FIFA 21 fans need not worry – the next iteration of the FIFA franchise is on track for release later this year as per EA Sports, and FIFA fans can expected an added twist – a holiday-season re-release to coincide with the launch of PS 5 and Xbox X.

The PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X will take gaming to the next level, providing players with levels of performance that were previously unimaginable.

For fans of the FIFA series the launch of the next-gen consoles is magnificent news, opening up a wealth of possibilities for their favourite game.

With that in mind, we take a closer look at what football fans can expect from FIFA 21 when it is released later this year.

FIFA 21 Release Date & Demo

Developers EA Sports have released the game on the final Friday in September over the past few years, and fears of any delays have been put to rest by EA confirming that FIFA 21 and Madden 21 will both launch on time (i.e. September).

The new consoles are not scheduled for release until the run-up to Christmas, meaning that EA is likely to release console-specific versions in November/December.

There’s also the matter of the start of the European football season. As things stand, the new seasons are expected to start in August/September, meaning the end of September is still a reasonable time to launch the game. If the new season gets delayed, expect a slight delay for FIFA 21 as well.

Whichever time they choose, EA will release a demo of the game around two weeks before the final version is launched.

Will FIFA 21 be backwards compatible?

Both Sony and Microsoft have previously stressed the importance of games being backwards compatible and there is no reason to suspect that won’t be the case with FIFA 21.

If the game is released on the current consoles first, it will undoubtedly be upgraded to ensure it operates seamlessly on PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X.

Conversely, if EA waits until the new consoles are launched before releasing the game, it is unlikely that it wouldn’t be backwards compatible.

As with any company in the sector EA are in the business of selling games and making it available to as many people as possible will be the ultimate aim.

Can I play the VOLTA mode on FIFA 21?

One of the most positive aspects of FIFA 20 was the inclusion of the magnificent ‘VOLTA’ mode which recreated elements of the wondrous ‘FIFA Street’ game from years gone by.

The feature proved to be hugely popular with players, allowing them to take control of their favourite teams and players and place them in unusual environments.

With three-on-three, professional futsal and more, VOLTA appealed to users who were looking to add an additional edge to their gameplay.

Building on the success of VOLTA in FIFA 21 seems to be a no-brainer and it would be a major surprise if it wasn’t included in the game.

How will the FIFA 21 gameplay be improved?

FIFA 20 pushed the boundaries of what was possible on the current consoles, meaning many of the upgrades from previous versions were tough to spot.

The next-gen consoles should bring about big improvements, with SSDs for faster loading speeds and better audio quality amongst the big changes.

EA hopefully have been able to address licensing issues in the new release, with the omission of Juventus in FIFA 20 a major niggle for true football fans.

From a gameplay perspective, the new Unreal Engine 5 and 8K supported graphics will make a massive difference and should lead to a much richer gaming experience.

What else will change in FIFA 21?

While FIFA 20 wasn’t a bad game, there were numerous elements of it that didn’t meet up to the expectations of players.

Problems with headers, corner taking, free-kicks and penalties detracted from the game and drew plenty of criticism from fans.

The career mode was also a major bugbear and is in need of a major revamp, with the FIFA 20 version feeling a little like EA had run out of ideas.

However, the boosted performance levels of PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X should give EA the scope to create a stunning FIFA 21.