Story - 86%
Graphics - 90%
Audio - 70%
Gameplay - 87%
Replayability - 83%
Has FIFA finally won the race?
Growing up with the Popular FIFA franchise, I came to expect bigger and better things with every release. Electronic Arts has been scrapping by recently between FIFA10 and FIFA 16, with small and minor changes that don’t effect the game as much you’d like it to BUT then came “The Journey”. When the preview came out, people absolutely lost their minds. I have never seen so much hype over a sport game since, well… ever.
All this hype, all this excitement and then you slide the game into your console for the first time, making it a reality. You are greeted with a beautiful picture of Marco Reus, taking a not-so-sweaty shot, elegant but not quite realistic. In typical FIFA style, you open with a game that will determine your skill level, obviously they recommended “World Class” for me, but I stuck to “Professional”. After getting past the dreadful time wasting match, you can finally play the highly anticipated mode; “The Journey”.
From the geniuses behind titles like Dragon Age and Mass Effect, Frostbite brings you: “The Journey”. Upon entering into the game mode, you see a young team of boys playing a game of football (Obviously). The cut scene that you see shows quite a bit of drama between parents, which is the most authentic thing FIFA has ever done, while a young boy is watching this from the field, this is the character you will be playing, Alex Hunter.
I could go on and on about this mode, but I will try some it up into a few lines, here goes; “The Journey” gives you the experience of a boy with father issues, that is striving to become a football great, like his father and his grandfather. The grandfather, which is somewhat of a mentor to Alex, helps him through this journey as he has been done the road before. Alex is determined and has a mate, named Gareth Walker, who he started his journey with but they end up being rivals. I don’t want to give too much away, but I can say the disappointment I experienced when “The Journey” came to an end, was bigger than my disappointment in No Man’s Sky.
Now that I have given you the story, let me explain how it feels to play for glory. Different. It has been a while since I enjoyed the changes EA has made to the experience of in-game controls. I like it, I lie… I LOVE IT. They have mastered the art of the controller; they are using the controller to its full capabilities, FINALLY! From the sensitivity of the triggers to the exactly you use the analog to turn, they are using it. The games fluidity is exceptional and the movement is glorious. The players move with more human like gestures, except one thing, dum dum duuuuuum… EA has and probably never will perfect the fine art of hand movement on their players, majority of the players look like their wrists were caught in a bicycle’s spokes. However, overall, they have done a spectacular job at bring the players to life.
Gameplay is far more difficult, which I love. It gives the game a more realistic feel. Balls can be mishandled, slip away from your feet more easily, your passes have to be completed from the receiving player and not just banging the ball between players. Skills are not quite as easily, they are a lot like FIFA 07, when you actually thought tactically and not just produce skill in the midfield and bang it in from 40 yards out (Cough… FIFA 10…Cough). The thing that does bother me, are the glitches in set pieces. There is an entire Facebook page dedicated to the hilarity of FIFA 17’s set pieces. I trust this will be fixed soon though and until then, I will exploit the ease of scoring from Free Kicks.
Over, I have fallen I love with the FIFA franchise again and truly can say, PES needs to step up their game if they want to keep up. Some huge congratulations to EA for making this one of the greatest sports titles of the century, it truly is a new step for these titles and will be looking forward to the next trick up their sleeve. I don’t want to tell EA how to do their job, but how awesome would DLC’s be with different character story lines that all correspond, different “vantage points” of the mode if you will!
Reviewed on: 04 October
Available on: PS, XBOX, PC
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Publisher/Developer: EA SPORTS/FROSTBITE
Estimated RRP: PC R900 – Consoles R1049
Release Date: September 27, 2016
- Beautiful Graphics
- Updates Controls
- Shortened “The Journey”
- The in-game Music