Fifa 20: Ultimate Team, game play and Volta

Last updated at 07:43
Jadon Sancho Fifa 20.EA Sports

Just as real-life footballers start to prepare for a new league campaign, gamers will be playing their final few matches on Fifa 19.

But a new season means a new Fifa, and if you think breezing through Fifa 19 will make you a star player on Fifa 20, think again, because it's going to be very different.

Fifa 20 is the 27th edition of the annual game developed by EA Sports. First published in 1993 and every year since, it allows players to compete in a variety of football competitions that replicate real life tournaments, including the Champions League which returns again for this title.

Game Play

First things first, Fifa 20 will feel a lot slower when compared to '19. That's not necessarily a bad thing, '19 often felt frantic and, although end-to-end action is exciting, it wasn't very authentic when compared to the real thing.

That's not to say that fast counter attacks won't happen, it just means they will happen less often, with much more focus on build up play.

AI is also a big part of the Fifa 20, EA are reducing the amount of AI defensive support and are instead concentrating on the user's defending. So we presume this will mean players will have to take time to re-master defensive play on the game. This may require gamers to switch between multiple defenders rather than relying the R1 or RB buttons for AI support.

To be honest, AI defenders doing daft things was often the cause of rage quitting on Fifa, so it was definitely a feature that needed an overhaul.

EA also say that "timing is everything" when it comes to tackling on the new game and there are a heap of new tackling animations that players can perform to win the ball back.

Eriksen taking a penalty on FIFA20EA Sports
Penalties and free-kicks will be completely different on the new game
What about attacking on the game?

Just like real football matches, goals win games on Fifa too. The challenge in the real and virtual world is getting that all important shot off on goal. EA has introduced a set up touch in the new game. It will involve rolling the ball forward to get a clean effort on goal. Players will require time and space to perform a set up touch, but it will mean your strike is more likely to be on target.

In Fifa 20, there's also a new system called 'strafe dribbling' allowing players to drop the shoulder in order to throw off defenders.

One-on-ones are going to be a big part of the new game, so whoever tops their individual battle, defenders or attackers, could go a long way in deciding who wins the match.

As an attacking player, once you beat a defender, EA has now incorporated a knock-on system so that attackers can knock the ball into space, build up speed and burst past opposing players. So expect the likes of Kylian Mbappé and Marcus Rashford to leave defenders for dust in the new game.

Free-kicks and penalties

Free-kicks and penalties have been completely changed in Fifa 20, this time relying on a target system on screen. In Fifa 19, penalties relied on an arrow and power bar, now you can literally pick your spot on the goal with a target. Of course there has to be an element skill involved, so expect to have to precisely time when you hit the circle or B button.

In Fifa 19, free-kicks involved moving the camera to direct where the ball would go. In Fifa 20, the camera stays fixed, while you move a target, lock it in place and then it's all about the right stick on the controller.

From here you have to select what kind of spin you want to put on the ball. You can do side spin, top spin, no spin, or a combination, which is based on how you swing the right stick. We know it's an old reference, but you can bend it like Beckham or hammer the ball home with swerve and dip just like Christiano Ronaldo. If you don't get things quite right, that ball is flying right into row z!

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Fifa 19: Alex Hunter and the actor who plays him

Game Modes

The end of The Journey for Alex Hunter

Sadly for fans of The Journey, Alex Hunter, Kim Hunter and Danny Williams' stories ended in Fifa 19. Alex's rise from nothing to global star was a popular feature of the last three Fifa games, but '20 is taking it back to the streets.

Fifa Street / Volta

Fifa Street, which was a popular game in it's own right is about to go mainstream and five-a-side football is being brought to the main Fifa game for the first time since Fifa 98. The game mode is called 'Volta', which means "to return" in Portuguese. Volta will feature customisable players in 3v3, 4v4 and 5v5 matches, each with different rules, just like pro futsal games.

Volta Football is also where virtual male and female footballers can play together on the same pitch.

Expect more changes and features to be announced in the coming months, especially when it comes to Ultimate Team and Career Mode.

Volta street football from FIFA 20.EA Sports
EA is bringing a new game mode to FIFA 20, 'Volta' - which is basically street football
Women's club football on FIFA?

The Women's World Cup was a huge success in France this summer, and Fifa 19 featured the competition in The Journey with Kim Hunter. So far club football from the women's game hasn't been included in Fifa games, but is that about to change? We'll have to wait and see, but a Fifa graphic of Chelsea's Fran Kirby modelling the Blues' new kit for 19/20 was revealed on the club's Instagram story recently. So could that mean we see the Women's Super League or maybe the women's Champions League on Fifa 20?

A digital image of Fran Kirby.Chelsea FC
Could the Women's Super League feature in Fifa 20? Chelsea shared this digital image of Fran Kirby from the game on their Insta
When does Fifa 20 come out?

Fifa 20 will be released for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC on, or around, September 27, 2019. Pre-ordering will get you access to the game three days early (September 24), while EA Access members get access over a week before general release on September 19, 2019. The demo should be available from 12th September.

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