FIFA 19

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FIFA 19
FIFA 19 cover.jpg
Cover art featuring Cristiano Ronaldo
Developer(s)EA Vancouver
Publisher(s)EA Sports
Composer(s)Hans Zimmer, Lorne Balfe
SeriesFIFA
EngineFrostbite 3 (PS4, XOne, Windows)
Platform(s)
Release28 September 2018
Genre(s)Sports
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

FIFA 19 is a football simulation video game developed by EA Vancouver as part of Electronic Arts' FIFA series. Announced on 6 June 2018 for its E3 2018 press conference, it was released on 28 September 2018 for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and Microsoft Windows.[1] It is the 26th instalment in the FIFA series. As with FIFA 18, Cristiano Ronaldo appears as the cover athlete of the regular edition, while he and Neymar appear on the Champions and Ultimate Edition packs for the game.[2]

The game features the UEFA club competitions for the first time, including the UEFA Champions League.[2] Martin Tyler and Alan Smith return as regular commentators, while the new commentary team of Derek Rae and Lee Dixon feature in the UEFA competitions mode.[2] Composer Hans Zimmer and rapper Vince Staples recorded a new remix of the UEFA Champions League anthem specifically for the game.[3] The character Alex Hunter, who first appeared in FIFA 17 returns for the third and final instalment of "The Journey", entitled, "The Journey: Champions".[2]

Gameplay[edit]

Gameplay changes on FIFA 19 include the new "Active Touch System"— an overhaul of player control, "timed finishing"— where the kick button may be pressed a second time to determine the exact moment the ball is actually kicked,[4] "50/50 battles"— a system for determining how likely a player will win loose balls, and "Dynamic Tactics"— which allows players to configure strategies, and switch between them in real-time during a match.

FIFA 19 introduces the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League and UEFA Super Cup competitions to the game, after their licences with Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer expired. The game will have support for promotion and relegation between the Champions League and Europa League.[5] Martin Tyler and Alan Smith return as regular commentators with Derek Rae and Lee Dixon as Champions League commentators. Geoff Shreeves also returns as the touchline reporter as well as Alan McInally providing updates from around the league. New graphics and stadiums have been implemented.[2]

Composer Hans Zimmer and rapper Vince Staples recorded a new remix of the UEFA Champions League anthem specifically for FIFA 19. It can also be heard in the game’s reveal trailer.[3]

The Nintendo Switch port will receive upgrades over FIFA 18. On 9 June 2018, EA Sports uploaded an official reveal trailer on their YouTube channel. Cristiano Ronaldo returned as the global cover star for a second consecutive time. He and Neymar appear on the Champions and Ultimate Edition packs for the game.[2] It reported that it will include 55 national teams with 35 licensed leagues.[5]

It was confirmed that the game would have a licensed Serie A after being called "Calcio A" (due to licensing issues) in FIFA 17 and FIFA 18.[6] The game will include the Chinese Super League, the first FIFA title to do so.[7][8][9] However, it was confirmed that the game will not include the Russian Premier League, as it did in FIFA 18 and previous FIFAs.[10] Russian Premier League teams CSKA Moscow, Spartak Moscow, and Lokomotiv Moscow were kept, while Dinamo Zagreb, Dynamo Kyiv, Slavia Praha, and Viktoria Plzen were added to the game. Boca Juniors appears as Buenos Aires FC in the game since the club signed a deal with Konami.[11]

As with every FIFA game there are new skills included, with Andrés Iniesta’s signature move, La Croqueta, featuring in FIFA 19.[6] 25 new icons have been added to the Ultimate Team in FIFA 19, including Rivaldo, Roberto Baggio, Johan Cruyff, George Best, Luís Figo, Steven Gerrard, Roy Keane, Ryan Giggs, Bobby Moore, Franco Baresi, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Eusébio, Hidetoshi Nakata, Fabio Cannavaro, Michael Ballack, and Frank Lampard.[12] New goal celebrations featured include Kylian Mbappé’s ‘Little Brother’, Roberto Firmino’s ‘Matador’, Mohamed Salah performing a sujud, Neymar’s ‘Hang Loose’, while Cristiano Ronaldo and his nearest teammate both perform Ronaldo’s trademark ‘Siii’ jump together.[13]

New stadiums confirmed for FIFA 19 include the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium – due to open in 2019, Molineux Stadium, home of Wolverhampton Wanderers, Craven Cottage, home of Fulham, and the Cardiff City Stadium, home of Cardiff City and Wales national football team, ensuring all 20 English Premier League grounds are featured.[14] There will also be 16 new stadiums from the Spanish La Liga, with 3 more from the Spanish Segunda Division.[15] The only absent stadium from La Liga will be Camp Nou, due to Barcelona's exclusive deal with rival game Pro Evolution Soccer 2019.[16] New Major League Soccer stadiums featured include StubHub Center of LA Galaxy and Mercedes-Benz Stadium of Atlanta United FC.[17]

The PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions, known as FIFA 19: Legacy Edition, do not contain any new gameplay features aside from updated kits and squads.[18]

The Journey: Champions[edit]

The story-based mode that was introduced in FIFA 17 returns in this instalment and continues for the last instalment under the title "The Journey: Champions". In this instalment, Alex Hunter signs for Real Madrid and tries to become their star player after Cristiano Ronaldo leaves for Italian giants Juventus.[19] As FIFA 19 has the full Champions League licence, Hunter also competes for Champions League glory. Danny Williams returns trying to carve out a name for himself and compete for the Champions League hardware. Alex Hunter's half-sister, Kim Hunter, tries to compete for the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup. The game features guest stars such as Kevin De Bruyne, Neymar Jr, Paulo Dybala, and Alex Morgan.[20] Gareth Walker and Dino, who previously appeared in FIFA 17 and FIFA 18, don't appear in the storyline for unknown reasons.

Story[edit]

Following a recap of the events of the previous journey, the game starts out with both Alex Hunter, his half-sister Kim and Danny Williams watching a video of Hunter's grandfather, Jim Hunter, scoring his 100th career goal for his club in a First Division match at Coventry City. After that, they train with their respective teams for the pre-season friendly tournament held in Japan - ending with Alex and Danny's teams facing each other in the tournament's final. Kim is over in Los Angeles training with USA for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in France and quickly forms a partnership with teammate Alex Morgan during it. Alex also meets with Beatriz Villanova, the football agent that contacted him at the end of the previous journey - promising to make Alex an icon in world football. She keeps her promise and tells Alex that Real Madrid have offered him a 5 year contract, which he accepts and heads over to Spain to his new club.

Meanwhile in England, Danny is preparing to make his debut in the Champions League with Alex's first club, with him being the target man in formation. In doing so he comes into contact with his estranged brother Terry, who plays as a defender for Alex's previous European club and their childhood rivalry is ignited. Alex is also preparing for his Champions League debut and gets help from various mentors in the team to help him boost his stats. Having already qualified for the World Cup, Kim and the USA team then play their final qualifier against Canada, while Kim continues to struggle with balancing her studies and school life.

Both Alex and Danny's teams make it out of their groups in the Champions League and are drawn at opposite ends of the bracket. By this point Alex has become increasingly caught up in his brand and sponsor duties from his agents demands and the increasing fame is starting drive a wedge between his family. This is further seen when Kim comes to visit Alex before the World Cup and Alex doesn't come to pick her up from the airport due to him being too busy with his new clothing brand, much to both Kim and his mother's dismay. Due to this, Alex is dropped from the both the starting XI and substitutes before the first knockout game in the Champions League, meaning he has to fight his way back to the starting lineup to regain his managers trust. Danny is also having agent issues as his friend Ringo and his agent have an argument over him wanting a new house or not, with the player given a choice as to which person he sides with. Nevertheless, both their teams make it to the semi-finals of the competition.

Kim, meanwhile, has made it to the World Cup in France and her strike force with Morgan continues to grow. However, following an argument over her being dropped to the bench, Kim is dropped from the starting lineup and almost sent home. However, due to her impressive level of skill for her age, she is given a vote of confidence by the manager and starts the last group game, getting the side through to the knockout rounds. Alex and Beatriz then come to visit Kim before the first knockout game and Beatriz, having been impressed by Kim's abilities, tells her that she should go pro and not go to college. Despite her fathers rejection of the idea as the team progresses he comes more around to the idea. Meanwhile in the Champions League, Alex faces Juventus and Danny once again faces his brother's side. Both defeat their rivals and progress to the final of the Champions League, with Danny and Terry reconciling after the end of the match.

Over in France, Kim prepares for the World Cup final against Canada, despite almost getting dropped again due to the coach finding out she was discussing pro contracts, which a player cannot do while on international duty. If Kim wins the final against Canada, her and her team celebrate the USA's 4th World Cup win and the nation becoming the 1st team in Women's World Cup history to retain the trophy, and it's implied that she signed a pro contract with a club and moves out of LA. If she loses she goes to college to finish her studies, though she still hopes to go pro one day. Then the game moves to the 2019 Champions League Final at the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid where Real Madrid face Danny's Premier League side. Regardless of who wins the final, the losing character takes their defeat graciously as the other celebrates being crowned the best club team in Europe. The game ends with Jim telling Alex that he has never been prouder of him and that when he retires, he will be the greatest Hunter of all time, drawing Alex Hunter's journey to an end.

