A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that there is nothing of concern in this game other than some branding (e.g. Coca-Cola). The soccer sim was designed to capture the excitment and emotion of 2010 FIFA World Cup soccer, a family friendly sporting competition taking place in June 2010 in South Africa. Online version does allow open chat using a headset with strangers, so parents of younger children might want to prohibit that mode of play.
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What's it about?
Ask a \"footie\" fan what's the significance of June 11 and they'll immediately grin ear to ear as they remind you it's the kick off date for 2010 FIFA World Cup, the biggest sporting event on the planet that pits the very best soccer teams against one another in a month-long competition. Now you can get in the game yourself with EA Sports' 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA, the official sports video game of the event, and arguably the most ambitious soccer simulation to date. The sim features all 199 national teams that took part in qualification, as well as all of the 10 licensed stadiums hosting the games in South Africa. There are many modes to dig your cleats into but the big one is gamers can play against one another in a deep online tournament mode, country versus country, until one team is crowned World Cup champion. Another mode lets up to four gamers play on the same team.
Is it any good?
Yes. While it might be tough to justify picking up a new soccer game each year, EA Canada has done an exceptional job at capturing the emotion, excitement, gameplay, and visuals that lead up to this major sporting event. The handling of the soccer player and ball has been greatly improved, too, putting much of the emphasis on the game's dual analog sticks (as with other recent FIFA titles), but also allowing for an optional, simplified two-button control scheme. In solo matches, the computer-controlled opponents are anything but predictable, but online is where this game shines. Speaking of Internet support, adding to the game's replayability are real-time moments updated from the real 2010 FIFA World Cup, that lets players see how they'll fare in the same nail-biting scenarios. Overall, soccer fans looking to take home a piece of the World Cup magic this summer shouldn't hesitate to kick this disc into their game collection.
Online interaction: The game is packed with online modes that range from quick pick-up-and-play games to full-on tournaments to the ability to play with up to three friends on the same team. The lobby is clean and intuitive. Some online versions allow talking to strangers over a headset so what you might hear is questionable.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about whether EA Sports has done a good job adding enough new features to justify the $60 price tag or is it virtually the same game but rewrapped in a World Cup skin? Are gamers who bought the last version of the game getting ripped off with this title? Can a video game company release a new game each year really innovate enough each time -- or should these titles be closer to $30 instead of $60?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.