Publisher EA has acknowledged that there may be some problems with FIFA 16‘s Ultimate Team mode.
This follows a recent in-depth user investigation by the FIFA subreddit, in which the community dug up inconsistencies and anomalies that may have been present for years.
For the unaware (though there can’t be many of you) FIFA Ultimate Team is a hugely popular mode of EA’s football game franchise.
In a nutshell, players go about setting up a team of footballers using digital trading cards, which can be purchased using real cash. As you might imagine, it’s made EA some serious bank since its introduction in FIFA 10 back in 2009
Many FIFA players have long suspected that something was amiss with Ultimate Team – many have suggested the more powerful (and costly) cards perform worse than their cheaper variants.
“Chemistry” is a concept that ensures an extra layer of strategy, as players who are teammates of another player adjacent to them in the formation will receive an attribute boost, thus making the team that bit stronger.
RighteousOnix outlines the glitch in the below video. It demonstrates how the stat boosts that should be granted to players with higher chemistry ratings are only applied to cards that have been in the game since launch (also the cheapest cards available in the game).
FIFA players have long complained that the most valuable cards in the game can feel disappointingly under-powered considering their rarity.
The above video certainly seems to prove that the common or “day one” cards can outperform their special edition counterparts, meaning these “valuable” cards aren’t actually all they’re cracked up to be.
“Fitness” is another Ultimate Team feature, that sees a player’s performance get gradually worse until they’re given a chance to “rest” (by leaving them out of a few games).
Some gamers have noted that this fitness limitation doesn’t seem to apply to special-edition players. They’re linking it to the chemistry glitch, believing that there is a mistake of some kind with Ultimate Team’s logic.
Here’s what EA Sports had to say on the matter:
After hearing this, our teams were in over the weekend and continue to thoroughly investigate the information. We will keep you informed with updates from the investigation. Our commitment to a fun, fair and secure experience in FIFA is ongoing, and as a community your feedback helps us achieve that goal.
While these issues may sound fairly inconsequential to the average gamer, you have to consider that hardcore FIFA players have been building their Ultimate Teams for years now.
When they part with real money for certain cards because they’re meant to deliver statistical advantages, it’s definitely not okay when those advantages are either nonexistent or broken.
Redditors are currently looking into other performance bonuses made by FIFA Ultimate Team while they wait for EA Sports to come back with a fuller account of the problem.
Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.