Online gaming is dominated by microtransactions nowadays, but it is always nice when gamers get the opportunity to pick up something for free.
It is even better when it is something you actually want to use and, despite being criticised for their lack of generosity in the past, EA Sports have come up trumps with their latest addition to FIFA Ultimate Team.
Real Sociedad's Martin Odegaard and Manchester United's Dan James feature as the rewards for completing a series of challenges in-game and for once, they are not unrealistically difficult to complete.
How do you earn them?
There are four versions of each player's card that can be unlocked - getting progressively better as you work through the challenges.
CHOICE! Players also have the choice of a LM, ST or RM.
Dan James begins as a 75-rated LM and peaks as an 86-rated RM, he can be unlocked by completing a series of challenges in the offline game mode Squad Battles.
Meanwhile, Martin Odegaard begins his Future Stars life as an 80-rated RW and finishes up as a rather tasty looking 87-rated CAM. The challenges to unlock the Norwegian prodigy are centred around the online mode Division Rivals.
You can find more information on how to unlock these Future Stars here.
Why is this so good?
Well, like we have alluded to already, these cards are perfectly realistic for any FIFA gamer to work towards and they will cost you absolutely nothing.
Add these cards to the Milestone players which can also be unlocked, albeit with a bit more hustle, and you can build yourself quite the team, without the need for microtransactions.
WINGERS! You could have an 86-rated Dan James and an 85-rated Leandro Trossard for FREE
The Icon-Swaps challenges are another route to unlocking free cards, but as you would expect, these require a LOT more work.
EA finally catching up?
Now we can praise EA for giving FUT players the opportunity to pick up these special cards for free, but other developers have been doing this for years.
American gaming developers 2K Sports - behind hit sports series such as WWE 2K and NBA 2K - have been highly criticised for their use of microtransactions, but they have had locker codes in their game for as long as I can remember.
BOOM! This locker-code gave players the chance to pick up Diamond Earl Monroe for FREE!
These codes allow you the chance to unlock players or packs or anything in between and whilst they are rarely anything spectacular, the regularity with which they are released means fans can't complain!
READ MORE: FIFA 20 Winter Ones to Watch Prediction – Eriksen, Bergwijn & moreSo could this be the start of a new era for FIFA's Ultimate Team? Yes, players are always going to buy packs, but putting in these special cards for free helps those who can't - or don't want to - buy into the microtransaction hype.