FIFA 10 – iPhone Game Review (vs Real Football 09)

fifa_10_iphone_easports_match_statsFIFA 10 for iPhone was released on the App Store earlier this month for $9.90 or DKK 59 if you’re buying through the danish iTunes Store like I did (that’s $11.50). I tried it out just so you don’t have to – in case it sucked 🙂 Here’s what I think about FIFA 10 for the iPhone…

Game Play

Graphics are great. Better than Real Football 09 from Gameloft, which is the only other iPhone football game I own, so I’ll be comparing FIFA 10 to Real Football 09 in this review. The menu graphics are also better in FIFA than Real Football. Both games are controlled using the on-screen “joypad”. You have a directional pad thingy on the left and some buttons to the right. It takes a little bit of practice until you know exactly how much to move your left thumb when controlling your players since you can’t “feel” where you’re at. With RF09 you have to double tap a direction to sprint, the players in FIFA 10 will sprint when you get to the edge of the D-pad so I found it easier to sprint, and in general also to control my players, in FIFA 10, compared to RF09.

The A and B buttons are used for passing, shooting etc. One tap on “A” will pass and one on “B” will shoot, when you’re in attacking mode. When defending, “A” will do a tackle and pressure your opponent if holding “A” down. There’s many different combinations you will have to memorize, e.g. sliding from “A” to “B” will have your player do a sliding tackle. Another big advantage for FIFA 10 is the commentator. You probably know it from PC/PlayStation FIFA games in the past many years. While the commentator are not always super clever, they still add something extra to the game that I enjoy, especially when you’re not going to spend hours playing it on the iPhone. Let’s face it, football games belongs on bigger screens with better controllers, and then a commentator might get annoying after some time, but I didn’t find him to be so on the iPhone.

Game Modes

Just like FIFA on your PC/PS3, iPhone FIFA 10 offers several game modes:

  • Manager Mode
  • Tournament
  • Be A Pro
  • Training
  • Penalty Shootout

Be A Pro is just like on PC/PS3 and it’s actually quite funny – you only get to control one player, so it’s a bit more simple but might get boring in the end. Still, it’s good to have the option of several game modes.

Player & Team Data

One other major difference is the team data. FIFA 10 comes with 30 different leagues, 570 different teams and 12,620 players. An impressive database. I’m not sure exactly what Real Football 09 holds in those terms but it certainly ain’t that much, that’s for sure. Besides, RF09 doesn’t have any club teams.

Battery Issues

If you plan on playing FIFA 10 when you’re on the plane, train or bus, you might have to consider bringing a battery pack, cause FIFA 10 likes to drink your battery juice. My first attempt with FIFA 10: I played a match duration of 8 minutes. I had 10% left of my battery when I started the game and just as the match went into stoppage time, the game quit and the iPhone shut down, 1% battery left. I figured that must be a mistake, something else must be using my battery. So I recharged and tried again and found out about a great feature in the game: To my surprise, FIFA 10 told me that there was a game going on and asked if I wanted to resume it. That’s a great feature, in case you have to exit the game to reply a text message or take a phone call. RF09 doesn’t have this feature. So in my second battery test, I played another 8 minute match plus the 30 seconds or so I spent in the team management to perform a substitution. Once again, battery went from 20% to 10% on my iPhone 3GS. Your mileage my differ if you’re on the iPhone 3G, but nevertheless, you might want to bring a battery pack just so you don’t run completely empty after just a few FIFA 10 games, some video podcasts and iPod listening. Griffin Technology makes a ton of Apple accessories that are usually of pretty good quality and they also have a TuneJuice2 backup battery which you take a look at. Real Football 09 doesn’t seem to use nearly as much battery. In my very non-scientific tests, I concluded that RF09 uses less than half the amount of battery that FIFA 10 does, maybe even only one third the amount. So you can play 2-3 times as much RF09 than FIFA 10, but is the extra gametime worth it, or is FIFA 10 just that much better?


As you probably noticed (or you’re about to notice it now, since I mention it), the battery section was actuall the longest part of my review. There’s a reason for that. A game has to be really amazing to justify draining the battery faster than you can cook a chicken in the oven, I’d say. And that’s the thing. I really like FIFA 10. It’s not a game I will play every single day but it has become the number #1 game I pick when I have time to kill on a commute or if I’m bored without any computer/Internet (3G coverage) around. I have also removed Real Football 09 from my iPhone – sorry RF09, you were great while things lasted, but FIFA 10 is just better, despite it’s hunger for battery juice. I will give FIFA 10 a rating of 4 out of 5 apples. Had it not used that much battery as it does – or if the iPhone just came with a much bigger better (which I would actually prefer…), FIFA 10 would have gotten a full 5 apples rating from me. I’d say it’s worth the price, even though I’m not a big FIFA fan of their PS3 version. Consider this game, next time you’re in the market for a sports game and if you like football. PS: Please give Zlatan a sliding tackle from me, if you run into him.

Rating: Rating: 4 out of 5 apples


FIFA 10 & Real Football 09 iPhone Screenshots:

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