Soccer mania is in the air.

The 2014 FIFA World Cup captivates millions of TV viewers each day. EA Canada’s FIFA 14 features a World Cup section where thousands of players play out their own matches, compete in online challenges, and create their ultimate team each day.

Earlier this week, EA Canada released a developer video┬ápromising the most realistic players and arenas every created. Soccer fans now have a fairly accurate representation of what the current FIFA’s graphics are and what the future will hold when FIFA 15 releases on Sept. 23 in the United States and Sept. 26 in Europe.

We put together a few slideshows of current FIFA 14 footage from a retail PS4 version and the latest official FIFA 15 screenshots (reportedly from Xbox One footage). Click any image to start the page’s slideshow.


Clint Dempsey

The United States’ captain features prominently in most World Cup advertisements and footage in America, and EA Canada decided to include a very impressive screenshot of Dempsey performing a volley (or karate kick) in FIFA 15. Dempsey’s FIFA 14 avatar is pretty spot-on, and his well-lit FIFA 15 counterpart is also accurate. EA┬ádefinitely paid attention to the details on America’s greatest soccer star.

Lionel Messi

The world’s greatest player was on the cover of FIFA 14, but that game didn’t do him much justice. The first screenshot blurs the Argentine’s facial features and hair, which is something FIFA 15 promised to rectify in the developer video. The FIFA 15 screenshot also leaves a little to be desired. It’s hard to tell from the angle the shot was taken, but it looks like Messi’s face still isn’t quite right. EA has plenty of time to fix this, or at least send out a better screenshot, but you would think that the best player on Earth would be the first avatar that the publisher nailed.

Gonzalo Higuain

EA Canada also included a lesser-known Argentine star in its first screenshot batch. This is the most interesting of the FIFA 14 vs. FIFA 15 comparisons. In this case, the FIFA 14 image is a more accurate representation of Higuain. The FIFA 15 image, which uses the EA Ignite Engine’s (EA Sports’ graphic engine for FIFA, UFC, Madden, etc.) new lighting features, portrays a much lighter individual that doesn’t look South American at all.

Jefferson Farfan and Lars Bender

The final FIFA 15 screenshot (with players at least) shows the new tackling system developed by EA Canada. It features two players from Germany’s top professional league: Jefferson Farfan of FC Schalke 04 and Lars Bender of Bayer Leverkusen. The FIFA 14 and 15 screenshots are pretty similar. There’s a lot going on in each, so it’s hard to really pinpoint the detail. The FIFA 15 screenshot is a much lighter and rich image, but it doesn’t show the kind of jump in quality that many expect from the new title. Maybe that’s because these are two lesser players that probably received less attention to detail.

The final FIFA 15 screenshot was designed to show off all of the title’s newest features: enhanced player models, re-imagined lighting, realistic fields, and detailed stadium design. It shows Liverpool players celebrating after scoring against Manchester City. The FIFA 14 image is far less impressive. Players’ facial expressions are slightly blurred, and the every part of the image is dark and shadowed. It appears that EA Canada identified these weaknesses and worked diligently to improve them for this year’s FIFA.