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FIFA 23: The New Features Coming to EA Sports’ Soccer Juggernaut

How long will FIFA be FIFA? With ongoing rumblings both at EA Sports and at global soccer’s governing body itself concerning the future of the planet’s most feverishly binged sports simulation, it was anyone’s guess as to whether we were in for a full-on franchise reboot (or the dawn of some sort of soccer video game multiverse of madness) when it came time for the sequel to FIFA 22 to drop this fall.

Well, according to a Monday report from Tom Henderson of Xfire, there are some legitimately new features to look forward to in the next edition of EA’s titanic world football offering. And while they don’t rise to a radical level this year, one key FIFA 23 advancement regarding cross-platform online play will have enthusiasts buzzing.

1. The FIFA Name is Staying (for Now)

In the fall of 2021, we were faced with the question of whether or not EA’s soccer games would continue to feature FIFA as its title sponsor at all. As Boardroom’s Randall Williams wrote in October:

“As The New York Times notes, FIFA has requested that EA pay $1 billion every four years (yes, read that again). FIFA currently receives an annual licensing fee of about $150 million for the game. EA has already registered a trademark for the phrase “EA Sports FC” should the two sides not come to terms on a way forward.”

Well, the hypothetical days of booting up EA Sports FC 23 on your console or PC remain hypothetical — at least for this year’s edition. EA is moving ahead with FIFA 23 without any name change plans immediately apparent.

2. Building on the Women’s Game

Let’s be clear: while the franchise’s addition of a handful of women’s national teams starting with FIFA 16 on the heels of the 2015 Women’s World Cup was a necessary breakthrough and worth appreciating, WoSo unfortunately remains far from the top of the list of EA’s priorities year to year. There are still no playable women’s club teams, after all — a setback not just for one’s personal entertainment, but for visibility, dignity, and equity on the part of the athletes, teams, and leagues themselves.

If there is something to latch onto here, it’s that the game will feature fully licensed branding for the Women’s World Cup. Henderson also reports that licensing will expand for the women’s side of the game in FIFA 23, but it’s too early to know if that constitutes the club team breakthrough that fans of the NWSL, Women’s Super League, and beyond have been clamoring for.

3. Hypermotion Evolved

The days of sending a select group of footballers through hours and hours of contrived live game situations in those silly motion capture suits covered in those little lightbulb-type things are over. EA’s “Hypermotion Technology,” which made its debut in FIFA 22, has been significantly expanded.

At its core, Hypermotion uses several strategically-placed cameras at real soccer venues to capture and map live action as it happens. This data contributes to the foundations of the game to make both the look and flow of the virtual athletes’ on-field play appear more lifelike.

If FIFA 22 was a polite Hypermotion cameo, FIFA 23 may be when it really turns pro.

4. Cross-platform Play!

It’s finally here. After years of waiting, gamers will be able to play FIFA online against one another regardless of which platform they’re using to play the full game: PlayStation, Xbox, or PC.

The change won’t mean anything to those who are content to play manager careers or home games against opponents seated on the other side of the same couch, but it’s a major shift for online competitors and FIFA Ultimate Team enthusiasts who’ve seen their list of potential opponents limited year after year.

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