Recently, FIFA fans uncovered an underground market where EA employees have been allegedly caught selling Prime Icon Moment Cards to community players for thousands of dollars.
After the black market was exposed to the public, EA put out an official statement criticising the findings and promising swift action. They emphasised the fact that every single FUT item is a virtual entity and does not hold any monetary value. Despite that declaration, these items are, in fact, being sold for actual money and at an exorbitant amount. This glaring loophole was created after ignoring the fact that the majority of FUT is built on gambling mechanics and microtransactions, something EA is being legally challenged for in multiple countries.
The whole situation has now been magnified after EA’s recent interview with Mirror where the video game company has made some rather controversial and contradictory statements. EA was questioned about the #EAGate movement and what it has learned so far. After clearing the air and talking about the ongoing investigation, EA was asked about the credibility of FUT in general and if we may see some changes to the game mode at last. EA replied saying, “FIFA Ultimate Team is a multi-faceted game of skill. It’s important to note that you can acquire all items in the game without ever spending money, with purchases being entirely optional. Any professional competitive player needs to demonstrate the skills of the meta-game in order to be considered proficient enough to compete at an Elite level, which includes trading, economy monitoring, squad rotation, and challenge completion.”
“Although the goal is to win matches, FUT isn’t just about playing simulation football in the stadium, just as football isn’t solely about performance on match day – there are many areas where players need to be better than their peers in order to create an advantage on the pitch. Progression is a prerequisite if you intend to be a professional player in any sport and eSports are no different.”
It’s interesting to read EA’s absurd statement, as their claims seem to be physically impossible to validate, as one Twitter user by the name of ScudzTV did the math:
Lets talk @EASPORTSFIFA (#FIFA21 A THREAD)— ScudzTV (@ScudzTV) March 16, 2021
You claim that everyone can get all players they desire without spending money on the game …
Here's my dream team, a mere 100 million coin team.
So this is "achievable" & here are my options according to you;
If EA’s claim of creating a competent team without spending a single dime were to be true, it would take a player 916 days of non-stop FUT sessions in order to build a world-beating team, which is the same as almost 3 years of playing the same game. In contrast, each FIFA title has a life cycle of just 11 months. If one were to buy their way to the top, as is the case with many streamers and pro athletes, it would cost a whopping 80,000 GBP (over 110,000USD) to assemble such a squad. All this is assuming the desired players are even available on the market!
And while EA literally encourages players to engage and master the art of trading, we have seen several cases of EA banning players who have gotten a bit too good at FUT trading, the same thing EA wants people to be good at. The most famous case is that of Nick-RunTheFUTMarket who has been banned several times by EA for trading. Not just that, EA also cracks down on third-party websites that sell FUT coins which they term illegal and enabling people to spend money outside the game on currency available only in their game. What EA fails to realize here is that the the main reason for the spawn of such activities is the way FUT is built.
High prices for FIFA points, scarce player items, hyper-inflated market, and restricted trading and skill abilities really contradict everything EA says. These recent statements from EA has already caused outrage in the FIFA community and from the look of it nothing will change in the near future as one Twitter user comically pointed it out:
Translation: Sorry, we can't hear you over all this money we're making. We're not changing anything until governments pass legislation that force us to— FUT Watch (@FutWatch) March 16, 2021
source: https://t.co/UL1q3FDESb pic.twitter.com/83PewxxQMj
These are indeed uncertain times for EA and FUT. Let us know your thoughts on this subject in the comments below!