FIFA 22 Review
FIFA 22 feels a lot more realistic than its predecessors; the game feels smoother to play, but still had some of the hiccups from previous games that the developers still have not ironed out.
So much Improved
Defending is much easier, not only does the AI hold their positioning, but the jockey system feels easier to use, and more effective than in previous games. In FIFA 21, you would often complete a standing or slide tackle and still not be able to retrieve the ball from the attacker, that has been addressed and defending feels a lot better. I’ve also found that defenders in 2 on 1 situations are better at pushing the striker to the outside and stopping the easy pass across forcing the shot from a tougher angle.
Gameplay feels revamped, with new animations the game feels much more realistic, passing is much more accurate, and moving up the pitch has never felt better. Crossing into the box also feels better and it seems more accurate. To many times in FIFA 21 a cross would be whipped in and float over and out over the touch line. In over 20 hours of gameplay, I have yet to witness that. When it comes to finishing, I find myself using more varied finishes than I had in 21. My most common shot in 21 was a finesse shot, either in the box, or outside it always seemed to do the trick. In 22, however, one shot won’t work every time as goalies are significantly better, saving finesse shots in the box with ease. This means I’ve had to adapt and use more variety to get past the keeper.
In Create a Club, I started a team in the MLS and was able to outfit my stadium even to the detail of choosing your pitch pattern, choose a crest from a rather limited selection, select my rival club and lastly replace a team in the league. Yes, rather than joining the league you must decide which team to replace (sorry Cincinnati). Getting to choose between a young, mixed, and veteran team decides the stats as well as the players that are generated to join your team. Lastly you set a transfer budget to start your first season as manage/gm this is a long-awaited change to your typical career mode which has been the pretty much the same with slight changes over the past few years.
Be a Pro
Ea has re-vamped be a pro mode, the most significant change for me is the fact that you can now come on as a substitute rather than just missing out on games when you are not in the starting XI. This gives you a more realistic game mode. First, you must win the favour of the manager through your substitute appearances before you make it into the starting XI. Another big change in Be a Pro is how you level up your character with attribute points, rather than just increasing XP sliders with training sessions. The managers expectations also changed, rather than goals and assists, expectations now include successful dribbles, as well as completed passes making the experience more realistic. (** unrealistic to ask for goals and assists every game**)
Goaltending is a positive fix and an unfortunate disaster. Players complained about the skill of keepers in previous games, and EA listened. Keepers in this game are almost too good, too many occasions have I had an easy pass across the 6 yard box only to have the goalie make a neurer-escdiving save. Though, I have also witnessed a goalie attempt to make a diving save for a shot that was shot right at him, resulting in the shot going in.
Volta still doesn’t feel quite right. I hopped into a game of arcade Volta, only to be matched with 2 computers and 1 actual person. The games premise seems to be enjoyable, but the wonky feel of the players makes it a terrible experience. Players falling over imaginary lines, getting in each other’s way, and falling over made me dislike the experience. In the football tennis (my most anticipated mode) my player would glitch in and out of the net, and randomly run off the court and away from the action. Another negative aspect is that you can only play these modes online, it would be a fun couch co-op experience away from traditional football.
I’ve also had times in games where a ball will ricochet into open space, and I am unable to gain control of my player who is closest.
All In all, FIFA 22 feels different than FIFA 21, most notably the passing, pace, and keepers. They have made a lot of changes to the game adding more to game modes that I have really enjoyed (Create a club, Be a Pro) Unfortunately, they missed the mark with Volta Arcade Games. As well, high scoring games are a thing of the past, as this game caters to those who want a more simulated football game rather than a casual player who wants to use the skill stick and score golazos against his friends.