It’s mid-July and the summer silly season (aka transfer window) is in full swing. As a footy fan, this is the time usually reserved for reading up on the latest rumors and over-analyzing press releases by EA and Konami for their upcoming fall soccer titles. There’s only one problem, EA has been unusually quiet on the FIFA 18 front. While Konami has been very transparent with showing off their new game and features, EA has gone into stealth mode, playing the background and working behind the scenes.
Let’s take a brief second to go over what we know to date:
Release Date – We know that FIFA 18 will release on September 29 on the usual consoles as well as the Nintendo Switch. Nothing new here, FIFA and PES usually release a month or so after the European seasons start.
Three New Stadiums Will Appear – “LA Galaxy’s Stubhub Center, Brighton & Hove Albion’s Amex Stadium, and Huddersfield Town’s John Smith’s Stadium all join the lineup of real-life grounds for this year’s game.” Two new stadiums for promoted Championship sides and one of MLS’ most popular clubs get their authentic stadiums in this year’s game.
Gameplay Trailer – On June 10, EA released a Gameplay Trailer showcasing signature animations from the game’s cover athlete, Cristiano Ronaldo. It’s hard to take too much from this, even after slowing it down to .25 speed on YouTube. Raheem Sterling, Antoine Griezman and the aforementioned Ronaldo all seem to have their individual characteristics (dribbling, running animations, etc…) captured and implemented but actual gameplay was not shown.
Gameplay Features – This year’s marketing push centers on Real Player Motion Technology, Player Personality, Dribbling Overhaul, and in-general, Gameplay Inspired by Cristiano Ronaldo. It wouldn’t be a sports game release without the catchphrases and this year’s iteration brings us an emphasis on more individuality and player/team personality. Traditionally weak in the area of personality and individuality, FIFA 18 might finally be the game that puts all of those licenses to use.
FIFA 18 Trial – Available to EA Access members and subscribers, FIFA 18 will once again be available early for a 10 hour trial starting September 21. No details have been announced regarding a demo, but it’s safe to assume that there will be one available.
Yup, that’s pretty much it. Sure there have been a few leaked videos and some hands-on impressions from E3 by our very own Millennium, but so far FIFA 18 has taken a backseat to PES 2018 when it comes to early information about this year’s title. That’s not to say EA won’t start ramping up its press releases, but for a game with as much global popularity as FIFA, it’s a little surprising how the game is shaping up. Maybe it’s arrogance on EA’s part knowing that updated rosters will still sell like crazy or perhaps they’re waiting for the perfect moment to wow us with some huge new feature (Online Manager Mode – fingers crossed!). One thing’s for certain, this year is certainly a deviation from the norm when it comes to early news.
What’s your take on the lack of news regarding FIFA 18? Cause for concern or nothing to worry about?