In Depth

Fifa 17: Reviews and best places to buy it

This year's version introduces a flashy new story mode with big-name cameos – but is it enough?

With the football season now a few weeks old, EA Sports has released the latest instalment in its popular Fifa football franchise.

So popular, in fact, that crowds of fans were waiting at shops across the UK for Fifa 17's midnight launch last night, reports the Daily Mirror.                                             

The latest version introduces new section The Journey, as well as a game engine lifted from some of EA's most spectacular action titles and tweaks to the already established Manager and Ultimate Team modes.

With these additions in mind, is it worth buying yet another new Fifa title to add to your collection?

It seems Forbes thinks so. Fifa 17 is "spectacular", "beautiful" and "cleaner and shinier" than previous versions, it says. This is "easily the best and most complete Fifa ever" and yet again "re-establishes the series as King of the Pitch", adds the magazine.

Forbes gives the game 8.9 marks out of ten, which makes it an "excellent release with some minor issues". The mag particularly loves The Journey, in which players work their way up the leagues as a rising star.

The Journey is big budget, with cut scenes and cameos from footballing stars. However, the main performance is by actor Adetomiwa Edun, who is best known for TV's Merlin, Bates Motel and The Hour.

Not every reviewer is convinced, though. GameSpot says it has "something" and lends the on-pitch game "added emotional weight", but concludes it "doesn't quite pay off". 

Nevertheless, while saying The Journey "lacks sophistication", seems "forced", is peppered with unrealistic moments and sounds "awkward dramatic note[s]", the website does gives the game nine out of ten and says it is better than Pro Evolution Soccer (PES).

Digital Spy disagrees, saying that when it comes to gameplay, PES has "definitely surged ahead". Fifa "plays a faster, more entertaining game this year", but it can't "match the all-out excitement of Konami's masterpiece". 

In it four-star review, Digital Spy is ambivalent about The Journey but praises the new Dice-created Frostbite engine under the game's bonnet. The difference from Ignite, EA Sports's in-house engine, is like "night and day". 

"The volumetric lighting and focus blur effects are spectacularly convincing," says the site, and make the game even more photorealistic than "Konami's astonishingly good work in PES 2017". 

Goal agrees Fifa 17 looks good, saying the "likenesses of top players are top-notch" and EA Sports remains "ahead of its rivals" in terms of presentation.

However, "on the pitch is where it really matters and this is where Fifa lets you down". The game is too slow, it says, and while this may be more realistic, it doesn't make for exciting gameplay.

Goal marks Fifa 17 seven out of ten, concluding The Journey is "fun" and overall the game is "fine" – but nothing more. PES is "the best interpretation of football ever put on a gaming disc", it adds. 

Usually, says The Independent, Fifa is "dependable but boring", with nothing much changing between each year's release except the teams. "One felt a little like being ripped off."

But this year feels like a new game, says the newspaper, and one "actually worth getting". The gameplay is improved and The Journey is "fun and sometimes emotional", if limited.

Fifa 17 is a "truly great game", says the Indy, while "PES is good but not good enough".

Similarly, Polygon feels Fifa fans will find it hard to grumble over the new title. Thanks to The Journey, Fifa 17 "feels like a reintroduction to the things that have made this series EA Sports’ pride and joy for the past eight years".

Tweaks to other game modes are sure to be popular with long-time fans, it adds, citing the new range of objectives issued in the managerial aspect of Career, which add a few extra twists to the long, hard, season-after-season slog. On-pitch refinements such as new set-pieces are welcome additions too, says Polygon, which awards the game nine out of ten.

Where to buy

Morrisons has the cheapest price, with Fifa 17 setting you back £38 at the supermarket. Alternatively, you can get it delivered from Tesco Direct for £40.

The deluxe edition is available from Game for £59.99 on both PS4 and Xbox One, while the Xbox 360 deluxe version is slightly cheaper at £57.99. 

Pop into a Game store on the high street, though, and the standard version costs £45.99 on both consoles.

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