Every year EA (Electronic Arts) release a new FIFA and every year brings with it new features to better the last, along with new graphics and for the most part; better animations and feel to the game play. FIFA has long been the dominant football game on the market for a very good reason, with every improvement the game tends towards realism but keeps to its competitively fun roots. It is a big favourite in the Gamewagons and everyone learns something new whilst playing together.
With the animations, response times of the players, positioning of computer controlled players and skill, training modes and option features, FIFA only gets better with this latest outing for the 2012-13 season. All the latest players and team rosters are included which even includes weekly mini-updates that relate to transfers and individual player form. This manages to correct a player’s stats based on current form throughout the season and reflects on the real world in a better way than any sports game before. There are a large variety of game modes including managing and player careers; there is a lot to do in this game including some of the best skill practices that can act as mini tournaments in their own right.
FIFA 13 brings home the bacon with its quick setup games; this is your generic friendly matches you will play vs. your friends and family. The menus are easy to navigate and the rapid setup does not get in the way of getting your competitive streak going. We tend not to get involved in changing starting squads and formations in the Gamewagons but you can and many can spend a long time getting their team “just right”.
The players respond perfectly to your controller input but only to a point. A low skill player may fumble the ball while receiving a pass, at least more often than a Barcelona starting squad player. The controls are very familiar to returning FIFA fans and don’t take long to learn for the newcomers to pick up. We have included a basic controller guide at the bottom of this review and highlighted a few controls that can really help.
Now about the in-match gameplay, this is the chasis to any football game. The improvement to Fifa’s ball play is considerable; passes look fluid and non-robotic. A good ball to switch play looks gorgeous and similar to what you would see on the TV. Defending now has a stand-off (Jockey) option that simply stops your player charging in like a mad man and holds their ground like a professional. The deeper you get into FIFA the more tricks you pick up to beat your opponent. Practice makes perfect and the time you invest in this game is rewarded with some spectacular moments.
Presentation – Visuals, Sound and Feel
A generation on from FIFA 12 and the realism has again built up. Not only player animations but the detail (mainly noticed on the replays) has increased significantly. It has truly welcome HD quality, if you can avoid it don’t play with anything but a HDMI cable.
The commentary is hugely varied in this version and stats are quoted for the most unlikely of teams and players. Almost gone are the days of tedious repetition during your matches. The menu tracks are even current tunes that will certainly be familiar to you.
Multiplayer – In the Van
This is the ultimate “In the Van” game. You can play competitively and cooperatively which offers something for almost everyone. You can have up to four players in a game (nore with the PS3 version) which gets as many involved at a time as possible. Various match lengths mean that we can find it fairly easy to run a tournament if this game is your bag and you want to discover who the best FIFA player is and learn from their techniques.
This traditional style sports game is the rite of passage of any young gamer and even as a rugby fan I find myself loving a kick around vs. my colleauges. A truly fun and great game for party atmospheres and well worth a long session. You can even handicap the best players by giving them a low stats team such as Leyton Orient and have them battle Premiership giants in order to level the playing field.
Tips and tricks
There are so many different play styles to Fifa that are unique to each team and sets of players. Here are a few of the generic ways to attack.
Fast wingers? Then use the space wide and cross in, this is especially effective with a tall striker as a target man.
Great technical players? Use a lot of short passes to weave in and out of your opponents and create chances through hogging possession. Defences do get drawn out of position if you are patient and then a little through ball can open up the route to goal.
If you have a great defence and at least 1 fast attacker then it could be worth letting the opponent come at you, steal possession then send the long ball down the field to have a 1 on 1 against the keeper.
In short, you must use what you have got in your team but that main tip is to pass it around a lot, learn to defend not just attack and slowly your win count will increase.
Left Thumb stick – Dribble
Right Trigger Button – Sprint (Shooting when sprinting is less accurate)
A – Ground Pass
X – Lobbed Pass / Cross when in position
Y – Through Ball (Key Skill takes some practice but work on it)
B – Shoot (Do not hold down too long, a short press is enough else your shot will fly over the bar)
B + Right Bumper Button – Finesse Shot (Tricky to get your fingers to come off sprint and then on this but the goals will come)
B + Left Bumper Button – Chip Shot (Nice as your opponent sprints their goalie off their line)
A + B – Fake Shot (Really tricky but when used is very effective)
Left Buffer Button – Trigger Player Run (When passing around making players make forward runs really stretches the defense, get ready to use the through ball but watch the offside).
RB (Held) – Dummy Pass (Similar to fake shot, helps draw tackles and commits a defender).
Hold A – Contain (Stand-off attacker much better than rushing in and risking missing the play)
Hold Right Bumper Button – Team mate Contain (Brings in another defender to help defend a player without diving in)
B – Standing Tackle
B (while chasing opponent) – Push & Pull
X – Slide Tackle
Hold LT – Jockey
LB – Switch Player (Moves to nearest defender)
Flick Right Thumbstick – Manually change player
Y – Rush your Goalkeeper
Y x 2 – Send back Goalkeeper
This review was created by one of our experienced Game Experience Managers Charlie Osler. To learn more about Charlie and the rest of the team click here.