Interviews

FIFA 12: 'I don't think we're going to run out of ideas'

David Rutter talks transfer deadline day, 'bad eggs' and injuries

With a new and improved career mode FIFA 12 is in the running to become one of the most well-rounded football game packages on the market.

To break down what changes and improvements have been made to this years edition of EA's world-class sim PSM3 sat down with FIFA producer David Rutter. Here's what he had to say.

How close do you think the game is to your original vision of FIFA 12?

For this year, its right there. I think we've hit the nail on the head for what we wanted to achieve this year and that's why we came out much earlier than we usually do with playable code - it's the first time ever we've let people play Career mode at an event.

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Career mode is much more holistic this year: with interlinked injuries, transfers and a morale system based around the players' expectations within the club that they're playing for.

For the future, we have things that we still want to achieve that are going to take us a while to get to; I don't think we're going to run out of ideas.

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You've put a lot of e ort into the transfers. Has that been based on the Sky Sports approach to transfer deadline day?

The changes have come about from our fans saying we need to make a big deal of it. There's a video at the beginning saying 'Transfer deadline day,' and then you can get stuck in, with multiple rounds of negotiation possible within that day.

A ticker counts down the hours and a cumulative amount of money that has been spent in that day, plus a summary pane of who's in and who's out from all the different clubs and a list of all the transfers that are happening. It creates a competitive environment - you versus the CPU - to do last minute deals.

When the transfer window closes, will there still be stories about players wanting to leave their clubs?

Sure. I think there are four or five reasons why players want to leave their clubs in FIFA 12: that they are not getting enough games, they don't feel that the club is where it should be, or they don't feel the captain's good enough.

At that point, you either have to fi x the problem or they are going to be unhappy - and that affects how they play. It's more of a squad management game this year, where you have to keep everyone happy.

You have to rest players since there's a danger of injuries - which can be serious - but you have multiple backup players, subs, and reserves. It's a balancing act.

So will one 'bad egg' player spread his mood throughout the squad?

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It's not contagious in that way, but if you have a weak captain that can affect multiple players. If you have players you're not picking, who think they deserve to play, then you're going to have a problem, but we don't have bad eggs. You need to figure out the team chemistry.

Now that you've got true injuries in the game, what kind of stats are you using to work out who gets the most injured, or who's more prone to layoffs?

We have a team of at least 100 people who edit the player database - from how good they are at passing or shooting, to how injury prone they are. And that helps. But at the same time, whether you're injury prone or not, if someone tackles you in a very brutal way, you're more likely to get injured than not. It's based on physics with the Player Impact Engine, but some players are more likely to get injured than others.

Do you know o hand who in your game is the most likely to get injured?

I don't know who's the most likely to get injured - but I'm pretty sure you could name some suspects...

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