2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa Review
Xbox 360 | PS3
2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa box art
System: X360, PS3 Review Rating Legend
Dev: EA Canada 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: EA Sports 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Apr. 27, 2010 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-4 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

As you can see, there really isn't much new content to enjoy, let alone worth shelling out 60 clams for. Moreover, far fewer FIFA gamers will actually pick up this edition, so the level of online competition will necessarily be seriously hampered when compared to previous editions of FIFA. Both these complaints would have been acceptable had the presentation been outstanding. Disappointingly, everything has been rushed through development such that I can hardly believe it was EA Canada that developed this title.

2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot

Perhaps most annoying, especially as a fan of US Soccer, is that many teams' player pools are questionable and the likenesses are god-awful; Landon Donovan looks conspicuously weird (changed for the worse) and respected players like Clint Dempsey and Tim Howard aren't even customized. In my opinion, every player on every national selection that has made the World Cup Finals should be fully detailed. That's the least they can do for our $60!

These issues aren't as pronounced for top-tier squads such as Spain, England, and Brazil, but there are still several instances where curious squad selections and generic player likenesses are a problem. If poor attention to detail doesn't bother you, sloppy coding will. Infrequent but persistent console freezing issues occur, out-of-match loading, saving, and menu transitions are choppy, and a menu glitch where a loading graphic persists in the lower-left corner just scream phoned-in development.

Also, the camera shots of supporters are appalling - the same four fans are shown with slightly different complexions, perhaps a new hairstyle or hat, and some face paint. It's pathetic! A game about the World Cup needs to embrace the fanfare. I want to see hot Brazilian chicks dancing to a samba beat. How about some pasty Brits chanting a terrace song? Maybe, if it's not too much to ask, we could get some stand-covering flags and shots of ultras going bonkers after a goal. As it stands, this game is essentially devoid of anything that makes the World Cup great; it has a decidedly vanilla, box-store quality that falls utterly short - perhaps Sep Blatter's leadership and outlook for FIFA should shoulder some of the responsibility in this regard.

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On a final note, other than the African-inspired soundtrack, the in-game sounds are stunningly poor. This is especially true of the commentating duo, which was obviously given just a handful of phrases to read off - there's more to the game than just getting "stuck-in" on a tackle Clive! Even worse, the pronunciation of names outside of the world's elite players is quite bad; it's almost like listening to the crew at Sports Center struggling through a Champions League highlight reel, but with British accents. Not good at all!

It pains me to say it, but this game's weak. This is essentially the movie tie-in of sports titles; about as interesting and worthwhile as games fashioned after the Olympics or the X-Games. There is no reason why this shouldn't have been relegated to a premium add-on through the FIFA Store. If EA wanted to charge full price, then they needed to deliver a meaningful, lovingly-crafted experienced. Both the World Cup and loyal fans like myself deserve at least that much.

By Jonathan Marx
CCC Editor / News Director

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
2.5
Graphics
The in-game action looks fine and the stadiums are pretty, but many player likenesses are awful and the supporters and fanfare surrounding the tournament have been unconscionably neglected.
4.5
Control
It's very easy to control this game whether you're a FIFA veteran or newcomer to the franchise.
2.8
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music selection is admirable, but the generic fan chants and lame commentators stink it up.
3.0
Play Value
Fortunately, the excellent gameplay found in FIFA 10 remains unscathed. However, the cash-in vibe this title exudes from nearly all other facets queers the deal.
2.9
Overall Rating - Average
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Win the 2010 FIFA World Cup - Compete as one of 199 teams from qualification right through to a virtual reproduction of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Final. Play in any of the 10 official stadiums that come to life with the pageantry and festivity of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
  • 2010 FIFA World Cup Online - The first-ever full and authentic 2010 FIFA World Cup online tournament. Compete as your favourite country against rivals in the group stage through the knockout rounds to be crowned 2010 FIFA World Cup champion. Navigate the Globe to locate top countries and opponents among all 199 participating nations.
  • Spectacular Presentation: 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa comes to life in spectacular fashion with all the emotion and pageantry of the official tournament, including all 10 official licensed stadiums. Experience confetti cannons, streamers, giant banners, seat cards, flags and fireworks as if you were in South Africa.
  • Battle of the Nations - Represent your country in the 2010 FIFA World Cup online tournament against your rivals to win global supremacy. Earn individual and team points and prove your nation is the best. Every performance is rated, recorded and uploaded and your ratings all count towards player and nation leaderboards.
  • Home & Away Tactics- CPU mimics international football by creating strategic, defensive formations for weaker teams playing away from home. Plus, weaker teams raise their level of play on their home pitch.
  • Altitude Effects - Less air resistance at altitude means the ball travels faster and further. Plus, player will noticeably fatigue faster and their stamina challenged while playing in cities at higher elevations versus sea level.
  • Authentic Stadiums - Compete in all 10 official stadiums of 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.


  • Screenshots / Images
    2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa screenshot - click to enlarge

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