With the announcement of FIFA 16 and the inclusion of women’s international teams for the first time ever, it represents a step in the right direction in recognising that it is not only men that play the beautiful game.
When FIFA 16 finally hits the selves you will have, in addition to the normal features so common to FIFA games, the ability to play as 12 WNT (Women’s National Teams) from countries like Brazil, China, Australia and England to name just a few. Though the options are limited in what exactly you can do with the 12 WNT, what is advertised is that you can compete in ‘Match Day, an Offline Tournament, and Online Friendly Matches’. Sadly, no career mode but hopefully something to wish for in future editions.
FIFA has come in for a lot of stick in recent days and weeks, not solely for massive corruption, FBI investigations and indictments and most recently Sepp Blatter’s resignation as head of FIFA. But at least they can have one very small shred of comfort in knowing that they are at least trying something different with a very tried and tested formula.
I personally welcome the changes and look forward to having something different to try out in what has been a very enjoyable but very similar gaming experience over the past couple of years. The onset of ‘even more realistic match physics’ which will probably defy Sir Isaac Newton and pitches that turn into a heavily ploughed field after putting the weather settings to ‘heavy rain’ does not particularly fill me with enthusiasm. More of FIFA’s new features will be exhibited at E3 and only then can we see why we pay £50 a go for what boils down to 22 people fighting over an inflated pig’s bladder.
Whilst the jokes aimed at the inclusion of the women’s teams into the EA sport franchise only really served to highlight that the gaming world is still very much riddled with misogyny, it is very much a minority speaking out it still shows that women are lacking in a ‘gaming role model’.
What if a player on FIFA 16 women's career mode gets pregnant loooool?
— Yousef imo (@Boreinho) May 28, 2015
FIFA 16: "your star striker is going to be out for 9 months due to pregnancy"
— Gregg (@greggmair) May 28, 2015
They're putting women in the next FIFA? Imagine that, playing career mode n one of your players are out for 2 days with a broken nail
— . (@JxstJxrds) May 28, 2015
Characters like Faith in Mirrors Edge, Samus from Metroid, Lara Croft and Alyx Vance from Half-Life show what can be done with a female protagonist, not to mention the choice you get to play as a female character in games like Skyrim, Saint’s Row and Mass Effect to name a few yet the industry needs to do more. Active inclusion in games like GTA, Call of Duty, Battlefield and many more would certainly aim to readdress the balance.
I’m not saying that the inclusion of WNT in FIFA 16 is the solution but it’s at least it’s the first step in finding a definite answer to the problem.
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