by William Thompson
reviewed on PC
Wonderfully presented (cntd)
I was even surprised that they mentioned that a traded player was playing against their old club. Even the over-the-top goal celebrations can be performed by the players, adding to the fun.
Visuals are reasonable too, although it could be said that they are somewhat dated for a PC title. I realise this is so the game can run on as many PC’s as possible and As long as it runs smoothly (which it does) I don’t have a major issue with it. Due to this, the player likenesses for players in the lower leagues aren’t quite as impressive as those in the major world leagues. I also made the mistake on one occasion of selecting a kit that was of a similar colour to the opposition kit, and found it difficult to differentiate between non-controlled players. But that aside, the visual presentation is more than adequate, and it is great to be able replay your favourite goals in all their glory. I know this feature has been around for years, but it is still good nonetheless.
All the game modes and the quality of the presentation would be for nought if the game was horrible to play. Fortunately, FIFA 14 plays superbly. Player movement is smooth as they move up and down the pitch. The way they move seems quite realistic as do the passing mechanics. Deft touches to close teammates and through-balls to the striker as he moves into scoring position are simple to execute with just the basic controls. Defensive controls aren’t quite as tight, though. The automatic switching to the closest defender can at times be more of a detriment than not. Tackling is fairly simple to implement though, either by getting in close and stealing the ball or by performing a somewhat dangerous slide tackle that could result in a yellow card. The opposition AI can be a bit hit and miss too. They will often harass you in their attacking half or in the midfield, but then leave a huge opening for your attacking player to run in a direct line through to the opposition box.
Opposition formation could also play a part though, as on other occasions the box is crowded and finding a way through can require more tactics. Weather can also affect your style of play. When the rain sets in, the ball feels somewhat more difficult to control. It slides away on the slippery pitch and can stop still in a waterlogged area. Controlling your players is also more demanding, as they come to grips with the slippery conditions.
Winning the championship
OK...so even after a couple of years, not a lot has changed. But having said that, the previous iterations have been reasonably good. FIFA 14 simply smooths out the rough edges whilst adding a couple of minor features to keep things fresh. FIFA 14 does just about everything right. Playing out a season as Manager is an enjoyable experience, rejoicing as your team hopefully holds aloft the championship trophy. The detail in the career modes could be a little overbearing for newcomers, but it doesn’t take long to get into the swing of things. The television style presentation with commentary from Martin Tyler and Alan Smith works extremely well (even when not playing in the EPL). The controls are smooth and even though the defensive controls not being as intuitive as the attacking controls, they are still very good. I’m not sure there is enough extra content to warrant a purchase from FIFA 13 unless you’re a diehard fan and want the up to date player lists, but if it’s been a couple of years since you’ve looked at a FIFA title, then there is no reason why you shouldn’t be getting FIFA 14.
Player movement is smooth, touch controls work perfectly. Heaps of game modes.
Defensive controls aren’t quite as tight as the attacking controls