I research this problem a few months ago and as I remember correctly VMware don't allow to use alternate bios.
As far as I know
bios440.filename = "path to the modified BIOS file/BIOS file name"
is still a valid vmx-parameter.
An editor for Phoenix BIOS is available here
Phoenix BIOS Editor 2.2 Download - BIOSEDIT.exe
Unfortunately this stuff is often used for dubios tasks - like cheating Windows activation - so the technical background is not posted in the well known places.
There is a VMTN post here
VMware BIOS modification - for Linux users
Looks like using your selfmade BIOS can easily fill a few weeks to get the expected results.
Did you already exhaust the options available via vmx-file edits ?
In addition to continuum's useful post, check out Using EFI/UEFI firmware in a VMware Virtual Machine – our EFI firmware has USB support, but you will need to use it with a modern guest OS (all described in that document). There are also vmx options for efi32.filename and efi64.filename which allow for the EFI firmware image to be substituted with one you've built or modified (just like the bios440.filename in continuum's post does for legacy BIOS), although building your own EFI firmware won't be a straightforward task...