Fifa 13 Scripting - Post 1
The allegations of scripting have begun to shake the very foundations on what FIFA is based on and that is its unpredictability but how "unpredictable" is it really?
If you spend any small amount of time online browsing the FIFA 13 discussions recently you may have noticed there seems to be a certain area that is being quickly red taped by EA and that is any discussion to do with or relating to anything regarding FIFA 13 being scripted. If you are not aware EA are now permanently banning anyone talking about this on their forums.
If they have nothing to hide why are they so bothered about it? Some may argue that if it is not true but people start to believe it then ultimately the bad press will damage their reputation and as a result their pockets. This is a fair and valid point but all they are doing to defend themselves are to ban any user who voices their concerns or opinions.
To give you a bit of background information on my gaming history I have been playing football games for the past 18 years and been gaming for the past 20. I began playing FIFA with their FIFA 95 release on the SNES and stayed with FIFA all the way to the release of PES 3. This was the turning point for me and I became a PES fan it had become, albeit for a short time, a far superior and more realistic game than FIFA. Then release of FIFA 09 brought me back to the series all the way up to today and they reclaimed their crown of having the best footballing game.
Every year I have quickly dominated online players easily making an impressive win to loss ratio and with the introduction of Head to Head seasons in both "Seasons" and "Pro Clubs" Division 1 just becomes a matter of time rather than the question of is it possible to get there.
Veterans of the game who have as much time and understanding as I have instantly notice if something is a miss during a match. This could be something as simple as a miss placed pace to a turning circle an 18 wheeler would be ashamed of. These split second differences in a game as fast paced as what FIFA online has become make a substantial difference and ultimately cost matches. Even some casual gamers have come up to me with no knowledge of this Fifa 13 scripting issue and told me about some matches they played the previous night and the unbelievable things that happened.
The word "Scripting" as what these noticeable changes during games have become more affectionately known as is probably the incorrect term. The word would suggest that each match is actually predetermined before kick off. This is not the case FIFA does not decide who wins and loses as some might suggest it merely shifts momentum one way or the other depending on scorelines and the time on the clock. This in addition to the boosts players have on Ultimate Team anyway adds to a very noticeable change in fluidity and as a result increases questionable actions in defence and comments about FIFA 13 scripting.
If you are reading this then you are probably having the same issues and if I said to you that in the 45th and 90th minute you actually seem to concede more goals and end up drawing or in some cases losing matches you would probably think I am psychic. Well I'm not its just the way FIFA is set up.
Below is a screenshot that was posted on a German forum by an alleged disgruntled Ex-FIFA employee who decided he would shed some light on the scripting or momentum shifting we have began to notice.
The image is quite self explanatory but I will run through a scenario with you.
- Within the first 15 minutes you go 2-0 up the match intensity actually shifts in your favour by +2 buts adds a negative to your opponent -1.
- Between the 15th and 45th minute the score is still 2-0 but now you only have a +1 momentum and your opponent is now back to normal at 0. The game will now feel a little more balanced than in the first 15 minutes but you should still feel like you are in control.
- From the 45th to the 60th minute is where it all changes the score is still 2-0 but now your opponent has a +1 momentum where as you are back down to the default 0. They get a lucky bounce and the score is now 2-1 and now the difference of 1 goal moves us to a new line on the match intensity database.
- Between the 60th and 75th minute they still have a +1 to your 0 but you manage to keep them from scoring and you keep it at 2-1.
- Now up to the 90th minute you have a +1 momentum but they have a +2 and in the 90th minute your defenders miss place a pace or seem to be easily bundled off the ball for an easy finish and the game ends 2-2.
Apparently though this has been around since FIFA 09 but it just hasn't been as noticeable even their manual explained the affect it can have on your players.
Now don't get me wrong losing sucks I hate it when I lose but if I get beat off an opponent that deserves the win I will hold my hands up and accept I was outplayed. However, if I lose because of something out of my control then that really pisses me off.
Two examples I can give you that I have personally experienced over the last 3 days. One game I was winning comfortably 2-0 I got hit on the counter and it was 2 on 1 - fair enough. One attacker was running down the wing the other through the centre with the ball. I had control of the defender in between both attackers but a bit further in front of them as an attempt to slow down the ball carrier until the other defenders could get back in position but also to watch for the pass if it was made. However, to my dismay my other 2 centre backs (I was playing 3-5-2) decided to stop running on the half way line. As a result I quickly changed to them to start running them back myself knowing from experience that the defender I was just controlling would automatically jockey the ball carrier with the contain button. As soon as I switched to the second defender the original one stopped running completely and I mean to a complete stop not slowing down an actual stop and ultimately let the ball carrier past. I then immediately switch back to him to make one last ditch tackle and as you can probably predict the second defender stopped running back as well (surprise surprise). As a result my opponent scored and the final result actually ended up being 2-2.
In another match the attacker had the ball on the wing and was about to cross it in. I knew this because that is all he had done all game. So as I had previously done in the match as well as in hundreds of other matches I positioned my player on the lone attacker in the box. As I expected he made the cross but the defender I was controlling suddenly and automatically pulled forward (The attacker was shooting left to right and crossed from top to bottom) this was even though I was holding down on the analogue pushing into the attacker to move him away from the heading position. Now this pull I felt from my player wasn't just a step or two away from the defender this was a whole 5 or 6 yards in a sprint. I couldn't believe it but then I knew for definite what I had read online about FIFA 13 scripting had some ounce of truth to it.
In case you were wondering this was my team
5 Stars - 100 Chemistry - 85 Rating
GK: Victor Valdes
CB: Gerard Pique
CDM: Sergio Busquests
CDM: Xabi Alonso
LM: David Villa
RM: Alexis Sanchez
The problem with all this is that is it very easy to blame a loss on scripting. I have seen a lot of videos on Youtube recently where people claim to have been scripted out of a match but really its just them being actually quite poor at the game. However, there are still those that have caught questionable moments in a match where the player actually has no control on what is going on.
As a result of my research I decided to test a little theory I had basing it on the Match Intensity database and the FIFA 09 manual I came up with a plan of action to do with my attacking mentality and the use of the quick tactics option.
I created a simple excel spreadsheet that calculated the match intensity based on the the score line and time and tells you what mentality and what tactic to play. I tried it and to my surprise it actually worked I won my next 3 matches 7-0, 4-2 and 4-0 in Division 1 even though I could sense the speed of my players had actually slowed and sped up at different points in the match. I could also tell that my opponents were having a hard time playing not because I was outplaying them they were really good players but because I understood the shift in momentum and what to do at different points in the game.
You can download it for free here [Opens in a new window].
Don't get me wrong this is no sure fire way to win constantly, you still have to be a good player and know how to play but with a better understanding of the momentum it helps. By all means its no way to play FIFA to have to constantly amend the tactics and clock watch just to stay ahead of the game but i tell you what if you can get a win from it and not feel cheated surely its better than nothing?
I am sure I speak for all FIFA players when I say this but we know that momentum is in the real game and it should be included in FIFA but don't punish good players because they can score more goals than the opposition and then set it up so the losing team can make a comeback. I would rather win (or lose) against someone that is worse (or better) than I am in an honest game of skill.
If you appreciate the points I have made above please spread the word and leave a comment.