Over the past few years, there has been a steady rise of arcade-style sports games, which is largely due to EA’s highly successful "Street" series. With NBA Street and NFL Street have both been very impressive, EA hopes to apply the same formula to the beautiful game of soccer (or football, for purists). As soccer matches are mostly low-scoring affairs, it’ll be interesting to see how EA attempts to transform it in line with the high level of excitement and speed found in the Street series. So does it keep on the strong "Street" legacy? Keep reading to find out!
For those of you who haven’t played a game in the "Street" series, here is you’ve been missing. The street series is a very fast paced urban style game that rewards you not only for scoring but also for style. Style has been a very important key element in the first two Street games, as they have been useful to pull off combos or receive a Gamebreaker. What made both NFL and NBA Street so exciting was that the action on screen flowed very well, giving us a very enjoyable, fast-paced arcade experience that was very easy to pick up and play. So now does FIFA Street keep that same sort of style and substance?
When you start FIFA Street you are immediately going to be prompted to create a player, which gives you quite a bit of different options to choose from. The game gives you plenty of different options to choose from, and really allows for you to make whatever sort of character you want. From there you will have to distribute skill points into five categories speed, shot power, shot accuracy, tricks, and tackling. Once you have distributed the skill points you are ready to go into the game.
From this point you are launched into the game, which is four-on-four soccer. Of course this wouldn’t be a "Street" title if the games didn’t take place in urban style settings, so forget those huge stadiums and be prepared to play on back-alley courts. What makes FIFA Street different from the normal FIFA games is that the game offers up a lot more contact, and you will see a lot more bodies flying in this game. Also in FIFA Street sweet jukes are executed as easily as using the trick stick (right thumbstick), and this is a necessity to do well in the game. And still present in the Street series are the Gamebreakers, which requires you to fill up the meter to get a Gamebreaker. The one problem with this is the AI, which sort of struggles with the fact that they still should be able to block a gamebreaker. Even when you shoot off a bad shot the goalie on the opposing team usually just watch any shot go by.
The career mode in FIFA Street is quite simplistic, yet gets the jobs done. You of course take your team to face up against others from all over. Each place you go has three different tasks for you to take part in, which include Kick About, Upgrade Squad, and Rule the Street. Kick About is just a fancy name for a standard single game. Then we have Upgrade Your Squad, which is if you take out the other team you get the character from the team. And then we have the Rule the Street mode, where you basically play a tournament and if you win you will be able to go to different locations.
FIFA Street plays in the most part like the rest of the Street series, with a few minor exceptions. First off the gameplay still needs a lot of refining as it doesn’t flow as well as the other games do. I say this because the action on screen just seems a bit sluggish at times, and not as much of a fast-paced experience as I have found in the other two Street games. I also found that the games AI can be pretty non-existent at times, and just seem to be a little too predictable. Also it just feels like they should have had more to do in the game as the newer version of NFL and NBA Street have had. And the lack of Xbox Live support is another downer for the game. With all that being said FIFA Street still does offer up a pretty average playing soccer arcade game.
Like I mentioned earlier the style of the Street series has always been an urban style and this has for the most part translated into pretty impressive visuals. So does FIFA Street fill the bill?
FIFA Street does exactly what it set out to do and that is mimic the same sort of urban style graphics as the other Street games, and for that they succeeded. But beyond that the game just doesn’t do anything else all that spectacular. In FIFA Street you are given a pretty average visual experience with very nice looking character models that do represent their real life counterparts very well. The one thing that I do think the game should have worked on visually is the flow of the game, which can be kind of sluggish at times. The environments in the game are pretty average some of the locations being better designed then others.
FIFA Street is an average looking arcade game nothing more and nothing less. You can definitely see plenty of room for improvement if EA decided to make a FIFA Street 2.
Do you enjoy the game of soccer? Or do you enjoy soccer video games? If the answer to either of those questions is yes then you are going to have fun with FIFA Street. The game is a typical arcade style game that allows you to pick up and play right away and then allows for you to hone your skills to perfection as you play the game more and more. The career mode is pretty enjoyable and although the AI isn’t perfect it still does offer up some great arcade soccer experiences. The game could have been a lot more fun then it is though had the AI been better and had the game provided more options in both online and offline realms.
FIFA Street is just plainly an average arcade style soccer game. It has some great ideas and some great potential but this first iteration just leaves a lot to be desired. If you’re a fan of the FIFA series or love soccer and are looking for a game, this game might just do the trick. I would definitely recommend FIFA Street as a solid rental choice.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.