Once a year, EA Sports unleashes its latest game in the soccer franchise, FIFA. This year, FIFA 16 will be the first true next-generation version of the infamous soccer game, and early access is now available.
A week before its worldwide release, EA Sports have allowed EA Access subscribers on Xbox One to play the game for a full 10 hours before the launch date. Once the 10 hours are played, the game is locked down again until release. However, it should give the rabid FIFA fans a chance to whet their appetite at the latest incarnation of the massively popular game.
FIFA 16 starts to pull the franchise away from the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. With features exclusive to the next generation consoles, and the regular tweaking and enhancing that makes each game unique, FIFA 16 looks to be crisper, more authentic, and playable as ever.
For the first time ever, EA also included female international teams in the wake of a much-publicised 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Alex Morgan, who featured heavily in the final victory and helped win the United States Women’s National Team their third World Cup, will grace the cover of the U.S version. Regular FIFA mascot Lionel Messi will grace a majority of covers across the world as well.
The FIFA 16 demo was released last week and has been very popular with fans. Not only did they get a taste of the full game, they were also introduced to a new Ultimate Team mode, as revealed by Digital Spy. Ultimate Team is a digital version of “sticker swapping” — you buy your packs and trade unwanted cards online. You can also use the cards to compile an Ultimate Team to play people around the world. The new mode is called Ultimate Team Draft — entry costs 15,000 in-game coins — and you get to draft a team from a random selection of excellent/average/poor players. Many YouTube accounts have published various videos of the mode, showing its huge popularity.
FIFA launched on the Sega Megadrive (aka Sega Genesis) in 1993. The game was famous for being the first to hold license from FIFA itself, meaning they could use likenesses, player names — although this wouldn’t follow for another three years — official emblems, graphics, and logos. The franchise has been converted into 18 languages and is available in over 50 countries. The series has sold more than 100 million copies worldwide, making it the best-selling sports video game franchise in the world.
FIFA 16 is available on September 22 in the U.S. and September 24 in the U.K.
[Image – EA Sports]