One of the most intriguing announcements at Gamescom last year was for UFL, a new soccer game from unknown studio Strikerz Inc., and
One of the most intriguing announcements at Gamescom last year was for UFL, a new soccer game from unknown studio Strikerz Inc., and today, almost six months after the reveal, the team showed off the first gameplay of the game.
The presentation was made during a live broadcast that lasted about 20 minutes and was delivered by Eugene Nashilov, the studio’s CEO. According to Nashilov, Strikerz Inc., founded in 2016 with just four employees, today has a workforce of more than 200 people.
UFL is powered by Unreal Engine and is clearly intended to seek out the FIFA audience, something that was clear from the revelation, in which they presented the game as “free-to-play” (free) and “fair-to-play” (fair), a clear blow to the FIFA Ultimate Team business model.
Beyond all the story that those in charge of the pre-recorded scenes had to tell, whose relevance could not be less, the important thing is the game, and in that sense the UFL has a long way to go but the first steps seem to be correct.
“UFL gameplay is designed to be fun, competitive, realistic and responsive,” Nashilov explained on the broadcast, where he also revealed that the main mode of the game is going to be the Global League Online, his answer to FIFA Ultimate Team.
In UFL we will be able to create our club and make it compete against other players around the world, progressively improving it with the arrival of new players and even making the available ones progress, through training or modifying their position on the field.
Like FIFA, the game will offer a series of minor leagues that will serve as a classification for professional tournaments, in which the best prizes and rewards will be distributed.
Obviously without real players the UFL doesn’t have much of a destiny on the floor, and how it will handle licensing remains to be seen. At the moment, a series of agreements have been announced with different clubs in the world, such as Monaco FC, Sporting Lisbon, West Ham United and Besiktas, among other minors.
They also created the figure of the UFL Ambassadors, a team of five high-profile players who will be the visible face of the title. The team of notables includes Zinchenko (Manchester City), Lukaku (Chelsea), Firmino (Liverpool), De Bruyne (Manchester City) and Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United).
When it’s time to grab the joystick it looks like UFL is going to share a lot of elements with the FIFA series. At first glance the animations, speed and general aesthetics are very reminiscent of the Electronic Arts series, and the user interface in the team management also seems to be copied from Ultimate Team.
It’s clear that the studio isn’t looking to change FIFA’s winning formula too much, but rather to alter the more questionable aspects of the franchise, particularly its business model. It is a difficult bet but even if it does not reach the success of one of the most popular titles in the world, it can become a good alternative for players who do not want to fall for the EA casino.
UFL does not have a release date but it was confirmed that it will arrive on all platforms in 2022.