Summary: My first impression of FIFA 12 was not good. Players moved like they were covered in molasses, my passes were inaccurate and under-hit, and apoplectic flailing had seemingly replaced tackling in my center-backs’ collective skillset. I left my first several matches feeling frustrated, impotent, and powerless. So much for escapism.
Excerpt: When EA originally showcased their all-new defensive system in FIFA 12, I couldn’t see any problem with the act of stopping an opponent dribbling towards me. A tap of *circle* sticks a leg out to prod the ball away instead of the player doing it automatically. Simple. Even though they removed traditional 2nd Player Press – where an AI team-mate would sprint in to tackle for the ball like a heat-seeking missile – it still felt easy enough to defend.
Pros: Dribbling is much easier and more fun, Tweaked online head-to-head leagues, Multiplayer is amazing
Cons: The AI is an unrelenting beast, Solo experience is frustrating, New defending is tricky to learn
Conclusion: Hailing from the grand old country of Scotland and writing for a mainly US site holds a few challenges. One of which is the surprising language barrier. You say trunk, I hide my bodies in a boot. You wear pants but I’m forever being told to pull up my trousers. We both call the best game in the world football but while watching ESPN I had to note that your football and my football seem like very different sports.
Excerpt: Forget what you know about FIFA. While EA has been keen to highlight how much of a change this year's game is going to be over the previous iteration, there have quite rightly been some sceptics, confident that it's just marketing speak covering up fairly minor changes. It isn't just marketing. FIFA has changed. For the first few hours, if not days, FIFA 12 feels wrong. Your brain will struggle to adapt to the new Tactical Defending system and you'll get trounced.
Excerpt: In all the hubbub about the Olympics, it's easy to forget that a major football tournament is just a few weeks away. In any other year, Euro 2012 would be dominating the TV advertising world and splashed over both covers of every red top in the country. As it is, though, we've got a national team with no manager and seemingly no hope of achieving anything, and absolutely no-one seems to care. EA still believes, but perhaps not quite as much as in previous years.
Summary: FIFA 12 is a great game when you get on the pitch and actually play football. The off-the-pitch issues are what plague it most, which sort of makes it realistic and close to real-life, just not in a way EA Sports - and certainly not the way the fans - expected it to.
Pros: Tactical Defending is a great addition, Precision Dribbling gives players a lot more time on the ball, Nice, solid presentation
Cons: Impact Engine is a bit wonky in places, Both Online and Offline game modes are plagued with bugs
Excerpt: FIFA is the type of game I always imagined would benefit greatly from 3D. The fast-paced fluidity of the visuals and gameplay could only seem much more impressive accompanied by the sensation of shots hurtling towards the player. Turns out I was right, at least according to my experience with FIFA 12 on the 3DS.
Conclusion: The Bad Career mode could still be more in-depth FIFA 12 is available to buy from Play.com. At HEXUS, we invite the companies whose products we test to comment on our articles. If any company representatives for the products reviewed choose to respond, we'll publish their commentary here verbatim.
Excerpt: The world's game is at the top of the mountain. Year after year the FIFA series makes a run at not only sports game of the year but is usually a dark house in the GOY debate. The past couple of entries have made incremental improvements that vastly improve the game. This year is no different and I have no qualms in calling it the best FIFA game ever. The biggest improvements in FIFA 12 are apparent on defense.
Summary: FIFA 12 is the latest installment in the soccer franchise, adding a slew of new features such as a new impact engine to improve hit detection, a brand new passing system, improved AI, new lighting effects, a more ergonomic menu interface, and presentation matches to emphasize the atmosphere of the game.