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FIFA 10 Next-Gen Notes

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Now that you’ve had time to digest all of our thoughts and feelings about our time with FIFA 10, here is a list of notes we took from EA’s presentations in London and Vancouver including what they’re working on, what they’re working towards and what complaints they’ve taken on-board.

Gameplay is the #1 priority
Begin the revamp of Manager Mode

In FIFA 09 the overall experience was strong, but still featuring some frustrations.
The aim is 30% innovation, 70% refinement.

Fourth year with this engine
• Cutting edge
• Detail driven
• Critical areas improved
• Becoming hard to improve further

Refining fundamentals

• Urgency
? New urgency AI Logic, understands threat
? New face-ball logic, so players look at ball and positioning
? Space threat – players will watch the runs of the opponent as well as any dangers such as gaps in defence

• Trapping
? More realistic, less like magical touch
? Removed impossible trap animations
? Improved trapping intelligence, how players react and respond

• Positioning of players
? Improved defensive awareness – postion priority logic balance on player attributes
? Improved balance – players swap positions and cover for each other
? Improved attacking mentality of AI players – no more useless straight line runs

• Passing
? Halved the time that the ball is in motion when passing
? Physics tweaked to improve feeling and fluidity
? Better space and threat analysis

• Shooting
? Floatiness reduced
? Improved and fine tuned parameters of shooting (including Reynard and Magnus effects)
? Various set of parameters included this year depending on kick type

• Defending
? Improved slide tackling, including balance, momentum and reach
? Timing becomes critical – longer to touch, easier to avoid
? Clearance logic, with more effort driven clearances
? Urgency and awareness, so that if a player’s out of position then someone will cover

• Goalkeeping
? More aggressive
? More intelligent
? More urgent
? More responsive with more rushes and punches under pressure

Response to feedback
• 280 million games played online
• Lots of useful feedback

Frustrations
• Balance of teams and tactics
• Lofted through balls constantly sparking attacks
• Goalkeepers, exploits and behaviour
• Movement – run animations
• Shooting – ball physics and too many shots hitting the post
• Rules – offsides and advantages not quite right

Requests
• Practice arena improvements
• Manager Mode improvements
• Continuous play including quick free-kicks

Removed scripted sequences
• Carding was too predictable in the past
• Warnings (must stay focused on the screen to see all outcomes)
• Quick free-kicks added

Innovations

Change the way the game is played
• 360° Dribbling – first sports game to include 360° dribbling
? Now you have the ability to spot gaps and run through them
? You can modify the direction of running subtly
? You can quickly place the ball on the preferred foot
• Skilled Dribbling system
? Close control for more intricate, more subtle and faster movements
• New nets

Manager Mode in FIFA 09
• Disappointing
• Unrealistic results
• Authenticity issues
• Broken transfer market

Manager Mode in FIFA 10
• Match realism
? Matches calculated on a minute to minute basis
? Significant fidelity
? Based on team strengths and weaknesses
? Much more realistic results
• Authentic transfers
? Based on prestige, experience, squad, manager experience/reputation
? Competition from other clubs when signing players
? Significant improvements in club AI
• Believable player growth
? Player growth based on age, performance and amount of games played
• Surrounding football world realism
? Importance of each fixture
? AI has its own strategy depending on the opposition
? Squad rotation by AI depending on importance of fixture

Manager Mode is now a multi-year project with constant improvements on a yearly basis.

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