FIFA Street 3 Hands-On

EA's over-the-top soccer series is coming back for another go and we have hands-on impressions of an early build.

The first FIFA Street wasn't very good; however the second game was much-improved and was a lot of fun. EA is looking to build on that momentum with FIFA Street for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. The game isn't due out until some time in 2008, but we've already gotten our hands on it twice and it's shaping up nicely.

If FIFA Street looks a tad familiar it's because it uses a modified version of the NBA Street engine. However, the games don't look exactly the same. The players in FIFA have are more like caricatures of their real-life counterparts with exaggerated body types and facial features. Even from the far off gameplay camera it was easy to figure out who players were. The game we played pitted England against Brazil so it was easy to recognize Rooney, Lampard, Gerrard, and Terry on the England side and Kaka, Ronaldinho, Gilberto, and Robinho for Brazil. All star players are broken down into one of four categories: Tricksters have mad dribbling skills; finishers can perform especially athletic diving headers and bicycle kicks; playmakers are super accurate with their passes; enforcers have the ability to perform some brutal tackles.

Think Rooney is dangerous on a real pitch? Wait until you see what he can do in FIFA Street 3.

Though this is the third game in the series the developer has decided to simplify the controls to make sure the game remains accessible to newcomers. Using the face buttons you can pass, shoot, and juggle the ball. The juggle button is pressure sensitive. This allows you to keep the ball low with light taps and bring it up to your head with harder presses. If you press the left trigger while juggling you can hold the ball where it lands--your thigh, on the inside of your foot, or even on your back between your shoulder blades. From this position you can shoot or pass the ball. You can even receive passes and immediately begin juggling them, moving down the field without the ball ever touching the ground.

Since this is an arcade-style game you'll be doing a lot of one-on-one moves. These too, are simple. You tap the right stick to perform small moves and hold it for a bigger move. Dribbling is context sensitive, so if you're near the wall you can dribble off of it and even run up it, backflip, and head the other way. You'll also be able to counter defensive moves--a nice bonus when you're playing someone who does nothing but slide tackle. If you're really feeling saucy you can deliver a ball right off your defender's groin, gather the ball and continue on your merry way. As the developer promised, the controls were easy to learn and we were nutmegging fools and scoring off bicycle kicks within a matter of minutes.

Not only are trick moves a great way of breaking down the defense and getting the ball down the field, they're also how you fill the game breaker meter. You'll earn points for every move, but you'll get more points the closer you are to your opponent's goal. Game breakers power up your entire team, making it near unstoppable for a brief period of time. You can extend this period of dominance by performing tricks while the game breaker is activated.

EA wasn't ready to talk about how many players would be in the game, nor how you would put your team together. They did indicate there would be an online component to the game, but declined to give details.

The game's brighter, more vibrant look extends to the many locales we were able to check out. The riverside field was actually on a bridge surrounded by a low wall and a wrought iron fence in what looked a lot like London. The samba pitch, which had a Brazilian feel to it, had clay instead of grass and was surrounded by a large concrete wall covered in graffiti. Another field was located in a parking lot right next to the beach. What stood out most about this level, other than the fact that it was right near the ocean, was the sand that would blow across the parking lot. If you've ever been to the beach on a windy day you know just what we're talking about. Two other locations we were able to check out were a nighttime level where the pitch was high atop a Tokyo skyscraper, and another was in a shipyard.

While most of the character models in FIFA Street 3 are purposefully exaggerated, Peter Crouch looks dead-on to our eyes.

Each field will have unique features that affect gameplay, too. For example, the high walls of the samba field will allow you to perform passes off the walls behind the goals. This is not possible at riverside because the ball would go over the low fence. Even the game's music adds to the atmosphere, reacting to the action on the field in real time, so when you get a game breaker it speeds up. To be honest, we were so focused on trying to score that we didn't notice it too much. But maybe that's a good thing.

