Review: FIFA 20 – Nice digital kicking a ball
FIFA, one of EA's longest-running game franchises, has returned with a new installment. FIFA 20 was released last Friday and we are now a week further playing the latest version. Finally we see the return of street football at a FIFA game. Under the name Volta, EA tries to fulfill the wishes of the fans. After all, the last FIFA Streets was from 2012. Will FIFA score well again this year? Or do we see the necessary drop-offs flying out of the stadium? You can read the answers to these questions below.
All right, the old principle of 22 men on the field and a ball. Whoever manages to get the ball into the net the most times wins. The football part has also been explained again, but what has changed in the new FIFA 20. The Football Intelligence of the game has been adjusted again. With the Authentic Game Flow, every player played by the computer will take into account the time, space and position of another player. This creates more time and space for the player himself. In addition to that, the "shooting" part of the game has been overhauled. This makes shooting feel more natural. The tackle system has also received an adjustment. The better your timing and tackle is, the better that player will retain possession of the ball after making that tackle. In short, EA has a number of updates again brought to the game that might have been in extended DLC.
In addition to the game-oriented updates of FIFA 20, EA has also made some changes to the career mode. Of course you can choose again between a pro player or coach. The nice thing about this year is that you can also choose the opposite sex when creating your coach or player. Both career modes are fun to play. As a player you can of course choose to play just yourself or the whole team. And as a coach you can choose to play the match yourself or have it simulated. The off-game menu is simple and easy to handle. However, with the coach mode I miss a lot of options. But that's more because I'm used to Football Manager.
The biggest downer, however, is the lack of voice acting. As a coach you give press interviews and you have conversations with the players and their representatives. The scenes are well developed and the animations run smoothly. However, the standard sentences that come back in every conversation, you see in the subtitles. EA could have hired a number of voice actors for this to record these kinds of conversations. The conversations now feel empty and soulless and certainly do not invite me to do more than necessary. A missed opportunity from EA to give the career mode some more depth.
Volta is EA's answer to the high demand for a new FIFA Streets game. Just like in normal FIFA 20, in Volta you can play a story to play yourself to the top. During this story mode, you unlock new locations to play, each with its own "stadium" and challenges. Once unlocked, these locations can be revisited in the other Volta: Volta Tour game modes. Volta League is the online part where you compete against players from all over the world. Strangely enough, EA has now added voice acting to all scenes. Which then gives me more reason to ask myself, why didn't they do that with the career mode of the normal FIFA section as well.
FIFA Volta is a nice addition to FIFA 20. Still, I would have preferred to see them come up with a separate game for street football. Perhaps they could have worked it out better than what they have done now. It feels more like a sense of duty towards the fans now.
Verdict FIFA 20
FIFA 20 is broadly the same as its predecessor. Of course, the game has been provided with some new updates to make it feel a lot more realistic again. The tackles have been modified and made more difficult, but when you can do that well it is very satisfying. And that also applies with the overhaul of the "shooting" system. This also takes some getting used to, but once you get the hang of it, you put the balls in the net here and there. Career modes are fun entertainment in between playing football. It's just a shame that the scenes that go with it don't contain any voice acting. With the standard sentences, we would have expected EA to frame them with a voice as well. FIFA Volta feels like a necessary added mode to give Street's fans their way. While Volta is fun to play and close to the fun of Streets,I would have preferred Volta to be a standalone game. Then EA could have made a little more of it and given a little more love.
All in all FIFA 20 is another great football game and will undoubtedly satisfy enough gamers until the next part which will of course come again next year.
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