[Review] FIFA Street
EA’s FIFA series has long been acclaimed as the greatest sports game in the world. It has claimed countless hours from our lives and has become the must have game for many sports fans. However, EA has decided to deliver a more arcade like and less serious soccer experience with the FIFA Street series. Is there enough room in the marketplace for two soccer games? Of course there are! This year’s edition of FIFA Street is a load of fun but is also challenging enough to keep diehard FIFA players engaged.
That’s what separates FIFA Street from its predecessors. It’s not too over the top as it was before. Tricks are cool but don’t seem totally unrealistic; which will draw those who enjoy the realistic elements of the FIFA series. Gone are the cartoon like characters and it maintains a realistic look while incorporating a street element.
For those that aren’t avid FIFA players because either you’re not a soccer fan or the controls were too complicated, FIFA Street is made for you as well. However, FIFA Street isn’t a pick-up-and-play type of game. There is a pretty steep learning curve as you try to master all of the tricks. It can be terribly frustrating at times because there isn’t a trick manual that you can access in-game. But once you get a hold of the controls and the Street Fighter-like movements to execute a bevy of moves ranging from the Ginga Toe Chop to the Touzani Around the World, it’s incredibly satisfying.
This is street futbol and FIFA does what it can to replicate the experience. No, it’s not as gorgeous as FIFA when it comes to environments, but it certainly is far from ugly. You’ll find yourself playing in a number of places including basketball gyms and rooftops. Each environment comes with its own characteristics. Some locations have larger goals and wider fields while others are smaller fields with walls surrounding. Every game will force you to play differently depending on the setup and environment. A 3-on-3 game in a smaller area will have you focusing on individual tricks while a larger field with 5 or 6 players on each side incorporates passing and more strategy. Aside from the regular 5-5 games, there are other challenges like Last Man Standing and Panna — which is like a style contest.
There are several modes you can play. The exhibition and career modes allow you to snatch up a top tier team like Manchester United and pull off all the nifty tricks your heart desires. It’s fun and welcoming experience. The World Tour concept invites you to build your own team of no-names and begin your trek from local games to the world finals held in Brazil. It’s a dicey experience, to say the least. For starters, you have no tricks and have to earn them along the way. If you started playing FIFA Street’s exhibition mode, you’ll quickly find yourself frustrated with a lousy skill set. You have no tricks and have to work your way to get them. There’s a lot of grinding involved when having to level up your players and climb the rankings in order to qualify for other events. Once you get past that part, it is relatively fun and challenging. The online experience is an easy and seamless experience and you can actually challenge others in your World Tour. That’s pretty cool too.
While FIFA still rules, FIFA Street is a welcome addition to the series. Especially for those who are not die hard FIFA fans or players. The controls are complicated and it may not have a tremendous amount of depth, but FIFA Street is an enjoyable experience.