FIFA 13: Everything you need to know

FIFA is back and even more hardcore than before. This time round it’s the attacking and ball control that has had a rethink. The result is an even more true-to-life football experience, complete with all the team and player-related trimmings you would expect from a FIFA game.

There is a whole lot that has been added to FIFA’s gameplay on top of the tactical defending that toughened the game up last year. So we thought it best we break down all the changes for you.

First touch control

This is easily the most significant change added to the core FIFA experience. There is now an entire system developed just for receiving passes. If you get sent a dodgy ball then chances are you will lose control of it, letting players from the opposing team take advantage of your mistakes.

Controlled by things such as defensive pressure and ball trajectory, the way you receive the ball will change each time a pass is sent in a player’s direction. Skill obviously still plays a big part in things but it is much more than dynamic than ever before.

On the flipside the actual touch of the ball is also different when you make passes. This means it is possible for players to do things such as over hit a ball or just send it loose in the wrong direction. The end result is a gameplay that doesn’t feel entirely random but has enough uncertainty to keep it exciting.

Attacking Intelligence

FIFA 13 has a newly designed system for player AI when it comes to attacking. Think of it like last year’s re-invented defence except this time the other way round. AI players have a much better means of positioning themselves to help build up plays and score goals.

All that difficult defending now has an incredibly smart AI to deal with when it comes to attacking. So your team will be putting pressure on defence in different ways. This new AI runs deep throughout all of FIFA 13’s gameplay and allows you to think ahead of your plays and predict movements of the rest of your team.

Adding to the authenticity is a better thought-out referee AI, resulting in much fairer handing out of cards and fouls. Goalkeeper AI is also a lot better at helping stop any nasty point concessions caused by AI mess ups.

New dribbling

Coupled with better attacking capabilities is a highly comprehensive set of moves when on the ball. The new dribbling is like the right stick oriented moves of FIFA 12 except far more comprehensive. First up, skilled players are much speedier when running with the ball. This helps speed up gameplay in general and when coupled with the first touch control tech adds a slightly erratic element to the match.

If you are on the attack there is a much broader set of skills available to help you retain the ball. This means complete player control, allowing you to do stuff like shield the ball or dodge tackles. It is a big step up for the way FIFA plays when more intricate ball control is required.

Free kicks redesigned

Typically the excitement of the free kick in football games is damped by a bit of a clunky execution. Another big rethink for FIFA 13 then is the way you take free kicks. Now you are given a whole set of passing abilities and the opportunity to position up to three players around the kick.

On the flipside of things, those blocking a free kick can add players to the wall as well as take them away, it can also be moved backward and forward as well. If you want you can even send a player running across to try and intercept kicks.

Player impact 2.0

In FIFA 12 the way players would interact with each other on screen was pretty impressive. It was well animated and added a lot to the authenticity of the game. Problem is that it didn’t do that much to actually effect gameplay.

This has been changed with a new player impact engine for FIFA 13. Depending on factors like player size you can force other players to mess up receiving or making a pass, possibly losing possession because of it. The push and pull mechanic has also been changed slightly allowing you to gain positions over other players.

Authentic as ever

It wouldn’t be FIFA without more teams and leagues than you could ever possibly play as. Naturally the Premiership has been dealt with accurately as have another 500 officially licensed clubs and more than 15,000 players.

We can’t go into details of them yet but there are also new elements added to EA Sport Football Club side of things. Career mode has also had a rethink as well as online which has had its head to head mode beefed up substantially.

FIFA 13 will be making its way onto Xbox 360, PS3 and PC in August 2012.

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