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The end of an era is upon us as we say goodbye to EA Sports FIFA as we know it. The franchise that has been with us since the mid 90’s, brings us its final instalment FIFA 23. This year’s edition was meant to be the swan song of a massively popular series of games, albeit with a few not so popular, so let’s take a look at how the teams over at EA Vancouver and Romania handled this tricky task. 

Firstly there is somewhat of a general misconception that this is the last ever EA FIFA game which, in a way, is true but only in name and other commercial aspects. EA Sports intend to continue to create football games just under a different name, EA Sports FC without the licence of FIFA. It will be interesting to see in 12 months time how exactly the fanbase will respond to a game without all the familiarities they are used to. FIFA 23 is always going to be the lasting impression, but is it a good one is? After a good few hours of gameplay I have to say, overall I am underwhelmed. 


The gameplay from the start felt very slow and I know I’m not alone in thinking this as many other reviews have said the same. I understand they have tried to replicate the real life pace of a game of football but as a gameplay experience, this doesn’t translate very well. Players seem sluggish and even those who, in real life are deemed speed merchants, play like they are running through treacle. There are certain settings that can be changed to somewhat improve the overall gameplay, depending on how serious you take your FIFA, but as a casual player I found it frustrating having to alter settings without really seeing any difference. 

FIFA 23 | TheEffect.NetCorners and set pieces have been changed up again so they will take a bit of time to get used to. Better player impact physics and ball physics have led to some moments of nice realism and the passing system has been refined from the wayward and questionable system used in FIFA 22. Each player is now given one of three pace styles which are, explosive, lengthy and balanced. This means some will accelerate really quickly whereas some will gradually build up speed over time and distance. This leads to some interesting duels between players but already it is being called broken, as the lengthy style is said to be overpowering all others. 

There are no major new additions in the way of game modes but they have tweaked and added to some of the old favourites like Volta and Pro-Clubs. There is a notable increase in the amount women’s league football features including the English and French divisions of domestic football. The recent Women’s Euros Finals in England and the massively positive public reaction has not gone unnoticed by EA as they even have their first ever female cover star in the way of Sam Kerr. This is really great to see as I’m sure many young girls across Europe and further afield would have been inspired by this summer’s events and will now have the opportunity to be able to recreate those events playing FIFA 23, when before they had no option.


Visually, it’s always going to be a good looking game but, is it clearly better than FIFA 22? I wouldn’t say so. There are a few ‘interesting’ player models, noticeably Jack Grealish apparently looking like Dracula, and also strange lighting and cameras being used during gameplay. EA sports have more or less admitted this and said they focused more on the small details like how the grass is affected by players tackling, sliding or falling to the ground. These are so minor that they are hard to notice. 

It may be safe to say that EA Sports struck gold when they introduced Ultimate Team to FIFA back in March of 2009. Since then, they have made millions from people buying, selling and trading players and other items to make their own virtual clubs improve. This mode is the one with the most media attention also as the term ‘gambling’ is sometimes used. This is in reference to the online purchase of packs that are randomly generated, often with a low percent chance of getting the player worth the investment. This has led to many stories of people getting into debt and children spending hundreds on their parents credit cards.

FIFA 23 | TheEffect.NetFIFA have denied these suggestions and have added a few features in the hope of appeasing those concerned. Previously, they added the option to preview certain packs before you purchase and this year they have added another feature called Moments. These are short scenarios that often only last a couple seconds or so but reward you with stars that can be redeemed for packs instead of having to use real world currency. This is a bonus in my eyes and I found myself being distracted from the cut throat nature that is the usual world of Ultimate Team. 

Co-op sessions, quickplay, skill games, house rule games and more are available so overall there is a lot of football crammed into FIFA 23. However, and this may come across as a bit harsh, but it’s all just got a bit boring now at this stage. Possibly the imminent fresh start as EA Sports Club may be just the ticket they need to revitalise this old flogged horse. No doubt there will be many like myself that will fall into the yearly trap of saying that I won’t play the new FIFA only to replace it with EA Sports Club and end up playing it all the same. 


A fair attempt to put a positive spin on the bad news of losing the FIFA licence, but at the end of the day, even with licence, this is just a bang average game. 

FIFA 23 Pricing & Availability

FIFA 23 is available now on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X and Series S, Nintendo Switch, Google Stadia starting at €39.99 for the Nintendo Switch edition.

FIFA 23 | TheEffect.Net

  • Overall


A fair attempt to put a positive spin on the bad news of losing the FIFA licence, but at the end of the day, even with licence, this is just a bang average game. 

Mark Reilly

I've been playing games as long as I can remember and appreciate everything from the main stream to the more obscure. My favourite genre is FPS but enjoy sports titles as well.