The PlayStation version of FIFA 2002 doesn't quite have all the features available on the PlayStation 2, but it makes a solid case for an investment on its own.
FIFA 2002 for the PlayStation 2 is EA's latest and possibly greatest attempt at enjoyably re-creating the game of soccer. Not one to be left too far behind, the PlayStation 1 has been given its own version of FIFA 2002, and considering the hardware, it is pretty impressive. Previous entries in the internationally popular franchise favored arcadelike gameplay and encouraged button-mashing contests. Gone are the days when your team of choice could score a dozen goals a period, performing incredible crosses at will. Instead, EA has decided to convert its popular franchise into a more simulation-oriented game, and the results are definitely pleasing. With the addition of enhanced graphics, as well as an all-new passing system, fans of soccer will find that this latest FIFA game is the most challenging, most realistic, and also the greatest yet.
FIFA 2002 is a visually capable title, with nicely rendered character models. The player models look good, and they're best appreciated when in motion, performing particularly deft motions or stumbling after receiving a tackle. The audience, although composed of flat textures mainly composed of arms, look fairly decent when they wave frantically after a scored goal. Considering the dated PlayStation hardware, the game has an overall polished look and performs admirably. Several camera angles are available, some more functional than the other more attractive ones that showcase the graphics, but the choices available are satisfying. Each camera angle can be further modified for height and zoom, ensuring that you always get the perfect view of the pitch. FIFA 2002 has a slick interface, and the menus are simple to navigate.
Perhaps the most noticeable change made to the way one plays FIFA is the more realistic gameplay. In this renovated passing scheme, instead of simply using directional passing, players must now deal with the strength of passes, as well as the trajectory, by varying the length of time that the pass or lob buttons are pressed. Mastering this type of control is essential to success because the passes lead the players they're intended for rather than heading toward the players' current location. Therefore, accurate passers will be able to gauge which teammates will be able to make a through run and send the ball ahead of them properly enough to get it in their control. This change to the gameplay takes last year's shot power gauge one step further and forces you to pay attention to every ball movement. Slide tackles are a much riskier endeavor now than ever before, but properly completing them has also become much more satisfying. They are less effective than in last year's game, and the refs will not flinch at handing out the penalty cards. Defensive play is thus now challenging and fun, made more so by the in-game tactics options that let you call traps and presses on the fly. The strategic player will appreciate set piece plays that can be used in dead ball situations and can come in particularly handy to create two-on-one situations and great scoring opportunities. Ball control is just as important as positioning now, as players are more limited by fatigue and well-duplicated human error. The AI will second-guess a scoring attempt if your defense is set up properly, and the wise player will do the same conversely. The AI steps up and usually plays a very good match, so there's a true sense of reward for every goal scored. What these gameplay changes amount to is a slightly lower scoring game, but also a much more satisfying simulation of real-life soccer.
- Game Universe:
- FIFA 2001 (PS2, GBC),
- FIFA 2001 Major League Soccer (PC, PS),
- 2002 FIFA World Cup (PS2, PC, GC, XBOX, PS),
- FIFA Soccer 2003 (GC, GBA, PC, PS2, PS, XBOX),
- FIFA Soccer 2004 (GC, GBA, PS2, PC, XBOX, PS, NGE),
- FIFA Soccer 2005 (PS2, XBOX, GC, PS, PC, GBA, NGE, MOBILE, GIZ),
- FIFA Street (XBOX, PS2, GC),
- FIFA 99 (PC, N64, PS),
- FIFA 2000: Major League Soccer (PC, GBC, PS),
- FIFA International Soccer (GG, 3DO, GB, GEN, SNES, AMI, SMS, PC, SCD)