Try as we might we couldn't get EA to nail down the release date in more detail than "sometime in 2008." While it's disappointing not to know when exactly to expect the game, it's good to know the developer is being given the time to finish the game. It's coming along nicely, though, so hopefully we'll see FIFA Street sooner rather than later.

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Discussion

72 comments
11paulg11
11paulg11

dat game is useless , its 2 short , and it gets boring after 10 mins

rudestoftherude
rudestoftherude

The people that say soccer is slow paced are the same to watch American Football. I mean c'mon! Run for 20 yards and then stop for a minute.... (Though I am a fan of both sports)

snoisius
snoisius

I played the demo and now im really excited about this - if it has many modes, balanced gameplay and solid online matches, it will be superbe

wildnine00
wildnine00

vassa86, I'm from Texas but I can't help but agree with you. I was on vacation during the last world cup, and I watched every single match they aired. Nothing else even comes close.

vass86
vass86

having a good online mode where every player can be controlled (like the be a pro mode from fifa 08 ) will be a big factor in whether i decide to buy this

vass86
vass86

"You sure need to do an arcade-style game to turn soccer into something spectacular and fast paced." i'm guessing your an american. go and watch the premiership, then try and tell me that football can't have a fast pace. And if you want something spectacular go and watch the world cup (which is the biggest sporting event in the world, bigger than your american football superbowl)

sktseany
sktseany

is there any reason the players are stick thin? looks an okay game tbh - i had 2, thought nothing much of it can't see myself getting it

guilhem_r
guilhem_r

You sure need to do an arcade-style game to turn soccer into something spectacular and fast paced. Maybe an MISL-licenced indoor soccer game could do the trick too, but this is probably not a valuable enough property to bother acquiring the rights. FIFA had indoor soccer circa 97/98 and it showed promise, but that mode was short lived unfortunately.

snowysponge
snowysponge

I think the graphics look cool. They are different from other fifa games, but definatly look like the players. They are like cartoons a little, but i don't think there is anything wrong with that.

NinjaMunkey01
NinjaMunkey01

fifa street is ok but the graphics on this are wrong!!!! it looks like a cartoon I dont like it!!!!

rodrigo101992
rodrigo101992

I will like to have on fifa street, teams like there is on fifa 08 Ex: Manchester United Chelsea Real Madrid Tigres and that on the team there are just the best 7 or something like that

PacmanChampion
PacmanChampion

Well that's the FifaStreet series down the toilet.

stefan90
stefan90

I WANT BETTER CHOICE OF COUNTREYS!!!

wii_sean_wii
wii_sean_wii

i agree wiv club-sandwich the graphics just look wrong hope they change it but i'll still get it if it stays the same bcoz the game rocks lol the biggest change i wud like is the career mode too be much longer as you cud complete the game really quikly in fifa street 1 & 2, but wiv the added online multiplayer it shud keep me playin for a while. o and dont you think Wayne Rooney looks like Popeye the sailor man ??

Some_One_Plays
Some_One_Plays

I love the art style it's like playing a teletoon cartoon show in a video game format, lol.

club-sandwich
club-sandwich

man, I love FIFA Street, but this graphics look horrible, I don't like the art style at all, I hope they change it.

Cirus2
Cirus2

looks like a TF2 mod :P crouch made me laugh

iboo01
iboo01

wicked ima b buyin this wen it comes out

snizo
snizo

whoa this looks crazy bring it on!

dutch777
dutch777

looks real cool, nice touch with the caricatures

jakjbt
jakjbt

i dont like the new graphic style fifa street 1 and 2 was more gritty and relistic

jaredrichards3
jaredrichards3

these street versions are so over the top it's funny

oxtake
oxtake

i think this game rules

dominator3333
dominator3333

1.this is not football it is street football(soccer) so dont expect to be like pro evo. 2.it is arcade sport-so graphics are supoused to be non realistic -they finally figured that out 3.For the first time they are trying to make arcade game In first 2 times they were trying to make Street Soccer SIMULATION And they failed..It was more like arcade now they are making it to be arcade!!!!

