FIFA 13 kicks Nintendo fans down. Again.

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EA was recently caught out selling the same game to Wii owners twice, with FIFA 13 – which was in essence little more than a full-priced FIFA 12 reskinned with new menus. Nintendo fans hoping to pick up FIFA 13 on the company’s as-yet0unreleased Wii U might be in for a similar bit of disappointment.

According to Eurogamer, the version of  “the beautiful game” headed to the Wii will be a gimped version of the one already available of PC, Ps3 and Xbox 360.

“Some of the later improvements on 13 we weren’t able to get into the game,” FIFA 13 Wii U producer Matt Prior told Eurogamer. “So we’ve got version one. They’ve got version two.”

At least with this particularly poor port, EA’s got a viable excuse, other than greed and laziness – in the 14 months it’s taken to port the game, 80 per cent of the team’s time was devoted to porting the engine – getting a codebase up and running to build future versions of the game on. As a result, some of the better new features from FIFA 13 didn’t make it to the Wii U – like the player Impact Engine, tactical defending and precision dribbling.

“It was a challenge,” he said. “Because it’s something that’s been written for a different machine there’s a lot of work getting it to work. There are different processors, CPUs and different libraries.

“We can’t take a feature they’re working on because we get it working and they change it,” he added.

“We get it working and they change it, alongside all the challenges we already have. It’s not technically feasible. Looking forward we could probably get parity now. But year one is always the most difficult because you’re laying the foundation.”

Furthermore, the Wii U version will also lack the wildly popular FIFA Ultimate Team, because says EA, Nintendo’s online system is still in its  “infancy”.

It’s not all bad though – the Wii U version will be getting its own exclusive features – mostly aimed at the casual market.

“We know there are a lot of casual gamers out there who love football, and by virtue of loving football are into FIFA,” Prior said. “I mean, gone are the days when you had to be a gamer to appreciate games, right? Messi looks like Messi now. Anyone who loves football can relate to it.

“But if you’re a non-gamer up until this point you haven’t been able to interact with it because you got on and your son or your brother hammered you eight nil. It wasn’t a pleasurable experience. Now, they can hop on and by virtue of Manager Mode have fun but not that pressure of twitch.

“We’ve seen a lot of games for the new console, they just throw inventory on there. It’s not really a game changer in what they’ve done with the GamePad. Ours is, particularly for a more casual demographic.”

In addition to that, the Wii U version will have a graphical edge over its other counterparts.

“There are pros and cons with each one. But the Wii U has got more memory so that allows us to improve visually on a couple of areas. You’ve noticed the crowd is double the resolution that it is on PS3 and Xbox 360 and also the pitch has a lot more detail. The crowd was something we knew we could have improved so we took that opportunity.”

Higher resolution crowds? Yup, THAT’s what Wii U owners want from their new consoles.

Last Updated: October 22, 2012

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