FIFA 22 hits the virtual pitch later this year as continental tournaments wrap up and major domestic leagues kick off. Soccer (or football) fans know to budget $60 (or $70) for the obligatory early-fall release of the world's most popular sports video game franchise. Footie fans will buy the game at launch without hesitation, but just as readily tell you that some FIFA games are better than others.
FIFA 21 was a tame entry, seen by some fans as a sign of how the franchise is stalling like a player who can't get into the first team. EA needs to show fans that its franchise has loads of potential, and isn't just limping into retirement. If FIFA 21 was a stop-gap for EA to transition to current-gen consoles (as some critics have suggested) then FIFA 22 needs to be a groundbreaking upgrade.
For now, Ultimate Team remains profitable for EA but a focus on this card-based mode comes at the expense of other modes. Career Mode received long-overdue updates in FIFA 21 but still feels half-baked when compared to similar modes in other sports franchises. VOLTA could use a reawakening since arriving in FIFA 20 and the on-field gameplay, while once a shining star of the franchise, is decidedly sluggish.
From what EA has revealed, FIFA 22 could feel less like an annual refresh and more like a restart for the franchise built for a new generation of consoles in the PS5, Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. Yes, FIFA 22 will arrive on last-gen consoles as well but with limited features. Because of this split in console versions, there's a lot to consider before you throw down cash on the latest FIFA release. With that said, here is what we know about FIFA 22 based on official info, leaks and rumors.
FIFA 22 pre-order: price and release date
FIFA 22 will be released on October 1 on PC, PS5, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S and Google Stadia. Those who pre-order the Ultimate Edition can play the game starting September 27. Along with additional perks (10%), EA Play subscribers get a 10-hour trial of FIFA 22 beginning on September 22.
|PS5||Xbox Series X/Series S||PS4/Xbox One||PC|
|FIFA 22 (Standard version)||$70||$70||$60||$60|
|FIFA 22 (Ultimate Edition)||$100||$100||N/A||$80|
As for pricing, the standard edition of FIFA 22 will cost $60 on PS4, PC and Xbox One and $70 on PS5, Xbox Series X, and Xbox Series S.
Those who pre-order the standard edition instead of buying it after release will receive a few perks. Those include the following:
- TOTW 1 Player
- Kylian Mbappé Loan Item
- FUT Ambassador Loan Player Pick
- Career Mode Homegrown Talent
Those who pre-order FIFA 22 Ultimate Edition get additional items. Here is the full list:
- FIFA 22 (for last-gen and current consoles)
- FUT Hero Item
- 4 Days Early Access
- FUT Ones to Watch item
- 4600 FIFA Points
- TOTW 1 Player & Mbappé Loan Item
- FUT Ambassador Loan Player Pick
- Career Mode Homegrown Talent
FIFA 22 trailer
The wait for FIFA 22 gameplay continues, but in the meantime, we can enjoy a cinematic reveal trailer EA published in July. In it, you see how EA is implementing its new HyperMotion technology, which uses real-time motion capture.
FIFA 22 cover star
Yes, Kylian Mbappé returns for the second year in a row. Why no Ronaldo or Messi? Remember, Barcelona and Juventus (or Piemonte Calcio in FIFA), as well as FC Bayern and other clubs, are partnered with eFootball Pro Evolution Soccer, or PES. Mbappe, arguably the biggest star on the remaining eligible teams (though his teammate Neymar might say otherwise), is a natural fit. The FIFA 22 cover art features Mbappe facing away from the camera, pinching his shoulders to highlight his name written on the back of his PSG jersey.
FIFA 22 HyperMotion technology
EA outfit 22 players with Xsens suits so it could capture real-time motion to simulate the intensity of a soccer match. It took the data recorded by the suits — every touch, tackle, sprint and duel — then combined it with machine learning algorithms that used 8.7 million frames of motion capture to create new animations.
