FIFA franchise might be one of the best-selling series for EA Sports but ask any football fan and he would prefer Konami’s Pro Evolution Soccer (PES) over EA Sports’ FIFA, mainly due to better gameplay. However, things have started to change since the last year. FIFA 10 although not without its share of flaws was hailed as a decent competitor to PES but it’s a different story this year. EA Sports has worked on the flaws and developed FIFA 11 what can be termed as a big step ahead from its predecessors.
The FIFA 11 brings many changes and most of them you’d realize, now emphasizes on a realistic gameplay. The gameplay mechanics have been reworked and unlike the previous versions, the game now wants users to correctly aim and power their passes and shots to get the desired result.
With the latest FIFA 11 release, EA has integrated the same EA Sports football engine optimized for the PC. The physics engine is similar to that found in the console version that provides precise control over the ball, movement etc.
The game also has a 360-degree dribbling system allowing skilled dribblers to tackle defenders more effectively.
FIFA 11 has a number of game modes to play from. In an offline scenario, users can select from Manager Mode, Be A Pro mode and Tournament. Although the Manager and Be A Pro mode has been clubbed in the consoler version as Career, the PC version still allows to play separately.
Manager mode will allow users to manage a team, set strategies, transfer players etc. as well as allow to play as a team with user’s defined team and strategy. On the other hand, Be A Pro will allow a user to control a single player to build his reputation and maintain his form throughout the season. Users can select a player from the current roster, create a new one with Virtual Pro.
Playing online multiplayer is a treat. Multiplayer offers number of options and most interestingly is the inclusion of support for LAN gaming. Players can now create LAN parties without needing them to communicate with EA servers. To compete worldwide, a user needs to have an EA account and EA keeps a record of all the games and lists you on the worldwide leaderboard.
Despite having so many features, EA has left out some of the FIFA 11 features found in the console from the PC variant. Those few features explained in detail are Pro Passing, Personality+ and Be A Goalkeeper:
Pro Passing is the feature found in console version that if a user needs to do long pass, he’ll have to judge the power for the ball to accurately reach the other player.
Adding another dimension to the reality is the Personality+. Personality+ is the player’s characteristics in the real world matching with the performance in FIFA’s virtual world. For instance, Barcelona’s Messi real world abilities like his sprints, dribbles or Iniesta’s closer control on dribbles are reflected in the game.
EA has also worked on making goalkeepers smarter as well. Goalkeepers are also equipped with Personality+ that makes each goalkeeper different and as an added advantage, for the first time, FIFA 11 allows users to play as goalkeepers. Playing as a goalkeeper also works in multiplayer mode, allowing users to play a true 11vs11.
EA Sports takes great pride on the game’s presentation and rightly so. The graphics and players’ resemblance is impeccable, thanks to its official licenses, and few other customization options like ability to record own crowd chants, player celebrations etc.
There is no doubt that EA Sports has worked hard on this release but you can also not undermine the fact that some of this year’s important features found in the console version are absent from the PC. That said, this PC version is the best FIFA game yet and a purchase won’t be disappointing.
Pros: Realistic gameplay, Graphics
Cons: Few console features left out