FIFA 13 is EA Sports' franchise with the most worldwide appeal, and over the last two years, it has become one of the company's best.
The series has seen steady improvements in animation, graphics, sound and gameplay mechanics. FIFA 13's release is just around the corner, and each of these categories has been targeted for improvement.
World footballers get ready, here is a healthy dose of everything FIFA 13.
Here is what we know so far:
(Newest updates will appear just after the cover athlete going forward)
Release Date: September 25 (September 21 for EA Season Pass)
Formats: Xbox360, PS3, Wii, Wii U, PS Vita
Publisher: EA Sports
Football is Lionel Messi's world. We know it, and so does EA, and that is why the global superstar is still representing on the cover.
But this year, Messi is not alone on the cover. EA Sports announced on August 20 that Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and Joe Hart would join the FC Barcelona star on the cover.
Here is the video from EA Sports making the announcement:
The demo for FIFA 13 arrives on September 11. Here are the details, per FIFA Blog:
FIFA 13 Demo Teams
FIFA 13 Demo Stadium
Etihad Stadium—Manchester City
Time—12 p.m., 10 p.m.
Weather—Clear Sky, Rain, Snow, Cloudy
FIFA 13 Demo Options
Half Length—3 minutes
Difficulty—Amateur, Semi-Pro, Professional, World Class, Legendary
Game Speed —Slow, Normal, Fast
Back in early May, EA Sports began releasing these stunning screenshots of FIFA 13. These were enough to excite most video game football fans.
The detail in those screenshots is amazing. The Sizzle trailer that was released not long after gave a glimpse of the game in action. FIFA 12 was a very solid game visually, but FIFA 13 definitely has some noticeable visual improvements.
Check out the Sizzle trailer:
FIFA 12 sported a nice, free-flowing commentating engine, and that system doesn't appear to have be tinkered with much. However, you will hear score updates from other matches in your league, voiced by Alan Mcinally and Geoff Shreeves, per FIFA Blog.
That is pretty cool, and it is something new to football games.
The FIFA 13 soundtrack hasn't been officially announced, but many fans are eager to hear what tracks they will be rocking out to.
This is the area of the game that has received the most focus, and that is something most every gamer will love hearing. This trailer from Gamescom in Germany is the latest example of gameplay:
The changes and improvements can be broken down to the following areas.
(information per EA Sports)
This innovation in gameplay is designed to account for the various ways a player can control the ball on first touch.
Every pass is not perfect, and every player doesn't have the same ball-skills. Thus, First-Touch should account for all the combinations of bad to good passes, and expert to novice ball-handlers. It's an ingenious concept, and we'll have to see how it operates in the demo.
This concept is very similar to NHL 13's Hockey IQ. Both of them aim to increase the artificial intelligence of computer controlled teammates and opponents.
Players should be able to judge space, thereby making smarter cuts and dashes to get in scoring position. It should also enhance the way players help you defend, and defend against you.
The dribbling has also seen some improvements. Now there is even more control given to the gamer and his or her level of control with the ball.
This is especially exciting to me because I love creating the highlight-reel plays. I have been accused of hogging the ball a bit, and this system only encourages my negligent behavior.
But at least I'll look good while I'm doing it.
These will take some getting used to master, but you could really make your opponents pay with this feature. The deception is awesome, and if properly executed it will be the fuel for many YouTube videos.
This year you can use the Xbox Kinect to interact with gameplay via voice and pitch commands. You will also receive referee feedback for your choice of words.
If you use profanity, or excessive yelling, you can receive yellow and red cards. It can even affect the storyline for your character.
FIFA Ultimate Team
Ultimate Team is one of the most popular game modes in the series. It returns in FIFA 13, and now the mode has extended to the iPad and iPhone for an extended connection to your league.
The card system is something that adds great intrigue, and it simulates the joy that many of us experienced from opening a pack of sports cards. Combining that dynamic with the traditional fantasy draft concept makes this a major draw for the FIFA series.
EA Sports Football Club
This mode also returns from FIFA 12, and it still allows gamers to build their club in comparison to their friends and other gamers across the world.
New to FIFA 13 is the Football Club Catalogue. The catalog features tons of awards, and it can help guide you as you attempt to climb through all-100 status levels.
One of the options you can unlock is the ability to edit players in your career mode.
Also through the EA Sports Football Club is a new feature called Match Day. It plugs your FIFA experience into real-life action. Gamers can play the same exciting matches that are taking place in real football.
According to EA Sports:
"Real-world drama such as injuries, suspensions, team form and media gossip will be reflected through in-game commentary and play out in-game."
If this is done properly, it could build on, and blow away the NBA 2K today feature on NBA 2K12.
Interjecting the drama aspect of the sport could take it to the next level.
Learn more about this feature by clicking the link above.
The largest mode of the game has expanded to include Internationals this year. You can choose to play as a player or manager (not both this year). As a manager you can guide a national team through friendlies, qualifiers, and tournaments.
When you play as a player you will start off on the club level, and you'll be aiming to be asked to represent your country in international play. Once your player retires, he can then enter management.
The transfer system has been redone. The system allows for you to offer players and cash in trade requests.
Here are some of the other details for the transfer system, per EA Sports:
When offering to loan players you can now set a future purchase price to sign the player permanently at the end of the loan period.
When the CPU makes an offer for one of your players you can now choose to “Counter Offer” to ask for more money. The CPU will then choose to accept, reject or make a counter offer of their own.
Contract negotiations now contain advice from your Chief Executive which act as a guide to what they think the club and player may want.
When offering contracts you can now choose a role for the player you’re trying to sign eg
Crucial Player, Important Player, Future Star. This expectation will effect whether a player chooses to join your club.
Prior to making a firm offer you can now make an Enquiry to find out whether a player is available and how much the club want for them.
You can now make offers for players directly from media stories by pressing the left stick.
A new Financial Strictness setting will limit the percentage of players sales that go back in to your transfer budget (chosen at the start of CM).
FIFA 13 also has a skills mini-game included in this year's version. There are 32 games that cover eight different sections of the new physics-based game engine, per FIFA Blog.
Here is a trailer that shows the mode:
Per IGN, EA Sports has an unprecedented set of pre-order incentives planned for fans that reserve the game with Gamestop.
IGN states gamers will receive:
"One FIFA Ultimate Team pack per week for 24 weeks, which equates to over £15 in extra content. Each pack contains 12 items, from players to stadiums, balls and kits.
All players bundled will have a rating of 75 and over, and each pack will also contain one "rare item", such as enhanced player attributes and the "most coveted players".
There are two alternative pre-order options.
Football Club will be available for those that pre-order through Amazon.
The adidas All-Star Team pre-order is available for fans that pre-order through the GAME. An eponymous All-Star team will be unlocked, with the world's top 23 players.
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