The result is 4,000 new animations arriving in FIFA 22 to improve intensity, responsiveness and physicality. Longtime FIFA players will also be excited to hear that the power of the PS5 and Xbox Series enables better AI so defensive formations stay rigid while clever attacking movements can slice through a backline. EA claims AI can make more than 6x more decisions per second so players are more aware of their surroundings and, therefore, make better runs.
“Each player experiences FIFA in their own way but on-pitch gameplay is the unifying constant, so we’re excited to offer deep innovation there. HyperMotion elevates that even further on next-gen consoles and Stadia and completely changes the feel of the game," said Nick Wlodyka, GM at EA Sports FIFA.
HyperMotion could usher in a new era for the beloved soccer franchise. But before we get too excited, let's address the elephant in the room: compatibility. FIFA 22 may arrive on all platforms but only next-gen consoles (and Stadia) will benefit from the new HyperMotion gameplay. Last-gen console omissions are understandable, but leaving PC players out has been met with criticism. EA explained itself, claiming it looked at what hardware PC gamers use to play FIFA and determined too many players would be left out of the feature due to its minimum system requirements. Now all PC gamers will be left out.
FIFA 22 Career Mode
Career Mode received the biggest update in years in FIFA 2021, and yet, the mode lags behind those found in other sports franchises. Will EA continue to give love to its classic offline game mode? The FIFA 22 website has a "Career Mode" section, suggesting the mode will receive new features, though it currently states "Full reveal coming soon."
More evidence of a Career Mode overhaul comes by way of a job listing with the description: "As an Online Software Engineer, you will help build our networked play development team - whether that be in our online career mode, Ultimate Team, or core online systems and protocols."
This suggests Career Mode could have some online element, perhaps the ability to play season matches against real opponents instead of only the AI, although it's unclear how the points system would work in such a scenario. Turning to other theories, reliable leaker @DonkTrading says six new features are coming to Career Mode including "Design your own" kits, badges and stadiums along with a new transfer market system, an in-depth pro-development career, and a new youth pro-development system.
EA already confirmed a "Create a Club" experience in Career Mode so we wouldn't be surprised to see these other rumored updates in the final product.
FIFA 22 Volta Football
Full details about Volta Football have yet to be revealed by EA. Last year, the newest mode shifted from a story mode to a more traditional tournament style. So far, Volta hasn't been the subject of many rumors or leaks, so any changes coming to the game mode this year remain a mystery.
All EA has said so far is to expect "reimagined gameplay" in Volta Football.
FIFA 22 FUT (Ultimate Team)
FIFA FUT, or Ultimate Team, will feature redesigned Division Rivals and FUT Champions to make it easier to test your skills and progress against other players. FIFA hasn't gone into detail about these changes, but they sound promising.
Former soccer legends will return to FIFA 22 under the banner "FUT Heroes." Similar to ICONs, these are retired players who made a significant impact at a specific club or national team.
Available in packs, the first batch of FUT Heroes includes nine players, each from a different country and team. Heroes aren't as versatile as ICONs, as they are assigned to a specific league. The benefit is strong chemistry with any other players in that league. Of course, linking with players of the same nationality gives Heroes an even bigger chemistry boost.
Below is a list of confirmed FUT Heroes.
|Tim Cahill||Australia||Premier League|
|Diego Milito||Argentina||Serie A|
|Jorge Campos||Mexico||Liga BBVA MX|
|Fernando Morientes||Spain||La Liga|
|Sami Al-Jaber||Saudi Arabia||MBS Pro League|
|Robbie Keane||Ireland||Premier League|
|Abedi Pele||Ghana||Ligue 1|
The HyperMotion technology debuting in FIFA 22 could enable next-generation gameplay but only those with the newest consoles will experience the difference. That makes FIFA 22 on last-gen consoles much less interesting, even if the main game modes receive new features.
EA is still holding back key information about new FIFA 22 features prior to its October 1 launch. We're expecting to hear more about changes to Career Mode, Volta and FUT, and will update this article with the latest news. From what we know, FIFA 22 has the potential to be among the best entries in the franchise...at least on new consoles.