FIFA 21 Release dates, the launch of the next FIFA game – FIFA 21 – is coming in 2020 and, as EA Sports boffins work on the finer details, eager gamers already have it on their wishlist.
Of course, the coronavirus pandemic has disrupted the entire world and industries everywhere have been impacted, including football, so it remains to be seen exactly how much the new game will be affected.
With the anticipation of the new FIFA game beginning to build, Goal brings you everything we know so far
When is FIFA 21 released?
FIFA 21 will be released on October 9, 2020, having been pushed back from its usual late September slot after EA Sports’ plans were disrupted by the coronavirus.
Early access is usually granted to those who pre-order the game, meaning they are able to play in advance of that date – this year, FIFA 21 Early Access will be available on October 6.
With E3 cancelled for 2020, EA Sports was set to announce its upcoming roster of titles during a digital event called EA Play Live 2020 on June 5.
This announcement was delayed until June 18 due to the current political climate in the United States and the protests around racial discrimination.
“With the important conversations taking place and important voices being heard around the world right now, we’re moving our time to come together in play,” EA wrote on Twitter.
What is the price of FIFA 21?
The standard edition of FIFA 21 costs £59.99 in the UK and $59.99 in the US.
EA Sports has, in recent years, launched a number of different editions – such as Champions Edition and Ultimate Edition – which cost slightly more than the standard edition.
FIFA 21 Champions Edition costs £79.99 in the UK and $79.99 in the US.
FIFA 21 Ultimate Edition has been confirmed as £89.99 and $99.99 on the Xbox and Playstation official stores.
Extra perks for FIFA Ultimate Team players such as gold packs, special FUT kits and Icons is the reason for the difference between the price of the editions included some.
Which consoles will FIFA 21 be out on?
FIFA 21 will be available to play on PS4, Xbox One and PC. It will also be released on the next generation consoles PS5 and Xbox Series X.
PS5 and Xbox Series X have been earmarked for a launch date somewhere in time for the holiday period in the US, which means they may land between October and December 2020.
Given the proximity of those dates, it would seem logical for EA Sports to work in tandem with Sony and Microsoft to ensure that the new release is available to play straight away.
Google Stadia, which was launched in 2019, did not have FIFA 20, but it is possible that a push will be made to make a game like FIFA 21 available.
Once again, the Switch version of the game will be a ‘Legacy Edition’ with no new game modes or gameplay changes, but featuring updated squads and kits.
When can I pre-order FIFA 21?
Gamers can pre-order FIFA 21 a number of months before the release date, with the pre-order period beginning on June 18 to coincide with the launch announcement of the game.
There are a few inducements for gamers to pre-order the game, such as cheaper prices, early access and Ultimate Team perks.
What new features will FIFA 21 have? Next Gen
Next Level features Controller Haptics on PS5 to offer responsive haptic feedback, faster load times, an improved lighting system to make the game look more realistic, spatialised audio for a more immersive stadium experience and off-ball humanisation where players look and feel more like their real-life counterparts.
Career Mode improvements
Issues with Career Mode blighted the launch of FIFA 20 and fans of this part of the game are eager for improvements to be implemented in that regard.
EA Sports has indicated that a new ‘Quick Sim’ option will be available on FIFA 21 and you will be able to jump in and out of games to influence the direction of the season.
You will also be able to improve players’ abilities with a new Active Training System – which will facilitate the creation of group training sessions to work on areas of weakness.
Enhanced opposition AI will also be a feature of the new game, with fresh ways to handle transfers – such as loan-to-buy with optional or mandatory future fees – being rolled out
Gameplay augmentation will be a feature of FIFA 21, with new attacking systems such as Agile Dribbling, Positioning Personality and Creative Runs providing greater control over player movement.
Goalmouth scrambles, possession battles and attacking duels will “resolve more naturally” in an attempt to create a more realistic, smoother playing experience.
Competitor Mode will give opposition better tactical understanding and capacity to pull off skill moves, making the game more competitive.
Each new FIFA title sees new Icons joining the roster of heroes from seasons gone by and FIFA 21 is no different.
Eric Cantona returns as an Icon in FIFA 21 and features in some of the promotional imagery.
Some of the other popular new Icons are Ferenc Puskas, Xavi and Nemanja Vidic, as well as Ashley Cole and Fernando Torres.
FIFA 21 will feature FUT Co-Op, which will allow you to team up – cooperate – with your friends in order to compete for FUT rewards and fulfil Co-Op Objectives.
Fitness cards will be no more in FIFA 21 and that means that players will see their stamina recharged fully after a game.
The removal of training cards will also stop people from boosting attributes to make players such as Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo unstoppable.
In Division Rivals, there will now be a cap of 40 games that will go towards a player’s rank, meaning that playing a ridiculous volume of games is disincentivised.
FIFA’s street football addition Volta will have a greater social element to it with Volta Squads, which will allow you to play with up to three friends online, as well as join the community of other Volta players.
There will be all new apparel to choose from in the customisation of your player, while Featured Battles is an addition that will see you compete for points and rewards.
As well as that, there will be a few more venues to play in, including Sao Paulo, Milan and Dubai.
Will VAR be in FIFA 21?
The introduction of the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) is the biggest change to football in the modern era, with contentious decisions and moments now up for review.
Despite first being rolled out in 2017, VAR will not be a feature of FIFA 21 – meaning it will be the third successive title without the new aspect of the game.
More official leagues & clubs
One area which FIFA cannot be faulted much for is that of official licensing and the game has long featured a vast array of clubs from across the world.
However, in since FIFA 20 Juventus are known as Piemonte Calcio and Barcelona are without a home as there is no Camp Nou. Those particular quirks will continue thanks to Konami boasting exclusive rights.
There may be no Juventus officially in the game, but EA Sports did secure an exclusive deal with AC Milan and Inter, though they are not expected to have AS Roma (who will appear as Roma FC).
There is arguably something of a licence race occurring between the two brands, so it will be interesting to see what else happens.
Who will be on the cover of FIFA 21?
Kylian Mbappe has been confirmed as the global cover star of FIFA 21 and the Paris Saint-Germain forward will grace all three covers.
The World Cup winner expressed his pride at being chosen by EA Sports, saying that it was “a dream come true” to feature on the cover of the game.
Eden Hazard and Virgil van Dijk were the cover stars for FIFA 20’s standard edition and Champions edition respectively. It was thought that EA would continue with spread of cover stars for FIFA 21, but Mbappe has claimed sole billing for the first time since Cristiano Ronaldo in FIFA 19.
Ronaldo had been the sole cover star of FIFA 18 and FIFA 19, but the Portugal icon will not return to grace the front of the game, in part due to Juventus’ exclusive partnership with EA’s rivals Konami, which is set to last for another two years. A similar situation between Barcelona and Konami means that Lionel Messi was never going to be on the cover of FIFA 21.
The likes of Neymar, Kevin De Bruyne and Paulo Dybala have appeared as FIFA cover stars in recent years and there are plenty of other alternatives besides, but Mbappe has clearly stepped out in front in terms of profile and appeal.