Do you have any insight as to why annual sports titles have not gone the Live Service model yet given the fact each year it is mostly minor tweaks and roster changes anyway?

I've actually worked on and shipped more than one annual sports title over my career and I want say for the record that the idea that annual sports titles are "mostly minor tweaks and roster changes" is absolutely and categorically false. Annual sports titles absolutely do not have the same scope as AAA games with multi-year dev cycles, but they do absolutely have significant breadth and depth of scope each year beyond "minor tweaks and roster changes".

The majority changes that occur each year are spread out because they must be - there simply isn't enough development time within the ~11ish calendar months between launches to rebuild everything, so decisions must be made about what gets added/updated this year and what waits for next year. That means that, besides roster updates and minor tweaks, this year we're committing to change our animation system, these eight specific stadiums/arenas, these three game modes, update the commentary system, and rework the stat simulation. Next year, we're committing to these other eight stadiums/arenas, these other four game modes, the physics system, the VFX system, and the AI logic. This sort of round-robin approach is necessary - the dev team often isn't large enough to sustain working on everything each cycle so we need to pick and choose what we can do each year within the time we have. It also means that players who only engage with some of the game likely don't necessarily see (or notice) all of the changes we make each time around. This doesn't mean that we didn't do it or that the changes aren't there, but it can certainly look like not much has changed if the player isn't playing those parts of the game.

To your main question - The primary reason that annual sports games haven't transitioned to a live service model is because of inertia. There is a well-established and financially sustainable annual sales model that works. There would need to be a significant and tangible gain to be had by switching to a live service model other than novelty - all of the current existing tools and systems are built with the expectation of delivering a new retail game each year, and all of the dev experience built up is for delivering a new retail game each year. Switching over to an ongoing service would come at tremendous cost. There must be a gain to outweigh that cost in order for the publishers to do it.

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