The postrealism of the new “Fifa”
“Should we mix the teams?” This question was never asked on a suburban field or during a Tuesday night football game. We’d like to imagine that she was bouncing between one office and another at the company’s headquarters Electronic Artsa leader in the video game sector that has dominated the sports video game market for three decades with its best-selling title: FIFA or EA Sports FCdepending on whether you are a traditionalist or a progressive.
The name change was a forced decision after Failure to renew license with FIFA: One billion for four years was Infantino & Co.’s demand, twice as much as the previous agreement. Some manager of the highest international football association must have realized that EA is making too much money by exploiting the Fifa brand. But the path of “progress” taken by the Canadian manufacturer primarily affects the viable teams that can exist from this year onwards Hybrid.
Men and women, side by side, against each other and vice versa, so to speak “Battle of the sexes” from today.
Let’s clear this up. EA Sports FC brings back the same as its predecessors.”Ultimate team“, the mode most played by users and a huge source of revenue for the company. A fantasy football-like game where you can create your own team and challenge players from all over the world. The basic operation is intuitive: the aim is to assemble a competitive and tight-knit squad using a system of online auctions and packages that can be purchased with game credits Footballers and, for the first time, female footballers. So why not try out the Osimhen-Girelli attacking pair or the Bastoni-Gama defensive pair?
“Who asked you?” could have been the fans’ counter question to the initial question. In fact, the community associated with the old FIFA has been calling for improvements for years that can further develop the gameplay and make it more realistic. Desires that often remain unfulfilled are compensated for by the introduction of novelty and unasked for details. And who knows, maybe this will also include the gender mix introduced this year. A move from EA that winks growing popularity of women’s footballparticularly in countries such as the United States, Sweden, England and Spain.
Mixing up the teams seems like a bit of a stretch though a compulsion.
There is no doubt that it is right to also give space to women’s teams, as has already been the case in some editions of the game, but this additional step does not contribute to a consolidated community welcoming the novelty positively. Once again there is a risk that the ideology surrounding the concept of “women’s football” will collide with harsh reality. Just a few hours after the global release of EA Sports FC 24, the women’s goals that could be achieved in the game – such as playing a game with the women’s national teams or even setting up a “hybrid” team – were known to have been completed by a percentage of player less than 1%.
The impression is therefore that EA prefers to embellish its image rather than the game itself and show itself as a company that is at the forefront of social and gender issues. Kind of “Sportwashing” in gaming termswhich brings to light two fundamental contradictions.
The first concerns the much-vaunted concept of realism. «EA FC 24 comes even closer to real football». «EA Sports is creating the most realistic soccer game the world has ever seen». These are the comments that can be read in capital letters in the game trailer. But it took a few hours for the social media court to deny this theory. And here clips are going viral in which Kailen Sheridan, a 1.75 meter tall goalkeeper, anticipates Cristiano Ronaldo on a corner or players like the 1.68 meter tall Sam Kerr, who towers over powerful defenders like Ruben Dias with a header.
The second is offered to us by the producers themselves. «Play the other modes» was the reaction to the dissatisfaction of the users. An invitation that undermines the logic of base money. In fact, Ultimate Team also allows you to purchase the various packages using so-called “FC Points”, which can be purchased with real money in the game. In 2021, EA earned $1.6 billion thanks to Fifa’s Ultimate Team alone and its “twin” in Madden NFL, the “Fifa” of American football. A statement that doesn’t quite match the marketing dynamic.
Perhaps the most avid gamers are not yet inclined to this change. Or maybe it is the “women’s football” system that is not ready for all of this. However, only time will tell whether the electronic arts revolution will be successful. For the player the hard sentence.
The article The postrealism of the new “Fifa” comes from Rivista Contrasti.