EA Sports has made a ton of new changes to kickoff mode for FIFA 19, with the mode now allowing gamers to pick from several new kickoff modes like Survival, No Rules, and Cup Finals. In short, EA Sports knows that gamers jump into matches against their friends in Kickoff mode a lot, and they want to make that experience better.
That’s why Kickoff Mode now tracks head-to-head statistics against friends, who will now be fed plenty of fuel for the banter bus.
Any local player can now access a quick login system that ties a local kickoff account to their respective gamertag or PSN ID, allowing FIFA 19 to continually track their stats regardless of where they’re playing.
When Player A now faces Player B, they’ll be greeted with head-to-head statistics for each kickoff game mode like their Win/Draw/Loss ratio, successful tackle rates, longest winning streaks, goals per match, penalties, and red cards. The multiple screens of info will even break down the goal placement areas in the net by percentage, conversion rates, average ball possession, and which attacking zone players are frequenting.
The statistics are pretty in-depth, and allow for both bragging rights for the overall victor and a tactical analysis that may impact how players approach the game.
These statistics are limited to the pre-game show, so players shouldn’t expect a popup mid-game talking about how Cristiano Ronaldo has 6 goals in the last 9 games against a certain player. Still, the statistics add a great level of banter between friends – and they were something that many friends tracked against one another anyway.
Creative Director Matt Prior anticipates that statistics tracking will be a very popular feature, though he couldn’t confirm if these statistics will carry forward into FIFA 20 as opposed to resetting each year:
I think it will be a very successful mode, I think it does add a new layer of depth and meaning to every single game. No game is kind of throw-any anymore. It all contributes to the stats and your bragging rights. So [stats being forwarded to next year] is something that potentially we can look at. Like I say, I anticipate it being popular.
Of course, the lesser-skilled players may not be eager to have statistics in their face ahead of every kickoff game. EA Sports has something in its pocket for players who like to play against friends of varying skill levels, too: dynamic AI. The CPU difficulty can now be set for each team individually, so a more talented player can handicap themselves with Amateur AI teammates, while the less-skilled player has Legendary AI moving their players into position and making runs. It’ll make games more competitive, and helps keeps a balance so those less good at FIFA can still have fun with their mates.
EA Sports has completely overhauled Kickoff Mode this year, and the idea of stat-tracking between all of these new modes is definitely exciting for gamers who enjoy playing against their friends (though it does track against CPU opposition, too).
At its heart, Kickoff was always about friends facing off against one another for bragging rights, and now there’ll be more discussion points (read: arguments) backed up by official FIFA 19 stats. Like EA Sports is always saying: It’s in the game.
FIFA 19 will release for Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One this September 28, 2018.
You can find John on Twitter at @Makelevi, where he’ll absolutely accept challenges in any of the new kickoff game modes.