FIFA 16

FIFA's interpretation of football removes some of the fun, but it offers so much else besides it's still a worthwhile game.

Key events

Digital FoundryFIFA 17: How the Frostbite engine improves visuals

Digital Foundry plays FIFA 16 and 17 simultaneously - with the same controller.

FIFA 17 moves to the Frostbite engine this year, the same tech as seen in Battlefield One and the upcoming Mass Effect. It's a departure from the Ignite engine used between FIFA 14 and 16 - introduced to show off the capabilities of PlayStation 4 and Xbox One - and allows for a big improvement in the series' lighting and atmospheric effects. We pit the two engines against each other here to see exact extent of the change, and if this is the series visual overhaul we've been waiting for.

FIFA 16 patch tackles FUT chemistry glitch

EA's released a patch for FIFA 16 designed to tackle the FIFA Ultimate Team chemistry glitch.

As we reported last month, FIFA players found a troubling glitch that meant the game buffed low-rated teams and nerfed highly rated teams without telling players.

This had to do with chemistry, but fitness was affected, too. In FUT, by playing cards in particular positions you can increase your chemistry stats. High chemistry can boost the stats of players. A low chemistry can nerf them. Chemistry is important for FUT because it can give you the edge in a match.

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Finally, tide turns in war with PC game crackers

"In two years' time I'm afraid there will be no free games to play."

I never thought I'd see this: video game pirates admitting defeat. But that's what appears to have happened. Notorious Chinese game cracker 3DM warned that "in two years' time I'm afraid there will be no [illegally] free games to play in the world". That was alias Bird Sister speaking, the founder of 3DM (via TorrentFreak).

EA announces Competitive Gaming Division, led by Peter Moore

EA announces Competitive Gaming Division, led by Peter Moore

"Competition runs deep in the DNA of Electronic Arts."

EA is launching a Competitive Gaming Division (CGD) to be led by former chief operating officer Peter Moore

Moore's new title will be executive vice president and chief competition officer. "This group will enable global eSports competitions in our biggest franchises including FIFA, Madden NFL, Battlefield and more," EA stated in its announcement.

EA chief executive officer Andrew Wilson noted that the CGD will be based around the following "three core pillars":

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Black Friday even bigger for console sales this year

Black Friday even bigger for console sales this year

Game sales also up over Black Friday week.

Love it or hate it, Black Friday isn't going anywhere. Console and games sales were even bigger this year than in 2014.

Unsurprisingly, Black Friday week saw a spike in sales for both hardware and software. Games sales were up 60 per cent on the week before and despite all the discounts, retailers raked in 32 per cent more money.

Software sales were down a little over the Black Friday weekend specifically when compared to last year, but still up on 2014 when incorporating the week leading up to the day itself.

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Face-Off: FIFA 16

Digital FoundryFace-Off: FIFA 16

Parity between PS4 and Xbox One - but is the Ignite Engine evolving fast enough?

Putting parity above all else, FIFA 16 arrives on PS4, Xbox One and PC with a near pixel-matched output on all three. It sticks to series tradition by keeping console-specific strengths limited to exclusive content, in the form of select cards in the Ultimate Team mode - where Xbox One gets a handful of legendary players this year. From a technical standpoint though, there's little to separate the console versions in terms of visuals or features - but as a package, does FIFA 16 bring anything tangibly different to the table over FIFA 15?

The setup is a familiar one for the series of course; everything is matched, from the full native 1920x1080 resolution to the lighting model, animation, and even grass shading and texture filtering levels. Thankfully, the per-object motion blur effect, which was missing from the Xbox One version of FIFA 15 at launch (and later patched in) is here from the start. The only discrepancy is during pre-match build-ups, involving long shots of stadia with high contrast edges. Here, PC delivers a slightly cleaner 1080p image owing to its use of 4x MSAA on these spots, not quite matched by the lower sample implementations on PS4 and Xbox One.

To get a good measure of how each stacks up though, we control both consoles in real-time from the exact same controller. As you can see in our video below, every sprint, pass and shot is performed via the exact same input, meaning we can match our footage as closely as possible. Outside of differing button prompts and an occasional offset in running animations, it goes a long way to prove there's a strong common ground between PS4 and Xbox One.

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FIFA 16 review

FIFA 16 review

Moving goalposts.

See if you can spot the pattern. In FIFA 11, pace was overpowered. In FIFA 12, pace was nerfed. In FIFA 13, pace was overpowered. In FIFA 14, pace was nerfed. In FIFA 15, pace was overpowered. In FIFA 16...

Yep, the world's biggest football game is back - and this time it's slower than ever!

FIFA 16

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FeaturePES 2016 vs FIFA 16: a friendly comparison

Early impressions ahead of review.

In some ways, I imagine writing about football games is a bit like writing about wine. Make a quick judgement, pluck arbitrarily from the glossary of established terms and - as long as you express yourself with conviction - most readers will be happy to follow your lead.

FIFA 16 demo has FUT Draft, FIFA Trainer and Chelsea

UPDATE: Out now on PS4, PS3 and Xbox One.

UPDATE 8th September 2015: The FIFA 16 demo is out now on PlayStation 4 and PS3. You can download the PS4 demo now from the PlayStation Store, where it weighs in at 4.6GB. The PS3 demo is also available from the PlayStation Store, at 1.6GB.

EGX 2015: Star Wars Battlefront first UK hands-on

Mirror's Edge Catalyst! Need for Speed! FIFA 16! More!

This year's EGX, the UK games festival formerly known as the Eurogamer Expo (and run by our parent company Gamer Network, disclosure fans), will be the first opportunity to play Star Wars Battlefront, Mirror's Edge Catalyst, Need for Speed and Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare 2. FIFA 16 will be playable on the Xbox booth, too.

Gamescom is a beautiful, hot, noisy mess of a show and an utter delight to visit. Sadly, not everyone can go - and this year, that includes me. But thankfully, we packed Chris Bratt off to tour the show with a camera in hand to capture just what attending the world's biggest gaming show is like.