Sports games are one of those durable niches in games that don’t really go away. There’s limited space for competition at the top and they leagues help keep it that way with exclusive licensing deals.
If you’re a NBA basketball game player and you want to play the current thing, you only have two choices, 2k or EA, and you probably prefer the gameplay of one over the other.
It’s not like shooter players who can choose from 15 other AAA shooter games.
The games industry as a whole is becoming more comfortable with microtransactions all the time. The reason for this is that people complain loudly, but they don’t stop pouring in the money.
Since making games is risky, difficult, and been steadily getting more expensive forever, game developers are going to keep using more and more microtransactions in bigger and paid products.
Here’s the thing. The games industry isn’t a monolith. Your average game developer isn’t champing at the bit to put microtransactions in the games.
The average developer is getting a paycheck. It’s mostly the people SIGNING the paychecks who want those microtransactions, so they can, among other things, keep writing more paychecks.
I’m a designer, and I’m also a CEO. One half of me doesn’t want to “corrupt” my designs with microtransactions, the other half of me laments that means cutting off mobile markets pretty much entirely when I would have no trouble deploying to them.