Just over a week ago, I was part of a group of journalists who had the opportunity to witness a rather magnificent preview of FIFA 22.
How big was this digital stream? In more than a decade of covering sports video games, I can not remember seeing a more impressive rollout of features in a game.
Maybe the closest thing was back in 2013 when I saw NBA 2K14 for the first time, but I run away. Since watching the preview, I̵
NOTE: Some info has been removed from the original published piece.
The new animation system mainly consists of Advanced 11v11 Motion Capture and Machine Learning.
It’s quite exciting. It is important to note that while it has been unveiled, it appears that EA is scratching the surface of the new HyperMotion features.
For those who are not aware, HyperMotion tech has allowed EA to capture 22 players on the field at the same time, designed to deliver smoother and more organic animations in all aspects of the game. The Full Team Authentic Motion initiative originates from 11v11 mo-cap, and you can see the difference.
We were treated to a detailed review of the new technology and its implementation with FIFA from EA’s Sam Rivera. I do not want to bore you with all the details, some of which flew over my head, but I can tell you that the overall gameplay is smoother.
Player behavior is another great addition. You can see this most clearly by measure. Stars have noticeable manners that help drive the immersion.
This extra team also applies to goalkeepers. In fact, the web memories have been completely updated. Players should see more realistic saves and the goalkeepers have also been given identities.
Rivera also talked about new ball physics. When it works with the extra animations, the action looks as good as it has ever done in comic book history.
When it comes to player movement, the biggest contribution is something called explosive sprint. The goal of the feature is to make more talented players feel different and more effective attacks after the first touch.
In my practical experience with cover athlete Kylian Mbappe, you can see him get a step on defenders with the improved controls.
Thanks to feedback from society, there will be new attack tactics for high-level players. This feels like a component that only the strongest players in the FIFA community will use, but it is still a solid addition to a game that tries to offer something for all kinds of fans.
In the spirit of rewarding top players with more tools in the game, FIFA 22 will also add more skill moves. There are four new ones. Scoop Turn Fake, Four Touch Skill, Skilled Bridge and First Time Spin.
What I have found, and which was covered in the preview, players can use 90% of the skill movements to control the ball at first touch, which can potentially be overwhelming. We have to see how it shakes out a month or two after release.
Finally, Rivera went over the extended match analysis. There are much more advanced statistics offered after matches and in career mode. More on that later.
I have played a few games with PSG in the demo, and one of the first things you will notice is the evenness of the controls. There are not many visual improvements compared to last year’s version, but there is no doubt that the gameplay is better.
I need a little more time with the game as the demo ends on Tuesday, and I did not get the chance to start testing it until Monday. From what I have seen, the combination of games and options has excited me about the release.
As it is, there is still a lot to like here.