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FIFA 10 review

Andy Vandervell

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Summary

Our Score:

9

Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, PS2, PSP, DS, PC and iPhone - Xbox 360 version reviewed

Easily the most enduring rivalry in video games is that between EA's FIFA series and the much-loved underdog, Pro Evolution Soccer (PES) from Konami. FIFA, the Chelsea or Man City of our story, has always boasted all the things that ought to deliver the authentic experience: the real names, the stadia, the competitions and so forth. Yet, throughout the PS1 and PS2 years, the likes of Ryan Greggs, Ruud Von Mesteroum and Merseyside Red ran rings round FIFA's licensed gimmick-fest.

When the current generation of consoles arrived, however, the worm began to turn. After the truly, utterly, terrible FIFA 06: Road to FIFA World World Cup, EA got its act together. FIFA 08 was probably the beginning of things to come. Though it didn't quite best PES 2008, it showed that EA was going in the right direction and had finally produced a brand of football game purists could enjoy. FIFA 09 built on this success quite dramatically, adding speed and fluency and ultimately usurping the good football crown so beloved of PES. FIFA has always been slicker, more polished and (recently at least) less buggy, so the transformation was complete. The king is dead, long live the new king.

Now we have FIFA 10, which aims to ram home its advantage over PES. I'll save you any further preamble and tell you now: it does, quite emphatically in fact. While there are numerous reasons why this particular FIFA is better than the last, its strength lies in the physics engine that was introduced in FIFA 08. Back when PES was dominant it was the excellent physics that made it great, everything else flowed from that. So it is with FIFA 10.

Where, comparatively, PES has become increasingly pinball-like, FIFA has weight and substance. Players grapple with each other realistically, running aside each other, manoeuvring their weight to try and dispossess or maintain possession. And, while the stronger typically prevail eventually, smaller, lighter players aren't brushed away quite so unceremoniously. Indeed, Wayne Rooney, a powerful but not especially large player, often uses his lower centre of gravity to his advantage. Only the real heavyweights can brush aside opponents with unerring ease. Ball dynamics, meanwhile, are uncanny in their realism.

All of these qualities have been fine tuned and improved in FIFA 10, but it's the introduction of 360-degree dribbling - a first according to EA - that sets it apart from last year's release. It's a fairly self-explanatory addition and its effects are subtle, but then the best things often are. Despite having analogue controls for eons, movement in football games has still been diagonal in nature. In FIFA 10 the degrees are much finer, giving you the precise control people have craved for years. This is best illustrated when playing on the wings, where it's now a lot easier to run very close to the line rather than hopelessly sprint into touch.

Elsewhere on the pitch this newfound precision simply makes playing the game more enjoyable. You can sneak through gaps and find angles you have wouldn't previously, while skill moves and dribbling past opponents is given a new lease of life with the Skilled Dribbling trait. Only available with the most skilful players, pulling on both left and right triggers activates extremely fast, accurate dribbling to pass your opponents more easily and without resorting to sometimes unreliable skill moves.

pewpew

October 13, 2009, 11:54 am

on what platform have you tested it?


heard about fifa on pc being not nearly as good as on xbox360 or ps3, can you confirm something like this?

Andy Vandervell

October 13, 2009, 1:17 pm

It was Xbox 360 (now added to the review). Unfortunately I can't personally confirm anything about the PC version, but I have heard similar things.

pewpew

October 13, 2009, 1:30 pm

ok, thx.


would be nice if anyone could confirm and highlight some of the differences. tried FIFA10 on PC, decent but not really convincing...

rimz790

October 13, 2009, 1:42 pm

Iv played the PC version and i have to admit it doesn't play as fluidly as the console versions. For some odd reason looks like they have given more priority to the console versions.

graingerc

October 13, 2009, 2:13 pm

@Rimon





‘FIFA 10’ is on XB360, PS3, PS2, PSP, Wii and PC). As with last year’s FIFA, Xbox 360’s share is 2 percentage points more than PS3 as Microsoft’s format generates 48% of sales, PS3 46% with 6% on the remaining formats). The only version where it is not in the PAL charts is for the PC (xbox 1st, ps3 2nd, ps2 8th, wii 9th, psp 10th) the PC version is not in the top 40!





