Electronic Arts has signed an agreement to develop and publish an official game of the UEFA Champions League 2004-2005 competition, and plans to release the results in February next year on PS2, Xbox, GameCube and PC.
The game is being developed by a newly formed team at EA Canada, and although not explicitly stated we expect it to be based on the FIFA codebase, much like EA's previous tournament-specific sojourns like UEFA Euro 2004. We also wouldn't be surprised if it turns into an annual thing. We know EA likes releasing football games.
EA says its Champions League game will allow you to guide your team from qualification right through to the final, and will feature more than 239 official teams including those from the English Premiership and Football League (surely "Championship"?), German Bundesliga, French LFP and Spanish LFP - allowing even fans of lesser teams to take on the best in Europe. (Much as they could do in FIFA 2005, of course, but that's a moot point.)
According to EA's announcement, "Throughout the game, players need to negotiate 50 unique and challenging on- and off-field missions successfully to take control of their UEFA Champions League destiny," including a stealth section where you sneak around trying to switch urine samples. Or not. We're not sure what these 'mission' consist of yet, but we'll let you know when we do.
Look out for UEFA Champions League 2004-2005 in February.