16
Jun

Landon Donovan definitely knows how to laugh at himself

You’re probably sick of hearing about Landon Donovan not making the USA’s World Cup team, but this ad is worth just one more mention of it.

Instead of Donovan sporting red, white and blue this summer, we get Landon in his bathrobe, slippers, moping around his apartment while playing as himself on FIFA.

Oh, and make sure you watch it all the way to the end.

That’s got to be one of the best eye-rolls ever.

He may not be going to Brazil, but at least Landon can still give American fans something to smile about.

14
Nov

Infuriated fans flys off the handle playing FIFA 14, breaks TV

Here we see a step-by-step guide of how to ruin a perfectly good television. The steps are quite simple:

1: Have a few libations

2: Play FIFA 14 with a friend with a temper

3: Score a goal

That’s seemingly what transpired in the video, and boy, is it awesome. You can watch the whole video build up to the pay-off moment, or, if you’re impatient, fast forward to the 48-second mark to see the tantrum.

What follows is a meltdown that would make Earl Weaver proud. Not only does the enraged gamer throw his controller and shatter the TV screen, he proceeds to beat the set with a series of slaps.

After that, we can’t see what exactly occurs (somehow the lights go out), but based on the cackles of his mates, we’re assuming he performed a series of elbow drops on the defenseless television set.

(h/t 101GreatGoals)

9
Oct

Leyton Orient coach bars team from playing FIFA 14 on match days

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As far as excuses for a drop in performance go, this one should be top of the list.

English football league club Leyton Orient are flying high at the top of the third division in the country. With eight wins from their first eight games, two draws from their next two has left their manager angry, despite their unexpected lofty league position.

After such a brilliant start, you can surely forgive the players for slacking off a little?

Not Orient though. Their reaction to slump? They’ve banned players from playing FIFA 14 on the Playstation 3 in the club’s new team bus.

In a bid to improve his players’ concentration levels, boss Russell Slade has moved quickly to ban the game being played on match days, citing the following reason: “several hours playing football on a video game is not conducive to a good performance in the real thing.”

Orient’s communications manager Johnny Davies told British newspaper The Independent:

“The coach boasts a fold-out massage table, a coffee machine and Sky TV, but the most exciting thing for the players was a PlayStation 3.

“For the majority of the trip the lads, led by Lloyd James, got stuck into the new FIFA 14 game and at times even played as themselves against Oldham in preparation for the match the following day.”

And if the whole scenario wasn’t silly enough, as Leyton Orient’s main sponsor, FIFA 14’s logo adorns the team’s kits.

24
Sep

FIFA 14 caps hat trick with stunning golazo

Soccer fans, rejoice: FIFA 14 is finally here. And while it might not feature the sort of gameplay changing revolution that FIFA 10 did with 360 degree dribbling, FIFA 14 does boast the nuanced revisions the franchise’s die-hards crave. 

The FIFA series just gets better and better, doesn’t it? We’ll admit that at first we were apprehensive by FIFA 14’s slower-paced gameplay than that of years past, but as you play the game more and more you appreciate the realistic feel.

From a gameplay perspective, gamers will find that patience, unlike in previous iterations, is the key to scoring.  Gone are the days where you could just sprint past slow defenders and be one-on-one with the goalkeeper. You have to be more methodological in your game play, keeping possession to break down defenses. With the physicality of players noticeably improved, getting bumped off the ball while trying to make a darting run is more commonplace. This is where shielding the ball really is at its best.

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Image: EA Sports / FIFA 14

The game has slowed down to make way for tinkering in dribbling, passing, defending and shooting. All four combine to make for a more fluid and life-like gaming experience. Defenders play tighter than before, trying to cut out your options to make it more difficult to pick out that killer pass. The counterbalance to this is a vastly improved teammate AI.

More incisive runs can be found around the pitch, but it’s up to the user to pick them out before the short window closes. On breaks, the computer makes smarts runs into space, drawing defenders or settling in for a key pass. The changes make for tougher scoring, but for those that enjoy the build up as much as the payoff, FIFA 14’s changes are a welcomed challenge.

The CPU’s tactics are also more sophisticated than in FIFA 13; teams press higher and more often — not just when the opponent is behind in the last 10-15 minutes of the game. For us, shooting was noted as the biggest improvement. Last year, we often would shoot whenever an open shot outside the penalty area presented itself. But depending on where the player was in relation to the ball, the shot seemed unnatural, or the game would defy physics in an attempt to create a shot that would look natural. 

For instance, Pure Shot makes goals look crisp and at times, can point out why you probably shouldn’t have gone for goal. Free kicks are harder to master, especially when the AI goalkeepers are much smarter than their FIFA 13 counterparts. Each set piece you take might have the same result, but the look and feel will be different all due to Pure Shot.

Shooting basics are not the only part of the game that has changed either. Career Mode has gone a major upheaval in team management, particularly scouting and the transfer window.  In a big change from seasons past, FIFA 14 no longer allows you to search for new players by their rating; now, they won’t be revealed to you until said players are actually acquired.

So how do you figure out who to buy? You utilize the completely revolutionized scouting network.  Aside from being able to search the world for the best new talents better than ever before — you can now search for up to six different player types each trip, plus select certain attributes you’d like players to have — your scouts can now also be used to help rate your transfer targets.  This change might be an annoyance to casual players who simply want to buy the best players, but it’s a FIFA diehard’s dream.  Your managerial skills will be more tested than ever.

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Image: EA Sports / FIFA 14

Online gameplay sees a new addition to its many modes. The popular seasons mode is now accompanied by co-op seasons, which we find to be a lot of fun. The adrenaline you feel when you are going into the final game of your season, the result determining survival, relegation or promotion, can now be shared with a friend. This online experience will definitely be a fan favorite.

Feeling overwhelmed? Well, don’t. Most of the key skills and basics remain the same. In the end, FIFA 14 provides the same level of excitement, exhilarating gameplay and distinct presentation that’s second to none.

12
Sep

Celebrations kick it up a notch in FIFA 14

FIFA is undoubtedly the world’s best-selling sports video game franchise, and one of the most anticipated features each year is the updated goal celebrations package. The game’s release is just two weeks away, and to tease it, EA Sports has now revealed all the new colorful ways you can make your favorite players taunt computer-controlled opponents.

Keep in mind, this isn’t the NFL, where celebrations earn players penalties and fines regularly. In the beautiful game, the more extensive your dance routine after a goal, the better. It’s totally acceptable to bust out a highly intricate “Le Cirque Labelle” routine, do the chicken dance, or even try “riding the cat” (really EA Sports?), as made famous by Congo goalkeeper Muteba Kidiaba:

Our money is on that one being the most used celebration in the game this year.

Sadly, you still can’t have your players do the one thing that isn’t allowed on the pitch — taking off their shirts (please don’t tell Mario Balotelli, he’ll be crushed). That option might never be included, but perhaps FIFA can meet us halfway. How about including an option of customizing your own undershirt messages?

6
Jun

I know it’s hard to contain the excitement, but try to relax guys, it’s just a trailer.

Among the key features for FIFA 14 are improvements in precision movement, shooting/positioning, ball physics, ball protection and teammate intelligence (thank goodness!). Will it top the ‘13 version? Jury’s still out.

Release date? September 27th. Ouch.

via EA Sports