Reception[edit]

In the United Kingdom, FIFA 19 opened at number-one on the software sales chart, but opening-week sales were down 25% compared to FIFA 18.[21] In Japan, FIFA 19 sold 155,641 copies.[22]

On Metacritic, the PlayStation 4 version has an aggregate score of 83, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[23] GameSpot rated it 7 out of 10, with praise towards the presentation, licenses, and new modes, but criticism towards the pitch gameplay, comparing it unfavourably to PES 2019.[24] IGN rated it 8.2 out of 10, stating that it is "an improvement on last year's effort, despite not all new additions quite hitting the mark."[25]

Accolades[edit]

Year Award Category Result Ref
2018 Game Critics Awards Best Sports Game Won [26]
Gamescom Best Sports Game Won [27]
Golden Joystick Awards Best Competitive Game Nominated [28][29]
The Game Awards 2018 Best Sports/Racing Nominated [30]
2019 Writers' Guild of Great Britain Awards Best Writing in a Video Game (The Journey: Champions) Pending [31]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Good, Owen S. (June 9, 2018). "FIFA 19 stretches the lifespan of the PS3 and Xbox 360". Polygon. Retrieved June 10, 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "FIFA 19 to include Champions League, new commentators – full details, direct from the development team". Four Four Two. Retrieved 13 August 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Behind The Music: Champions League Anthem Remix With Hans Zimmer". EA Sports. Retrieved 9 July 2018.
  4. ^ "FIFA 19 New Gameplay Features - EA SPORTS Official Site". www.easports.com. Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  5. ^ a b "'FIFA 19' has a lot more to offer than just Champions League". Engadget. Retrieved 2018-06-10.
  6. ^ a b "FIFA 19 release: Champions League, new ICONs & 19 reasons to get excited for new game". Goal. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
  7. ^ "FIFA 19 to include Chinese Super League for first time in series". FIFPlay.com. Retrieved 2018-09-09.
  8. ^ "What's new in FIFA 19? Here's what we know so far". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 23 August 2018.
  9. ^ "CSL on Fifa 19: not quite fantasy football but you can see why the China league is joining the EA party". South China Morning Post. Retrieved 12 August 2018.
  10. ^ "The full Russian Premier League won't be in FIFA 19". Retrieved 6 August 2018.
  11. ^ "FIFA 19: Boca Juniors could be excluded from the official roster". FIFA Ultimate Team. 11 September 2018. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  12. ^ "FIFA 19 Ultimate Team: What Icons are in the new game and how do you get them?". Goal. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
  13. ^ "UPDATED FIFA 19 new celebrations and tutorial, ft Cristiano Ronaldo, Paul Pogba and Neymar". Talksport. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
  14. ^ "New Tottenham stadium on FIFA 19: EA Sports releases first look at completed Spurs home". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 13 August 2018.
  15. ^ "All the new La Liga features in FIFA 19". EA Sports. Retrieved 17 August 2018.
  16. ^ "FIFA 19 will have every La Liga stadium except Camp Nou". Joe.ie. Retrieved 20 September 2018.
  17. ^ "New FIFA 19 Stadiums: LaLiga Santander, Premier League, and More". EA Sports. Retrieved 27 September 2018.
  18. ^ "EA SPORTS™ FIFA 19 Legacy Edition". Centre Soft. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  19. ^ Sherlock, Harry (7 August 2018). "FIFA 19 news: Journey Mode star Alex Hunter signs for Real Madrid". Goal.com. Retrieved 8 August 2018.
  20. ^ Wright, James (13 November 2018). "FIFA 19 The Journey Demo News - Alex Hunter returns with Danny Williams and Kim Hunter". Daily Star. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  21. ^ Yin-Poole, Wesley (1 October 2018). "FIFA 19 launch physical sales down 25% on FIFA 18". Eurogamer.
  22. ^ "Game Search". Game Data Library. Retrieved 7 December 2018. FIFA 19
  23. ^ "Pro Evolution Soccer 2019". Metacritic. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  24. ^ "FIFA 19 Review". GameSpot. 5 October 2018.
  25. ^ "FIFA 19 Review". IGN. 19 September 2018.
  26. ^ Watts, Steve (5 July 2018). "Resident Evil 2 Wins Top Honor In E3 Game Critics Awards". GameSpot. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  27. ^ Keane, Sean (22 August 2018). "Gamescom 2018 award winners include Marvel's Spider-Man, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate". CNET. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  28. ^ Hoggins, Tom (24 September 2018). "Golden Joysticks 2018 nominees announced, voting open now". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  29. ^ Sheridan, Connor (16 November 2018). "Golden Joystick Awards 2018 winners: God of War wins big but Fortnite gets Victory Royale". GamesRadar+. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  30. ^ McWhertor, Michael (13 November 2018). "The Game Awards 2018 nominees led by God of War, Red Dead Redemption 2". Polygon. Retrieved 19 November 2018.
  31. ^ "WRITERS' GUILD OF GREAT BRITAIN AWARDS 2019: SHORTLISTS ANNOUNCED". ALCS. 5 December 2018. Retrieved 11 December 2018.

External links[edit]