Professional FIFA players were left shocked and angered by EA’s decision to place restrictions on squad selections in their competitive FIFA Ultimate Team game mode. The new rules will force players to be more selective of what cards they use in qualifying with restrictions placed on the very highest rated(best) cards.
The decision looks to have been made on an ad-hoc basis with the current season already well underway with just two qualifiers left in the competitive season.
The move is EA’s attempt to reduce criticism of the card collecting part of the game which many claim makes the esport Pay2Win.
Competitive FIFA has long been accused of being Pay2Win with many prospective pro’s spending upwards of $2000 on packs at the release of the game giving them a massive competitive advantage. These packs contain virtual players that have the potential to be far better than what most players can get a hold of. And while these virtual players can be obtained without paying huge sums it is an unrealistic prospect for many. With qualifiers starting within weeks of the release of the game, players who have shelled out for packs have a far better chance of qualifying for tournaments.
This isn’t the first controversy around FIFA Ultimate Team packs, the Belgium government effectively banned the sale of these and other “loot boxes” which they consider a form of gambling.
Restrictions on FIFA Ultimate Team Squads – Overview
Taking effect immediately and for the next two qualifying events these are the restrictions that are in place. The email states this is a “trial.”
Maximum of 2 Icons
Maximum of 1 95+ rated non-Icon players
Maximum of 2 90 to 84 rated non-Icon players
All other players must be rated 89 or lower
These restrictions will be for qualifiers only with players allowed to use the full selection of cards at tournaments.
Restrictions placed on FIFA Ultimate Team Squads – Pro Players React
Players took to Twitter to make their feelings clear – with some applauding the decision but taking umbrage at the timing with those that have spent a lot of money feeling they have been effectively robbed.
Ryan Pessoa of Hashtag United made his feelings clear.
We’ve had a long gap between qualifiers so players may have now decided to invest some money to bolster their squad are you going to give them the money they spent back? You throw this curveball when we are in March it’s useless.
— Ryan Pessoa (@hashtagryan_) March 9, 2019
George Hughes, esport manager of North seemed to be lost for words.
It’s 2am but:
-how can they do this
-You can’t experiment with format at the end of the season, especially with something this huge
-how can they do this
— George Hughes (@GeorgeHughes) March 9, 2019
So how do you feel about the restrictions placed on FIFA Ultimate Team Squads? Has EA made another misstep? Is it too little too late? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.