Fifa 15 is not broken, insists Electronic Arts

Fifa 15 publisher Electronic Arts has launched a stern defence of its decision to reconfigure the transfer market within the game’s popular Ultimate Team mode. In a blog post seen by the Guardian before publication, the company insists that fans who have taken to social media and games forums to declare the game fundamentally broken are wide of the mark.

Ultimate Team works like a trading card game, allowing players to purchase packs of digital player “cards” allowing them to build fantasy teams of well-known stars. Previously, FUT’s open-bid auction system allowed fans to sell high value players at vastly inflated prices. However, many Fifa purchasers quickly found that they could exploit the open auctions for considerable monetary gain. In early March, the system was restricted so that all cards on the market have to be priced within an EA-defined range, and include a Buy It Now option. Fans responded with near-universal criticism of the move, going so far as to coin the hashtag #RIPFUT on social media.

In its extensive blog post and FAQ , EA confirms that the prime target of these changes were third parties manipulating the system for their own financial gain. “We want to keep the game fair and secure for everyone, and ensure a level playing field for all FUT fans,” says EA. “To accomplish this we have to root out the activities of coin farmers and cheaters who are harming your experience. These exploiters generate coins illegitimately through the use of bots and phishing scams, creating a flood of fraudulent in-game currency and driving up the cost of players on the transfer market.”

While something needed to be done, many questioned EA’s need to apply a minimum price value to cards. Rather than level the playing field, in many cases it saw FUT players lumbered with unshiftable commodities. For instance, only last week the market was swamped with gold Daniel Sturridge cards, all unsold at their minimum value of 16,000 coins.
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EA says it is aware of this issue. It has already revised the price ranges of more than 650 individual cards (including Sturridge), and, in a previously unplanned move, introduced tiers specific to each platform. “These reflect the values and dynamics within those unique economies, and make transfers fairer and more enjoyable for all FUT players,” the post explains.

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The bottom line is that minimum pricing isn’t going to disappear, no matter how much fans complain. “[Removing it] would open price ranges up to the movement of fraudulent coin-selling transfers,” EA claims.

“An example of the need for minimum price ranges would be ‘Man of the Match’ Coutinho,” explains a development team spokesperson when asked for further comment. “Upon release, his initial range was set at 200, 000 min and 400,000 max. All of his transfer market activity saw him selling at the exact minimum or maximum price range, and nothing in between. Essentially, coin sellers were using him to move 200,000 coins to coin buyers.

“Without a minimum range, the margin could become bigger, and would also allow opportunities for coin sellers to corner certain players like MotM Coutinho.”

On the back of this research, EA has adjusted the Liverpool midfielder’s price range to 150,000-230,000, and says his buying and selling activity now matches that of a “normal player’”.

Longer term, Fifa forum regular Flamstead has offered what appears to be a workable solution to the issue of non-selling cards. “After trying to sell the player three times at the minimum rate, you should be able to discard him for the minimum price. Either that or have the option to immediately discard for half the minimum.”

EA, however, insists this isn’t viable. “It was considered by the development team but could have potentially thrown off the balance of the game,” explains our source. “The risk being that if gamers ended up preferring to discard for the minimum price, they would opt out of placing them on the transfer market. This could lead to very few players left on the market.”

Across the series’ official forums it’s clear that most devoted players remain critical of the change. Intriguingly, however, fans do offer some balanced, even positive, feedback via the message boards of individual clubs – suggesting that while these new arrangements don’t suit FUT die-hards, more casual players of the mode are benefitting.
“It’s been better for me,” writes a Crystal Palace fan called Tomo. “As someone who hasn’t been inclined to spend real money, I’ve never really had more than 100K coins at one time, and am more likely to have 30-40K. It now feels like I’m on a more even playing field – that I can prosper with a bit of luck in my packs or by selling a player at the right time. Average players definitely do sell where they wouldn’t before.”

Everton supporter Pablo P agrees. “I can see the benefit if it actually does stop coin sellers – the likelihood of that is slim to none, though,” he writes. “People will still buy coins as the prices [of top players] will still be in the millions.” He feels the company should be prioritising elsewhere anyway: “I’d much rather they invested as much time into their servers, and ensuring that the sweats were match-made against the sweats.” ‘Sweats’ is a term for Fifa fans who only play teams loaded with world class players, or resort to underhand tactics to win games, such as endlessly knocking the ball around their back four after establishing a lead.

The loudest independent voices where Fifa is concerned, however, stem from Youtube, with some channels devoted to the game having a reach to rival EA itself. They remain largely dubious as to the company’s motivations, and cite numerous examples of ways in which they believe the mode to be broken beyond repair.

“I’ve got a load of good players in my club, but I only have 4,000 coins,” explains JMX25, a Youtuber with over 275,000 subscribers, in a video uploaded this week. “The problem is I can’t sell anyone, which means I can’t get any more money to buy other plays.”

