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FIFA 22 cross-play explained: Why is EA Sports finally introducing the much-requested feature? 

FIFA 22 is going to get a playtest for cross-play on the next-generation consoles (Images via FIFA 22, TomsHardware)
FIFA 22 is going to get a playtest for cross-play on the next-generation consoles (Images via FIFA 22, TomsHardware)
Arka "Biasedguy" Sarkar

FIFA 22 is set to start something that could change the face of the series forever. EA Sports has indicated a switch in its name with its license with FIFA having expired. That's not going to be the only change, as earlier on May 3, the developers announced the playtesting of cross-play.

This is undoubtedly a historic moment for the series, as cross-play has been restricted for all FIFA games. It also questions EA Sports' motives for making the change after all these years.

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FIFA 22 was the last major addition to the series, released in October 2021. The game has new features like HyperMotion technology available on next-generation consoles. They are the same ones who are now getting the playtest for cross-play.

Although it's highly limited, it's an indication of what's to come in the future. While EA hasn't explicitly given out a reason, it could be because of new hardware or fresh competition.


After years of requests, EA Sports is finally bringing cross-play with test on FIFA 22

Despite the changes that EA Sports has made over the years, cross-play has been limited so far. That's about to change as the playtest is about to be in a limited sense.

The limited facility will be available to those playing on the PS5, Xbox Series XlS, and Google Stadia. The feature will be available to online sessions and friendlies only. While this is just a limited test, it clearly shows EA Sports building up for the future.

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With the advent of the next-generation consoles, more and more games are going cross-play. For example, Borderlands 3, which is yet to get full cross-play on the PS5, will be available in the future.

However, EA Sports' decision seems to be based partly on the hardware's capabilities and partly on what its competition has to offer. EA Sports has emphasized that there won't be any difference in the quality of the game is cross-play.

Closing the gap between the different platforms might have been harder in the past. The difference might be more manageable now based on the abilities of the modern next-generation consoles.

There could be a case from a business point of things like the name of the FIFA series will likely change in the future. EA Sports has also increased its emphasis on the multiplayer side of things. Going cross-play will enable more flexibility moving forward.

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The genre of sports games is quite competitive, and eFootball by Konami is making a comeback. Following a disastrous start, eFootball has started to showcase its true potential.

One interesting point about the game is its aim to go full cross-play in the future. While a botched release in the past has denied its ambitions, it's slowly getting back on its path. Another video game called UFL also aims to provide a full cross-play experience.

EA Sports' decisions seem to be about competition as it's about making technological changes. The developers will hope for the cross-play test to go smoothly, and there's then a chance that the feature will be enabled across more modes.

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It's also interesting to note that cross-play, for the time being, will be limited to FIFA 22 players on next-gen consoles and Google Stadia. EA Sports hasn't stated any plans for the feature to come to the older-generation consoles or PCs.

However, success with the next generation could be implemented on other hardware. It will ultimately depend on how well the performance on those devices will be.


Edited by Yasho Amonkar

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