FIFA 15 brings out the emotional for the soccer match

EA Sports’ FIFA series has done so much right over the past five years that when you see something it has left out, and even left unaddressed for several years, the absence really does stare you in the face. So at long last, FIFA 15 is proud to announce that the corner flags will now move if they’re touched by the ball.

1405912648_930.0x524.0%20(2) FIFA 15 brings out the emotional for the soccer match

FIFA 15 may not look a lot different on first blush, but that’s not the goal. It’s supposed to feel different. After refining down the animations and behaviors and actions of players in the beautiful game, FIFA 15 will now try to replicate their emotions — giving all 22 players on the pitch a dynamic attitude that reflects both the broader and the more immediate contexts of the match.

McHardy and his team are calling it emotional intelligence, and it’s meant to complement the upgrades FIFA 14 made to the crowd’s emotion and response to the action. It’s important to soccer because many times the most important play isn’t a goal, but rather a missed opportunity, or a brilliant save, or a mistake that leaves a side utterly agonized over what was lost in the moment.

With emotional intelligence, players on the pitch will develop an attitude (really) through plays that involve them — getting jostled or fouled, for example, is going to get a player frustrated or angry the more it continues or the later it happens in the game. Then, for events that all players participate in or respond to, where the needle is on his emotional barometer will inform his reaction.

A good example is when in the game a missed shot occurs. If a good chance goes over the goal but it’s early, his teammates are more likely to respond with visible encouragement. If the same player has blown two opportunities and misses a third, their response turns to hands-on-hips exasperation.

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