FIFA 18 Overhauls Referee Logic

If there’s anything that can get you to appreciate real-world soccer referees, even after they’ve seemingly screwed over your favorite team, it’d have to be dealing with their digital equivalents in FIFA 17. The good news is: with FIFA 18’s update to their underlying logic, players should hopefully go through fewer broken controllers as a result of, shall we say, highly questionable decisions and calls.

Per Kicker’s interview with EA Creative Director Matthew Prior, the problem seems to be rooted in the Frostbite engine used in FIFA 17. While their calls are technically “correct,” based on the data given, how they were visually represented could differ in significant ways, frustrating players when a seeming non-issue gets their team carded.

That does raise a question, though: will the AI update only apply to the PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One versions of FIFA 18? The Frostbite game engine was implemented specifically for singleplayer campaign mode The Journey, and won’t be present for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo Switch versions of the most recent title. Those three will be using a downgraded engine, utilizing only updated stats for players instead of the graphical and logical overhaul planned for newer-generation platforms.

If the referee logic problem is based on the Frostbite engine, it would make sense not to implement AI updates to the older-platform versions of the game. Though that does subsequently mean that any long-standing bugs with the older model will apply to their versions of FIFA 18 as well.

But regardless of the underlying program they’ll run on, FIFA 18’s various versions will all likely involve new circuits, and stats upgrades to current teams. There may, however, be a few missing ones, such as China’s Super League. In turn, that takes out a few modern stars and stats monsters that FIFA 17 players might have been relying on.