Video game review FIFA 22

Fans of the franchise will be happy look forward to this time of year with a new fifa, here is our run down.
The latest instalment to the beloved FIFA series. With cover star Kylian Mbappé, an overhaul of gameplay that will challenge players more than before but, further reliance on making money from Ultimate Team loot boxes, FIFA 22 is, as expected, a mixed bag.

The FIFA franchise moves fully into the realm of next-gen console gaming with FIFA 22. Yes, last year’s edition ended up getting a release on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S, but the game came out before the consoles and the only real difference was a slight upgrade in graphics and gameplay.

FIFA 22 feels like it was made for next-gen consoles and it certainly shows. While there are still some small AI hiccups and frustrating microtransactions leftover from previous years, FIFA 22 is a smoother and better-looking experience than ever before, setting a new visual standard for sports games.

A step up in the graphics department is expected for every franchise launching a new game on next-gen consoles. FIFA 22 went a little further than EA counterpart Madden 22, though, focusing on the smaller details like hair, facial expressions, hands, and feet. When you combine the fine-tuning of those little things with the overall upgrade that next-gen engines provide, you’ve got a game that looks absolutely stunning, especially in 4K.

EA have thankfully cranked up the difficulty when it comes to finding success and hitting the back of the net, primarily overhauling their passing system so that players have to put in the work, in what can be an anxiety-inducing 90 game minutes of nail-biting near-misses and tactical offence.

Sure, you can turn the difficulty right down and send your score against your computer opponents into double digits, but after five or so minutes of laughing at how simple this game can be, the fun has drained completely from the experience.

What we absolutely have to talk about however, is the most popular mode in the FIFA series – FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT).

Featuring loot boxes with gameplay-affecting items persist in Ultimate Team, leading some to consider it a pay-to-win experience. That’s not just the view of many players of the game – many who play FIFA professionally reckon Ultimate Team is pay-to-win, too.

Everybody starts on an equal playing field when they join Rivals this year, which means those of us who are adequate when playing, but not hardcore, will inevitably come up against players who will tear us apart with what looks like minimal effort. Hopefully, as the season progresses, ranked play will allow for fairer battles, so that each and every match can be a close one, rather than quickly swaying left or right in the first few minutes.

The actual games and options within FIFA 22 are largely the same as last year, though more emphasis on Volta has made that an even more exciting experience. The career modes can be a little frustrating at times, but they’re not bogged down by sloppy stories or poorly animated cut-scenes like other sports games. These modes are all about playing soccer, nothing else. That said, the intro the game itself does offer a little in the way of story and it’s done really well. It’s enough to show off how good the game looks and provide something interesting outside of a menu for players to see when they fire it up for the first time.

If you’re a big Ultimate Team player, you’re probably still going to get bothered by microtransactions. FIFA, like every other sports game on the market, has yet to do something about the pay-to-win mechanics that bring the Ultimate modes down. It’s disappointing, to say the least. But it’s only one game mode, and it certainly didn’t take a step backward this year.

If you’re playing on current-gen systems, FIFA 22 may be a bit of a harder sell. The game itself is largely the same as last year, It’s the next-gen graphics and gameplay that really make the game stand out. On next-gen, it’s a must for longtime FIFA players. For everyone else, it’s more of a personal choice. You certainly won’t be missing out on much if you wait a little while.

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Lee Clarke
Lee Clarke
Business And Features Writer


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