FIFA Street for PlayStation 3 Review

The most popular sport in the world gets the personal treatment as Electronic Art’s FIFA Street offers a very involving street football game experience features a huge real-life player cache and several worldwide locations that obviously include more urban environments.

The Hype

EA SPORTS™ today invited sports fans from around the world to free their game with FIFA Street, available in retail stores today in North America, and this week throughout Europe for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, and for the Xbox 360® videogame and entertainment system. The community buzz and appetite for an authentic street soccer game has pushed the FIFA Street demo to near-record levels of global excitement. More than 2.1 million people have downloaded the demo in the past two weeks, making FIFA Street the second most downloaded demo—behind only FIFA Soccer 12—released by EA SPORTS over the past year*.

FIFA Street is the first street soccer videogame that authentically replicates the way the game is played around the world. It is described as “spectacular” by Official Xbox Magazine, earning an Editor’s Choice award and a review score of 9 out of 10. PlayStation: The Official Magazine calls the action, “chaotic, tense, and above all, super fun.”

From the creators of the award-winning EA SPORTS FIFA Soccer franchise, and powered by the revolutionary FIFA Soccer gameplay engine, FIFA Street delivers an arsenal of authentic street dribbling styles and trick moves that ignite the one-on-one battles. Utilize the groundbreaking new Street Ball Control to experience the highest fidelity of touch on the ball and responsiveness ever developed by the FIFA Soccer franchise. Compete everywhere from parking lots to prestigious 5v5 futsal-style tournaments on the streets of the world’s most renowned cities. Enjoy unique and entertaining game modes like Panna Rules and the new Last Man Standing, which were created exclusively by the FIFA Street team. Play with and against the stars of the most popular clubs in the world—or real-life street players—and compete at more than 35 locations in the world.

World Tour story mode, where gamers create a team of friends and compete in a connected world against other FIFA Street gamers’ teams, is described by Official Xbox Magazine as “setting the standard for all other sports games.” In the mode, players will be able to follow each other’s journey as they build their squads, unlock new tricks, and progress through the story of their pursuit of street soccer glory. Players will be able to share and compare progress with friends directly in the Street Network and it will also broadcast in-game videos like “Goals of the Week,” and alert friends to each other’s accomplishments throughout the game.

FIFA Street delivers a unique, fun experience where everything from the environments to the gear to the music is true to street soccer and its culture. Hand-selected to bring the beautiful game back to the streets, the FIFA Street in-game soundtrack features 24 songs gathered from around the globe.

The Reality

Players address their individual (experience, performance progress rewards, unlockables) and group (wins, advancements, etc.) games amid teams maxed out at six players per side plus several other variations including panna (featuring special skills like getting the ball through defender legs, futsal (no walls), and one-on-one play. There are no referees and a large cache of available players plus several unlockable items including footwear, team kits, street wear, environments and teams.

FIFA Street also features national and club teams for the first time in this game series. The MLS league is included along with the Serie A (Italy), La Liga (Spain), Ligue 1 (France), and the Premier League (England). Players can also unlock the following special teams in the World Tour mode stages three and four: African All Stars, Asia All Stars, South American All Stars, North America All Stars, Street Ballers, Street Kings, Street Stars, Street Wizards, Street Swirl, Street Stylers, Street Dragons, and Classic Team.

Venue walls and other environmental elements important and play into the physics as players get authentic streetball complete with fans, strong game sounds, and audible on-field chatter. Some extensive branding reminds players of familiar big venue football elements.

New features include The Virtual Pro career mode features a manager mode (15 year career), improved one-touch passing (a.k.a. Street Ball Control), new “ATTACK” dribbling system, and the social competition Street Network where players can record and share their gameplay video. Players can view featured videos any time.

In the single and multiplayer modes, players can compete in “cage matches”, trick competitions, “last man standing”, and fight-for-possession matches. The tutorials and practice modes are ideal for players wanting to learn more about the sport.

Players form their own team in World Tour mode that features team management, a progression point system and integration into the EA Sports Football Club where player progress points yield rewards in other associated game like FIFA 12. Players also choose their locations with five- or six-a-side matches.

The controls promote fast paced footwork by utilizing the dual analog sticks where one controlling player movement and the other control his foot.  Complicated schemes yield rewards and jaw dropping moves including aerial move and quick boosts past defenders though the formidable AI does not give away anything easily. All players recover well after hits or when they get burned on a nifty trick. Full field views are important for passing and figuring out all the angles, but expanded camera view options would have added even more realism and a unique on-field view.

Tricks and move combinations impress, but the rewards increase when the result is successful. Completed tricks and moves only transfer into points with successful goals. Players can also ramp up point amounts by choosing higher difficulty levels and successfully winning. The customization features include point distribution so players can strategize to make their team well rounded or create skilled specialists. The overall system intrigues and promotes progress, but an automatic “level-up” option would have been a helpful addition.

In the Hit the Streets mode, players mixes preset scenarios with customization while the online mode features open voice chat via a headset microphone and the ability to play between two and 20 players (players need an EA account and Playstation Network account to sign-in). Players cannot use licensed club players online, which creates stronger individual elements and unpredictability where other players must strategize against other teams instead of incorporating the same tactics from other game mode. Friends can also track each other’s progress.

The in-game soundtrack features 24 songs from artists including Fatboy Slam, Vato Gonzalez, KKS, Kano, The Chain Gang of 1974, Felguk, Malachai, and Spank Rock. Also available on Xbox 360.

Review: FIFA Street

Where to Buy: and other stores

Price: $59.99

What I Like: realism level and physics, all age appropriate (just watch online chatter), style in gameplay and visuals, fun to watch, high amount of tricks/moves, high replay value due to deep multiplayer and online modes, comprehensive coverage of the sport

What Needs Improvement: female player inclusion, progression/ difficulty level in World Tour mode, more camera options for deeper impact/experience

Source: Copy provided by publisher



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