Another Youtuber, GCIIMessi, shares a similar tale regarding an inability to sell players: “I 100% understand why EA has implemented price caps, but I think they’ve done it the wrong way. I bought David Luiz a few days ago for 700,000; now I can’t shift him at 550,000, the lowest start price.” It should be noted, however, that both of these channels feature links to sites from which Fifa coins can be purchased – despite the recent changes.

User comments in response to these claims add to the EA criticism, and accuse the US publisher of looking after only itself – which it again strongly refutes. “Price ranges were implemented to benefit the entire community,” it says. “EA has no plans to sell coins directly to players, and we believe the game benefits when the playing field is level for all and progress is achieved through playing matches, squad building, transfer market trading, and making decisions with pack items.”

As a software distributor, EA is within its rights to prevent third parties from making significant, royalty-free earnings from its intellectual property. The challenge, now is to keep its multimillion-selling sports franchise equally appealing for casual and devoted fans alike. At present, the latter is clearly discontented. And turning that around has suddenly become the company’s biggest challenge between now and the arrival of the 2016 iteration later in the year.

The 9 most amazing FIFA 15 goals scored this week

Like us, you probably think you’re half decent at FIFA 15. If so, you need to watch this video and immediately bring yourself down a peg or two.

We had already been forced to reassess our abilities on everyone’s favourite game, after we went to the UK FIFA 15 Championships and were left very pretty silly and insignificant by the eight best FIFA players in Britain.

Now, we have got hold of this EA Sports video, which showcases the best goals scored on FIFA 15 in the last week.

Suffice to say, we now understand what is actually possible in the game – and realise that we are yet to get anywhere near it.

If anyone reading this has ever scored a goal as good as the nine in this amazing video, we have two things to say to you:

1. Well done, congratulations and welcome to the official list of Row Zed heroes.

2. For the love of God, send it in to us (via the form below) so we can share it with the world…

Real life FIFA 15: FC Copenhagen’s own footage looks more like the game than reality

The relationship between football and computer games has finally gone full circle. This incredible FC Copenhagen video, documenting their derby victory on Sunday looks more like FIFA 15 than… well, FIFA 15.

Two of Danish football’s biggest sides faced off in Copenhagen as the home side ran out eventual 3-1 victors against rivals Brondy.

With a range of high definition cameras in use, the club filmed every aspect of the game to create arguably the greatest, most uplifting highlights reel we’ve ever seen.

Replicating the pre-match routine that can be seen on FIFA 15, the clip takes us through the tunnel, past the handshakes and all three Copenhagen goals.

The surreal clip consistently blurs the lines between reality and CGI, Delaney’s finesse finish and celebration being the prime example.

Have we really reached the point where a computer game, based on football, is now being recreated in real life by the subject on which it was initially based?

Its Happened! Orlando City Now Playable in FIFA 15

If you’re a FIFA video game fan, then you’ve most likely seen my FIFA 15 updates here on this site. With all the guessing about when EA Sports would update the game to include Orlando City SC, I was hopeful that this year’s game would be updated.

However, after weeks of talks that there would be an update in February-and those updates never happening-I began to feel like it wouldn’t happen.

BUT, out of the blue yesterday, word began to spread that Orlando City And New York City FC made their way into the game. Naturally I rushed to turn on my PS4 to finally play with Orlando on FIFA 15. (As a side note, I did get the Orlando City roster on my PC for FIFA 15, before my computer updated and the game stopped working.)

As I opened up the game and looked into the rosters, I was heartbroken to see that Orlando wasn’t on the game. Naturally, I went to the internet and learned that Orlando is NOT on the next generation consoles yet (meaning PS4 and Xbox One). They only exist on the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game.

For some reason, EA Sports put both expansion teams into the “Rest of World” section of the game, instead of into the MLS. Weird.

So, because I didn’t have a “last-gen” version of the game, I called up one of my friends, who helped me out. He gave me a rundown of the ratings of all the players from the game. Some are surprising, and others are disappointing.

As you can see from this picture that my friend graciously took, some of the ratings are a bit surprising. The best surprise for Orlando fans is that Kevin Molino comes right out of the gate as a 67 overall. Original ratings from the game had him at a 49, so having him go up almost 20 is a nice thing to see. They also have Darwin Ceren at a 60 overall and as a starter, because they do not have Cristian Higuita on the roster yet. Rafael Ramos comes on as a 58 overall, which includes an 86 agility and 78 acceleration.

Meanwhile, on the bench, they have Josh Ford at a 58, Estrela at a 56, Eric Avila at a 64, Martin Paterson at a 64, Seb Hines at a 65, Carlos Rivas at a 64, Lewis Neal at a 60, Pedro Ribiero at a 61, Tyler Turner at a 56, Sean St. Ledger with the second best defender rating, at a 67, Tony Cascio at a 63, Tally Hall at a 67, Harrison Heath at 50 and Danny Mwanga at a 61.

