Customer Reviews: FIFA Soccer 2003 Xbox
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Price:$19.99+ $3.99 shipping
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on October 24, 2002
Although World Cup Fever has temporarily subsided, this game is a hit! EA Sports has really done it this time! If you liked World Cup 2002 or any of its predecesors, you will love FIFA 2003!
This game allows one to play with the best club teams, players, and national teams in the world! Many stadiums (24 or so) and team-specific chants create a realistic environment. I was shocked by the increased player control (foot movement is more realistic), player-specific abilities (the better players are not only faster, but more skilled in one-on-one situations), and fabulous graphics. The CPU is much improved in the 2003 release and better adjusts to player tendancies and game situations.
Although the 18 featured "Club Championship" (team chants and stadiums, and increased detail) are European (EA should include Mexican, Brasilian, MLS, etc. in future editions), they are fun to play.
As I enjoyed watching the 2002 World Cup, I was thrilled to try a game that better reflected the changing demographics in soccer. The Korean team is lightning fast, Senegal physical, and US team finally respectable! I can now play the vastly-improved US team with pride and unafraid of losing to my friends who generally sport Brasil, Mexico, or Germany.
The PC version is good (better remore play options with more teams), but the X-Box version is fabulous! The graphics and sounds are incomparable and worthy of the superior X-Box platform!
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on January 30, 2003
The FIFA series of games has always been the best of the soccer games, but it was never that challenging. That's not the case anymore. FIFA 2003 is a very tough game with a steep learning curve.
The game has a few modes of play. You can play in a Club Championship (Champions' League) season with one of over a dozen European club teams. You can play in a tournament and set it up however you want. You can also play a full season with club teams. It's very comprehensive and features MLS, English Premier League, and other top world leagues. It also has the vast majority of the top players in the world.
The graphics are outstanding. Each player has a unique look that is almost a perfect match to how they really look. The players motions are fluid and look extremely realistic, complete with turns and tackles. There also are literally hundreds of stadiums in the game, from Arsenal's Highbury to the Revolution's Gillette Stadium. Soundwise, the commentary is done by a British pair that do a nice job calling the action, but don't give a whole lot of excitement to the game. The crowd sounds are good, though, complete with chants. There is simply nothing cooler than hearing your crowd continually chant "One-nil, one-nil, one-nil" when you're up 1-0.
The gameplay is where this game gets very tough. First of all, the teams now know how to defend, so no more going from coast to coast and scoring with one player. You have to set up your goals with care and precision. But even the perfect setup might not get the job done. You have to aim the shot with the left thumbstick...the same left thumbstick you use to move. This takes a lot of practice and the game will be very frustrating the first few times you play it as you watch shot after shot sail wide. EA has also added a "freestyle" control to the right thumbstick, which is supposed to add some new moves to your arsenal, but I still haven't figured out how to use it effectively.
Overall, though, any fan of soccer would really like this game. With patience, you can have a lot of fun with all sorts of teams.
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on April 14, 2003
Okay, that may be overstating it, but the gameplay is the only weakness in an otherwise outstanding soccer simulation.
For instance, how can one argue with the sheer number of league licenses on this game? The real teams, the real players. The stadiums look real, the players' faces are in the game, teams have all three kits available for every match!
You play a whole season as your favorite club. You soldier through the domestic league fixtures. Throw in a domestic cup competition and (if you are lucky) an entry in the Champions League! Player injuries and suspensions give you the feel that you're running the club on a day to day basis, making the decisions a manager would face. Do I rest my star player in the league game so he's fit for the cup game? You decide.
Unfortunately, gameplay does not quite hold up its end of the bargain. When you first play this game, you think to yourself, "This game is hard! I'll get better with practice." Well, you do. But then you begin to notice that no matter how good you get the CPU still wins all the 50/50 air balls. The CPU defenders take the ball anytime they are near, while your defenders are stuck to the pitch like a moth on flypaper. I've played the game for a month now and have never scored on a corner kick. I've also never seen a penalty kick in a match. That seems odd to me.
The most disappointing aspect of gameplay is the "Dynamic Ball Control." It sounds like a very promising idea, that you can use the second thumbstick to a execute special dribble move. Unfortunately the move takes so long from the time you press the thumbstick until the player actually executes the move that the defender has already taken the ball. In real soccer you employ this type of move as a reaction to the defender to keep the ball away from him. The fatal flaw in this game version is that you have to anticipate (instead of react) in order to have any chance of success.
So, in recap, kudos to EA Sports for upholding their reputation for securing team and league licenses. They employ those licenses to make an outstanding looking game. We hope, however, that in future versions they can tune the gameplay to match the amazing visuals.
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on November 9, 2002
Just some notes on this game:
1) The graphics are excellent. The players look more realistic (they look leaner and more real), move more naturally, and have names on their jerseys a la Madden. Big improvement over World Cup 2002 in this regard (and that's saying something). Interestingly, World Cup 2002 looked better than Madden 2003- this game is yet another level higher. Patrick Kluivert looks like Patrick Kluivert- although I'm not sure where Javier Saviola's hair came from.
