EA Sports FC 24 Review
Like Yorke and Cole, Bergkamp and Henry, some partnerships are synonymous with the sport. EA and FIFA are high on that list. After nearly 30 years together, EA made the bold decision to rid itself of the governing body’s moniker to spearhead a new venture. Will FC 24 mark a new era of football games or will it continue its lineage under a new banner?
The moment you step foot on the pitch, it is clear to see that this is an evolution of its previous titles rather than a complete overhaul. While I hoped that the re-brand would have led to more changes, the new aspects in this iteration do improve the overall experience.
EA Sports FC 24 strives to be the most realistic football game to date and it achieves that goal. Although very similar to FIFA 23, nuances within the gameplay improve the on-pitch action which opens up a range of tactical opportunities. At the heart of this are the Playstyles which come in two forms. A standard and plus variation, these highlight signature abilities that help to make players distinct. At a glance, you can easily see a player’s skill set and then adapt your tactics to make use of these. Although the basic tier helps strategize, athletes with Playstyle+ truly make the difference. Only given to the elite, these allow stars to stand out for much more than just pace. With certain players, you can now whip in that perfect cross or pick out a stellar 60-yard pass. It’s a great addition as it shines a spotlight on a range of skills and will encourage you to experiment on the pitch.
HyperMotionV is at the forefront of FC 24’s advertising campaign. It claims to use real-life data to give an unprecedented number of options. This is immediately evident as players can now take the ball in their stride and adapt to the presence of defenders. Not only does this look visually impressive, but it also opens up more possibilities to attack or defend. The improvements in physical aspects also enhance the gameplay. You can now effectively battle for the ball and use your footwork to jostle and make space. These small additions add a tactile element that helps give players a presence on the pitch.
Personality on the Pitch
With 22 people in a match, ensuring that all players replicate their real-life counterparts must be difficult. Most games focus on a small cohort: the superstars of the sport. While Ronaldo, Messi, and plenty of others are perfectly captured, it’s the focus on the rest that is impressive. Due to the combination of AcceleRATE 2.0 and AI Mimic, FC 24 manages to make each player feel unique. The array of running styles and variety in body movements add to the authenticity and make the game edge closer to the real-life experience.
FC 24 captures the TV aesthetic of the sport with its dynamic match intros. Before the game, you will get a small montage which sets the atmosphere for the match. This alters and develops the narrative of the game which is visible even at the final whistle. Menus take you behind the scenes and even pundits feature to enhance the presentation. The attention to detail is remarkable with kits reacting to the body and hair moving much more realistically than previously. Combining this with the crisp lighting helps to create an aesthetic that is second to none.
Same Old Song
Ultimate Team is the most popular mode. While monetization is still present, EA includes a ton of content to make this an addictive and enjoyable mode. Staples such as SBCs and Moments return and new additions aim to make improvements. To truly capture the notion of a dream team, women are now in the mode. This opens up new possibilities as you can link up stars from across the spectrum of the sport to create the Ultimate Team. The ability to evolve players is a game-changer. Through the completion of objectives, you can improve the stats of your favorite players which will lead to more squad diversity.
Before the card collecting boom, the career mode ran supreme. While the mode includes several systems and new additions, many don’t add to the overall experience. For example, you can now watch the game from the touchline to see what it’s like in the technical area. Although it may sound like a novel idea on paper, in reality, it doesn’t work. You can’t see anything and it lacks the match-day atmosphere. New cinematics celebrate achievements and the player-focused mode includes more choice. Even though there are minor improvements, the career modes feel a little convoluted and could do with being stripped back and redesigned.
A New Lick of Paint
Speaking of which, the menus have finally had an overhaul to give the game a much-needed facelift. In-game moments have also been stylized, with stats and analysis being projected on the pitch. A new gameplay camera combines the broadcast style and standard wide view to create a viable new option. Small zooms on key moments help to build tense sequences but also, the wide view allows you to consider teammate locations for quick counters.
EA Sports FC 24 is a safe rebrand of the FIFA series. While it doesn’t stray too far from its predecessor, new additions improve the overall gameplay. Playstyles highlight skills and HyperMotionV helps to make each athlete feel distinct. All of these aspects merge to create one of the most authentic football games to date. Even though monetization plagues Ultimate Team and Career Mode is largely the same, FC 24 refines moments on the pitch to make each touch a thrill.
***A PlayStation 5 key was provided by the publisher***
- The Impact of Playstyles
- New Animations
- A Ton of Content
- Doesn’t Take Many Risks
- Monetization in Ultimate Team
- Career Mode Still Needs Refining