When is FIFA 20 out? Release date, ‘Volta’ career mode details, trailer and everything else we know
E3 is slowly getting underway, and gaming fans are gearing up for big announcement of new games.
But EA Games – the publishers behind the world famous FIFA series of football games – got in early with their EA Play live stream on 8 June, ahead of gaming’s biggest expo.
One of the biggest announcements to come out of EA Play was the reveal of FIFA 20, the next yearly update to the sporting franchise.
New modes, features and gameplay tweaks are coming to the game. Here’s everything you need to know:
What is FIFA 20?
FIFA 20 is the next instalment in the FIFA series of football games, often considered the definitive virtual recreation of the sport.
Aiming to present the beautiful game as realistically as possible, the FIFA games feature fully licensed teams, players, stadiums… everything down to the kits.
By this point, FIFA’s presentation and footballing gameplay are pretty solid, with new games in the series being released yearly since 1993.
But each new game adds a few features and tightens up the core gameplay a little.
What is ‘Volta’ football?
Fans of the FIFA Street games will be happy to see new mode, Volta Football.
Those games took the FIFA footballing formula and boiled it down to five-a-side games of futsal, the fast-paced, finesse heavy variant of soccer played on hard courts with a smaller ball.
FIFA 20’s Volta mode will do the same, and replaces FIFA’s story-driven career mode, The Journey.
Last year’s FIFA 19 introduced the ‘House Rules’ option, which allowed players to toggle interesting rule sets like turning off cards for a more aggressive game, or removing players from the field when goals were scored.
Volta will incorporate that idea in this year’s game, and you’ll be able to play 3-on-3 and 4-on-4 matches with no keepers, 4-on-4 and 5-on-5 with keepers, and professional futsal.
Volta itself will be split into two modes, ‘Kick Off’ and ‘World’. The former will let you use real-world players in mini versions of their teams, and the latter has you create a single player at the start.
They can be male or female, and there will be a multitude of options for customisation, from tattoos to clothes and footwear.
You’ll also have to set up your home pitch, choosing a team size and your preferred pitch type, and once your team is up and running, beating an opponent will allow you to ‘steal’ a copy of one of their players for use in your squad.
“This year, we are embedding a whole new experience with VOLTA Football into the game that reflects how many footballers started out their careers in the streets,” said executive producer Aaron McHardy.
“This is a unique aspect of the sport that gives our players an experience unlike anything they have ever seen before,” he said. “We’ve also focused on delivering key gameplay updates that raise the level of realism and quality across the game.”
“With small sided football ingrained in FIFA 20, players can take the learnings from the streets and apply them to the stadium or vice versa.”
What else is new?
A number of tweaks have been made to the gameplay in FIFA 20, as the developers continue to refine the experience.
The pace of the game has been altered, meaning the fast players on your team will actually feel faster than players with slower stats, and the AI defending has been reigned in a little to make it slightly more forgiving.
The idea is to spread players across the field as opposed to having them bunch up in areas around the ball, a decision that EA hope will result in more one-on-one situations in games.
The ball itself has had its physics tweaked, meaning it will now bobble off the turf (and any trailing limbs) realistically, will move slower and less predictably, and will be affected by its spin when you strike it.
Then there’s the “Decisive Moments” system, “which overhauls the fundamentals of shooting to give players more consistent and clinical finishing,” said EA, “and Controlled Tackling that utilizes the Active Touch System to add a variety of new tackling animations.”
When can I play it?
FIFA 20 will be released on 27 September for Xbox One, PS4 and Nintendo Switch.
EA Access players can get a week’s early play, with the game launching on the subscription service on 19 September.
It’s worth noting that the Nintendo Switch version of the game will be a so-called “Legacy” edition, meaning Volta and the game’s other big new features won’t be present.
“You’re gonna get a fresh new look in Switch, with kits and player lists and all of that,” executive producer Aaron McHardy told Eurogamer. “But you’re not going to be getting Volta or any of the big new features.”