The World Cup in Qatar is just around the corner; it kicks off in four months and will bring delight to football fans around the world.
Of course, playing in winter isn’t ideal for many European fans, and domestic leagues are being put on hold whilst players fly off to the Middle East, but it is still a World Cup, a football festival enjoyed worldwide. Players will be delighted with the recent heatwave that has swept across Europe, as it gives them a chance to acclimate to the immense heat they’ll endure in the desert.
For football fans at home, it means a chance to see many different nations play; the opening game is between Senegal and The Netherlands, according to TalkSport. It is the only time the first fixture has not featured either the hosts or the previous winners. Nothing about the competition will be conventional, which could make it incredibly special or a huge disappointment.
Either way, fans worldwide will be glued to their sets and likely to be playing lots of video games as well. Since 1986, the World Cup has come complete with a video game for players at home to enjoy. The first effort, World Cup Carnival, wasn’t well received, instead being labelled by Crash magazine as the worst football game ever! Since then, football games have come on a lot, with EA Sports and Konami dominating the scene. However, mobile games have slowly improved, and now you can get football-related games of all descriptions. Soccer Stars and Dream League Soccer are two of the best, but the games don’t always put you behind the ball. Among the Foxy Games online slot titles, there are games such as Golden Boot and Gold Cup, which lean heavily on World Cup themes, but without the actual licensing. Soccer Cup 2022, on Android and iOS, lets you win the World Cup again in an unlicensed setting.
However, whilst these games provide football fans with a platform to enjoy their sport, they’re not quite as satisfying as some officially licensed World Cup games from the past. With that in mind, we’ve selected the best three official World Cup games for you to enjoy ahead of Qatar 2022.
2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa – Xbox 360/PS3/Wii
Qatar 2022 could be a watershed moment for the World Cup; a new time slot and the last 32-team competition mark it as unique. The same can be said for the 2010 World Cup video game. It was part of the FIFA franchise, which has been the case for the last 12 years. Indeed, this year’s official game will be an EA Sports game, but it can’t possibly top 2010. Back then, PES was the preference for many gamers, but the World Cup game came out with a wave of innovations that made fans begin to switch over. PES never recovered; from 2010 to the present, FIFA has dominated the industry.
World Cup France 98 – PlayStation/Nintendo 64
Recently. Video games have been all about simulation, and as serious sports fans, we perhaps prefer that to the arcade romps of old. However, it would be hard not to fall in love with the World Cup game for France 1998. It was arcade style, less sport, more frantic fun, but it harked back to an easier time. The graphics were good for the year, but it was light on options. Still, it is widely loved today because it is so playable; you can pick it up and master it within minutes.
World Cup Italia ’90 – Sega Mega Drive
Many consider the World Cup of 1990 to be one of the classics. It certainly was from England’s point of view; it was the last World Cup before the Premier League era and one the Three Lions perhaps should have gone on to win. The video game has a similar feel; it was the last 8-bit game and the best 16-bit title. Sure, it feels as old as Gary Lineker and Peter Shilton, but it also retains the charm of the 1990 tournament, just before money began to seep into the game and give everything an artificial shine.
If you still prefer your sports to be in real life rather than the virtual world, then pay regular visits to our sports section for all the latest news and views.