Cover art featuring Cristiano Ronaldo
|Engine||Frostbite 3 (PS4, X1, PC)|
|Release||28 September 2018|
FIFA 19 is a football simulation video game developed by EA Vancouver as part of Electronic Arts' FIFA series. It is the 26th installment in the FIFA series, and was released on 28 September 2018 for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and Microsoft Windows.
As with FIFA 18, Cristiano Ronaldo featured as the cover athlete of the regular edition: however, following his unanticipated transfer from Spanish club Real Madrid to Italian side Juventus, new cover art was released. He also appeared with Neymar in the cover of the Champions edition. From February 2019, an updated version featured Neymar, Kevin De Bruyne and Paulo Dybala on the cover of the regular edition.
The game features the UEFA club competitions for the first time, including the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League and the UEFA Super Cup as well. 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. Composer Hans Zimmer and rapper Vince Staples recorded a new remix of the UEFA Champions League anthem specifically for the game.
The character Alex Hunter, who first appeared in FIFA 17, returns for the third and final installment of "The Journey", entitled, "The Journey: Champions". In June 2019, a free update added the FIFA Women's World Cup as a separate game mode. It is the last FIFA game to be available on a seventh-generation console, and the last known game to be available for the PlayStation 3 worldwide.
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, "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 licenses with Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer expired. The game will have support for promotion and relegation between the Champions League and Europa League. 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.
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. However, Ronaldo was taken off the cover in February. Now, it features Neymar, Kevin De Bruyne and Paulo Dybala on the cover. It includes 55 national teams with 35 licensed leagues.
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. The game will include the Chinese Super League, the first FIFA title to do so. However, it was confirmed that the game will not include the Russian Premier League, as it did in FIFA 18 and previous FIFAs. 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; for the same reasons, Colo-Colo appears as CD Viñazur. Once again, due to Konami securing deals with certain Brazilian clubs, the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A is featured in an incomplete form, this time with only 15 clubs, with the notable omissions of São Paulo, Palmeiras, Corinthians, Flamengo and Vasco da Gama, all of which are Konami partners. The remaining Brazilian clubs, while appearing with licensed branding, do not have any of their players licensed due to an ongoing judicial dispute over image rights, which are negotiated individually with each player, unlike other countries.
As with every FIFA game, there are new skills included, with Andrés Iniesta’s signature move, La Croqueta, featuring in FIFA 19. 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. 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 ‘Siii’ jump together.
New stadiums confirmed for FIFA 19 include the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, 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. There will also be 16 new stadiums from the Spanish La Liga, with 3 more from the Spanish Segunda Division. The only absent stadium from La Liga will be the Camp Nou, due to Barcelona's exclusive deal with rival game Pro Evolution Soccer 2019. The only new Major League Soccer stadium featured is the Mercedes-Benz Stadium of Atlanta United, joining LA Galaxy's StubHub Center and Seattle Sounders' CenturyLink Field.
On 29 May 2019, EA announced a free update featuring content from the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup tournament. The DLC updates the women's teams already featured on the game and adds the remaining 10 teams that are participating in the tournament. 20 of the teams in the tournament feature licensed kits and players (Italy has unlicensed kits but correct player names, Chile and Brazil have licensed kits but generic player names, South Africa is completely unlicensed). These new teams can be played in Kick Off, but not in the International Women's Cup mode. The Kick Off mode features a new scenario in which the player can compete in the final at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais. It is the first time that the FIFA Women's World Cup has been utilised in a video game of some form.
The Journey: Champions
The story-based mode that was introduced in FIFA 17 returns in this installment and continues for the last installment under the title "The Journey: Champions". In this installment, Alex Hunter signs for Real Madrid and tries to become their star player after Cristiano Ronaldo leaves for Italian giants Juventus. 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 mode features guest stars such as Kevin De Bruyne, Neymar and Paulo Dybala. Gareth Walker and Dino, who previously appeared in FIFA 17 and FIFA 18, don't appear in the storyline for unknown reasons, though Walker does send the characters a few abusive tweets during the story. The game also introduces other fictional new characters whose names include Beatriz "Bea" Villanova, who is Alex Hunter's new agent, Danny Williams' estranged brother and Paris Saint-Germain F.C. defender Terry, USWNT coach Marriane de Silva, Real Madrid C.F. coach Bartholomew Cazares, Danny Williams friend Ringo, and Melanie Trembley, a player of the Canada women's national team who serves as Kim Hunter's rival in her story .
The story 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 which is being held in Japan - ending with Alex and Danny's teams facing each other in the tournament's final. Alex later 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. Alex is yet to make his Champions League debut and gets help from various mentors in the team to help him boost his stats.
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 to drive a wedge between his family. This is further seen when Kim comes to visit Alex before the World Cup and Alex doesn't go 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 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 manager's trust at the same time 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. Alex and Beatriz then go 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. Back in the Champions League, Alex faces Juventus and Danny once again face his brother's side. Both defeat their rivals and progress to the Champions League Final. In the 2019 Champions League Final at the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid, 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.
On Metacritic, the PlayStation 4 version has an aggregate score of 83 out of 100, indicating "generally favorable reviews". 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. 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." Despite receiving positive reviews from critics, FIFA 19 received negative feedback from fans. It is currently the lowest rated game of the series on IMDb, and is considered by some fans to be the worst FIFA of all time.
|2018||Game Critics Awards||Best Sports Game||Won|||
|Golden Joystick Awards||Best Competitive Game||Nominated|||
|The Game Awards 2018||Best Sports/Racing||Nominated|||
|Gamers' Choice Awards||Fan Favourite Sports/Racing Game||Nominated|||
|2019||Writers' Guild of Great Britain Awards||Best Writing in a Video Game (The Journey: Champions)||Nominated|||
|D.I.C.E. Awards||Sports Game of the Year||Nominated|||
|National Academy of Video Game Trade Reviewers Awards||Game, Franchise Sports||Nominated|||
|Performance in a Sports Game (Adetomiwa Edun)||Won|
|SXSW Gaming Awards||Excellence in Convergence||Nominated|||
|Italian Video Game Awards||People's Choice||Nominated|||
|Best Sport Game||Nominated|
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