If you like football then the game with probably the most replay value – in that you can play it with friends and it’ll never get even slightly boring – is FIFA.
Having moved onto FIFA from the sinking ship of PES a few years ago, I’ve bought it every year and more than gotten my money’s worth from them.
And the same is true of FIFA 14. Though I’m still waiting for my mates to catch up and buy their PS4s and PS Plus subscriptions, I’m having a mostly good time playing online Seasons mode – or in other words, ranked matches – with random people online.
But that doesn’t mean the game is perfect; of course it’s not. In fact, it’s bloody frustrating at times.
So here’s a list of five things that are really grinding my gears with FIFA 14. Some are long term issues, others are specific to this new version.
1. Gameplay Issues
For example, the randomness of Corner Kicks is still a thing. There are times where a corner will come into the box and no matter what you do as a defender, you can’t intercept it before your opponent heads it into the back of the net. And sure, sometimes you’ll benefit from it too – it’s completely 50/50. But it’s equally frustrating when you’re the attacking team and scoring from the corner seems to rely upon the AI moving your player into a position from which he can score. I’d love it if there was actual skill involved there.
There are other gameplay issues too.
What about the ridiculousness of the over-the-top through ball? I was playing against a guy yesterday whose only move was to hit a long ball from the back. Three times he managed to get a man through on goal to score, because the aut0-switching of defenders means that when control switches to your defender, he then stops his AI assisted run and is essentially taken out of play. Thankfully I won the game 5-3, but that’s not the point.
And then there’s the issue with poorer teams. I’d love to play as my team – Dundee United – but because they are only 2.5 stars, it means by the laws of football games these players are slow and untalented. You don’t get fast players anywhere but at the very top level it would seem.
2. Imbalanced Teams
I accept that when you play ranked games, people tend to want to play as the best teams.
But with FIFA 14 this is bugging me.
I’m not the sort of person who wants to play as Real Madrid or Barcelona all the time; I’d rather play as 3 to 4.5 star team.
What I’ve noticed though is that no matter who I pick, I end up playing against a higher star opposition.
So for example, if I play as 4 Star FC Shakhtar, I’ll never play against another 4 star team. Instead, I get put against teams like Liverpool (4.5 star) or Man City (5 star).
The most frustrating one was when I chose 3.5 Star Toulouse and ended up being put against Liverpool again. Because of the way FIFA works, I’m instantly in a position where it’s unlikely I’ll win if my opponent is in any way decent.
The only way to ensure you don’t get put against a noticeably better team therefore is, depressingly, to play as a team like Real Madrid.
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.
3. Inability To Mute Opponents
This isn’t a FIFA specific problem; it’s just that FIFA is the only game I’ve played much online on my PS4.
And I’m sure there must be a way to sort it, but I’ve yet to find the solution.
The problem? Players who decide to use their microphones while playing FIFA. And they always seem to be French or German.
Listen buddy, I don’t want to hear you have a conversation with your wife. I want to listen to sound of the actual game, not the sound of you.
I can’t even begin to understand the mindset of people who use the mic when playing against strangers anyway. Total weirdos.
The worst one was playing against some French dude who was playing FIFA while listening to loud French Hip-hop music. And it meant that I had to listen to that too, because the sound of the game was completely drowned out. He didn’t even utter a word either, which begs the question of why his mic was even on? I ended up having to just turn the sound down.
Come on Sony, give me a means of sorting this problem.
4. You Can’t Quit
Even if you quit a game of FIFA before you’ve kicked off, it gets counted as a defeat.
Now on the one hand, that’s fair enough. There’s nothing more irritating than rage quitters or – as was the case with the Xbox 360 version – players who’d quit if you scored before the five-minute mark of the game knowing it wouldn’t be counted as a defeat.
But there was a reason why players were able to quit in those first five minutes, and that was because of issues like lag or situations described above. If I start a game and find I’m a 3 star team up against a 5 star one, or if I hear the person I’m playing screaming down the microphone, or if the game is unplayable because my opponent has what appears to be a dial-up internet connection from the 1990s, I should be able to quit before a ball is kicked, no questions asked.
If I decide to quit after the game has started properly, then fair enough, but before it’s even started I shouldn’t be marked down for it.
5. People Who Watch Cut Scenes And Replays
I’m sure this will annoy almost everyone; the sort of dickhead who decides to watch every cut scene and replay.
Thankfully I haven’t been up against anyone who wants to watch the teams coming out yet, but watching extended replays of goals? That happens almost every time.
Now I have absolutely no problem with someone who wants to watch the replay of a good goal – a piledriver from 40 yards or an overhead volley is worth seeing again – but it’s the type of prick who wants to watch three different replays of a clumsy goal-line stramash or a basic one-on-one.
What’s wrong with these people?
Are they trying to noise me up or are they just weirdos?
There was one example of a guy who went 3-0 up on me and watched the replay of every single goal. And none of them were remotely exciting. When I scored my first and second goals to get back into it I just skipped the replays as I normally do, but believe me, when I scored my 3rd in the 89th minute and the winner in the 93rd, I made sure to milk every last drop out of those replays. It made my victory all the sweeter. The prick.
Are you a replay watcher or skipper? Be honest.
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