For anyone who ever played FIFA 09 on the 360 or PS3, then on the face of it FIFA 10 is actually pretty similar. The menu and in-play interface is very similar, but it’s only when you look a little deeper that you realise why it’s the best football game in the world.
The first improvement is the 360 dribbling. It’s evident from the very beginning that it makes a huge difference to the game play and creates a much more realistic feel to the movement of the players. It has received a lot of hype since the announcement of the game and I have to say it does live up to its promise. For me this is the biggest difference from the previous version. The extra directions allow for improved passing and shooting motions and creates an all round realistic experience.
There are a lot of tweaks to the game this year which may not be massive improvements alone, but all together the game looks and feels a lot more like a real football match. Small features such as quick free kicks, in-play refereeing decisions and variable weather conditions create fantastically realistic football.
Another great improvement is the commentary. This has been one of my most major gripes about all football games in the past, but this year EA have clearly worked very hard adding hundreds of new phrases and improving the relevance of what they say. Some of the phrases, particularly after scoring, are extremely true to life and the excitement of Andy Gray almost makes you believe it’s on TV. After last year’s introduction of the user controlled celebrations, this year there are more to choose from and they even commentate on some of them, for example the ‘take a bow’ celebration.
However, FIFA 10 is not 100% perfect. There are some minor faults which are slightly irritating. For one thing, the referee seems to blow the whistle for every stoppage including throw-ins and obvious goal kicks which gets a bit excessive. And perhaps I’m being a bit of a perfectionist if I whinge about the fact that when playing a game in England in October, I found the pitch covered entirely in a sheet of snow. Perhaps this isn’t wholly realistic however I was impressed in the graphics of the snow, it really is quite brilliant.
One more annoying feature which can actually be quite costly as far as the game is concerned is how the referee persistently gets in the way of passes deflecting it off course. If you’re like me and get quite into your games, this can be highly frustrating.
Apart from this, there isn’t much else wrong with FIFA 10. A much improved manager mode including player form, more difficult transfers and manager statistics make it much more enjoyable and focused on management than ever before. They’ve made improvements to graphics and player faces as they have done for every new edition that’s gone before.
All in all, I’ve owned the game for a week now and I’m hugely impressed with FIFA 10. It’s the most addictive FIFA game I’ve ever played. Hmmm…All this writing about it…Just one game perhaps!