Subscribing to the theory that multi sport athletes tend to outperform their singly focused peers, at least to the age of about 15 or 16, I’ve signed our twins up for soccer this spring instead of lacrosse. Where we live there are about 3 x times the number of kids playing soccer than other sports, at least in the burbs, which helps getting up early on a Saturday morning an easier sell. About half the kids on the team they know from school.
So far, our 8 year-olds are eating it up, not minding jumping into the fracas, happily bumping elbows, knees, and sculls as they do at this age, a soccer match looking very much like a fox hunt. It takes a bit of personal restraint not to become a soccer parent, nee coach, and bellow out, “Space Scarlett! Have you forgotten how to get space?” No, far better to stand arms folded over chest, behind baseball hat and sunglasses, the silent observer pretending that this is not our first rodeo.
So much to learn.
To that end, I went digging through some unopened PS4 games that I had inherited from my wife, when she cleaned out her office at Coke two years ago. At some point she had worked on a collaboration with EA Sports. Sure enough, there lay FIFA 17. NHL 17 too. Hell yeah.
I think, not knowing how well the games would have aged, both released in 2016. The relatively new TV would help.
I popped in the soccer title and after the obligatory update, we were thrown right into none other than Chelsea v Man U. No tutorial or settings, just here you are sucker. Let’s see what console football chops you have.
Well, none actually. It took me most of the first half to determine how to move a player, and do some basic passing and shooting. We chose the blue jerseys and judging by the shot differential at the half, our 2 to Man U’s 19, our goaltender must have had an EPO infusion pre match to keep the score 0:1.
The second half went better, me figuring out how to switch defenders, and not putting 13 balls out of touch (?) as we did in the first. The score remained as in the first half and we felt very much like USA in the 1990 WC losing to Italy 0:1 in Group 1 play. We puffed up our chests and thought that the AI must be pretty weak.
That is until I realized that the game was just gauging my skill level, to which it promptly suggested that I leave game settings on NOOB.
OK. I kept playing for another hour and declared it , easily worthy of the precious drive space that it consumed. The kids looked interested too. The only reason that we didn’t try some offline multiplayer was that I didn’t know how to set that up and it was approaching their bed time.
So we are happy for the time being. Question for you console FIFA gurus. When we burn out in the 2017 edition are there newer versions worth owning? It would need to allow offline multiplayer so that two of us could play a match using two controllers.