With the full Worldwide release of EA Sports FIFA 15 imminent, we at Balls.ie want you to be able to hit the ground running and fly up the online leaderboards, or just claim bragging rights against your mates.
Having played the 80% complete demo build at EA Guildford back in July, as well as time spending with the demo, and being lucky enough to have early access to a review copy, these are the tips will help you get to grips with the new mechanics in FIFA 15 and transition seamlessly to the new game.
Finesse Shots Are King
The finesse shot is well and truly back in FIFA 15. It's not quite as overpowered as when it was first introduced to the series a few years back, but it is certainly a powerful weapon. Shooting from an angle at the edge of the box should always be a finesse shot, as it has a much higher chance of curling inside the post than a normal power shot would. Obviously every attempt at a finish shouldn't be a finesse, but for low finishes in the box, curlers from the edge of the box, and 1v1's with the keeper, your best bet is to hold RB/R1 while shooting.
Near Post Shooting Is Also Very Effective
On FIFA 14 it seemed as though a standard driven shot across the keeper to the far post was the best bet for finishing, so naturally EA Sports looked to remedy that in FIFA 15. Instead, they may have made near post shooting a bit too powerful, as the new goalkeeper AI seems to struggle with near post shots. In Ultimate Team especially, powerful shots to the near post are a great bet.
Don't Commit To Every Tackle
This should be common sense, but you still come across players who feel the need to actually make a tackle every time they are close to the opponent. X/Square is slide tackle, and B/Circle is standing tackle, but you don't need to use either of these buttons to win the ball back. Instead, A/X should be used to contain the man with the ball, and then it all becomes about positioning. Advanced FIFA players will use RB/R1 to send a second player to pressure the ball, while manually positioning a defender deep to prevent the next pass, but those who are less experienced should be using contain, and only sliding in when it's a last ditch attempt.
Leave The Goalkeeper To Take Care Of Himself
In previous FIFAs, it was sometimes a good idea to rush the goalkeeper with Y/Triangle to rush your opponent, or to bring him out a bit and close the angle. Don't do this in FIFA 15. Goalkeepers have been a huge focus for the development of FIFA 15, and as a result they are much more alive to sweeping up, you don't need to call them. The only thing that calling your keeper will do for you now is cause confusion. Keepers are inconsistent in FIFA 15 because they can be inconsistent in real life. Just leave him be.
Aim Your Corner Kicks For The Near Post
Corners are another thing that has been changed from FIFA 14 to 15, and thankfully so, because they were far too easy in last years' game. Some people have been complaining that they are too tough, but that is only if you stick to your old routine. Try to aim your corner for the front post, and depending on how your player attacks the ball, you can shoot or flick the ball on. If you can get a shot on target from a near post header, the keepers find these difficult to deal with, but if a shot looks awkward, you can pass the header back across goal and attempt to win the second ball.
Angle Your Through-Balls
Everybody who played FIFA 14 a considerable amount will know how infuriating the over-the-top through-balls down the middle were. Well EA have made it more difficult, but it seems that the through-ball from the angle still has a high success rate. A good example of when to use this pass would be to cut in with a wide player near the half way line and angle a through ball in behind the defence. The defenders seem to react better from passes that go straight down the pitch, probably so players don't transition from defence to attack so quickly, so by playing the ball wide before trying to pick a pass you give your chances a boost.
Formations Are More Important Than You Think
The key to finding your go-to team in FIFA is down to finding a formation that suits your style of play, and then matching it with a club that has players for that position. Since FIFA took over the football game market around 2009/10, there have been some formations which have been consistently strong. 4-1-2-1-2, 4-2-2-2, 4-2-3-1, and 4-3-3 are without a doubt the most balanced and effective formations to use. Avoid three at the back unless you know exactly what you are doing, avoid five at the back because that's just bad form and ruins matches as a spectacle, and instead settle on a four at the back formation that compliments your game. If you like to hit people on the counter with crosses, go 4-3-3. If you like to play through the middle go 4-2-2-2. A combination of wide and narrow play suits the 4-1-2-1-2, or if you are one of those guys who cares about possession and passing more than anything, you want a 4-3-3 false 9.
If You Play Ultimate Team, Buy The Coin Boosts
One of the biggest struggles of anyone playing FIFA Ultimate Team is the crap players you get at the start, and unless you are a veteran of the game mode it can be difficult to generate the coins to buy good players. In the EASFC Catalogue you can buy coin boosts that give you a set amount of coins extra after every game you play. A level 1 EASFC player can buy a 200 coin boost for 10 games, and higher levels can get 1000 coins per game for as many as 15 games. In no time you will have enough for a strong gold team. For a beginners guide to Ultimate Team, click here.
The Simple Body Feint Is The Most Effective Skill Move
Some people devote themselves to only scoring goals that involve McGeady spins, Ronaldo chops, and needless rainbow flicks, but by far the most effective skill move is the body feint, which even two star skill move players can pull off. There is a skill move guide in the controller settings, but hit the practise arena and use the body feint by just flicking the right-stick either left or right before taking off into the space.
Turn Auto-Switching Off And Use The Right Stick To Change Players
Make sure auto-switching is set to "Arial Balls" before you do anything, because you can't defend properly against a good player with it on. This will ensure that you can track off the ball runs. It is also a big help if you can get comfortable with using the right-stick to directionally choose which player to control as it just takes the random element out of changing player.