FIFA fun from 1994-2020
One of the joys with video games is the nostalgia feeling that brings endless happy memories and reminders of fun experiences. With the latest version of FIFA now hitting people’s consoles and PC’s, we take a look back at how the game has progressed, and hopefully pull on some of those nostalgia strings that matter so much to us gamers.
The recently released FIFA 21 is the 28th version of the game to be released by EA Sports. How we know the game today, with its high-level graphics and heavy emphasis on the Ultimate Team mode, is so different compared to its previous versions.
The first ever FIFA game was released all the way back on 15th December 1993. Whilst you may look back now and not think much of the technology and gaming experience offered, it was ground breaking at the time.
FIFA 94 also known as ‘FIFA International Soccer’ opted against using the popular 16-bit style format when developing the game, and instead went down the route of isometric technology. We won’t run through each and every version that was released but we want to feature a few of our favourites and the key versions that moved the gameplay experience forward.
FIFA 96 was the next release worthy of a mention, with the inclusion of 3D graphics and commentary (for the UK at least) from the legendary John Motson. As the game developed towards FIFA 97 we had the inclusion for the first time of different game modes and the players favourite was six-a-side played indoors.
Moving into FIFA 98 was a big leap forward for the game with enhanced graphics, the first view of player and team selection and customisation and a soundtrack for the game. The theme of supplying soundtracks followed through with FIFA 99 and 2000 with the latter having its soundtrack provided by Robbie Williams.
FIFA 2001 and 2002 are not remembered as fondly but did bring with them customisable kits, power levels for shooting, passing and gave players the chance to challenge each other online.
2006 was the next big year for FIFA with everything having been given a total refresh and a new game engine created to offer improved graphics and better gameplay. Career mode was also re-worked and extended and the concept of Team Chemistry added.
A couple of years on in 2008 we had the “Be a Pro” option that let us play as a particular pro through their career but it was in 2009 what proved to be the most popular mode was introduced – Ultimate Team.
In 2010 we had an interesting development that allowed for 10 vs 10 matches where each player played as an individual member of the team and in 2011 we finally got the chance to take control of the keeper!
It was in 2009 what proved to be the most popular mode was introduced: Ultimate Team.
With FIFA 12 we witnessed the introduction of the Player Impact Engine to implement a real-world physicality across the pitch. It was this same version of the game that brought Precision Dribbling and Tactical Defending. FIFA 13 brought us Attacking Intelligence, with FIFA 14 then introducing Human Intelligence.
The launch of FIFA 2016 gave us the first female football pro’s featured in the game and by 2019 we were able to play not only in the World Cup but also in UEFA Champions League, Europa League, and Super Cup competitions.
Bringing us up to date, FIFA 20 brough us Volta game mode and some of the best graphics and gameplay ever seen in FIFA and brought us “Agile Dribbling”, which acts as a balanced match-up for the defensive jockey mechanic that was brought into the game in recent years.
All of us love to try to replicate the clever skills of our favourite players. In the earlier editions of FIFA, skill moves weren’t an option but as the game developed the latest releases have a star rating system with specific skill moves applied to each star rating.
Here’s a quick example of how the different skills ratings can impact the skill moves that can actually be executed in FIFA 21:
- 1* Skill Moves 2* Skill Moves 3* Skill Moves 4* Skill Moves 5* Skill Moves
- Bridge Drag Back Heel Flick Ball Hop Flick Over
- Directional Nutmeg Ball Roll Roulette Simple Rainbow Advanced Rainbow
- Standing Ball Juggle Stepover (Normal & Reverse) Fake & Go Drag to heel Rabona Fake
- Open Up Fake Shot Body Feint Heel Chop Heel to heel flick Triple Elastico
- Flick Up Feint Forward & Turn Fake pass exit Tornado Spin
Alongside great skills we all want to score incredible goals and it is often the execution of a skill move before shooting that leads to spectacular goals. Although sometimes it takes an optimistic strike of the ball from far out to smash the back of the net to impress some.
This video showcases some of the extraordinary goals that could be scored in FIFA 20. Many of these were from online gameplay where it takes that something special to pull off quite a goal.
With the release of FIFA 21 and even more improved gameplay mechanics, we can expect to see the wonder goals continue flying in. We’ll be sure to update you on some of the most cracking goals in the future.