FIFA 22 has been officially confirmed as coming this year. While a new entry in EA Sports' juggernaut football franchise is expected every fall, fans are still eager to see what improvements have been made to the biggest sports game in the world.
This year’s entry could see the franchise take some significant leaps. FIFA 22 is the first in the series to launch on PS5 and Xbox Series X, and the development team at EA Vancouver is promising that FIFA 22 will take full advantage of the power of the next-gen consoles.
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While the game was only recently unveiled we have already received a slew of details about what changes and improvements are coming to this year’s FIFA 2022. For starters, we know that PSG star Kylian Mbappe will once again grace the cover, after being the face of FIFA 21 as well.
It’s already been confirmed that we won’t have to wait long for even more details, thanks to the EA Play Live Spotlight event taking place July 20, but until then here’s everything we know so far about FIFA 22.
FIFA 22 release date
If you want to kick off even earlier, the Ultimate Edition will give you four days early access, so you can start playing on September 27. Typically early access is also granted to EA Play members as part of the services game trial function, though that’s not been confirmed for FIFA 22 yet.
It’s also worth noting that unlike last year the standard edition of the game doesn’t come with access to both the PS4/PS4 and Xbox One/Xbox Series X versions of the game. If you want Dual Entitlement then you’ll need to opt for the more expensive Ulitmate Edition.
As per usual the Nintendo Switch version will be classified as a “Legacy Edition”, which essentially means that it’ll have no new features and will be unchanged from the previous year’s installment bar updated rosters and kits.
FIFA 22 trailer
So far EA has only released a single trailer for FIFA 22. The trailer feels plenty of in-engine footage and shows off the new animations that will be in the game courtesy of the new Hypermotion animation system.
FIFA 22 gameplay
EA has yet to release gameplay footage of FIFA 22, though it’s expected that we’ll get some later this month.
We do however know that the flagship addition to the game this year will be the Hypermotion animation system. This next-gen only feature (sorry PS4 and Xbox One players) gives an “unprecedented volume of high-quality real-human movement data” and is responsible for over 4,000 new animations being added to the game. Player movement both on and off the ball should look more realistic than ever thanks to EA capturing data from actual 11v11 matches.
FIFA 22 will also sport a new AI system for goalkeepers. This is much needed after the leaky nature of goalkeepers in FIFA 21. The new system will allow for more reliable and realistic shot-stopping, and goalkeeper personalities will make each player react differently depending on the situation as well. When the pressure is on, expect your keeper to make more mistakes.
Ball physics is another area that has been addressed for FIFA 22. Allowing the ball to move more realistically and often in a less predictable way. A smaller addition is Explosive Sprints, which enable players to perform a quick burst of energy to pull away from a defender or catch a darting striker. It should add an additional level of control to both attacking and defending play.
FIFA 22 Ultimate Team
Ultimate Team is FIFA’s most popular mode, so it’s little surprise that it’ll be placed front and center in FIFA 22 with fresh several tweaks promised.
FUT 22 will see both Divisions Rivals and FUT Champions redesigned in order to create a “more accessible way to test your skills and progress against other players”. These two flagship modes are hugely popular with players, so EA will no doubt go into specifics of what’s been altered soon.
A new item coming to FUT this year is Hero cards. These celebrate some of football’s most memorable players and moments. Chemistry works a little different on these cards: "FUT Heroes have unique league-specific chemistry which is tied to their specific hero moment, providing a green Club link to any player within the same league as well as the usual nation link."
We don’t yet know exactly how many FUT heroes will be in the game but nine have been confirmed so far: Mario Gomez, Tim Cahill, Diego Milito, Jorge Campos, Fernando Morientes, Sami Al-Jaber, Robbie Keane, Abedi Pele and Clint Dempsey.
FIFA 22 Career Mode
Players often accuse EA of neglecting Career Mode in favor of focusing on FUT, but EA is promising that more significant changes will be coming to the main single-player mode in FIFA 22.
The biggest is that you will be able to create your own club in this year’s game, rather than having to pick from a real-world team. You can then lead your newly formed club from relegation fodder to global giants.
EA has made lots of noise about improving Career Mode before that ultimately haven’t really panned out, so we’ll wait for more details before declaring that the mode has finally got the attention it deserves but the early signs are promising.
FIFA 22 Pro Clubs
Pro Clubs is one of FIFA’s most enjoyable modes but has seen very few updates or improvements in recent iterations. EA is also promising that this mode will be given some much-needed attention in FIFA 22.
There will be new customization options, a new player growth system, and streamlined social play to make getting into a game even easier. They all seem like welcome additions, though none sound especially groundbreaking.
FIFA 22 Ratings
The official player ratings for FIFA 22 haven’t been revealed yet. We typically get them closer to launch, so expect them in late August or early September. As to who will be the highest-rated player in the game? Lionel Messi is the obvious choice, but cover-star Kylian Mbappe will likely be up there as well.
FIFA 22 Demo
FIFA games usually get a demo roughly two or three weeks prior to launch. However, FIFA 21 bucked the trend by being the first in over a decade to not have a pre-release demo.
EA claimed this was due to the team’s need to focus on finishing the full game. This could happen again with FIFA 22, especially as the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is still very much having an impact on game development.
If there is a demo expect it to be confirmed closer to launch but don’t be surprised if EA once again forgoes releasing one.