Reviewed by Jive | 11.24.05
Introduction:As all of you know FIFA '06 is the latest EA soccer game. Along with the release of this new game come some new features, as well as a good dose of its old style of play. For all you soccer fans you will find a lot to peak your interest. If you aren't so interested in soccer, it can still be a fun game.
The Game: FIFA 06 has a lot to offer soccer fans. It boasts a number of soccer teams somewhere in the range of 500! So, you have a lot of opportunity to pick your favourite team and players. There are some 10000 players and 21 leagues! If that is not impressive to you then you need some help! You couldn't ask for anymore from a game like this. This is far more then any sports game has ever incorporated. Another great feature of FIFA 06 is the long span that the game covers. You can take control of your team for up to 15 seasons! This gives any gamer plenty of time to try to make their team hit the top!
One thing to mention with FIFA 06 is that the better you play, the better your players will try to play. Your players have a playing style that will change according to the mood of the game. Morale is a key feature to getting your team to perform up to their best! So, make sure that you try to take control of the game early as it will help you to keep your players going strong. The more intense action moves you make, the more your team will hype up to the game and play harder for you. Individual players are also affected by how the game is going, so make sure not to leave anyone alone for too long!
Among the features that the new FIFA 06 offers is very customizable player controls. This makes the game easier to play for people who have set ways in which they already play. Growing up on other soccer games and older versions of FIFA make this a good option for any soccer gaming fan.
Now down to some game business. There are a number of different modes by which to play: practice mode, manager mode, tournament mode, online play, and lounge mode. Most of them are fairly self explanatory. However there are some notes that need to be made. The manager mode lets you take control of a team and their players for up to 15 seasons. You get to have full control of the team's finances and players. This can take a while to work up into the big leagues. But, it makes for interesting game play. You can sign some big contracts with sponsors for your team and make money to be able to get better players. It takes a while to really get the hang of this mode, as there is a lot of decisions that have to be made for your team to become really competitive. Be careful in manager mode to read all your emails, they will provide you some good advice about what to do in manager mode.
The next mode to talk about is lounge mode. This mode can be good if you want to invite some friends over for a quick game. This mode can keep track of up to 8 of your friends at a time and keeps stats on everyone for the session. The good thing about this new mode is that it allows you to even out the playing strength a little between you (who has the game) and your friends (who might not). It does this by keeping track of your stats and gives the weaker players some power-up's and cheap shots that allow you to pull off some interesting plays in order to keep up with the better players. Some of the cheap shots are interesting and include such things as fatiguing the other team, keeping some opponent players out of the game, and even restarting the game! These can be an interesting little feature to keeping the games fair.
Graphics & Sound: As always the graphics in the game are exemplary for a sports game. The models and mechanics of the players all work very well. The stadiums are modeled very well and give you a life like impression. EA once again excels in the graphics end of its FIFA games. This is probably due to the incredible European support for soccer games. North America might not be so huge into soccer, but our European friends surely are! One bad thing about this game is that it's a port to a number of systems so the graphics aren't as good as they probably could be, but what more can you ask for? It already has so many features to it!
The sound in the game seems pretty good. The crowds are modeled and you can hear the players and ref's. Not too much more you can ask for. It does have a soundtrack with it that seems pretty good. But, a lot of the songs aren't in English. They still sound good ok though!
Mojo: Overall, if you like soccer games then this game is IT. FIFA 2006 has so many features to get you going and playing. I am not sure what more you can ask for in a soccer game. Does it offer that much more then its predecessors? Well, that is up to you. Some of the upgrades are well done, others it seems to have taken some stuff out. The online play isn't really up to snuff, but that is just one shortcoming. These types of games typically have trouble with online play. So, that is nothing new.
Lowdown:If you are into soccer I suggest you pick this game up. Most FIFA fans know what I am talking about. They are loyal to the brand. But, its more then just small upgrades. With every FIFA there is always something that is radically different. EA has been great to keep up with these games. There is always improvements being made and EA is always trying out new features to make the next game even better then before. It is amazing how much work goes into these games.
Game: 8, Graphics/Sound: 7, Innovation: 7, Mojo: 7. Final: 7.5 / 10