tom;;diablo;;brock;;fifa;;football;;ea;;soccer;;sports Tom "El Diablo" Brock


By Tom "El Diablo" Brock on October 13, 2017

It has been about two weeks now, since Fifa 18 saw the light of day and was made available to soccer fans around the world. This year, I thought I would first put even more time into playing through the many modes that this game has to offer, before writing my review. So, here we are! New season, new review. It almost sounds like I'm obliged to do this, but believe me, I'm not. It's Fifa time everybody! Get your balls ready to score today! I'm sorry, should have chosen my words a bit more carefully there...

But in all seriousness, every year I complain about how I keep falling for Fifa's marketing tricks and end up buying the game. This year however, I am very happy that I did fall for it. Fifa 18 has introduced a lot of great new things that really add to the game, so let's get into it!

Let's begin with the actual gameplay of a match. When I first played a game of Fifa 18 I immediately noticed that gameplay felt a lot smoother than last year's game. The flow between defending and attacking felt way more fluent and transitioned nicely. I also feel like passing the ball around is more important than ever, especially against the A.I. In order to reach the goal you can't just simply dribble your way through the defence, you have to see who's open for a pass and deliver at the right time for the ultimate opportunity at the goal.

Defending is a bit of a pain in the ass though. For some reason I just can't seem to figure it out. I tried defending like I did in last year's game, but it didn't do a thing, I tried defending in new possible ways but my opponents just seem to easily avoid my players when in possession of the ball. I don't really know what to do against it except for attacking even more to compensate for the amount of goals I concede.

Graphics-wise, Fifa continues to get better every year, more and more players have their faces scanned for the games, and I even feel like they put in more effort to make players that didn't get scanned look more like their real-life counterparts. The stadiums also look amazing, especially the Premier League ones, you can actually experience the atmosphere of the place. Last year, Fifa introduced us to the Frostbite engine, a great new engine for the in-game graphics, however they didn't quite use it to its full potential. This year however, Fifa has made good use of the engine by putting in way more cutscenes for both the journey and career mode.

Speaking of the journey, let's talk a little more about that. So last year we witnessed the rise of Alex Hunter, a young prospect from England who made it big time in the Premier League. Well, let's say his rise did not go unnoticed, a lot of people have their eyes on Hunter, who spends his summer going on a pre-season tour with his club. On this pre-season tour he meets a few interesting people (spoiler alert: SIIIIIIIIIIIIII) and impresses the fans on the other side of the ocean. When the Premier League season starts though, he will have to go through some interesting times until the deadline of the transfer window. What I like about this year's journey is that the character development continues in a big way. You keep finding out more and more about Alex' life and actually get to play as some other people as well!

Career mode is always my favourite game mode in Fifa and this year has had some changes, but not too many. As I mentioned earlier, there have been more cutscenes added to negotiations about eventual transfers and contract extensions which gives the mode a way more realistic feel to it. With transfers nowadays getting bigger than ever, it feels incredibly real to negotiate with players and their managers about wages, bonuses and signing fees. Aside from the new negotiations system there haven't been many notable changes to career mode. But hey, don't fix what isn't broken! Now here's to hoping online career mode will be a thing next year!

Now we get to the big one, Ultimate Team! It looks like with the success that was weekend league last year, Fifa decided to make a more accessible version of it available for all players, even of lesser skill. That would be squad battles! Each day you get four random teams from players all over the world, and you can challenged these teams in a match against the A.I on a difficulty of your choosing, the higher the difficulty, the more points you can get. With the points you collect you can climb up a ranking, and with each rank you climb, your rewards at the end of the week get better. This way, players that aren't as good at the game as others still get the chance to play a lot and get some nice rewards for it! Lovely addition all around.

Fifa has also added daily and weekly objectives, which are assignments you can choose to complete in order to get rewards such as coins or packs. Sometimes you might even complete an objective without even knowing it, which basically means you get a free reward, isn't that brilliant? Lastly, good news for players that don't play on Xbox! Legends aren't exclusive to Xbox anymore! They are now called Icons and they're available on all platforms! Aside from those new features, Ultimate Team has stayed the way we know it and will probably be the most played game mode once again. I love the squad battles, and this is a major factor for me to play Ultimate Team more.

So, my end verdict about Fifa 18 is that the developers knew exactly what to keep in and what they had to add, which is impressive! A lot of games tend to change features that didn't need to change and actually make it worse. So my respect to Fifa, you know what your community wants and you deliver! So to all the people that say Fifa 18 is just Fifa 17 with updated teams, you couldn't be more wrong! Now if they'd just patch the defending that would be too sweet!

available on:

EA Sports
September 29, 2017