EA Play marks the first of this years E3 press events, and as expected we saw plenty of updates to their annualised sports franchises – FIFA, NFL Madden & NBA Live – shown off on stage earlier tonight.
First up, it was revealed that NFL Madden 18 would be following in the footsteps of FIFA 17, and introducing a “Cinematic Story Mode”. Longshot, as it’s to be known, will see the player take rookie Devin Wade from a small town player up through his career to the NFL drafts, in a similar fashion to The Journey of FIFA’s Alex Hunter.
This years iteration also sees Madden making the leap onto EA’s Frostbite engine, just as FIFA did in ’17.
Speaking of Alex Hunter, and FIFA, it was announced he’d be returning for a second season of the beautiful game in FIFA 18.
Hunter’s now obviously a well established player within the footballing world, and his second season on the pitch promises to open more opportunities, including, it seems, a potential move to other territories, such as the American leagues.
Elsewhere, FIFA 18 will see gameplay improvements including “player personalities” granted by a new animation engine, which brings individual players’ style and distinct movements to the field. To achieve this, EA have brand new motion-captures, including those from cover star Cristiano Ronaldo at hand. Off-pitch, the arenas and crowds seem to have had major overhauls too, with decorations, chants and other atmospherics adding even more excitement and authenticity to the game than ever before.
Finally, for the basketball fans, we saw NBA Live 18, which also sees the introduction of a new Story based mode, called “The One”.
Looking similar to what rival NBA2K games have done before, The One will have you create your own player, who’ll start on the streets and work his way up to the professional NBA leagues. Performance and choices made on courts both inside and outside the big arenas will impact your career going forward.
A free trial version of NBA Live 18 will be available this August, with progress made carrying over, should players wish to purchase the full game thereafter.