FIFA 21 – Review in Progress


When sporting events are in extended limbo and uncertainties are hung, what better way than to spend it with a game of digital Football.

This is my first 24-hour experience with FIFA 21. A football fan myself, being able to play my favorite athletes and simulate games and scenarios is a thrill. FIFA 21 honors its past players and relies on those players’ know-how of the game’s controls and mechanics.

I did not play the previous installment of FIFA and struggled with identifying certain menus in the game, such as its story mode and management. The controls, if one is accustomed to sports video games, are basically standard. Square for Shoot, X for pass, R2 for sprinting, etc.

Those standards of controls in sports video games are what I love about the genre, as it takes their target audience into high regard and avoids the drastic changes that could ruin the muscle memory the players have installed in them.

The game starts off with a quick match. You are Paris Saint-Germaine F.C. with star Neymar and the rest of the team in your control. It’s a refresher for past players to get the hang of controls in an easy match. For new players, however, there will not be any outright control prompts. The match is also unskippable, so new players and newcomers to the sports video game genre will be left guessing or reading through the settings.

Afterward, you are taken to a menu that determines your style of gaming. What I particularly loved about FIFA is the options of making the game accessible to individuals that will find it useful. Text-to-Speech text for menus is an available option, along with toggling subtitles or not.

The game’s main menu is beautiful, however, a lack of description from the get-go left me guessing. I wanted to start off with story mode, and because I did not play the previous installment, I couldn’t figure out where it is. Career Mode is misleading to fans of the genre, as in FIFA, it’s simply playing through a season in a character you’ve created or one of the real-life rookies.

Volta is what story mode is called in FIFA. It’s a huge testament to the backbone of the entire sports industry: the streets. I have not gone very far into the mode nor into the gameplay itself, but the premise is exciting.

FIFA, and football in general, is also one of the most inclusive gaming experiences one could ask for. The option to play as a woman in an all-female team or in a mixed team is amazing. As a fellow female, to be represented in video games is important to me and to the young girls that are still learning to love the sport.

Expect my full review soon.

The game code has been provided by the publisher for review.