So in answer to your question hardly any are sold on the PC, compared to the consoles - so why should they spend a lot on developing the game for it

Ed

October 13, 2009, 2:17 pm

@graingerc: Well maybe if they spent a little more time making it playable, more people would buy it...





I know I basically gave up on FIFA 09 because it was next to unplayable on a PC. I now wouldn't consider buying this version on PC.

Jones

October 13, 2009, 2:41 pm

Im just waiting on the PES vs FIFA fanboy kick off...

jingyeow

October 13, 2009, 3:23 pm

The recent iterations of Fifa on the PC are never the same as the console versions. It's like NHL. They never update the PC version, just the player rosters and perhaps some menu interface tweaks, but it's the same game every year.





If Fifa on PC was anywhere good, people wouldn't mind, however those that don't have consoles know that PES is superior at least on PC. It runs smoothly and look graphically better than Fifa on the same hardware.

Richard

October 13, 2009, 4:31 pm

I wonder if you guys will be doing a review of Pro Evo 2010 in the comming weeks?

dave

October 13, 2009, 6:29 pm

I'm a PES fanboy I'll admit it.


However due to some colleague persuasion and a ridiculous under £25 price I've brought this for the PS3


Now don't get me wrong I played 09 and it was better than the old Fifa's including 09 which was a vast improvement but this new one is fantastic!

Andy Vandervell

October 13, 2009, 8:58 pm

Wouldn't hold your breath on PES. Konami doesn't send us review code and we're only selectively reviewing games now.

rimz790

October 14, 2009, 12:51 am

That's why i bought Fifa 10 on the PS3 after seeing that Fifa 09+10 on PC were abysmal compared to the console versions.





I was a Pro Evo guy up until Pro Evo 6, then after that i didn't like Pro Evo 08+09. I played Fifa 09 on my brothers PS3 and i liked it. I recently bought a PS3, played the Fifa and Pro Evo 10 demo and loved Fifa. Now im back to playing footie like i did with Pro Evo 6.

TL1210

October 14, 2009, 1:22 am

I have this on Xbox 360. It's definatly the best football game I have played! I havent got my "Game Face" in yet as there is a problem with the upload software on easports website..hopefully they will sort that out soon.





Taking free kicks is a lot better on this version, it's not as hard to score from them!





Also, the 360 dribbling and skill moves are excellent! The players seem to run into space a lot better as well :)





On the multiplayer, there is no head to head match against friends like what is available in the offline mode.. ie 2vs2.. It would be good if it had that..They do have Be-a-pro but you only get the choice of controlling 1 player, although 1 of you can control "Any" player on the pitch (apart from player your friend is using).





I played the demo of PES and was not impressed..the Graphics looks like it was made for a last generation console! It has nothing on FIFA..





FIFA10 1 - PES 0

Nips

October 14, 2009, 8:34 pm

FIFA10 - PC is still last generation, the game engine is a good few years old. EA did say that FIFA10 will be next gen on PC but the backtracked (Not a big enough user base with supported hardware).... Fingers crossed for the next version?!





Fortunately PES09/10 is next gen ..

hankb6d

October 14, 2009, 9:51 pm

I got ten minutes on the full PES2010 in town last weekend, why they released such an inferior demo baffled me. In short PES fans will like it, more of the same, as an old PES fanboy I am afraid to say it cannot hold a candle to fifa 10 on the highest sets. Things that really irk with PES are the crazy running animations the "thud" of a pass amongst other little things that annoy me so much I didn't enjoy the game. Strangely I prefer PES rudimentary commentary to FIFA with the two muppets off sky. At least we have a choice in this genre.

Ben Smedley

October 27, 2009, 4:50 pm

fifa 10 is way betta then pes 10. The graphics on pes iz betta but tht iz all bout it. I qued up for bout 50 minz to get fifa 10 and bout 30 secs for pes lol tht jus tellz u tht pes iz kinda crap

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