FIFA Street is a semi-rebooted version of the PlayStation 2 and Xbox game of the same name. Developed by EA Sports, long term holders of the FIFA games contract, this football game revolves around short games with small teams but with plenty of pace. Not forgetting of course the tricks that made its predecessors the success that they were. The game entails a combination of randomly generated and real professional footballers and teams engaging in “street football” with few rules, and game styles that test both the playing of the game and the skills needed to master it.
There are various game modes available to players of FIFA Street, each with their own various game styles within them. There is a simple quick-play mode, very similar to that incorporated in the usual FIFA games. The player can choose to play a simple 5-a-side football match with the team and in the location of their choice. Alternatively there are skill games available to test the wit and knowledge of the players control to the maximum. These games are relatively short and are ideal for having a quick play around on your own to practice or with a friend for a quick challenge. There are several teams available to play as, however not as wide a range as the traditional FIFA games, so some players may find themselves disappointed. There is also less selections available for locations in which to play, but what is available provides variation enough for continued pleasure and enjoyment with some variety.
There is also a “story mode” to the game, in which the player can design their own captain to lead a team of players from a kick about on the streets to world champions in the street football arena. There is a lot of customisability in this mode; the player may create as many team members for their team as they wish, choose the emblem, name, abbreviation and announcement name for the team, and customise the kit colours and individual clothing for each team member. There are options to wear a standard football kit or standard street clothes in games, which can be unlocked by winning matches. The higher difficulty a match is played on, the more that can be unlocked by winning it. Each match has bronze, silver and gold levels, corresponding to easy, medium and hard difficulties respectively. The player may also choose where they wish to start their legacy in this mode, expanding from a region to a country to a world as they progress. As matches are played the individual players gain experience and gain skill points in a levelling up system similar to that of a role playing game. These skill points can be spent on upgrading a players sporting attributes such as speed, athleticism or goalkeeping, or on unlocking new tricks for the individual players to perform in matches. Unfortunately in the story mode, you cannot perform every trick straight away and must progress and spend skill points to unlock new ones. The starting selection is a little smaller than some players might have hoped, but you can perform keep ups and stand on the ball to keep yourself happy until you progress. In the quick play mode you can perform all of the tricks. available in the game, so if you are after some way to show off to your friends, look here.
The game play itself is somewhat more complicated than what might be expected. There is a lot of holding one button and tapping another in order to perform some simple tricks, which can lessen the excitement and pace of the game as a lot of learning and trial and error is involved. Most of the standard controls, such as sprinting, passing and shooting are the same as a traditional FIFA setup. Tackling is also performed using the same controls but takes a lot more effort to succeed at. There are also now several ways to control the ball. The player can walk or run normally, move while performing keep ups with the ball, or use the new street ball control system. This mostly concentrates on stationary play but can be used in combination with movement to make your way across the playing field, and simply involves the player moving the ball around themselves to avoid opponents and set up tricks. There are also multiple way to vary your shooting as on traditional FIFA games, but on FIFA Street you can flick the ball up to shoot, shoot along the ground, shoot normally and score with usually impressive shots such as back heeling or overhead kicks. These however are not always as fun as you might expect after playing for some time as it becomes quite an easy feat.
The graphics of FIFA Street are quite impressive. This is the most noticeable way in which this game is different to FIFA Street 3, alongside the fact that you can no longer run up walls and perform inhuman stunts to win. The game has very much taken a turn towards reality, which is arguably what it needed after the previous game. The players look human in pretty much every way. Their bodies are realistic, the height system is less over-exaggerated than in the other FIFA games, and the faces are quite impressive. The movement is also realistic and players can even fall over each other and trip up to add to the realism. The ball is easy to see and the playing areas look fairly realistic too. A nice feature is that even though some of the arenas have walls or fences around them, the game has a clever cutaway feature when the ball is near a section of the wall so that the player can still see. Some of the replays which are displayed as if they are on cameras simply in the local area, such as CCTV cameras, are quite a nice touch too, although some of them work less well than others. A normal instant replay can be played in the same way as on other FIFA games too.
The sounds of the game are not that potent but what is incorporated has both good and bad points. As ever in FIFA games an extensive soundtrack is included in the game packed with popular music, which is good for those who like it. This now also plays in the background of games as if a radio is nearby. The players shout to each other during the game, which had the potential to be quite a clever idea but the shouts are often difficult to understand and repetitive. The commentary system is not so nice to listen to as in normal FIFA games and, at least in the smaller level games on the streets, pretty much involves a couple of people nearby shouting about how “he got you there”. Perhaps it would have been more appropriate to have included an option to select the type of commentary that is used in the games so that the player could decide how they liked it.
There is of course online play in FIFA Street, and the story is incorporated in this as a world tour. The option is present for the player to upload their manager to online play too. Overall the game is better than FIFA Street 3 by a long way, bringing the idea back to football rather than how many impossible feats the players can perform before they actually score a goal. Compared to the original game, maybe it is not quite as fun and exciting, but it still makes for a decent and fun game to play. Fitting closer with standard street football experiences rather than how mad the tricks can be was a good idea, but in some ways the game is a little more straight laced than some gamers maybe would have liked and expected compared to the original which was about as exciting a FIFA game that had ever been produced in its time. The game is a great choice for any FIFA fan and for anyone who wants something new to play with their mates when they are bored of shooting things. Well worth the money!
Exciting and fast paced, but technical and requiring time for learning. A slow starting story in terms of the range of tricks to be performed but still fun to play.
Good graphics in terms of the appearance of players; arenas are not so special but do not look bad. Some clever visual techniques have been incorporated.
The sounds are not all that impressive but do not take away from the play.
A good game, beating its predecessor but not quite matching the original. As a game in itself though it is very fun, great for FIFA fans and highly recommended for something a little bit different.
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.