If there was an award for the 2011 comeback game of the year, it would have been FIFA 12. Although FIFA has always been a powerhouse of popularity in the professional sports gaming genre, FIFA 12 was still an incredible improvement over FIFA 11 (which, in itself, could have been considered a step backwards for the franchise following the 2010 release). Steaming ahead towards FIFA 13′s Fall release date, what could the franchise possibly do to take another step in the attempt to achieve football perfection?
FIFA 13 touts many new impressive features that are sure to boost the footballing experience. Along with continuing the evolution of its social platform, there will be a new system called 1st Touch Control which eliminates unrealistic control for every player, and incorporates an added sense of uncertainty when receiving passes and crosses. Poor passes will be much more difficult to control than perfect ones, thus allowing the defense to capitalize on a player’s lack of focus. The game’s new Attack Intelligence, Complete Dribbling, and Tactical Free-Kicks are additional new tweaks to the game in an attempt to make the gameplay more realistic, and thereby bring the most out of the game’s competitive fans. So what are some other features that we at mAltIntel would like to see in FIFA 13?
New Means of Substitutions, Formation Changes, and Player Movement
Personally, I would like to see adjustments made to the substitution system during both exhibition matches and seasonal modes. This also goes for overall formation changes to give a more managerial feel to controlling the team on the pitch. How about instead of swapping to a cut scene of players high-fiving their subs (which everyone skips anyhow), the game just adjusts its angle in order to see a player leaving the screen without having to cut away from the overhead shot of the action? Doing so would keep the game flow going once things resume. Much like in baseball games how you must select start and warm up pitchers in the bullpen a few minutes before substituting them in, maybe have an option to warm up players, complete with meters telling whether or not they’re warmed up, stretched, and ready to enter. The player movement in seasonal modes should be made more realistic as well. Never should I start a season and then see that Chelsea is shopping Didier Drogba. And on the occasion that a player moves clubs in the off-season, it should have a much larger effect on the success of the team. Another realistic twist that could be incorporated is the tendency for players to want to leave poor-performing clubs for successful ones in an attempt to win trophies. Fernando Torres did it, didn’t he?
Show More Love for the Bosses
All the attention has always been on the players, and rightfully so, but what about the managers? They play an important role, especially in season/career modes. Yes, there have been managerial modes in the franchise, but I’m talking about during seasonal modes. You don’t even catch a glimpse of your teams boss during matches. Now compare that to how often the managers are featured during televised matches. FIFA is all about realism, isn’t it? If previous games incorporate contract disputes with players in the off-season, how about something similar with managers? That way, if I decide not to resign Jose Mourinho in exchange for a cheaper, no-name manager, my team could find its play drastically worsened when I simulate through the season. Of course, this would require CPU-generated up-and-coming coaches as one goes through multiple years, but if the same can be done for a random 18-year old midfielder that my team suddenly signs in 2016, I don’t see why the extra attention can’t be played on a vital part of a team.
Bring Some Realism to Injuries
Injuries in FIFA have always been scarce, soft, and not of very large impact on a team’s success. First off, when an injury does occur, there should be a cut scene of a player being stretchered off the pitch, or maybe having trailers attending to them, even if it is happening on the sidelines while the play is still going on. If realism is what the FIFA franchise is gunning towards, why not incorporate something that can be so crucial to a team’s moral? If Arsenal is running away with the league title and then midway through the season Robin van Persie gets injured, this should have a noticeable effect on the team’s season. Something could be incorporated for the recovery time of a player as well. If a player is returning from injury, maybe they should have a percentage in their information to state how fit they actually are. There’s no reason why a player playing his first game back from injury should be performing on the level of everyone else.
An In-Depth Youth Academy
How about in season modes, feature an in-depth youth academy as a way of being able to control up-and-coming talent. If Major League Baseball games have in-depth minor league systems, I don’t see why something along those lines can’t be incorporated into FIFA. In the past, youth academy features have been limited to a hands-off tracking system for youth players for call ups. This would allow for fully intelligent control of the club’s future from the ground up. Depending on the player’s performances and how they improve over time, they can then be delegated to and from the main clubs at the will of the gamer. Not only should there be more control in this area, but when you create a character, he should have to go through the youth academy before getting thrown into the big leagues.
Intensify Penalty Kicks
FIFA clearly wants to market off of the final 5 minutes of the Manchester City victory over Queens Park Rangers that won ManCity the Premier League title on the final day of the season last year. How about marketing itself on how intense the penalties were in the Champions League final as well? When teams find themselves in the dreaded PK, whether it be to decide a game or following a foul, this is always one of the more crucial and memorable moments of the match. From the perspective of the player taking the kick, it should be a lot more complex than the simple meter at the bottom of the screen in FIFA 12. I suggest a cursor to pinpoint where precisely the player will aim the kick, and then that will determine the difficulty of the meter (kicking straight ahead would be a very easily attainable green on the meter, but the closer to the corners you get, the tougher the meter is to perfectly line up). From the keeper’s perspective, I think it should be a lot more dramatic. Maybe slow the motion down, incorporate both the left and right joysticks (possibly to control the lean and then the reach of the arms), and really put some new tactics into defending a PK.
Despite whether any of these ideas ever see the light of day in the FIFA franchise, FIFA 13 is sure to raise the bar one step higher this year. The new features sound awesome, the social networking advancements are innovative, and even the Kinect features bring some new fun to the game. Be sure to stay tuned to mAltIntel for news regarding FIFA 13 and check back following the game’s highly anticipated release for all of our thoughts.