FIFA 11 to have web-based, console-connected Creation Center

Create-a-player modes have been common in games for more than a decade, but when it came to their implementation in console titles, I’ve found that a controller often isn’t ideal for fiddling with anatomy sliders and scrolling through clothing choices. And I’ve been surprised that, in the modern age of Internet-connected consoles, more developers haven’t leveraged console/PC connectivity to improve the user experience on that front.

EA Sports is finally answering my prayers with the newly-announced Creation Center in FIFA Soccer 11.

The Creation Center, which is exclusive to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game, allows gamers to utilize a web-based hub to create, manage, and share FIFA 11 players and teams. So you’ll be able to hop onto your computer to set up new players and teams — a process that will likely go much faster with a mouse and keyboard than a 360 or PS3 controller — and then download them to your console for use within the game.

You’ll even have the ability to share those players and teams with the rest of the world. Downloaded teams and players can be used in Tournaments and Kick-Off matches, as well as in online play; players can also be used in the Arena and Lounge modes. In addition, the Creation Center lets you change players’ attributes and mess around with team strategies.

This is exactly the kind of functionality that I’ve been waiting for in this generation of consoles, and I hope to see it expanded across EA Sports’ entire suite of titles. I’m going to continue to be okay with the EA Sports Online Pass if it helps to cover the costs associated with developing these types of features.

FIFA 11, with Personality+, will be out for PS3, 360, Wii, PC, PSP, PS2, DS, and mobile platforms on September 28th in North America and October 1st in Europe and Asia. (The Wii version is due out on October 1st in Europe and Asia, and October 4th in North America.) Check out the gallery for some images of the Creation Center.

Samit Sarkar