I'm right in the middle of playing both FIFA 14 and PES 2014 (I'll be comparing them here next week). But as I play them - and in particular the former, which is looking old - my mind drifts to what the football games of the next (or next) generation could/should look like.
And I'm pretty sure they should like this. Up top is an ad, released last month, showing English Premier League outfit (complete with the now-gone Carlos Tevez) Manchester City being put through their paces in a training session. The best parts, though, are the pre-game bits, walking down the tunnel and out into the lineups. I've put some other virtual athlete clips below.
I say this because sports games in 2013 are way too intent on replicating the broadcast experience, or tailoring their structure towards armchair strategists and managers.
Fuck that. That's selling video games short. If we're going to control fake footballers and direct them to do amazing things, why not go for the same immediacy that other genres have found makes their games such compelling experiences?
I've complained about this before, recently, but that was with lame training videos. These give you a much better idea of what I'm talking about.
Seeing Pro Evo replicate a national anthem lineup is like walking through a wax museum. But if you were out there, in first-person, crowd booming in your ears, Oculus Rift (or futuristic successor) strapped to your face...that's what I'd want from a sports game.
We play GTA for the rush of escaping the cops. We play Call of Duty for the rush of the lethal shooting gallery. We should be playing sports games to experience the thrill of being a World Cup-winning goal-scorer, not watching one on the TV.