dav1000
dav1000

i agree,i dont play many football games because i aint into it that much cuz i suck at it, but pro evolution is the dogs...crackers. fifa street 1 i tohught was alright but i think it went downhill from there for old FIFA

hurleyreyes
hurleyreyes

Has anyone played football??? or "soccer".... If you do, then you know that is nothing like the whole Fifa series displays on its games, wether is the normal Fifa or Fifa Street. I totally disagree with the ones that said that the 1st Fifa street was awesome... the ball had the most silly physics I´ve ever seen, the music sucked balls, and you could foul everyone without mercy! I didn´t played the 2nd one because of all this, and because EA sports NEVER improves their franchises from year to year.... If you love football try Pro Evolution, that´s what football is about

metaled2912
metaled2912

Am I really waiting for this? Or not? Last time EA allowed me to juggle the ball on FIFA Street 2 everytime a guy would touch me I would fall the kind of fall that would need an ambulance.

comissario
comissario

did they really need to exaggerate player faces? it looks so discouraging for me. fifa street 1-awesome, fifa 2-totally awesome, fifa street 3- will be great if they change the players to a more realistic face. it's just too cartoony. it needs to change

Shiftus
Shiftus

They really nailed the look and feel of these players perfectly, without overdoing it. The effect is unmistakable caricatures and I think it's even easier to identify these guys than in any other sports game. It feels like Incredibles meets Team Fortress 2 meets FIFA

mega_sonic_fan
mega_sonic_fan

Im not saying this game isnt gonna be good, i love soccer games. plus playing soccer is bad ass, but their arms and legs make them look like they are from a different planet. they dont look like that in real life AT ALL.

AJ-2K7
AJ-2K7

i think FIFA STREET 1 was good, 2 was even better though. hopefully they'll have improved even more. i'll definitely try this one!

stunner_prince
stunner_prince

i always wanted to play this franchise but i dint have a console.now that i have a ps3.i jus can't wait for this game.so waiting for more info and having fingers crossed

Ampersan5340
Ampersan5340

liked fifa street 2 and hope I'll like number 3

SolidBrix
SolidBrix

I would have thought the would have switched things up a little bit more a la NFL Tour.

Zbox360
Zbox360

well then don't buy it, but obviosly there has been enuf people in the past that like it to buy it. if you don't want it then don't, u don't have to be so darn negative. oh we don't need this game. who cares what u think then. just don't post it, keep it to urself, cuz i actually like this game!

ou661
ou661

yea we dont need this game

ieswk_basic
ieswk_basic

In reference to the image: Yup thats peter Crouch alright look closely as he grabs the hair of the other player >>

fearrich
fearrich

Do we REALLY need a third game in the worst football series of all time?

talkingpie92
talkingpie92

I prefer more realistic graphics for sports games, but it's nice to see more devs trying new things out.

citizenzero
citizenzero

The graphics are SUPPOSED to be not realistic, notice the cartoony style of this, so don't expect visual realism. This is great i'm glad to see something new for a change in the art direction. The rendering and the art style reminds me of Team Fortress 2, i hope they animate well :)

d3r7y
d3r7y

Very NIICCCEEEE!!!!!

rsoxguy12
rsoxguy12

kinda bothers me how the graphics r sorta bad, but this game is about gameplay and not looks.

dominator3333
dominator3333

arms are terrificly done!!!!!!! All soccer players have arms like they are from poorest part of africa! Game graphics look great!!! It could get very high gradE FOR VISUAL PRESENTATION

mega_sonic_fan
mega_sonic_fan

Whoever made this game has no clue how to make arms and legs, lol

MBII_Dolla_Bill
MBII_Dolla_Bill

Great... its not on Wii. Gonna have to play it @ my friends' houses.