Introduction to the Game Modes
The game of football consists of 22 men chasing a ball around a field for 90 minutes, and at the end, the Germans Win. - Gary Linker, former England Striker
So perhaps you're new to the FIFA series or new to soccer in general. This little Geezer guide will be designed to give you a rudimentary understanding of the different game modes FIFA offers. I will then offer several suggestions regarding tactics/strategies (and maybe some ideas as to what team or league to start with) that will hopefully serve as a foundation for developing your skills and love of the game.
At the bare minimum, I hope this helps you appreciate the game, and not want to break the disc. Yes, there will be times where you'll want to pull your hair out, but that is down to the game of soccer itself, and not always due to the video game.
Kick Off Mode Your typical, one-off exhibition mode. Similar to 'Play Now' from Madden
Career For those playing Madden 13, this should feel similar to the new Connected Careers Mode in said game. The developers of Madden have claimed that FIFA was their inspiration for the evolution of the connected careers mode. When starting the mode, you'll be asked whether you'll want to be a player or a manager. As a player you'll control your own digital avatar (or a preexisting player) week in and week out for your club and national side. As a manager you'll be faced with an experience similar to that of Be A GM mode in the NHL series. In this mode you'll buy and sell players, play matches as you normally would, and compete in both league and cup competitions for both club teams and national teams (should you be offered a national team job)
Tournament This is the mode you would typically think of as 'Season Mode.' In it you play as one team, for one season. There is not buying and selling of players, no multiple competitions, only the one you choose. You be able to select any league or cup competition from any country on offer in the game. New to the game of FIFA or new to the sport of Soccer? Maybe try the MLS Cup competition (hint, though its called a 'Cup' in fifa, its actually a combination 34 game league schedule followed by playoffs)
Seasons this is a fairly new mode to the fifa series. In it, you play online, against other gamers in a loosely organized 'season' of (I think its) 10 games. You have to reach a certain point total to be promoted or relegated into the league above/below. In this way, theoretically you will end up playing other gamers at a similar level to you.
Ultimate Team Just like ultimate team in NHL or Madden, but with a great auction house, and with a competition set up similar to that of 'Seasons' Mode. I personally find this mode to be very addicting, and taking me away from my traditional mode of choice, Career.
Pro Clubs The team/league online mode in which your digital likeness will team up with the digital likenesses of other geezers as we set records for futility in front of goal. This mode can be a lot of fun, and can be both rewarding and frustrating as hell in terms of learning the finer points and strategies of the game of soccer.
In my next post I'll discuss the merits of picking one team, and one formation, to familiarize yourself with as you're starting out.