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FIFA 18: The new practice arena looks 10 times better than FIFA 17’s

A leaked screenshot has given fans a glimpse of what they can expect

FIFA 18 is nearly here but little is known about one of the game’s trademark features – the practice arena.

Thankfully, a screenshot has emerged showing the new space in all its glory – and it looks incredible.

Gone is the pale green of FIFA 17, replaced by deep blues and higher-resolution textures.

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Lighting is much improved and looks less flat – while it looks as though the arena will be set at night, rather than during the day – as per the last game.

Boards emblazoned with the FIFA 18 logo are positioned over the stadium, while little details such as score board help bring it to life.

FIFA 18 may seem like an eternity away still – but you may not need to wait until September to get your hands on the game.

The practice arena in FIFA 17 looks flat and lifeless in comparison

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The practice arena in FIFA 17 looks flat and lifeless in comparison

That’s because EA is doing another closed beta this year – due to kick off around August 18.

Select members of the FIFA community – from YouTubers to professional gamers – will be invited to play an early version of FIFA 18 and submit feedback.

But there’s an outside chance you could get in on the action, too.

Expect new skill games to feature in FIFA 18

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Expect new skill games to feature in FIFA 18

To give yourself the best shot, you’re going need to have an EA account – then, head to email settings and check the box that says you want to receive promotional materials.

If you’re lucky enough to receive an invite, you’ll be able to play an early version of the game.

It’s worth mentioning that the screen will feature a watermark – complete with your gamer tag. This is to stop you from taking screen shots or streaming the game – both of which will result in account ban.

The closed beta will feature a watermark with your gamertag on there to stop you streaming or taking screenshots

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The closed beta will feature a watermark with your gamertag on there to stop you streaming or taking screenshots

For those who can’t get their hands on the closed beta then you’ll have to wait for the demo, which drops a few weeks later.

If past years are anything to go by, the FIFA 18 demo will arrive on September 15 – two weeks before launch.

The FIFA 17 demo dropped on September 13, with the full game arriving on September 27.

FIFA 16 followed the same pattern, with the demo arriving on September 8 and the game released on the 22nd.

So, what’s in the demo?

If it’s the same build EA has been showing off at their preview events, you’ll be able to play as a number of teams including Manchester United, Manchester City, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich.

Here’s the full line up:

  • Manchester City
  • Manchester United
  • Chelsea
  • Real Madrid
  • Atletico Madrid
  • Juventus
  • Bayern Munich
  • PSG
  • LA Galaxy
  • Toronto FC

You’ll also likely be able to play through the first part of The Journey: Hunter Returns – although we wouldn’t doing that unless you’ve played the first one.

Check out what happens at the end of The Journey  if you won’t have time to play through the first chapter.

Who will be the best player on the demo?

Without a doubt it will be FIFA 18 cover star Cristiano Ronaldo – although his rating on the preview build was TBC.

If you’re desperate to get your hands on the game, sign up to EA Access to play FIFA 18 five days before launch for a full 10 hours.

Cristiano Ronaldo is the face of this year’s FIFA

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Cristiano Ronaldo is the face of this year’s FIFA

So, what did you think of it when you had a go?

We’re very impressed – it’s slower than FIFA 17 but that’s no bad thing. Plus, it looks spectacular – especially on PS4 Pro.

Why not take a look at our FIFA 18 early review for an in-depth analysis.