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When EA released FIFA 18 on the Switch, it had been missing several modes and features. Considering that the game had been handled by another studio in Bucharest – and considering that among the game’s producers gave the (rather fishy) excuse that they didn’t want to overwhelm Switch players with every option simultaneously – we gave it the benefit for the doubt. It had been still an excellent game at its core, in the end. Get the cheap black friday deals & sales for your fav product.
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Then, when FIFA 19 followed a year later, progress had plainly been made: some factors from the Xbox One and PS4 version just like the new shooting system, the Champions League licensing and the brilliant new friendly ‘house rules’ had managed to get to the Switch, too. Having said that, though, the Switch version was still miles behind the other systems when it found full parity, with entire modes missing and the much-loved Ultimate Team still lacking several key features.
Therefore here we are actually with FIFA 20. By this aspect we’d wished for a ‘third time lucky’ scenario: in the end, with the other systems’ Journey story mode ending in FIFA 19, and all-new modes announced for FIFA 20, we’d hoped that EA could have taken the initiative and built on the Switch’s ever-growing popularity by ensuring the Nintendo version of FIFA 20 offered similar to its Microsoft and Sony cousins. On the other hand: it’s done nothing at all.
Instead of put any effort in whatsoever to regain interest in the Switch version by trying to take it consistent with other systems, EA has simply slapped a ‘Legacy Edition’ sticker on the title, taken its ball and gone home. And with that, we’ve stopped kidding ourselves and started kicking ourselves instead: this is always likely to happen, and most of us must have seen it coming.
To clarify, Legacy Edition may be the cursed subtitle EA’s been increasing ‘dead’ updates of its games since FIFA 14. It presumably came into being as a reply to the drama caused when it had been revealed (by this very writer, actually) that FIFA 13 on the Wii was identical to FIFA 12 with only the kits and squad line-ups changed. There is mass uproar about the suggestion that EA was trying to trick dedicated players on ‘lesser’ consoles by chucking the specific same game out with updated transfers, therefore from FIFA 14 onwards EA started adding the ‘Legacy Edition’ name to create it clear what you’re getting. Or, rather, what you’re not getting.
What does this mean if you buy FIFA 20 on the Switch? Well, to put it simply, this means you’ve just bought FIFA 19 again. Much like other Legacy Editions, the summer’s transfers have already been updated, this season’s new kits replace the old kinds and the four new stadiums put into the other versions make it in here too, but that’s literally it. Actually, sorry, you get new menu music, too. Can’t believe we practically forgot that.
“But hi, Nintendo Life,” we hear you ask. “How about all of this shiny new Volta street football mode EA’s been going on about since it announced FIFA 20? All of the official trailers were packed with Volta this, Volta that, it appears like a fairly big deal.” Well, we hope the elements is good, for the reason that only way you’ll be getting street football on the Switch is by firmly taking it outside and playing within an alleyway. There is completely zero trace of Volta in the Switch version of FIFA, meaning Nintendo fans are completely overlooked of arguably the largest addition to the year’s instalment. We miss the glory days when FIFA 97 on the SNES got the brand new indoor football mode exactly like its big brothers on PlayStation and Saturn.
“At least Ultimate Team continues to be within. That’s the big one, isn’t it?” Well, yes, but it’s identical to the best Team mode we saw in FIFA 18 and 19 (and don’t your investment one in FIFA 18 had been missing features even in the past). The brand new ‘Seasons’ service – where you get XP for doing offers and clearing various challenges and earn fun new rewards for hitting certain levels, like retro 16-bit footballs and so on – is nowhere found here.
Add this to the actual fact that previous years’ Ultimate Team features remain missing – no Squad Battles, no FUT Champions, no Division Rivals – and it’s little wonder that during writing there are simply 15,402 players and items listed on the Switch Ultimate Team transfer market (in comparison to more than a million on the Xbox One version). Whenever there are no extra modes that will help you gain in-game coins and you’re working with a transfer market that’s around 70 times smaller than on other systems, it doesn’t matter if Ultimate Team is within. It’s dead. It’s a clear gesture.
Even the modes that did make it across this past year haven’t been updated this time around. The brilliant House Rules made friendlies an excellent laugh in FIFA 19 and EA’s added some better still rule sets in FIFA 20, including a hilarious one called Mystery Ball where every time the ball is out of play you get different power-ups like superhuman shooting, speed boosts and… sorry, we’re wasting your time and effort here. It isn’t in the Switch version. Neither are the other new kinds that Xbox One and PS4 owners are enjoying.
We could nearly grudgingly choose the spin when EA claimed that its next-gen Frostbite engine was had a need to handle the story mode, and that’s why the Switch versions of FIFA 18 and 19 didn’t own it (despite the fact that the NBA 2K games look similarly impressive and also have were able to pull it off on the Switch, thanks quite definitely). However, not updating something similar to House Rules, which already saw a amount of effort when it had been added this past year, is pure disrespect for the Switch fanbase.
Imagine if EA had made a decision to say: “Look, this isn’t doing work for us on Switch. For individuals who bought FIFA 19, you can purchase a £14.99 DLC that upgrades it to the FIFA 20 Legacy Edition and is actually a data pack updating the squads and kits”. Many will be disappointed – angry, even, at EA’s decision to abandon the Switch while it’s still riding high – but we don’t doubt at least a few of FIFA 19’s small but core Switch following could have got it. To charge £44.99 for what’s essentially a squad update, however, is nothing short of disgusting.
And let’s remember one very important things: don’t be beneath the impression that EA reaches least being honest by declaring this a Legacy Edition on the box. As we explained inside our FIFA 18 review, we’ve been playing a Legacy Edition since the series found Switch, for the reason that game and all its modes – including Career, which includes been unchanged for such a long time it’s practically buried under a thick layer of dust right now – are mainly predicated on the Xbox 360 and PS3 Legacy Editions. Which makes FIFA 20 on Switch a Legacy Edition of a Legacy Edition, which says everything really.
When EA’s Patrick Söderlund stepped on-stage in Tokyo in early 2017 during Nintendo’s Switch reveal presentation, and declared that he was such an enormous Nintendo fan that he and his wife gave their son the center name Luigi, there is a genuine hope that the times of the feature-free FIFA 13 on Wii U and the weird cartoony slow-mo FIFA games on Wii were over, and that football-loving Nintendo gamers were finally likely to be treated with the respect they deserved. Instead, Switch owners have already been short-changed with every version of FIFA the machine has received to date, and you will sure as hell gamble that Luigi Söderlund is playing the PS4 version instead.
FIFA 20 on Switch is a totally pointless release that nobody can purchase. More infuriatingly, it sets EA up for the inevitable decision to cancel the series on Switch altogether in the coming years, of which point it’ll blame poor sales on too little interest from the Nintendo fanbase: because it’s obviously our fault we weren’t grateful and gullible enough to get its quarter-hearted effort with no the common sense to note we were paying practically the same sum of money as the fully-featured Xbox One and PS4 versions.
FIFA 20 is a cynical attempt from a publisher to totally cease support for the Switch while still getting the gall to advise it deserves to be rewarded with a near-premium payment because of its insufficient effort. If you would like to pay good money to get insulted, go heckle a big-name comedian instead: at least you’ll receive a smile from it. Unless you al