FIFA Football 2004 - GameCube

Also known as: FIFA Soccer 2004

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Also for: PC, PS2, Xbox, PlayStation
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Sport: Football - Soccer
Arcade origin:No
Developer: Electronic Arts Soft. Co.: Electronic Arts
Publishers: Electronic Arts (GB)
Released: 24 Oct 2003 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 3+
Connectivity: GC/GBA Link Cable
Accessories: Memory Card


Seeing as the GameCube misses out on the majesterial Pro Evolution Soccer 3, Electronic Arts' offering can surely plug the gap with ease. Even if Konami's game was available for the 'Cube, FIFA 2004 contains more than enough football goodness to warrant a closer look.

The most trumpeted feature in FIFA 2004 is EA's new trademarked 'Off the Ball' Control. It does exactly what it says on the tin: lets you control the players not in possession of the ball. Luckily enough, you retain control of the player with the ball at his feet too. Hurrah! It's a neat addition to the series' list of features, enabling you to anticipate moves, time your runs, fight for space and put players in prime positions to receive passes and launch attacks. It does take a while to master, but then again, it increases playability no end.

In a nod to other contemporary football games, FIFA 2004 incorporates a Career mode that offers players the chance to adopt a more 'hands-on' role at their chosen club. Sure, you continue to control the players in the matches, but you now get the chance to take a team from the lower divisions, battle through the leagues, acquire new players, and attempt to turn them into champions.

With the usual host of league and cup competitions we've come to expect from the license-laden best-selling FIFA series, and a mind-boggling selection of teams and amusingly-named players, the 2004 incarnation will doubtless prove popular with GameCube owners. Props to EA for keeping faith with the beleaguered little machine - FIFA Football 2004 should keep it turned on for a while yet.