With all of this said, the biggest disappointment in this update is Bryan Rochez. The young Designated Player is listed as the worst player on the Orlando City roster. Harrison Heath even has a one point advantage over him in ratings. It’s only a matter of time before these ratings get updated, but Rochez needs to prove over the next few weeks, that he deserves better than a 49 overall.

For now, if you own a PS3 or Xbox 360, then I’m jealous of you. Hopefully the folks with the “next-gen” consoles will get an update in the next few days. If there are any updates to FIFA 15, stay tuned to this space and we’ll tell you about it. This story will be updated with any news that comes out over the next few days.

Until then, to all you last-gen gamers: enjoy the fun! I envy you.

FIFA 15 Prediction: Dortmund Vs. Schalke 04 Who Will Win?

FIFA 15 Prediction has Bundesliga fans on edge ahead of Saturday’s match with Borussia Dortmund going up against FC Schalke 04.

The highly anticipated Bundesliga derby will take place at Dortmund’s home ground Signal Iduna Park. Kick off time is set for 9:30 AM on GOL.

In a FIFA 15 show down between the two arch football rivals, the match ended in a draw 1-1 with Dortmund hitting the back of the net first.

Borussia Dortmund and FC Schalke 04 have in the past mt on 85 occasions and is dead even with 30 wins a piece and 25 draws.

Schalke 04 went down two nil on Wednesday’s Champions League fixtures against Real Madrid. The second leg will be played on March 10.

FIFA 15 Ultimate Team down, say users today

Gamers are reporting that FIFA 15 Ultimate Team is down right now, EA Sports servers are currently offline for a moment because of a scheduled maintenance update happening right now.

Over on the official @EASPORTSFIFA Twittr account the latest tweet shows FIFA Ultimate Team is ramping down for maintenance, and downtime will last around 3 hours.

This means FIFA FUT players will not be able to get online for up to 3 hours and this is already causing a stir on Twitter, many gamers will get to see a message saying on the lines of EA servers are not available at this time, please try again later.

FIFA Ultimate Team on February 11 is most definitely having a scheduled maintenance between 1:00 AM PT, this means gamers will not be able to access FIFA Ultimate Team, Mobile companion app and the Web App, these will all be offline. All other online services for other game modes will not be affected.

eep visiting the official Twitter account above for FIFA 15 FUT updates. How do you feel about the FIFA 15 FUT maintenance update?

FIFA 15 Ultimate Team Teases TOTY Loan Players

EA Sports is hoping to entice players to get into the real world Premiere League transfer deadline day ahead of time with their official Twitter account. The game developer is teasing a few TOTY loan players for FIFA 15 Ultimate Team, their ever popular mobile application for the football video game and real world sport. The company will also give a few of these players away to the community within a new promotion, which you simply need to retweet in order to gain entrance into the running for said players.

Many people within the FIFA 15 Ultimate Team community asked EA Sports who these players would be and when they would be available as loan options. However, the Twitter account simply directed people towards the news and updates page for the mobile application. This implies everyone within the app’s community can get their hands on the loan players and options within a general update in the future.

However, the very same Twitter account for FIFA 15 Ultimate Team is also running a 50 match loan giveaway for four different players from different teams within the Premiere League. The studio is encouraging everyone to retweet for a chance to win loan versions of Kroos, Robben, Messi, and Ronaldo. The tweet in question already has a lot of retweets, so chances of winning any of the aforementioned players dwindles with each passing hour, unfortunately. Within the first minute of being live, the tweet for Ronaldo had over 12,000 retweets.

This is certainly not the first giveaway promotion EA Sports has offered for FIFA 15 Ultimate Team. The game development studio seems to have something new for the community every few weeks or so, as they continue to support their game and the community that loves what they are doing. Of course, a promotion isn’t the only way to get these new players, so keep an eye out for a new update, too.

FIFA 15: 20 Free Transfers You Need To Sign

Since a manager is as only as good as his signings, if he has no transfer budget to make any, it’s unlikely he’s going to be particularly successful with the just the previous manager’s favourites at his disposal. Particularly if those same players got the predecessor sacked. Click Here to buy cheap fifa 15 coins online at xtmmo.

But even with no money, when taking over a new club, a manager needs to put his own stamp on things, and there is good news for FIFA managers looking to do just that without the luxury of playing with a moneybags side where embarrassingly expensive signings are an inevitability.

The sacred Bosman ruling has changed the game of football for the sneakier, allowing players to talk to other clubs and engineer transfers without a fee six months before the deal at their current club expires. So with that in mind, it’s worthwhile looking through the list of players who are in the last year of their deals at the start of career mode. All are talented, and all should be considered genuinely good contenders to offer pre-contracts to in the January 2015 transfer window. And bear in mind, don’t go blowing all of your wage budget when you could have any of these lads a few months down the line.

