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FIFA 17 Players Demand Explanation After Evidence of Secret Rubber Banding/Momentum Discovered

The FIFA 17 community is demanding an explanation from EA after users found evidence of ‘momentum’ – also known as scripting or rubber band difficulty – in the game’s data files.

For those who are unaware, a rubber banding system dynamically adjusts the difficulty of a game according to how well – or how badly – a player is performing. For years, publisher EA has denied claims that its flagship football series stealthily includes such a feature.

However, evidence has surfaced over the past couple of days that points to the contrary. Reddit user girlfriend_pregnant kicked off the debate after data mining FIFA 17’s game files on PC and discovering, amongst other hidden attributes including ‘super sub’, a line of code that pointed to the team chemistry stat – used in FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT) – being linked to ‘momentum’:

//— team chemistry (0-100) (used in momentum)

This initial thread launched a community-led investigation, with Reddit user Murhawk013 discovering that a recent EA Sports Spain video seemed to confirm that individual player ratings in FIFA 17 are artificially boosted depending on how they are performing in a match.

Yesterday, the poster of the original thread returned to Reddit with even more concrete evidence of the system. Another section of code, discovered by CatalystFCP, detailed various circumstances where the in-game difficulty is increased or decreased at various points throughout a match depending on various criteria, such as the total number of shots or overall possession, being met.

In the data files, the developers refer to this as “adaptive difficulty”, although it’s currently unclear whether it simply applies to player games against the AI, or online multiplayer and FUT as well.

As a result of the discovery, and confusion as to the context of its implementation, a number of users have banded together to create a campaign named #ExplainFIFAMomentum, in the hopes of prompting EA to clarify the exact nature of a feature it’s previously denied exists.

FIFA 17 players have complained that rubber banding unfairly and unrealistically influences the outcome of a game and penalises good performances, with the system open to being gamed and exploited by those who are losing a match.

If the feature does apply to FUT, it also opens a whole new can of worms with regards to players paying real money for extra in-game content, in the form of player packs, without being assured of a level playing field.

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  • Topapps4u

    I think EA sports are the king in the market in terms of football game
    and users always try to get some sort of errors or faults in their game
    and try to spread false news.

    • Matteo X

      Yes, people is all stupid and konami paid to spread false news…cmon.
      Momentum exist and makes fifa really frustraiting because it could be a great game.

    • Peter C

      Sorry but anyone with good eye sight who has played Fifa enough can clearly tell Momentum exists. People used to refer to it as scripting which is a little misleading but momentum has been in Fifa since I restarted playing the series in 09.

      • Leandro Biciato

        Yeah but it somehow is making some noise and this noise could change somethings

  • Daniel

    Momentum is real

  • Professor Murder

    Ooooohhh, this is BAD news if this works in Ultimate Team. You can’t have a system like this where players use their REAL money to help their team compete.

    • Leandro Biciato

      Yeah, THat probably might be even in the FUT contratcs. Its a police case

  • Edonus

    This is why stopped playing Madden. The game gets ridiculous sometimes.

  • Albert

    If your playing bad, against a better opponent, all your shots go in. If you play good and are much better its reversed and its harder to score. At least after second half. Its not normal 1on1 in this game. Its obvious something is wrong. I will buy pes next time. And not waste time and money on getting angry. Its supposed to be fun. Never had an experience like this with any other game. People spend more money when their sad, that been tested. Fifa takes advantage of addiction and emotions, and gets paid more that ever.

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