FIFA Street - Review

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Finally, Chris Kamara’s Street Soccer has a rival.

 

The FIFA Street series has long been the annoying little brother to the main FIFA franchise, going through various changes of image and style, yet without asserting a consistent presence on the market.

The model has previously gone for style over substance, with flare moves and tricks being favoured over the simple notion of scoring in the opposition’s goal – the caricatured incumbents and camera kineticism of the series’ last entry perhaps the pinnacle of this misdirection.

This time around, EA has stripped away such contrivances, wisely putting its resources into building a game that utilises the brilliant FIFA 12 engine, albeit with a few tweaks. The resulting game surges ahead of previous entries, even somehow contriving to leap-frogging PSOne 'classic' Chris Kamara’s Street Soccer – who would have ever though it possible?

Until EA's FIFA games started to get their act together and overcome the stranglehold of Pro Evolution Soccer, one of their best entries into the football game genre was FIFA 98: Road to the World Cup. The football world was a very different place back then: Spain were still perennial underachievers at tournaments, David Beckham still had curtains and EA only released one football game a year.

I mention this as FIFA 98: RTWC included a simple five-aside indoor mode, with the same control dynamic as the main game. This made for a highly entertaining distraction, but it was only ever just that. FIFA Street was similar in premise, and not far off becoming an aside itself, but this latest reboot makes its existence as a separate franchise worthwhile – providing variety, fun and a decent sense of progression.

Its gameplay options are impressive with five-a-side (with and without walls), two-on-two and last man standing modes available, as well as the provision of a custom mode to customise your ideal rules. Each style plays uniquely, utilising different attributes. Panna rules (two-on-two), for example, allows players to build up a separate skill meter, which is added to the score once someone nets a goal.

Though this can be cruel when you’re leading 10-1 on goals, only for your opponent to win 11-10 on points due to their extra trickery, it shows EA hasn't turned its back on the essential nature of FIFA Street. Indeed the number of tricks, each performed via the right stick, are vast.

Bite-sized versions of the dominant football nations and teams are all available to select though a strength and weakness of FIFA Street, that the gulf between defenders and forwards is negligible remains.

Though diluting realism, EA’s decision should at least alleviate the domination of teams such as Real and Barcelona online – a long standing bugbear of the FIFA 12 online veteran. Career mode is strong, with create a player available, as well as the recruitment of a bespoke team.

With stars hand-picked by the player, the idea is to progress from local regional competitions to ultimately become world dominating champions. The tour mode is great for thrusting you into different styles of play on various pitches, each incorporating new tactical challenges and freeing up yet more skills.

Upon winning matches – and the accompanying prestige – your teams gets awards such as new kit and skill points, though one small gripe is there is no auto-levelling feature, so leading to lengthy bouts of statistic checking.

To be fair to EA, many tour modes of other games feature the same sort of weakness, but in FIFA Street, the laborious stat boxes are a stark contrast to the speed and fluency of the actual game and therefore quite a distraction – as it that music which is practically screaming ‘I’m cool, young and urban’ at you.

There comes a time when little brother has to grow up and step out of his older brother’s shadow. FIFA Street has toned down the showing off to create a more rounded experience, so becoming a great accompaniment to FIFA 12 and offering a swift, arcadey variation of the beautiful game.

Price: £49.99
Format: PS3 (tested), Xbox 360
Developer: EA
Publisher: EA

Score: 4/5

News
peopleHowards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, was 60
Sport
Romelu Lukaku puts pen to paper
sport
News
Robyn Lawley
people
Arts and Entertainment
Unhappy days: Resistance spy turned Nobel prize winner Samuel Beckett
books
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookA wonderful selection of salads, starters and mains featuring venison, grouse and other game
News
people
Life and Style
Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson voice the show’s heroes
gamingOnce stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover
News
i100
Life and Style
Phones will be able to monitor your health, from blood pressure to heart rate, and even book a doctor’s appointment for you
techCould our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?
Travel
Ryan taming: the Celtic Tiger carrier has been trying to improve its image
travelRyanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?
News
people
Extras
indybest
Sport
Usain Bolt confirms he will run in both the heats and the finals of the men's relay at the Commonwealth Games
commonwealth games
Life and Style
Slim pickings: Spanx premium denim collection
fashionBillionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers 'thigh-trimming construction'
News
Sabina Altynbekova has said she wants to be famous for playing volleyball, not her looks
people
News
i100
Life and Style
tech'World's first man-made leaves' could use photosynthesis to help astronauts breathe
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    SAP Project Manager

    competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP PROJECT MANAGER - 3 MONTHS - BERKSHI...

    SAP Project Manager

    competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP PROJECT MANAGER - 3 MONTHS - BERKSHI...

    Microsoft Dynamics AX Functional Consultant

    £65000 - £75000 per annum + benefits: Progressive Recruitment: A rare opportun...

    Microsoft Dynamics AX Support Analyst

    £45000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Progressive Recruitment: This is an exce...

    Day In a Page

    Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

    The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

    With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
    Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

    How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

    As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
    Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

    Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

    Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
    Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

    Acting in video games gets a makeover

    David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
    Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

    Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

    Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
    Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

    Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

    Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
    Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

    Spanx launches range of jeans

    The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
    10 best over-ear headphones

    Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

    Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
    Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

    Commonwealth Games

    David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
    UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

    UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

    Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
    Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

    The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

    The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
    A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

    A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

    Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
    Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

    Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

    How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
    Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

    From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

    He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
    How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

    How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

    Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash