Format: Playstation 3 (Reviewed), Xbox 360, PC
As the greatest year in British sporting history comes to an end, it is only inevitable that we begin reflecting on what has been a truly magnificent twelve months for sport in this country and the legacy of the biggest event of them all – The London 2012 Olympic Games.
The lasting impact of the Olympics is still being debated and determined, but its official video game might well have delivered a legacy of how developers treat multi-sport events in the future. It’s no classic, but it’s arguably the best attempt that anyone has made to create a game worthy of such a major license.
The emphasis of Sega’s effort is inevitably on the core Olympic sports of athletics and swimming, but diving, archery, shooting and gymnastics are also heavily featured. A number of other events such as table tennis, rowing, shooting, kayaking, weightlifting and women’s beach volleyball are also part of the package.
Format: PS3 (Reviewed), Xbox 360
Publisher: EA Sports
Considering that FIFA has faced only nominal competition from its rivals since the transition to the current console generation, it is to EA Canada’s great credit that it has continued to improve the series with each year’s iteration rather than exploit its dominant position.
But this year it is faced with the dual threat of a resurgent PES 2013 on consoles and the emergence of a number of smaller, cheaper and original footballing titles on other platforms, such as New Star Soccer.
FIFA 13 doesn’t take as big a leap forward as its predecessor, but instead plays to its strengths. It marries the most realistic football simulation around with the most immersive modes while responding to changing trends.
It’s been almost five years since MyFootballClub (MYFC) acquired Football Conference outfit Ebbsfleet United, completing the first ever crowdsourced takeover of a football club. The project was first announced in 2007 and offered wannabe owners to have their say on how a football club was run, from the boardroom to the pitch.
By pledging £35 a year, subscribers would be eligible to vote on all major decisions, including budgets, sponsorship deals, significant transfers and team selection. The level of direct democracy that MYFC was prepared to offer its members was unprecedented and ensured that it generated enough media attention to achieve the required funds to purchase the North Kent club.
The takeover was completed in February 2008 and success soon followed, with the club winning the FA Trophy at Wembley. However this was followed by relegation in 2010 and financial instability. Ebbsfleet won promotion back to the Conference at the first attempt, but subscribers have deserted in their droves and it now appears as though the relationship between MYFC and the supporters has deteriorated beyond repair.