A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn a number of positive things, including healthy competition, national pride, teamwork/cooperation, following codes of conduct, and that exercise can be fun and rewarding, even though the game wasn't initially designed for education. The other plus is the inclusion of female soccer teams for the first time in the franchise, which clearly boosts the diversity in the game. Aside from strong branding (in-game advertising), the fact that players can talk freely online (even with strangers), and in-game purchase options, FIFA 16 is excellent for players of all ages.
Celebrates world's most popular game, teaches codes of conduct, teamwork, professionalism, athleticism, national pride.
Positive Role Models
Characters look, move like their real-life counterparts, most of whom are positive role models. For the first time in the FIFA franchise, gamers can play as female players.
Ease of Play
Simple controls, easy to learn, lots of tutorials, drills.
Products & Purchases
Lots of branding on players, stadium, with company logos for companies such as EA Sports, Adidas, Qatar Airways, Samsung, T-Mobile, Nike, YouTube. Has additional content in pricier collector's edition games, option to buy players with virtual currency, real money (in-app purchases).
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that FIFA 16 is the latest iteration of EA sports' yearly soccer simulation. There isn't any controversial content in this game. But players should be aware that for the first time in the franchise's history, players can select to play as women's teams along with the standard men's football clubs. There are two small caveats: First, gamers who play online can talk with other people, and no one from EA Sports will filter or moderate the discussions, possibly exposing players to inappropriate content. Second, there are many logos for brands splashed all over the stadiums and on the players, as well as optional in-app purchases, which Mom and Dad might not like.
Is It Any Good?
For soccer fans, this is the best game available, easily justifying the purchase; that can't always be said of yearly releases of sports games. At the risk of stating the obvious, the problem with an annual sports game is there's often little added to the overall experience to justify the purchase. This isn't the case with FIFA 16. Though it's comparable visually -- but still better on next-generation consoles than on last year's FIFA 15 -- it's the controls, options, pace, and modes that make this year's game feel light years ahead of what came before it. Worth noting is the increased attention paid to defensive players, with more tension and drama in the midfield, including new ways to pass and dribble, so the spotlight isn't only on your forwards and strikers.
Along with regular games against smart computer-controlled teams, or playing head to head with a friend beside you (not to mention in online matches and tournaments), the new FUT Draft mode adds another layer of strategy as you buy player packs, build teams, and play them against friends (or enemies) online -- but be aware it costs virtual money, which you can redeem via in-game purchases. Winning tourneys will put more cash in your bank, which you can use to buy more players, and so on. What's more, adding women is a great idea and long overdue -- after all, the U.S. Women's National Team won the 2015 Women's World Cup. It's clear that FIFA 16 is the finest football sim there is. If you like soccer and video games, you'll love FIFA 16.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.