2) I haven't found a control for time of day and weather. I've only played in Camp Nou at night. I would like to see that stadium in all its glory in daylight!
3) Gameplay is improved with alot more controllability and, when appropriate, less controllability (like when sprinting). I like tackling better as well. Star player abilities from WC2002 are gone (thankfully). Also, many of the national sides have been updated since the World Cup (i.e. South Korea is awesome).
All in all, I was expecting WC2002 with club teams but was pleasantly surprised at all of the improvements. It would be nice if all the customizability of the PC version could be transferred to the Xbox. But at least the ability to trade is there so that I could put Hong Myung Bo on the LA Galaxy right away!
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on March 18, 2003
I have a love hate relationship with this game.
What I love. The graphics are great, the teams are plentiful and acurate, and the season mode, complete with trading and multiple league play is right on the mark.
But that seems to be where all EA put their effort, in the gloss and the superficial.
What I hate. Basically, I hate the gameplay. It's totally off. Most obviously is the total lack of airplay. For some baffling reason you are not able to excecute any kind of flicks off a long ball, or headers, unless you are being chalenged by an opponent. It's also impossible to volley a pass first time off a long ball. Your controled player will always bring it down when unchallenged (giving the computer a chance at a cheap tackle) While it sounds like a small thing, it completly happers the flow (and realism) of the game. To make matters worse, the computer will volley and flick the ball around your defenders with ease, which is just about frustrating enough to make you eat your controller. Moreover, the players (both attacking and defending) are simply ridiculously inert. They just don't move enough. In fact, I've found that if you are in possesion of the ball, and you just stop dead, no one will challenge you for at least 5 minutes. And then, you can make a pass, and wait another 5. The game just stops dead without you to move ahead. It's simply farcical. You can win 1-0 with just scoring then waiting. Not very real, or fun. Furthermore, your teammates will often run along side you, uselessly parallel with your player. When you do get them to make a run using L, they make a run that would look more in place on a mini-league field for 10 year olds. Just totally stupid. And again, frustrating.
I would trade in all the gloss, sound, graphics, and licenses for a decent, playable game.
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VINE VOICEon December 16, 2002
i recently upgraded from the ps2 to an xbox and this was the 1st game i bought. my roommate walked in and thought i was watching a game on television - the graphics are quite impressive. gameplay and ball control is definitely more lifelike. when i first played on default settings, i got beat 1-0! i was expecting to walk out and romp all over the computer using my old fifa 2002 skills. this game is definitely a step up on realism. i was quite impressed with difficulty in controlling the ball when running the ball. also thankfully they've gotten rid of the ability to basically walk thru people using angles. the only thing i'd like is more customability. you can't create your own players/teams. also i'd love to see EA bring over an indepth Franchise Mode (ala Madden 2003) with computers making transfers on their own, players retiring, signing new players, players attributes inc/decreasing based on performance, etc. but those are just my petty complaints though. the game overall is very impressive and still the defining soccer game out there.
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on November 9, 2002
I like soccer. I'm not a hard-core fan or anything, but I like the game. I just bought the XBOX version of the game. I am seriously impressed. I hadn't played an EA soccer game since FIFA International Soccer for the 3D0. That was years ago. So I think it was about time I bought a new soccer game. I read some good reviews in a few gaming magazines. I've played most of the recent EA Football & Basketball games and was pleasantly surprised by EA. After playing FIFA 2003 against a real person for 1 match, I knew I had spent my money wisely. I continued playing long into the night against the CPU. Graphics are awesome. The best graphics I've seen anywhere. Gameplay is superb. The CPU plays good. The control is excellent. I also enjoy the replays (highlites) at the end of the match. Sound is super. I have the XBOX connected to my AIWA receiver. If you're into soccer (or maybe thinking about a great sports title) go get this game.
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on August 7, 2003
Fifa soccer series was going in to a deep hole with their last games released (2001,2002, world cup). The graphics were amazing but the gameplay was not equivalent with the game graphics and presentation. I have been a soccer games fan, and I play winning eleven series that is a lot better, fifa 2003 give me more features to compare it with WE series. The gameplay have improved a lot and the action is more intense. If you want to play the best Fifa soccer game ever try it.
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on June 30, 2003
The GamePlay And The Reffing Is Way Off. You Cant Win Balls In The Air. You cant pass Backwards without Taking 10 Minuets. And It [is bad] Bigtime That you Cant Create or edit players or leagues.However It Is Great that there is no limit to howmany trades you can do there for it is easy for you to update the rosters. I think The tournaments are cool. but I Hate how off the national teams are Example: German National Team Doesent Have Kahn And The Brazilien National Doesent Have Ronaldo Those Were only The 2 Best Players In The World Cup
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on June 24, 2003
This is a very good game, it is more challenging than the 2002 one. The players do look better, but the thing I hate is they have the MSL, which is way less popular than the Mexican soccer league ten times. If this league was included the game would sell about 20 times as much. They did a good job in translating the game into spanish, but they just need that little detail in order for me to give it a five star.
It is a great game though and I can't complaint about that.
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