Some Thoughts On The (Pretty Good) FIFA 15 Demo

Some Thoughts On The (Pretty Good) FIFA 15 Demo

Every year I download the demo of the latest FIFA game, play it for a bit, nod then put it away and wait for the actual game to turn up before I start putting serious hours in. This year, I can’t stop playing the demo.

For the first time in a few years, this feels like a fairly new FIFA game. It’s far from the drastic overhaul you’d have hoped for given this is the first year there’s a market for the PS4/XB1 version, but within the confines of sports games – where even the tiniest change can be made by marketing to seem ground-breaking – there’s a lot to appreciate here.

Note that I’ve been playing on Xbox One (whose demo went live earlier in the week), so some of the smoother/prettier things I mention may not apply if you’re soldiering on with an Xbox 360 or PS3.

Here’s the good:

  • The game feels tighter. The last few years have seen both player and ball movement get a little “floaty”, but that’s been changed noticeably for FIFA 15, especially when it comes to stuff like crosses and shots.
  • One of my biggest problems with FIFA 14 was how it handled throughballs, which are a big part of how I play. Basically, even if there was a mile of green space in front of you and a supporting player breaking through, if a defender was anywhere in front of you a throughball would somehow magically seek him out and break up the play (I know, there are manual options, but ugh). In the FIFA 15 demo, if there’s a defender in the way, the player with ball will often slightly “dink” the throughball over the defender’s feet. It’s a small touch, but one which really opened the game up for me.
  • This will only matter if you follow a Premier League team, but the new league-specific presentation looks pretty sweet, and that’s only taking the single ground (Anfield) available in the demo into account. The pre-game camera actually sits in the tunnel beneath the famous “THIS IS ANFIELD” banner. Nice touch. Overall the presentation seems vastly improved in other areas as well, especially the new TV-style highlights and pre-game lineup announcements.

And the bad:

  • This is a weird OCD issue I might have, something you may never have even noticed, but the distorted font FIFA uses on the back of shirts – in a series that otherwise prides itself on visual accuracy – has always struck me as odd. It’s still there, and it still bugs the shit out of me every time the camera pans over a team while they’re lining up before a game.

With only one ground and a handful of teams available to play as, there’s not much more digging to be done in the demo. But if you haven’t got it yet and are interested at all in the series, I’d definitely recommend grabbing the demo and checking it out.


  • I noticed in the demo when you play straight away (Liverpool v Man City) that the computer controller Man City players will run to the corner, then run towards goal hugging the goal line and shoot from the tight angle and 99 times out of a 100 they will score.

    I like how the virtual scoreboard is shoved right in the top left hand corner and it’s out of the way of the action (it use to bug me a lot when you are running down the left/right wing (top part of your screen)…whilst the scoreboard will go transparent…it wasn’t transparent enough and there are times you could lose the ball

    Yep you’re going to get the kiddies screaming “NOTHING”S CHANGED” or “SAME AS LAST YEAR” but for a 2nd go around on the PS4/XBone…it’s pretty good

    Not I’m waiting for the PES 2015 demo so I can make a comparison

  • I dunno I’m not totally impressed by it, still gonna get it with Xbox One EA early access and buy it later… but I feel the gameplay doesn’t feel natural, this may just need time for me to adjust as far as I can remember I had the same feeling when playing the 14 demo last year

  • For me, playing the PS4 demo, actually feels like I am playing a new game for the first time in years. Somehow they’ve managed to make the flow of the game feel more natural, but tighter at the same time.

    The presentation using the premier league graphics makes it look refreshingly new but familiar.

    I like that it feels like I can slow down and dribble properly and not just kick and Chase with speedy wingers

  • Its the small things in this one that make it a lot better. I love the fact that when liverpool is playing at Anfield, the fans will sing YNWA before the match starts, it might seem small, but it adds a lot to the atmosphere. And the fact that the new engine is on pc now.

  • I think the game looks good, feels pretty good. There are some times I feel like the ball physics are alittle off,particularly in the pase of the ball. My biggest problem, and a very subjective one, is the player ratings. They seem to have missed on a lot of player ratings that ive seen poping up online and inmthe demo.

  • the game is almost too realistic, which is good and bad. the bad part is that the players are incredibly weak and can trip over almost anything. and i compared messi to a 80 pace player the 80 pace player is incredibly close to catching up. if ea can actually calculate the distance for the player’s paces it would be better. so far i give this game 4/10

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