In Depth

Fifa 19: reviews, soundtrack, EA Access and where to buy

The popular football series is back - but is it a hit with the critics?

The launch of Fifa 19 on consoles and PC today marks the return of Champions and Europa leagues to the series following a ten-year absence.

The title, developed by the Vancouver-based studio of EA Sports, features all the teams and players of this year and 2019’s Premier League seasons. 

Gamers can play as football legends including Cristiano Ronaldo or Neymar da Silva Santos (better known as Neymar), who are the cover stars for this year’s instalment in the Fifa series.

With Fifa 19 now available in stores and through the EA Access subscription service, here is a full rundown of the new game, plus the critics’ verdicts.

What do reviewers says?

The Guardian calls Fifa 19 “a true simulation of modern football: brash and bloated yet also slickly professional”.

The new title gives “attackers and defenders chances to look amazing in equal measure”, says the newspaper, although matches can become so “crazy” that they can feel “authored”.

Meanwhile, IGN reports that after a three-year run, the single player story mode, called The Journey, brings fictional footballer Alex Hunter’s adventures to a close “with a 16-hour campaign that’s more soap opera than Sopranos”.

However, while the story feels “underbaked”, the addition of the Battle Royale-inspired Survival mode to the game livens things up, says the games site. This mode sees players omitted from the pitch each time the player scores a goal, which “theoretically” gives the other team an edge and forces gamers to come up with new tactics to outwit the opposition. 

Digital Trends gives Fifa 19 a fairly unimpressive score of seven out of ten, because it is “largely the same game you got last year, especially if you don’t care about the campaign mode”.

That said, the tech site praises the game for delivering an “excellent” football simulation that will keep fans entertained for hours.

When is it out?

Fifa 19 is available now. Prices for the standard edition of the game kick off at £49.99 for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on Amazon. The figure rises to £59.99 for PC players. 

Players on older consoles, such as the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Nintendo Switch, can snap up the game for £45.99 on Amazon.

The Champions Edition, which includes exclusive player kits, costs £69.99 on the PS4 and Xbox One. Switch users, meanwhile, can buy it slightly cheaper at £59.99.

Does it release early through EA Access?

Absolutely. Those who sign up to the £19.99 per year EA Access gaming subscription service can download and play Fifa 19 without paying full price for the game.

What’s new about the game?

There are a host of new features in Fifa 19, even though it’s an evolution of last year’s game, says Gamespot

One of the most striking additions is that the Champions and Europa leagues will be included in the series for the first time in over a decade, the website says. EA has managed to recruit official commentators Derek Rae and Lee Dixon to offer “expert commentary” during Champions League matches.

In addition, there’s a new Custom League that lets players create their own championship where teams from different leagues can go head-to-head with each other.

EA has also added a handful of tweaks to the gameplay mechanics, says Metro

These range from an “active touch” system that allows players to have more control over the ball to more “tactical options” for goal scoring.

Character animations have also been improved, according to Tech Radar. Players will notice “more physicality” between footballers when they collide on the pitch.

How about the soundtrack?

The artists providing music for this year’s game include Childish Gambino, Gorillaz, Labrinth, Sia and Diplo, reports Goal.

Along with these stars, Fifa 19 will feature “lesser known musicians”, according to the football news site. These include Washington-based indie band Death Cab For Cutie and Ladama – a band whose members hail from South America and the US. 

A full rundown of all 33 songs can be found on the Fifa 19 Spotify playlist. 

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