Here we go again...
It's been a while since we've had some good old fashioned EA conspiracy talk and before the year is out, our old favourite "momentum" is doing the rounds again. All thanks to some code pulled from FIFA 17's data files which is on Reddit in full for your viewing pleasure. Example below...
[ADAPTIVE_DIFFICULTY] ENABLED = 1
// Description: "User scores in first 5 minutes"
// WHEN <GoalEvaluation> IF <user score is greater than opponent score and before 5 minutes> DO <increase difficulty by 0.25> RULE1_PARAM1 = 5
// Minutes RULE1_OUTPUT = 0.25 // Description: "User scores in first 20 minutes"
// WHEN <GoalEvaluation> IF <user score is greater than opponent score and before 20 minutes> DO <increase difficulty by 0.25> RULE2_PARAM1 = 20
As you can see, at first glance it doesn't look great for FIFA, but reserve judgement for just a second if you will.
If you've read this site (or the others we've worked on) for a while you'll know we have done this topic to death, even to the point of getting an interview with EA's Lead FIFA Producer to discuss it one on one. It's about 20 minutes long but it's a good listen if you want to catch up on the history of momentum, or scripting in FIFA from an EA perspective.
The caveat of course is that we recorded this interview in 2012, which leaves a whole lot of time for FIFA's code base to change as countless new features have been added to the game in subsequent years. Interested to get your views on this new information but here's a few points to consider.
What we know about momentum in FIFA
- A momentum based mechanic did exist in FIFA around the time of FIFA 07/Euro 08 (8 years ago)
- This code was not used in FIFA 08 and beyond however
- There's no indication that the current 'leak' affects online play, or if the code is even active
- Why would EA handicap their own experience?
This topic rears its head at least once a year, but after Chem Gate it will be very interesting to see if EA have any official comment to make this time round. As we wrote at the time regarding Chem Gate, transparency is key when you bring in highly competitive modes like FUT Champions. So lets see if we get some, even if it is just to quash the momentum theory yet again.