The first details on FIFA 14 point to continued refinement of the gameplay in EA Sports' top-selling, critically acclaimed football franchise. But what wasn't announced also is noteworthy.
FIFA 14 is, so far, slated to release for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC—with "additional platforms" to be announced later. That most likely means a PlayStation 4 and new Xbox version at the launch of those consoles, rather than Wii U—a console absent from Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14, as well as the upcoming NCAA Football 14 and NHL 14.
For those with the 360, PS3, or PC, the most distinctive all-new feature discussed was a "Global Scouting Network" to assist your career mode club in a year-round search for talent. "Scouts can evaluate footballers all over the world to uncover the attributes and traits of every player in the game, in preparation for the transfer windows," a news release said.
Other bullet points dealt largely with in-game enhancements, such as another upgrade to teammate intelligence and ball physics, ballhandling maneuvers like protecting the ball, sprint dribble turns, and variable touches while dribbling, which brings each player's skill at dribbling and running more into play.
"Pure Shot" is the big sales pitch at this stage, and it promises players will auto-adjust their stride and angle to try to find the best target when shooting on goal. That, combined with new shot animations, are meant to make finishing a more exhilirating experience, properly capping off the tension building up through a scoring opportunity.
A specific release date was not announced but the game typically arrives at the end of September. Eight additional screenshots were released; they are below. For EA Sports' full statement on FIFA 14, see here.