Few can argue that sports-related video games aren’t closely related to their real-world counterparts, and that shows in numerous modern-day titles. Within the 21st century, increasing numbers of developers are striving to incorporate real-time elements into their productions. However, many creators go about this in different ways. With that, let’s take a look at several football games that integrate real-time components into their offerings.
Throughout the past decade, gamers have held Electronic Art’s FIFA series in high regard, with many believing that it’s the pinnacle of console football games. To maintain its popularity, EA have continually sought to integrate real-time elements into the franchise, and they’re now at the forefront in FIFA 21.
One way that EA combines live sports and video games is through their FIFA Ultimate Team mode. The feature allows players to build teams by buying cards with coins on the FUT market. To stay in touch with real-world football, the developer releases a new Team of the Week every Wednesday. This component awards in-form players with updated in-game ratings that match their on-pitch performances. Not only that, but the game also features a dynamic set of Road to the Final cards. During this promotion, selected players receive a rating boost for progressing to the next round of either the Champions League or Europa League.
Football Studio Live
Away from mainstream gaming, Football Studio is another example of a title that combines on-screen immersion with live components. The development is one of many real-time creations available at Genesis Casino, and it intertwines classic card gaming with a football-inspired atmosphere. In staying true to its roots, the dealer’s table appears as a football pitch.
The game hit the online casino world in 2018 prior to the 2018 World Cup in Russia, and it remains a popular title three years later. Regarding the implementation of live sports features, players can hear from Football Studio’s hosts, who are cast as commentators. Although they are primarily dealers and not necessarily football experts, it brings football to the fore within a gaming setting.
Football Manager 2021
Sports Interactive takes a different approach to integrating real-world football elements into their Football Manager video games. Much like FIFA, the much-loved tactical title uses database updates to alter player stats and transfers. On March 13th, the developer released Football Manager 21’s final winter update. Although this isn’t a weekly reflection of live football performances, Sports Interactive takes more data into account before handing out new ratings.
Aside from summer and winter database updates, Sports Interactive also implements real-world contract lengths and injuries into Football Manager 2021. For example, those starting a new game with Liverpool under the final winter update would, at the time of writing, be without Joe Gomez, Joel Matip, and Virgil van Dijk for several months.
Combining Features is Becoming All the Rage
Because of the above titles’ success within their respective genre, it appears unlikely that the trend of intertwining live sports with video games will disappear in the near future. By mirroring real-world components, developers can bring much-needed realism to their titles. Crucially, this plays a significant role in expanding and retaining their audience bases.