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    Kicking off your next FIFA ‘career’

    Danial Norjidi

    Electronic Arts (EA) recently unveiled some of the latest features and updates coming to career mode in FIFA 23.

    According to the Pitch Notes on the EA website, one of the new features mentioned is Playable Highlights, which EA described as a new gameplay format that is specific to Career Mode.

    “In Playable Highlights, you take control of key moments in matches in an attempt to define their outcomes, specifically handling close calls that impact the scoresheet while leaving the rest of the match to be simulated by the match engine.”

    Explaining how the feature works, the Pitch Notes share an in-depth background system is in place and evaluates the two opposing sides for each match, taking into account their offensive and defensive strengths and weaknesses based on the players in the lineup and their stats at that exact moment in the season. Team OVR (overall rating), fitness, sharpness, and morale are all included as part of the system.

    “Using that data, FIFA 23 generates the number of scoring chances each team will have and spreads them across the match. Each scoring chance triggers a match highlight, prompting the player to take action in gameplay to either convert a potential goalscoring opportunity (attacking highlight), or to prevent the CPU AI from doing the same (defensive highlight).”

    A screenshot of FIFA 23. PHOTO: ELECTRONIC ARTS
    A screenshot of the FIFA 23 gameplay. PHOTO: ELECTRONIC ARTS

    “With Playable Highlights, we’ve compressed the match into an intense, bite-sized experience that will enable you to cruise through seasons while conserving your focus for the encounters you feel that are most important, all without giving up control over the results you generate along the way. The new experience is available alongside all of the previous match progression options, so you can still choose to play the full match, Sim To End, or use the Interactive Sim.”

    Manager Career allows for choice of playing all highlights in a match or only the attacking highlights by allowing the simulation to decide defensive outcomes.

    Meanwhile, in Player Career, Playable Highlights offer two options of controlling the entire team or just the player that was chosen for the career. “If you choose to play controlling only your player, the system will only show highlights that your player is actively involved in, while resolving other highlights in the background. Additionally, the feature adapts to both being a starting XI player and a bench player. The objectives for both cases adjust appropriately to fit the bite-sized format.”

    Also mentioned in the Pitch Notes is the main menu experience, where EA shared, in FIFA 23, they are aiming to create a more unified menu design across the game.

    “We’ve redesigned our main menu so that you can have faster access to your areas of interest. We’ve also brought more contextual information forward such as your squad depth, the players whose contracts are about to expire, or the most promising players in your Youth Academy.”

    Another feature is Dynamic Moments, which EA describes as a collection of cinematic that will accompany the player’s progress in the career mode experience in both Manager and Player Career, with the aim of making a more immersive and memorable journey.

    “There are seven bespoke Dynamic Moments you can experience in your Career, each of them tied to various achievements or events that you might encounter on your path to stardom, from the very first moment you enter the club.

    “Making it into the club’s starting XI in Player Career or dealing in the transfer market in Manager Career can trigger more cinematics for you to discover as you play.”

    The Pitch Notes proceed to note that the structure of pre-season competitions has been updated to a more authentic format. Specifically, eight teams will play three matches each in order to get their campaign off to a good start. Only the winner of the tournament will be able to claim the prize money award that will help boost their transfer budget.

    “We’ve also changed the timing of the tournament, with matches taking place closer to the first games of the season. This way you can put your players’ hard earned sharpness to better use from the season opener.”

    Another notable change coming to Career Mode with FIFA 23 is in terms of save files.

    “We know how important and fun it is for you to experiment with various clubs across different leagues in both Manager and Player Career. You are now able to use a common pool of the save file space, allowing you to mix and match between Career Mode and Tournament saves. This enables you to create up to 17 Career Mode save files.

    “Additionally, FIFA 23 surfaces more information about a save file, so ahead of loading a save file you will be able to identify the team you were playing with and the upcoming opponent, to better differentiate between saves.”

    Specific to Manager Career, EA has announced that there will now be the option to play as a real manager. “We’ve seen feedback from players wanting to play as some of their favourite managers, and we’re happy to say FIFA 23 enables you to play as one of the 350+ authentic football managers, of which 30+ have star heads, in Career Mode.

    “Upon selecting the manager of your choice, you can customise their outfit and decide on the club they’ll be in charge of. You have the option of continuing to build a legacy at an authentic manager’s current club, pick a different club to start at, or even create a new club for the manager to lead to glory.”

    Another new feature is the Transfer Analyst, which has been designed to help step up negotiation skills and hone players’ managerial instincts, assessing the financial and squad impact of transfer business.

    In addition, a tension metre has been added to transfer negotiations in the game. “Whenever you submit a counteroffer, the other party’s Tension will grow since you’re pushing them towards a tipping point in terms of declining the negotiations altogether. The further your counteroffer is from what the other party would consider acceptable, the more tension they will accumulate.”

    Also mentioned in the Pitch Notes are expanded customisation options for Create Your Club in FIFA 23 Manager Career Mode. These options include third kit and goalkeepers’ kit customisation, as well as the option to edit details of your players before starting your career.

    EA also shared that, as financial control is a big aspect of managing a club, financial information can now be seen broken down to help the planning of finances and to ensure there is enough money in the bank to pursue targets.

    The toggle between Transfer and Wage Budget has also been removed in this year’s edition of the game. “You will still be informed about how your budget translates into weekly wage, as that information will still be used when agreeing personal terms with players.”

    Specific to Player Career is a new Player Personality feature, “which allows you to shape your virtual personality and get Attribute benefits from doing so.”

    “Our aim was to deliver a fluid personality system that drives a deeper personal connection to your player and lets you define their character on and off the pitch.

    “By performing certain actions on and off of the pitch you will gain Personality Points that will accumulate and expand your personality, giving you access to benefits. Your behaviour and decisions on the pitch will be closely monitored by the Player Personality system in FIFA 23, for example, every time you decide between connecting with a teammate or keeping the ball a little longer to set up the shot for yourself will shape the kind of player you are. These kinds of decisions contribute to three distinct personality types that impact your Attributes.”

    The three personality types are: Mavericks, who aggressively chase goals and act on intuition, seeking stardom on and off the pitch; Virtuosos who are skillful and intelligent, relying on their ability to change the course of matches in the blink of an eye; and Heartbeat players, who EA described are “like the pulse of a team, reading the game ahead of their opponent and dominating through willpower, determination and resilience”.

    “As you play more matches, you will gain more Personality Points. The total number of Personality Points can grant you new tiers of Personality, and the higher the level, the higher the Attribute bonuses become.

    “When you reach the final tier of Player Personality and dedicate yourself to one of the Personalities by placing the majority of your Points in it, you can reach an Absolute level, the very last evolution stage that will give you even more benefits that will help you to make your mark as a football player.”

    Also new is the addition of Off-Pitch Activities, which allow further shaping of Player Personality outside of matches and training.

    Each activity has certain requirements and presents different types of rewards.

    The three different types of Off-Pitch Activities are: Decisions, which appear contextually and as a consequence of things you do either on the pitch or off of it; Investments, which allow you to potentially multiply the money you’ve earned in your career; and Shopping, where you can choose to purchase things that will help you grow as an athlete, add glamour to your life by buying something flashy and grandiose, or spending money on a broad variety of charitable activities.

    FIFA 23 is scheduled for release worldwide on September 30, 2022 on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, and Stadia.

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