I have to say, I was initially sceptical about FIFA 17’s change to a new engine, I enjoyed the game so much last year (apart from the incompetence of every goalkeeper) that I considered whether it was really worth the £50 that Game were charging.
After playing the demo I was won over by the new Frostbite engine purely because it encourages you to play the game like real football. It’s been so irritating past games that it was way too easy to play the ball in behind with fast strikers.
EA has curbed the power of these particular forwards and made strikers that play as a target man and players who play out from the back just as formidable.
In my first game I played as an out of form Chelsea and was battered 3-0 by Arsenal despite hitting the crossbar from three different corners. I then thought I’d choose the impressive French side Nice and rinsed Leicester 4-1 after a Balotelli hat-trick.
I came to the conclusion that playing a back five system was the most effective way of pressing the other team into submission and flooding the midfield area. I was very pleased by how good, accurate passing was rewarded rather than punting it up to Aubameyang for the knock in.
I was also impressed by the new tournament features on Ultimate team and the way they encourage you to try out Europe’s youngest talents in order to discover new players. It’s so frustrating to play Ultimate team because every single game you end up playing pretty much the same team. With new competitions and advice you’re encouraged to make your team much more personal and to develop your own style of play.
Although the real thing I was keen to try out was the new The Journey mode which didn’t disappoint, it has added a brand new dimension to the game in which you develop Alex Hunter into the Premier League’s latest superstar.
The fact you can even mould the player’s personality through conversations and verbally bash people who think you’re never going to make it as a professional is pretty good.
So, after playing the game for a couple of days, I am rather impressed by EA’s latest FIFA game. I would recommend buying this year’s edition but go to your local Tesco and pick it up for £40 like I did rather than spend £50 on it at Game and waste £10.