14 (PS3, Xbox 360, Xbox One)

Speed and control is what you need on the ice. Thank the Player Impact Engine and Collision Physics for that. Skate the ice and block (or worse) your opponents. There are over 1,000 new skating animations to provide realistic views, a third-person presentation to showcase fights and precision control over the puck that are about as close to the real thing as you’re going to get. And if you want to live the life of a NHL player, the Be a Pro Career Mode will put you right there in the locker room. Just don’t piss off the fans or blow that press interview.

Buy NHL 13.

Madden 25

Photo Credit: EA Sports

EA Sports Madden NFL 25 (PS4, Xbox One)

A game franchise doesn’t make it to its 25th anniversary without blazing a few trails along the way. The Madden NFL series has been a best seller in the video game world since the 1980s. And EA shows no signs of slowing down. They’ve upped the game-play for Xbox One and PS4, the new gaming consoles due out later this year. You want realistic, detailed athletes? You want even truer player motion? Here you go. The IGNITE engine will give it to you. Scan the field and anticipate the action before the ball snaps. Set up your blocking. Then utilize all your skills as the fast-moving animation takes over.

Buy Madden NFL 13.

NBA 2K14

Photo Credit: 2K Sports

2K Sports NBA 2K14 (PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One)

LeBron James, anyone? Sure we just saw him win another title, and take seven games to do it. But now we have to wait months to see him back on the court. Or do we? James graces the cover, but his updated moves really make this version worth playing. The graphics aren’t too shabby either. It’s probably safe to assume that gameplay will depend, in part, on the console. But we’ll see. The King James Bonus Pack DLC includes goodies like the Path to Greatness mode.

Buy NBA 2K13.

MLB Live Challenge

Photo Credit: Konami

Konami MLB Live Challenge (iOS, Facebook)

Any time can be game time on your iOS phone or tablet. We aren’t talking just text, but colorful 3D graphics of players and the stadiums. Build, train and perfect your dream baseball team, while collecting Player Tickets (over 2,000, featuring pros for all 30 of the Major League teams). It brings a fantasy element to the game. Player stats get updated daily based on the most recent MLB action. And if you want to put your team to the ultimate challenge, compete in the Season Mode against other Live Challenge users and real MLB teams.

Happy tailgating!

Get all your team gear for the big game.

Find more cool gear for your next tailgate.

Marshal M. Rosenthal is a technology, gadget and lifestyle writer based on the West Coast.


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