One of the most prominent introduction to FIFA 15 is the ’emotional intelligence’ for those who haven’t paid attention to EA teasing it before the release, ‘Emotional Intelligence’. This particular feature is designed so players have more authentic experience while playing the game. Every player on the field will react according how their team or their fellow team member reacts. For example; if you are playing with Manchester United and Rooney’s about to score but misses, the reaction of other team mates will be of dismay. Similarly, if you end up scoring a goal, there will be a positive reaction. Furthermore if you keep missing the goals, the reactions will keep changing. This doesn’t just work while scoring the goals, this feature has been implemented throughout the game and players will be able to see a lot of experience. Considering how it’s still a new feature, many fans might not like it, but it really adds flavour to how the game is played.
Another great improvement we see here are the goal keepers, they have been tweaked to the expert level. However, tweaks aren’t just under the hood, players can actually witness the goal keepers stealing the show and it is one grand thing to see. If you are wondering what are the changes, the goal keepers can now react to how the flight of the ball changes after it’s been kicked, they will move their bodies in the mid-air. Putting in simpler words, you won’t see a stiff goal keeping anymore, it is way more flexible than before and that is certainly a good thing. However, since this is a new addition as well, there are some glitches here and there but not too many to hinder your FIFA experience. The bottom line here is that if you are expecting terrific goal keepers who still have the potential to fail, then you get exactly the same thing.
The defense mechanism throughout the game has been improved as well, you can no longer score goals without breaking a sweat, be it a goal keeper or the defenders, if you are playing against a top tier team, you are going to have a hard time, but don’t worry, even with the hard time, the game offers you plenty to enjoy the matches despite the number of your goals.
One of the weakest points of FIFA 15 that I came across was the AI of other team members, as long as you are in control of one team member and you know how to play, you’re good to go, but if you are hoping that rest of the team will react accordingly, then you might be a disappointed. Often, while passing I witnessed that Robin Van Persie completely forgot that he was supposed to intercept and then move forward with ball. This is the case with almost every other player. However, it isn’t as bad as it sounds. The controls are tight, and sometimes they play really well which ends up giving the players a satisfactory amount of hours.
FIFA 15 has flaws, and you can’t question it, but rest of the game is made with such finesse that you can’t help but forget them. Speaking of finesse, the animations in this installment got an overhaul as well, everything is smooth and fluid. gone are the days of rigid player bodies and the ball itself. You can notice how fluid things become once the game kicks off and you take charge of the ball, you can notice the loose ball, the deflections, everything is unpredictable in FIFA 15, and this makes it one of the most challenging and gratifying FIFA games ever. While we are at it, the match atmosphere is an absolute joy to witness. The whole stadium reacts according to how the game plays out, the crowd starts chanting the club anthems, and everything works in a dynamic, it all adds up to giving you an authentic football experience.
On the other hand, the game is enjoyable as long as you play it, as compared to the previous installments, this FIFA has more cutaways than before. Therefore, you’d have to wait for seconds in every cutaway before you can skip them, I really wish there was an option for us to skip them but sadly they aren’t. However, the game engine really shines in the cutaways rather than the game, so if you are one of the people who love to have some eye candy, you are going to enjoy the cutaways this game has to offer.
Aside from the game itself, other aspects of game have improved as well. The commentary for instance is better, you will be hearing the commentators talking about how the players and the teams performed in the FIFA 2014 World Cup, or how your team is setup before the match starts, this doesn’t have any impact on the game play itself, just adds a really authentic feel to the game itself. Martin Tyler and Alan Smith are the commentators, while Tyler will be discussing about the stuff mentioned above, Smith will be busy talking about what’s going on the field, despite the variations in the commentary, it isn’t flawed, as a matter of fact, it’s better than ever. The game also comes with custom team sheets and this ends making you feel as if you are playing with your OWN team rather than a preset.
In short, FIFA 15 is quite simply one of the finely balanced FIFA games out there, it looks and plays even greater on the next gen hardware because of all the enhancements made. Despite having the flaws, it still manages to rise up and give you an excellent football experience you can have behind the screen. Is it better than the FIFA 14? Yes, in every possible way, it’s bigger and more refined than ever and it certainly wins the title of the best football game… at least for me. EA really did a wonderful job with it.
FIFA 15 deserves a healthy 8/10.
- Brilliant match atmosphere and amazing crowd.
- Animations are smoother than ever, with excellent, life like player models.
- Emotional intelligence is a really nice addition.
- Tougher and well balanced game play.
- Team AI is not for everyone.
- Unnecessary amount of cutaways hinder the experience.