FC Barcelona: Lionel Messi on the Cover of FIFA 13

Xoel Cardenas@@XoelCardenasContributor IIIJuly 6, 2012

Photo courtesy of www.ea.com/soccer/fifa
Photo courtesy of www.ea.com/soccer/fifa

Lionel Messi is the best footballer on Earth.

And now he will finally be on the cover of the best and most popular sports video game on Earth.

Messi will grace the cover of FIFA 13, which is scheduled for release in late September. EA Sports released of the official cover of FIFA 13 with Messi and the new FC Barcelona kit in late June.

Leo used to be under contract with Kanomi’s Pro Evolution Soccer franchise for a few years, including making the cover of PES from 2009-11. Not to be outdone, PES 2013 will have Cristiano Ronaldo on the cover.

David Rutter, FIFA 13’s executive producer, said via press release that "FIFA 13 will capture the drama and unpredictability of real-world football.”

Does that mean now we are going to be able make players dive? If anyone at EA Sports is reading this, as an FC Barcelona fan, is there going to be a diving option for FIFA 13? Maybe press X + ↓ and we can make Sergio Busquets dive. I’m sure Real Madrid fans would like this option as well, as they can make Angel Di Maria dive and roll around like he does every game.

Rutter also stated that FIFA 13 will have new innovations that will trump FIFA 12.

“These are game-changing innovations that will revolutionize our artificial intelligence, dribbling, ball control and collisions to create a true battle for possession across the entire pitch, and deliver freedom and creativity in attack.”

Photo courtesy of www.ea.com/soccer/fifa
Photo courtesy of www.ea.com/soccer/fifa

There are three main new additions to FIFA 13—Complete Dribbling, Attacking Intelligence, and First Touch Control. In a recent interview with ESPN.com, Aaron McHardy, lead gameplay designer for FIFA 13, stated that FIFA 13 will now enable you to move in any direction while facing any direction.

“[Complete Dribbling] puts you in a situation like Lionel Messi in the real world where you’re facing up defenders in these 1v1 battles, but now you can easily go left or right, making quick decisions while simply using your left stick. Simply by changing the orientation and the facing angle of the player who is moving, we can put you in a much better position in these 1v1 battles, enabling you to better beat people off the dribble.”

According to EA Sports, Attacking Intelligence will allow your player to analyze space and think ahead, making it easier to break down the defense. First Touch Control eliminates near-perfect touches for all players and allows the defender to take advantage of the loss of focus and poor touches to win back possession.

If you have Kinect for Xbox 360, FIFA 13's new voice recognition will allow you to control your team with your voice. You'll be able to substitute players, change your formation and talk/control your teammates just by speaking. One of the funnier innovations is the "referee feedback feature" which will recognize when you are frustrated with one of the ref's call via the sound/tone of your voice.

One of the funniest features of FIFA 13 on Kinect is this: If you say a profanity, the referee feedback feature will recognize it, and you may be given a yellow or red card for it. 

Photo courtesy of www.easports.com/soccer/fifa
Photo courtesy of www.easports.com/soccer/fifa

FIFA 13 will have new Spanish commentators in the North American and Latin America editions. EA Sports revealed on Thursday that ESPN Deportes' Fernando Palomo, Mario Kempes and Ciro Procuna will be the new Spanish commentators. Ernique "El Perro" Bermudez and Ricardo Pelaez were the previous commentators.

I don't know about you, but I can't wait to play as FC Barcelona—now with Jordi Alba and those new kits—and take on Real Madrid in El Clásico. I'm sure some Arsenal fans will want to play against whatever team Robin van Persie goes to if he is sold this summer. We can't forget about Bayern Munich fans who will want to take on their bitter rival Borussia Dortmund. I can't forget about Mancunians and how much fun they'll have playing the Manchester Derby with Manchester United—now with new signing Shinji Kagawa—facing off against Mario Balotelli and defending EPL champions Manchester City.

I hope EA Sports puts the Balotelli shirt-off celebration against Germany in Euro 2012 as one of their regular celebrations.

A video game is meant to be a distraction and a stress reliever. But ask anybody who has played FIFA and they will tell you that FIFA sometimes causes more stress than relieves it.

But it's too much fun.

FIFA 13 hits stores on September 25 in North America and September 28 in Europe and the rest of the world.

Congrats to Lionel Messi for being the new cover player for the biggest-selling football game in the world.

Xoel, The Voice of FC Barcelona on Bleacher Report.

Follow me on Twitter:@XoelCardenas

Don’t forget to check out my other columns:

FC Barcelona: Did Barça Go Wrong With Mats Hummels?

Euro 2012: Tricampeones & a Dynasty!: Ranking the Spanish Players at Euro 2012


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.