Sports Gamers Online

FIFA Pitch Notes: Gameplay Beyond FIFA 19 and Moving Toward FIFA 20


Today, EA Sports released another installment of FIFA Pitch Notes. For this entry, EA discussed a variety of gameplay topics, specifically in reference to problems in FIFA 19 that will be addressed in FIFA 20 and beyond. Here’s a complete breakdown.

Some of the biggest gameplay areas touched on today include: AI defending, 1v1 shooting, timed finishing, volleys, skill moves, passing and more.

To begin, EA notes that gameplay fixes and patches are more complex than players realize. Per the article, “Although we always make an effort to deliver a refined gameplay system, there are certain changes that become more difficult to address mid-cycle. Take FIFA 19 and AI Defending as a key feedback example… In order to tune AI Defending appropriately, the team needs enough time to adjust for the impact it will have on other functions on the pitch.”

Essentially, EA tries to explain that core gameplay issues, like the ones discussed in this article, can’t be patched quickly because a hasty patch could cause major damage to other parts of the game. For example, Madden 19 released a patch in February that was aimed to patch overpowered contested catch animations. While the patch helped that issue, it somehow caused a fundamental flaw that made all players fall forward in tackling animations. FIFA’s developers hope to avoid such catastrophes.


After numerous feedback sessions, and by gathering direct feedback from players across forums, surveys, content and social channels, we were able to deploy patches to address some of the concerns in the early stages of FIFA 19 like: Jumping Volley Kicks, mid-game Dynamic Tactics, First-time Finesse Shots, Defensive Pressure, Near Post Shots, AI Teammate Shot Blocks, Tackling Speed, Stamina on Defensive Constant Pressure, further tuning of Shooting and Skill Moves, Timed Finesse Shots, Timed Shooting Window, and Goal Keeper Movement.

Per EA, the following is a list of gameplay features/mechanics that will be focused on for the release of FIFA 20:

  • A.I. Defending: renewed defending system, improved tackling, improved jockey system
  • 1v1 Shooting Consistency: improved accuracy, less “superhuman” goalie reactions:
  • Timed Finishing: green timing window reduced to 2 frames for all shots, more skillful
  • Volley Crossing and Shooting: increased difficulty for volley crosses and volley shots
  • Chained Skill Moves: consecutive skill moves will now have increased error risk
  • Set Piece Positioning: more realistic and intelligent marking/positioning interactions
  • Manual Goalkeeper Movement: effectiveness heavily reduced
  • Passing: increased accuracy for easy passes, decreased accuracy for difficult passes
  • Player Switching: improved situations to always get control of the desired player

Most of the above list include parts of FIFA 19 that were a problem for many players, and something that the community gave EA consistent feedback on.

EA Play begins next weekend, and FIFA will play a big role in the event. Per the article, “We’ll be hosting a livestream at EA PLAY and we plan on beginning to show you some of what we’re discussing today, as well as some other surprises we’re excited to talk about.”

You can read more about the latest installment of FIFA Pitch Notes here.

What do you think of these FIFA Pitch Notes? What have you heard that makes you excited for the lead up to FIFA 20? Let us know in the comment section below, and don’t forget to subscribe to SGO.

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