So if you’re taking over a cash-strapped club or merely love a bargain these are the 20 best players you can pick up for absolutely nothing from the first January in your new game.

FIFA 15 Team Rankings: Our Top 5 Clubs At The Season’s Halfway Point Based On Current Form And Ratings

The European football season is a few matches past the halfway mark at this point of the year, and the transfer window is open. Almost all of the clubs (sorry, Dortmund) you’d expect to be at the top of each league are right it in, and form and injuries have had their effects on the title race.

The best teams have shown off their high-end talent and displayed consistency through the first half of the season, yet the competitions in England, Spain, and France remain as close as ever. EA updates the team and player ratings in FIFA 15 to reflect real-life performance, and this part of the season is as good as any to see who’s on top. Our top five clubs are listed below, a combination of the current Matchday ratings and opinion on how effective the teams are in-game:

1. Real Madrid

As is usually the case, the Spanish giants come in on top of the ratings. While Barcelona may have some more highly-rated players, the style Madrid plays and the speed of its attackers are simply very effective in FIFA. The 92-rated Ronaldo is the easiest player with which to beat defenses and score with in the game, and Bale is even faster on the other wing. Combine those two with the talented dribblers and passers in the midfield, and Madrid can cut opponents apart on the counter or pick out passes to unlock defenses. Right back and goalkeeper are arguably week spots, but Casillas still pulls off great saves and Ramos and Pepe are among the most effective combinations around.

2. Barcelona

While they’re not playing amazingly well in real life, Barcelona’s very highly rated team is quite effective in FIFA 15. The absurd attacking trio of Messi (95), Neymar (88) and Suarez (91) cannot be matched, but it can sometimes be difficult to get the team flowing. Playing as Barcelona always seems to make you play like Barcelona, and a high press passing game can be troublesome to pull off. If you instead take advantage of the attackers’ dribbling skills and pace, you’ll likely be able to beat any defense ahead of you. The midfield is highly rated as well, but it’s a bit slower and more pass-focused than Madrid’s–speed kills in FIFA 15, and that’s why Barcelona sits second.
3. Bayern Munich
The German champions are coasting through the Bundesliga right now, and one look at their roster shows why. The team is stacked from back to front, with the world’s best goalkeeper Manuel Neuer (90) backstopping an already dominating squad. Lewandowski can finish any chance, and he’s flanked by tricky speedsters Robben (90) and Ribery (88). Goetze (86) and Muller (86) can rotate into a number of positions as well, completing an absurdly gifted attacking band. With solid defenders and passers in Schweinsteiger and Alonso (or Lahm if he’s not at fullback) supporting them, this is an extremely difficult team to break down, and the attacking threat is always present.
4. Chelsea

Though they’re playing like the second or third best team in the world, the FIFA 15 ratings don’t quite get that form across. This is due in part to Mourinho’s focus on team effort and tactical efficiency, but there are of course some stand out stars. The 89-rated Eden Hazard is in scintillating form, and can easily beat players on the dribble with his speed in FIFA 15. Goal-scoring machine Diego Costa (87) will convert up top, and Fabregas’ (87, which should arguably be higher given his assist record) passing can launch the perfect attack. The very pacey Willian (82) can provide another outlet, and Matic locks the game down in midfield. Come at your opponents with pressure and speed and Cheslsea can score easily. Courtois (86) is very difficult to beat between the sticks, and a strong defense will help protect any lead you earn.

5. Juventus

Though not named in the same breath as the rest of Europe’s elite in the last few years, the current Juventus side is quite good. You might see more PSG or Manchester City playing online, but this team is better in the game on paper. The outrageously talented Pogba is now an 87 and can score, create, and defend in midfield, while Tevez is as effective as ever up top. Perhaps the world’s best all-around player Arturo Vidal (87) will make this side difficult to break down and can help the scoring. If there’s a weakness to this team it’s in its speed, but the same could be argued for City’s midfield and defense. Juventus may not immediately come to mind as a top team, but they’re currently leading Serie A and are rated well in FIFA 15.

 

FIFA 15’s Ultimate Team of the Year midfielders now available

FIFA 15’s Ultimate Team of the Year card releases continue today with the availability of a trio of dark blue midfielder cards. Time has now expired on the goalkeeper and defender cards that were available on Monday, so they should no longer be popping up in packs.

Those Team of the Year midfielders are, of course, Barcelona’s Andres Iniesta, Manchester United’s Angel Di Maria and Real Madrid’s Toni Kroos.

As with the ‘keeper and back four, these three FIFA 15 Ultimate Team of the Year cards will be around for two days: until 6pm UK time (10am Pacific US.)