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Fi Fa, ho hum

Updated on: 08 October,2023 10:48 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Jaison Lewis |

EA’s FIFA videogame is no more, and from its ashes has risen FC 24. Is it the same game year-on-year update of FIFA, just with a new name, or is there truly some new magic in this football videogame?

Fi Fa, ho hum

EA Sports FC 24

EA Sports FC 24
Rating: 4/5
Developer: EA Vancouver
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Platform: PC, XBS, XBO, PS4, PS5
Price: PC at Rs 3,499; Consoles at Rs 4,799

EA’s FIFA is one of those few games that transcend the barrier between gamers and non-gamers, enjoying a considerable fan following here. This year, however, things are different, EA no longer has the FIFA branding. Instead, the game is now called EA Sports FC24, which is a bit of a mouthful.

The developer EA is pretty consistent in bringing a FIFA game every year to the market, and that should remain the same for FC 24 as well. Considering this is the first year with a name change, it is a little shocking how little branding and advertisement budget the company has poured into promoting the new game.  Several fans of the FIFA franchise that I spoke to didn’t even know the game had changed names or it was even launching. This might affect the overall sales for FC in India. What ultimately will decide its overall success and staying ability is going to come down to its familiar gameplay. Has EA done enough to break from the shackles of FIFA to create its own standalone game that is better than the old FIFA games in every way?

Unfortunately, the answer to this question is not really. In many ways, FC 24 is just another upgraded FIFA with some incremental updates and some tweaks here and there to make the game more interesting. In many ways, though, it hangs on to the problems of the past.

Let’s talk about everything new, starting with HypermotionV. For FC 24, EA is using real-life game captures of players making their signature moves and behaving and performing and bringing those moves to the game. This means your favourite players will run, play, kick and tackle like their real counterparts. This brings a bit more immersion to FC 24, closing the gap between field and video games. However, in actual practice, it doesn’t actually change the game too much. Some moves were fun to see, but this can only be enjoyed during highlights where you aren’t so engrossed in the game that you don’t actually notice all these small changes. Also, they don’t happen often enough to call it a proper feature. 

What does change the game in a pleasant way is the new Playstyles signature abilities. Playstyles signature abilities using real-world data. Players will have some traits that will give them specific abilities like better defence, better freestyle kicks, rapid dribbling or even power header styles. There are two types of Playstyles: a regular one and Playstyle Plus, which can be attributed to one of the assigned playstyles for a player. The game has a total of 34 Playstyles applied to specific players. It’s available in Career mode for players to make their players more unique and more defined. This is actually the true magic in FC’s new gameplay. 

Manager Mode is also back. As a manager, you can hire coaches. These coaches will train your team to execute your playthroughs better. The more and better-quality coaches you have, the better your team performs. The coaches also have training specialities that you can use further to boost your player’s abilities on the field. Training plan is improved a bit, which makes it more accessible for players to customise. 

Career Mode also has a few more improvements. Players can now hire agents this year, and these agents will help you where you plan to go. You need to tell them what it is you want to achieve, and they will draw out targets for you to achieve. Hit the goals, and you will be on your way to success. Another addition is the introduction of awards, where your player… provided goals are met, can win awards. 

As usual, EA has included their cash cow, Ultimate Team. This time, they have included female teams as well, and you can form teams with both male and female players. Some of the female players are ranked higher than male players, so you will want to include them in your teams. There is also a way to upgrade players in the stack you have instead of searching for particular cards. That said, you have to use credits to do that as well. So, if you are into Ultimate Team, it is business as usual where you have to pay to win. One way or the other.

Volta is also back, and it doesn’t seem to have undergone too much underlying change. It is pretty similar to what you would have experienced in FIFA 23. So, the big question is, do you need this new football game? FC 24 does have a bunch of new additions that scream we are not restricted by FIFA anymore, but at the same time, you are essentially paying a premium for the same football game you have paid for every year. It is still going to ask you to pay up for Ultimate Team, and it is still going to be unpredictable while passing. The new features are nice, but the overall game is still pretty much FIFA. 

FC 24 is a good game, but I would suggest waiting a bit if you can and continuing playing FIFA 2023… maybe in a few months, when FC 24 is a bit discounted. If you are one of those rabid fans, however, don’t let this review stop you.

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