EA Sports activities FC 24 hands-on preview: No FIFA, no drawback

EA Sports activities knew it was making an enormous play when it rejected soccer’s governing physique FIFA’s calls for for vastly costly new phrases to hold on calling its video games by that ever-familiar title.


Now the sequence is constant underneath a brand new guise – EA Sports activities FC, with its first iteration being FC 24. Unveiled final week, we have had the prospect to play the sport on PlayStation 5 forward of launch to see the way it’s shaping up.

EA Sports activities FC 24

First impressions

It is very early, however our first style of FC 24 has us utterly reassured that the sequence stays in good well being, and a few of its much less glamourous adjustments could possibly be essentially the most welcome of all.

Professionals

  • Acquainted, refined gameplay
  • A lot improved menus
  • Glowing presentation
Cons

  • Gameplay adjustments are minor

Plus ça change

Whereas it is not overtly pooh-poohing its former associate, there is not any doubt that EA is making an enormous deal of the rebrand it is given the sequence previously generally known as FIFA – this can be a large transition that strikes its hottest sports activities recreation to an all-new model, and it is a second of danger.

That is to not say that the adjustments made to FC 24 are literally all that seismic in comparison with FIFA 23, although, and it could be truthful to border the change as extra of a advertising and marketing one than a gameplay one.

Nonetheless, a brand new 12 months brings some new options as all the time, and the highlight this time is on a number of totally different areas. First up is an improve to the HyperMotion animation system that lets EA scan actions from recorded footage as an alternative of laborious movement seize.

EA Sports FC 24 1

EA Sports activities

Which means theoretically a star participant like cowl athlete Erling Haaland may rating a ridiculous aim one week, and the FC 24 crew may get that transfer animated and obtainable to gamers in a matter of weeks (though whether or not this can occur in apply is one other query).

The system has apparently been within the pipeline for round 5 years and may unlock much more potential animations over time.

Additionally thrilling are adjustments to how gamers’ our bodies and garments are modelled – the previous particularly sees a serious improve to accuracy to go away gamers with distinctive physiologies trying far nearer to their precise selves.

EA Sports activities confirmed us Wolves’ stocky sprinter Adama Traore as the proper instance of a participant who’s by no means regarded fairly proper till now, whereas the beforehand too-skinny famous person Vinicius Junior additionally now seems to be appropriately extra muscled.

EA Sports FC 24 3

EA Sports activities

Boasts concerning the material rework that is taken place are barely extra doubtful – the demo I performed nonetheless had the nice outdated weirdly flapping shirts and shorts, regardless of a supposedly main behind-the-scenes improve.

Triangles are my favorite form

The EA Sports activities FC rebrand is focusing so much on triangles this 12 months, with the brand new brand a jutting triangular one – virtually as a direct riposte to the roundness of the old-school EA Sports activities brand. Nonetheless, all of it hangs on how essential they’re to soccer.

Passing it across the opposition has lengthy boiled all the way down to discovering triangles to cross by way of, and whereas that is not one thing that has introduced a complete change of favor to the gameplay in FC 24, there’s nonetheless been some tactical evolution.

Tactical types can now have a larger influence in your crew and you’ll choose a philosophy to develop in profession modes from an inventory of greats, like Tiki-taka and Gegenpressing (not forgetting the traditional Park the Bus).

How gamers can develop into these techniques is not one thing we have been capable of assess, although – our demo was restricted to only the Kick-Off mode and two groups, Manchester Metropolis and PSG.

Nonetheless, enjoying a bunch of video games between these two star-studded sides was sufficient to place one main fear to relaxation. There’s completely no loss in authenticity or branding because of FIFA’s departure.

EA Sports FC 24 5

EA Sports activities

Likenesses, golf equipment, stadia and merchandise are all current and proper, and EA Sports activities FC has signed much more offers to maintain the likes of the Premier League, WSL, Champions League and extra in its roster for years to come back.

Gameplay may be very acquainted to outdated palms from FIFA 23, with a slower tempo than some older entries provided, leaving explosive gamers like Mbappe nonetheless simply as horrifying after they hit their stride.

New precision by way of balls are pleasant after they come off, and an expanded roster of talent strikes implies that top-level gamers will actually be capable of showboat with tricksters like Neymar and Vinicius.

It is arduous to know an enormous quantity greater than this from the video games I used to be capable of play – whereas main adjustments are coming to the likes of Final Workforce, Professional Golf equipment (now simply Golf equipment) and Profession modes, these will all need to be examined at a later date, or at launch.

A brand new shine

FC 24 does not convey a complete visible overhaul once you’re in a match, but it surely has a lot cleaner menus and layouts that ought to make navigating to the mode you need and laying out your crew so simple as it has been in ages.

That may not sound like a really thrilling prospect, however since huge Final Workforce gamers spend half their time fiddling round in menus, the adjustments which were made may make an enormous distinction over time.

EA Sports FC 24 2

EA Sports activities

In-game, the sound design has additionally taken a step up as an entire, with extra trackable sound because the digicam shifts round angles within the stadium.

The final couple of years already introduced welcome adjustments to lighting that made for extra dramatic matches, and new broadcast-mimicking touches solely improve the premium presentation.

You possibly can see pundits milling round, gamers warming up and chatting within the dressing rooms when you make adjustments at half-time or earlier than a recreation, and crunch matches will once more be accompanied by tifos, flamethrowers and extra to essentially amp up the environment.

First impressions

It is very early days for EA Sports activities FC 24 – whereas there are solely a few months till its launch on 29 September, this sequence’ gameplay is so finely tuned that large changes may nonetheless be made fairly trivially.

With out entry to flagship modes like Final Workforce and Profession, I can not actually say way more than that FC 24 performs prefer it’s misplaced virtually nothing by abandoning FIFA’s title, and that is a really reassuring marker to hit at this stage.

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