FIFA 21 Review : A Game Plan that does not change?

FIFA 21 is awaited by all football enthusiasts, as every year for a long time now.

Like every football season, the desire to see the big virtual players again is intense. Is the game developed by EA Sports worth checking out once again? 

Are any changes present or is it just a transition component before a FIFA 22 signing a possible redesign of the series? Let’s take a closer look, ball at the foot …

We are now used to this annual release cycle, EA Sports obviously wishing to once again highlight its title for this new year. 

The idea now is to know if the recipe is innovative compared to the previous section. As much to say from the outset, FIFA 21 remains in great width in the continuity of FIFA 20 . It remains to understand why.

“Muscle your game Robert!” 

Regulars of the series stamped EA Sports know the versions that come out between two generations of consoles. 

These episodes do not upset the series and act more as a replacement for luxury than as an indisputable holder, and leave more room for new things for that of the following year.

Clearly, FIFA 21 does not change the formula initiated by its glorious elder. The recipe is the same but the taste is unfortunately very different. Different by slight unfortunately unwelcome changes. Indeed, after a few hours of play, we must face the facts: the attack is more privileged to the detriment of the defense.

As in a certain time that we thought to be over, the goals are raining, and it is much easier to score than on the version of last year. 

Fifa 21 gameplay download tops & tricks

The defense has not become more complex, because again it is similar to what was proposed for the 2019 version. There are indeed some rather crude defensive wanderings. On the sides, for example, full-back players tend to lag behind the opponent and are easily overwhelmed. 

Just like the central defenders sometimes going on an adventure, and who thus leave gaping holes in the center which has the effect of leaving a boulevard to the opponent. High-scoring matches are therefore legion.

Of course, between each episode there is a time to adapt, but it is clear that the balance is far from optimal. There is a real imbalance between attack and defense, the fault of an AI which tends to “raise” the defenders a bit too high, thus leaving the field open to counter-attacks. It should also be noted that at the same time, the defensive midfielders tend to stay in the background, thus not helping the effort initiated by the defenders. 

In this case, it is rather difficult to anticipate 100% in the sense that even if we feel the action to come, the defensive placement is fishing and it is difficult to cut the pass line.

“What do you think Arsène?”

The classic “4-2-3-1” still has a bright future ahead of it, especially with a team that has fast and powerful full-backs. The attack is certainly privileged, but it is fluid with a good number of calls and counter-calls from the players. 

However, it will be necessary to pay attention to “laser” passes. A little deep pass and our attacker quickly finds himself in front of our goalkeeper.

The “4-2-2” and other offensive “4-3-3” also remain safe values. The first being balanced, as well in the middle as in attack, and the second as its name suggests, has rather a strong offensive vocation. 

The dynamism and speed of the game have been slightly revised upwards and the players give more the feeling of “sliding” on the field.

We also note in this FIFA 21 a better fluidity in the animations as there is a change in the dribbling. The dragback using “L1 + R1” as well as the stick. The centers towards the goals as for them require the grip not to send them in the stands. 

Likewise, players can now use the creative race where once a pass is made, it is possible to orient a teammate with the right stick in order to create a clear opportunity.

Play it like Gigi!

As for the goalkeeper, we remain on familiar ground, with little change compared to FIFA 20. They are not bad and clearly do the job. However, the defense is sometimes permissive, the goalkeeper will have as many opportunities to shine … as to concede goals. The clean sheets are so rare. The penalties do not change one iota. A system still just as unintuitive.

Regarding the free kicks, there again, we remain on familiar ground since the device is the same as in FIFA 20.

Like the entire title, it does not move much and it remains on the bases acquired last year .

Finally, a little word for the players in FUMA. The latter will always find their happiness there, the habits having not really changed. As usual, we will also find our balance in the game depending on the different tactics to be used, going from “ultra defensive” to “ultra offensive”. 

The pressing can also be activated but only for a limited period of time by means of a gauge in the form of a circle. A rather realistic point and a very pleasant novelty brought by the developers.

As for VOLTA …

VOLTA, the fashion that plays street and futsal returns in this new section. The possibility now to play online either solo or in co-op ‘.

 A good thing obviously, thus allowing to vary the online game, thus leaving the usual shackles of the seasons and FUT.

Besides the multiplayer aspect, the “solo” via a scenario is present, but just like that of last year, the latter remains anecdotal. However, it begins with the presence of Kaka who is pleasant and will allow to meet other equally emblematic players. 

Regarding the modes, you stay on familiar ground with the choice between 3v3 without a guard, 4v4 or 5v5 and even in Futsal mode without the walls.

The “clash in the spotlight” mode allows you to recruit renowned players and thus build a sick team while earning points and unlocking items to customize your player or your team. 

Because yes, you can create your own character as was already the case before.

These novelties obviously make it possible to lengthen the life of the game mode.

The latter appreciated by many players in the community will be able to live longer than last year, which is not to displease us.

Pass me the Fut!

FUT is the annual mass for fans of the series. EA Sports takes great care in its lucrative game mode. FUT doesn’t change its ways, Fut Champions, drafts, friendlies and pre-match setups are still alive and well. Co-op mode is a good thing to collect rewards for two. Which is not to displease, quite the contrary.

This year, the personalization of the stadiums is also pushed. From tifos to the cages with the possibility of adding a sound to each goal or fireworks if you want to play it big prince. 

In short, you will have all the arsenal to make your stadium a big field where the opponents must tremble. A good “virtual” alternative in these covid times … of its audience.

The content is still so gargantuan and the game just as addicting, especially when you acquire TOTS. 

While regulars are fine at the start, the idea is to have a large roster to win Draft and thus obtain large packs and therefore amortize the investment of said Draft.

In short, FUT remains solid on its footing and clearly makes you want to dive into it again for another year. 

It will also be possible to transfer your PS4 / Xbox One team to the PS5 / Xbox Series X consoles.

A lot of content but few changes!

The modes offered are numerous but remain in line with FIFA 20 with the classic match, special rules, Champion’s League etc. 

The same goes for multiplayer, the season and FIFA Pro, again similar to last year, this time with the possibility of customizing the AI ​​players of his pro team.

In short, FIFA 21 is clearly a transitional episode and EA makes it remarkably “feel” to us. 

We stay on a game that has already proven itself without changing the formula too much before the finish, we imagine a real component “new generation”. Pity…

70%
good-ish

JoinGames Verdict

FIFA 21 is not bad far from it, it turns out that it does not innovate at all the recipe initiated by FIFA 20. Very focused on the attack, the defense suffers from a significant imbalance, leaving the door open to games full of goals. It is therefore a transition component, which leaves known bases so as not to upset the players and thus draw big news for FIFA 22. We feel that the game is intended to be more dynamic and impactful, but on the contrary we also feel that the 'we are sticking to a title that has overlooked a major development. Of course, we will spend many hours on it trying to tame the defense to block the attackers and their ball calls coming from all sides. This FIFA 21 has solid foundations even if it does not change the recipe. FUT clearly does the trick and will delight a lot of players and fans alike. The architecture does not change, the foundations are good, but the series really needs a facelift which will undoubtedly go through the next part ...

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