The argument about whether it’s called football or soccer is a tale as old as time, but thanks to EA – we finally know FIFA 22 will be “powered by football.” It raises another question, though: what does that exactly mean?
If you take a scroll through Twitter now, or even a year ago when we were all knee-deep into FIFA 20, the community have often called for gameplay changes.
The tired Frostbite engine is just one part of the argument, and to play a football game like FIFA 21 where passing was so inconsistent and complicated for the last year has left a sour taste in many mouths.
FIFA 22, thankfully, presents an opportunity for the game’s developers to choose a different path. Depending on who you speak to, whether it’s our followers on Twitter with UltimateTeamUK or professional players, some of which I have interviewed in the past, the gameplay comes up time and time again as problematic.
FIFA 22 Hypermotion Technology
On July 9, though, everybody that’s raised concerns with the in-game experience of the previous three installments were given some hope. The cover star was announced as Kylian Mbappe, to the surprise of almost nobody, but there were two interesting details on the case art.
Detail one – “Hypermotion Technology.” Well, we’ve never heard of that before.
FIFA 22 cover star revealed: Kylian Mbappe 🇫🇷 pic.twitter.com/OhXz1KqpqO
— FIFA 22 News (@UltimateTeamUK) July 9, 2021
The Frostbite engine certainly hasn’t got a loyal fanbase by any means. In fact, the game’s community has been very critical of how gameplay has deteriorated, especially in the era of Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
However, EA have been teasing a big feature coming. For their annual news conference, EA Play Live, on July 20 we know they will be releasing more information about such enhanced technology. What players want, though, is less talk and more action. This has got to deliver – and feels like a big moment for the franchise. Its performance on PS5 and Xbox Series X|S just has to be better, and more fun to play.
EA Play Live schedule 2021
Let’s be clear – FIFA games are going to sell every single year. Ultimate Team has been, while controversial in some circles, a genius introduction. Career Mode is a nice format people are always coming back for, and so is Pro Clubs.
Wait, Powered by Football?
Detail two – “Powered by Football?”
Now the easy joke to make here is, wait a minute, are we only now being powered by football? FIFA is a football game, after all, and it’s been running since 1993.
What the cover art does suggest, though, with these two details is that there appears to be significant realistic changes in the works. At EA Play Live, we’re bound to hear more on this front and it could quite possibly be the rework we’ve all been waiting for. Improvements to defending, passing, attacking, and even set pieces – why not?
Slogans are usually very revealing. To that point, increased focus on real football and face scans in recent years when developing the game would suggest more accurate movements and player representation will be a big strength for Hypermotion.
As the series edges closer and closer to realism while trying to keep elements of arcade gameplay, finding the balance will be tough. But for the first game on next-gen (current-gen now, for most), there’s no doubt that the bar is set high.
This isn’t a crossbar challenge though, and this new engine – if that’s what it is to be – must hit the back of the net.