Football/Soccer (depending on where you are in the world) fever is upon as the 2022 FIFA World Cup is due to kick off this month in sunny Qatar.
There’s been much controversy surrounding this year’s games, with many claiming human rights violations and ungodly amounts of money being pumped into the event. Further controversy also unfolded as we saw FIFA and EA Sports part ways this year. FIFA 23 is the last title to be released by this somewhat dynamic duo after decades of collaborations, the games’ World Cup mode is currently putting in big numbers.
Amidst the headlines, FIFA have gone ahead and announced their very own NFT themed games being released in celebration of the World Cup. We can imagine this receiving mixed reviews from the get go due to the negative attention NFTs have brought due to scams committed within the space.
Many who have followed the headlines will be aware that FIFA and EA ended their partnership, due to EA wanting to delve into web3. FIFA were initially against this so this recent update is fairly head scratching.
“This is a hugely exciting group of partnerships that we’ve entered into as we embrace a new, digitally-native football fan and engage with them in the spaces that we know they are already active within,” FIFA chief business officer Romy Gai said.
Below we will go over the four upcoming games in a bit more detail.
Upland is one of the biggest metaverse experiences where players can buy virtual real estate. It’s a replica of the real world and has gotten quite the following.
NFTs are a main factor in this game, with well over 3 million being sold so far. There a total of 392,746 monthly active users on Upland.
As stated on the Upland site the collaboration brings forward “Legits collectibles, Outdoor Decor, community-based challenges, and amazing moments from all 32 national teams participating in FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.”
As an honest review, this is not a great announcement. With how popular the World Cup is and how much knowledge is needed to engage with most real estate NFT games there are, we cannot see this being hit. Good job FIFA.
Their second World Cup project comes in conjunction with Phygtl. This is a fan engagement app that is available on mobile devices. Mobiles are owned by billions around the world and the concept behind this game is more accessible.
You are able to vote for your favorite players and build up a community with other users.
Again this is nothing amazing in terms of gameplay and we cannot see much longevity outside the World Cup NFT content, however it’ll be interesting to see how it goes.
Altered State Machine – AI League
Now this is what people are after, an actual football game. This is an actual 4v4 football mini game. Players play against AI controlled characters putting their teams to the test as an in-game manager.
The game is set in different locations around the world. Collect different cards and set up your team in the most strategic way as you battle it out to be at the top of the leaderboards.
To advance in the game you can level up your AI team to unlock new traits and characters. 3 games in on the list and it’s still looking like FIFA would have been better off sticking with EA.
Our final game is ‘Matchday Challenge’. This game allows users to predict the results of games through the inclusion of gaming cards, a popular feature of web3 games as we have seen historically.
Battle it out with your friends to get the right score and climb the ranks. Whilst sports betting is highly popular it does have age restrictions and a barrier of entry with money. Perfect for children and younger audiences this game captures the traditional notions of sports gambling whilst gamifying it in the process.
Whilst still nothing groundbreaking, this game is probably the best one off of the list. With an easy concept and interactive gameplay, be sure to at least try this one if you and/or your loved ones have plans of watching the World Cup this year.
Overall, this is not what people were expecting when they saw ‘World Cup game’ in the news headlines. At least FIFA tried though, however the integration of web3 technologies was probably not the best idea as it still requires a level of knowledge to engage with them properly. A level of knowledge the average person probably won’t have. However if you are optimistic and want to try something new, be sure to check them out regardless.