EA has responded (at some length) to criticisms of FIFA 13 leveled at it by the BBC's Watchdog.
In its response, EA points out that "our game goes through a rigorous, year-long testing process that logs thousands upon thousands of hours of evaluation to ensure a high quality experience at launch and all season long."
The company cites the sheer volume of players as a key factor in the problems, stating that, ?On any given day, more than 1m online game sessions of FIFA are played by our fans in the UK. But as with any product or online service with such a high level of traffic and popularity, there will be some circumstances where fans experience challenges or issues.
?And as with any online service, our game is also dependent on many other factors, such as online access and availability at the customer?s location, to ensure the best experience.
?We are constantly listening to our fans and asking for their feedback to help us identify issues and assist us in prioritising the improvements to our game. In summary, we have already delivered improvements to FIFA 13 to address issues in online connectivity, addressed key issues in game modes like Career Mode and FIFA Ultimate Team, and are actively addressing customer issues related to transactions in the game that have not been executed properly, such as missing coins or FIFA Ultimate Team items.
?Since we released a major update to the game on October 19th, we?ve seen reported game crashes and other issues drop by more than half.
?We have received reports from our fans of rare occurrences where the ball in the game does not appear. Our team continues to investigate these rare events and we will communicate directly with our fans once we have more information.?
?Our commitment is to not only address issues and necessary fixes to improve the FIFA experience as quickly and effectively as possible, but deliver new services and new content all season long. The process of improving the game experience for our fans is a constant one, and our team continues to work on additional improvements that we will implement and communicate in the coming days and weeks ahead. We know that we have significantly improved the FIFA experience for our fans in recent days, and we fully expect that to continue as we develop and implement additional improvements and fixes.
?We understand that some fans may wonder why we can?t fix all the known issues at once. That?s a fair question and the answer isn?t quite as simple. We are delivering improvements and fixes in such a way to ensure the millions of people playing FIFA 13 do not experience undue or overly lengthy network/server outages, that title updates and other improvements are done to a high quality, and that we?re confident the changes will improve the FIFA 13 experience for everyone.?