PS3, 360 FIFA 09 get Ultimate Team mode

EA Sports adding downloadable card-collecting game mode that will let players create and compete with dream teams drawn from international rosters.

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One of the few bright spots in Electronic Arts' earnings report last week was the global sales tally for FIFA 09. The popular soccer sim has sold more than 7.8 million units worldwide for the Wii, DS, PC, Xbox 360, PSP, PlayStation 2, and PlayStation 3. It remains EA Sports' most popular online game, with an average of 1.21 million matches played each day on the 360 and PS3, totaling 141 million to date.

The future of FIFA is in the cards (literally).
The future of FIFA is in the cards (literally).

Now, EA is hoping to expand on the two platforms' popularity with an all-new downloadable game mode for FIFA 09. Called FIFA 09 Ultimate Team, the new mode will let players assemble dream teams from the game's licensed roster of top international stars. Players will then use their teams to compete against other lineups, earning coins which can be redeemed for packs of virtual cards.

Each pack will include three grades of cards--bronze, silver, and gold--of 30 types, including player, staff, contract, formations, and tactics. Players can then use the cards for either team development or advantages on the field during a match. EA Sports also confirmed that FIFA 09 Ultimate Team card packs can be purchased with real-world currency, although prices have not been finalized.

The add-on will be available via download only, and has a preliminary cost of $14.99 on the PlayStation Network and 1,200 Microsoft points on Xbox Live Marketplace. For a detailed interview outlining what FIFA 09 Ultimate Team has to offer, visit SportsBeat, the GameSpot Sports blog.

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