It is an exciting time with FIFA 20 just days away from release, with a demo announcement expected imminently.
Let’s see what EA has done to make the game better than the gameplay seen in FIFA 19 and where the potential question marks remain.
Speed of Gameplay
From the Beta, we have seen that the speed of gameplay is significantly slower in FIFA 20. This is definitely a positive factor as we can finally formulate our attacks similar to real life.
FIFA 19 Ultimate Team rewarded thoughtless gameplay.
This came from performing the same repetitive skill moves over and over again, or quick-fire passing without the need to strategise a way to break the opponent’s defence.
Thankfully, this year it looks like there is more strategy and balance behind the game.
This should make gameplay more enjoyable for football lovers as there should be more thought behind attacks.
Different Styles of Play
In FIFA 19 Ultimate Team, fast build-up was very overpowered. The game heavily rewarded quick counter-attacks or even easy kick off goals.
Hopefully, by the looks of it, the extremely quick transitions from last year look to be fixed. Your opponent would counter attack and suddenly be joined by seven of their players before even entering the box.
Hopefully, by reducing the speed of gameplay and actually causing players to play more according to their work rates and attacking position we can see different styles of play all be effective.
We want to see a variation of play just like in real life. Where teams can play high pressure like Liverpool, tiki-taka like Man City or park the bus.
What has been boring in previous versions of FUT is that everyone has virtually the same team and plays virtually the same way.
The game mechanics have a lot to do with this as no one wants to play a style that is not effective. This year promises to change that.
Passing Still Has Some Niggles
Given that passing is so fundamental to having a successful football team you would want more control over it in FIFA 20 Ultimate Team.
However, it seems that assisted passing is still highly effective and doesn’t require players to have to think much about playing good passes.
In addition, you can hit a pass and not really have to worry about power or direction and still hit an inch-perfect pass most of the time.
I wouldn’t say that passing has gotten worse, I just wouldn’t say that EA has made an attempt to reward players who can pass better.
What was frustrating to see is that 180-degree passing still works. You press the pass button with your back facing your goal and you get an accurate pass almost all the time. This is something Konami have corrected on PES 2020 this year.
Dribbling and Improvements in Defending
Improvements in dribbling remain uncertain as there didn’t seem much change to FIFA 19 in that regard in the Beta.
Hopefully, there will be some improvements in dribbling when the FIFA 20 launches.
A key improvement to FIFA 20 is the defending and the fact that there is much more emphasis on manual defending. You can not rely solely on the AI to defend for you anymore.
Question Marks About Shooting
First time shooting in FIFA 19 Ultimate Team was incredibly frustrating. So many FUT 19 players were able to score first time finishes from all types of angles and positions.
In reality to score a first touch shot it is pretty tough and has a low conversion rate.
When FIFA 20 releases we can see if they have made more patch improvements to shooting, as the Beta was inconclusive regarding to the over effectiveness of first time shooting.
Final Thoughts on FIFA 20 Ultimate Team vs FIFA 19
Ultimately, FIFA 20 Ultimate Team looks to provide a much more complete gameplay than FIFA 19 Ultimate Team.
FIFA 20 finally promises us a game with tactical knowhow and potential for the skill gap to increase once more. Whereby, real football fans should be rewarded with their understanding.
However, with EA it is never perfect as the new skill moves, particularly the Drop Back skill move seems overpowered. The La Croqueta (Iniesta skill move) from FIFA 19 was extremely overpowered and it seems that this new skill move will follow suit.
We hope EA can prevent people from focusing only on the most effective skill move or way of playing. Rather, that varied skill moves or playing styles are promoted.
This makes playing FIFA 20 Ultimate Team much more vibrant and interesting.