The FIFA series has been in a slow but long decline for years now. It used to be my favourite series but from the moment microtransactions took over in the form of Ultimate Team, the series has been going downhill fast.
I loved Ultimate Team at first, it reminded me of collecting Panini cards and trading them with friends. I guess it’s the modern day equivalent really – in that it’s addictive and bloody expensive. The problem is though, EA seems to have focused on this above all else, to the detriment of the actual football. To me FIFA is no fun anymore, it feels the same every year, with some minor tweaks, usually accompanied by buzzwords such as ‘Dynamic Passing,’ ‘Timed Finishing,’ “50/50 Battles,’ etc, all of which is meant to excite us and make us buy this year’s latest version.
We all know it’s a bit of a con really. For one, you have to spend an absolute fortune on Ultimate Team cards again since for some reason your team cannot carry over (well EA has got to line its pockets at our expense after all). Another thing is, who can actually tell the difference anyway? The graphics have got to a point where any improvements are generally pretty minor, which means often you are playing the same game as the previous year, with a few minor tweaks here and there. Look at GTA V and how that has changed since launch. It’s probably changed more – for free – than every version of FIFA which has launched since. Sure you are having to pay for Microtransactions in GTA, much like you do in FIFA, but at least you don’t have to buy a new version every year.
In my opinion, it’s about time EA took a leaf out of Rockstar’s GTA book (Or even Fortnite’s) and made FIFA a game as a service. I for one would much prefer one version which constantly updates, allowing for changes such as new kits and squad changes to be updated for free, while any major changes could come in the form of a season pass, offering a cheaper alternative for these minor updates which we get each year. EA could still make just as much money since Ultimate Team would still exist and I’m sure it could think of other optional extras for the real hardcore out there who are determined to bankrupt themselves in order to be the best player out there.
Will this ever happen? Most likely not, since EA is one of the best selling games each and every year, but isn’t it about time we took and stand and demanded a bit more for our money if this is to continue? I’ve owned every FIFA since the first one, but this year I’ve had just about enough of it. The game is becoming stale and boring and is in need of a major gameplay overhaul. I’m not sure if this will ever happen, mind you. The problem is EA makes so much cash it hardly needs to make any effort at all, it’s just a case of printing the words FIFA, followed by the year and it’s guaranteed to sell millions. It’s the one game where reviews of 1/10 probably would make no difference to sales.
Maybe it’s because FIFA doesn’t really have proper competition. PES is a great series, but thanks to its lack of licensing (which is getting slightly better to be fair) and more significantly, it’s lack of marketing budget, it’ll never compete in the same league as FIFA, which means EA can continue to do whatever it likes without having to worry about any other football game eating into its sales. Maybe we should all buy PES this year, that’d get EA’s attention, wouldn’t it?
Is it just me or is FIFA really on the decline? Let us know your thoughts.