With soccer games becoming more and more popular here in the states, we are starting to see more and more soccer games released on the current generation consoles. With Konami’s Winning Eleven series starting to gain popularity it is now time for EA to step in and bring out a solid soccer game. Is FIFA Soccer 2005 for the Xbox the one to do it, or are we going to have to wait until next year? Read our review to find out!
The FIFA soccer series has been around for quite sometime, and has had little to no competition up until a few years ago her in the United States. Since FIFA came onto the market quite a few years ago it has remained the best soccer game out on the market to date. But this year Konami put out a very impressive version of Winning Eleven that has the title up for grabs. Does FIFA do enough right this year to earn the best soccer game of the year award? Let’s just say that deciding this year’s winner seems like a toss up.
So many of you are sitting there still playing FIFA Soccer 2004 and are wondering what are the new features in the game, and is it enough to upgrade to the new version. FIFA Soccer 2005 provides a few major upgrades that really have a heavy impact on the gameplay of FIFA Soccer 2005. This year EA added a new ability called "First Touch Control". Many may be thinking, that’s it just a lousy new ability? Just wait before you say that because this new ability has a major impact on the game. The "First Touch Control" allow you to just that control your first touch, something that is very critical in soccer. A good first touch and a bad first touch now can really be the difference of a goal on your opponent or a goal scored on you. A bad first move usually will result in a loss of possession. This new ability is really one of the key factors to be successful in the game as it allows you to really have an advantage over you opponent right from the get go.
That’s not the only new addition to the game but probably the most popular addition for Xbox users, is the addition of Xbox Live support. As EA and Microsoft have finally come to agreement on allowing EA Sports games to play on Live. This Live support is identical to the Live support that is found on other EA Sports games, and from what I have played it has been absolutely amazing. Some of the talents that these players possess are just amazing. So far I haven’t experience much lag at all and the gameplay has been very smooth.
But not everyone is going to be playing online and for that EA has provided us with a very extensive career mode. You can see that FIFA 2005 is becoming closer and closer to the other EA Sports games in that there franchises pay even closer attention to the mood of your teammates and your coaching staff. Your performance as a coach with also is monitored, as an approval rating will be evaluated after every match. You will earn points that you can spend on your supporting cast (coaching crew) to better prepare your team. If your team does not perform up to par for a long period of time then you will be finding yourself at the unemployment agency in search of a new profession.
When it is all said and done the gameplay of FIFA Soccer 2005 hasn’t had any major upgrades from last year but does an amazing job of tweaking the gameplay in a manner to put even more strategy into the game. You will find that the game is becoming more and more a soccer simulation as passing in the game is becoming more and more crucial, as breakaways or counterattacks are becoming harder and harder to perform.
Overall I was impressed with the upgrades that EA Sports brought to the table in this version of FIFA Soccer. The "First Touch Control" is something that does take some time to get the hang of but after a little practice this new control will become your new best friend. Combine that with very solid Xbox Live support and we now have a game that will make any Xbox soccer fan happy for quite a long time.
EA Sports has been getting better and better at creating great sports graphics for there games. Although many of their games aren’t the most beautiful looking games in the world, they still manage to create that solid feel around them. So does FIFA Soccer 2005 continue the EA Sports tradition?
Not only have the graphics of FIFA Soccer 2005 been improved from last year’s version but also FIFA Soccer 2005 may be the best looking game EA Sports has given us this year. What’s funny about that last comment is the game that I would least likely expect to have great graphics (FIFA Soccer 2005) does. What are so impressive about this game are the amazingly accurate character models. The developers of FIFA Soccer 2005 hit the ball dead on with these, as the characters just look so real. One thing you tend to worry about with soccer games is the animations but this is something that you can see EA Sports has been working on heavily in the off season and for that they have done an amazing job.
Overall the graphics of FIFA Soccer 2005 are quite impressive with great animation and solid character models. I honestly believe this is the best looking game EA Sports has put out this year.
What’s nice about FIFA is that it does a very nice mix of simulation and arcade gameplay that works wonderfully with the game. With the addition of the new "First Touch Control" and the Xbox Live support the game has just an amazing amount to offer. Combine that with the solid career mode that will give you plenty of replay value, and you have a game that you can fun with all the way up until next year’s edition.
FIFA Soccer 2005 is the best FIFA game to come out for quite sometime. The additions to this year’s games on paper don’t sound all that impressive but when put into play, works great. If you are a soccer fan looking for a game for your Xbox, you should definitely look into picking up FIFA Soccer 2005.
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