EA’s FIFA games are a blessing to indie artists

Over the years FIFA has introduced acts like Kings of Leon, The Black Keys and Imagine Dragons.

Meryl D'Souza September 19, 2016

There’s something satisfying about thumping a rival team on those FIFA games after your favourite team continues its abysmal run in the real world – Manchester United and Arsenal fans, in particular, should be able to relate to that.

You don’t need to be a hardcore football or gaming fan to enjoy the game, it’s repetitive and enthralling enough for a neutral to get hooked. It isn't the number one selling sports videogame franchise on the planet for nothing.

The Franchise’s newest instalment that comes out later this month is powered by EA’s Frostbite engine and will feature an all-new game mode called “The Journey”. That particular mode will feature a new single-player story campaign mode where players will take on the role of Alex Hunter and follow his rise to and in the Premier League.

Yes, the game is addictive but here’s something that many don’t realise about the game: the music is always on point! For those of you who play the game, think about it, a song you hear repeatedly while navigating through the various menus and skill drills while playing the game inevitably ends up topping charts across the world. 

For those of you who don’t play the game, the FIFA games use a set playlist of about 20-30 tracks on loop. A new song plays every time you go through the game menu, take part in skill drills while the main game loads in the background and when you pause a match.

Over the years Electronic Arts' FIFA franchise has introduced indie bands like Bastille, Kasabian (see screenshot above) and Two Door Cinema Club to the masses. Even some of the bands – like Imagine Dragons and The Black Keys – that have made it big today, did it through the game.

EA’s team has found the right balance between mainstream hits and indie unknowns. And before you point out that most bands mentioned above are either US-UK-based, the platform has also shed the spotlight on Brazil’s Marcelo 2D and Karol Conka, Panama’s Los Rakas and China’s Chinza Dopeness.

But it’s not just about introducing bands. The FIFA games compel you to like the music they put out through subliminal advertising. For players invested in the game, even if they don’t like a song the first time they hear it, the track stands a chance to – more often than not – grow on them. Moreover, if you don’t like a particular song, you’d have to go into the game’s settings and manually disable it – a feature not many are familiar with.

The game's constant track repetition takes it from fresh to annoying to annoyingly good. For indie artists who don’t have the budgets to market themselves like the Kanyes and Taylor Swifts of the world, the chance to be part of a franchise that sells internationally is more than they can ask for.

Also, bear in mind that EA’s partnership with FIFA means that their soundtracks are used at all league-sanctioned matches around the world. So apart from just the millions of gamers and football fans buying the games, even the die-hard football fans who spend their hard-earned money on tickets to watch matches, end up listening to the tracks that make the cut.

Here’s a little sample of the tracks featured in this year’s edition:

FIFA 17 releases on September 27.