EA has announced that EA Sports FIFA Online, a free-to-play online version of its best-selling FIFA franchise, is being developed.
Anyone with an “average spec” laptop or PC should be able to play the game, but perhaps the most interesting news is that, during the closed beta test, fans and gamers will actually help to shape the features and content for the game before the start of the English open beta in June 2010.
“Listening to and engaging football fans has been one of the driving forces behind the success of our FIFA franchise and now we are inviting European football fans–in mass numbers and earlier than we ever have before–to help us develop a new football game,” said executive producer Kaz Makita. “Fans will determine the features that matter most, and at the end of this process, our goal is to deliver a game for fans looking for a quick football fix at home or at work.”
According to Makita, many football fans do not want a console gaming experience due to time and other priorities in their lives, but still want to be able to play a top notch football game. “FIFA Online will be designed specifically for them.” he said.
Fans will be able to register for the closed beta test from 3 February at the official site. More than 20,000 players will be able to take part in this first phase of the test, the open beta will allow hundreds of thousands more in June, shorty before the game’s launch.
Over the next 12 – 24 months, FIFA Online will be launched across Europe in a number of languages, then in North Amercia.
The game itself will feature 30 licences leagues, 500 clubs and in excess of 15,000 players. The first stage of the closed beta will include a 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa tournament mode, the second stage will feature a league mode that opens up the online play.
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