FIFA Interactive World Cup to kick off on 1 November

The FIFA Interactive World Cup is all set for the launch of its seventh edition in a brand-new game format. The world’s biggest online football tournament set a new record last year with over 775,000 registered players. Now, on 1 November 2010, FIFA will open the first qualifying round for this year’s event together with tournament partners EA SPORTS and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE).

There will be a total of six qualifying rounds on the virtual pitches of EA SPORTS™ FIFA 11 game on PlayStation®3. They will run from the 1st to the 25th day of the month, and will be open to all registered players. The first round will take place in November, and the final round will finish on 25 April 2011. Two players can qualify for the Grand Final from each online qualifying round. There will also be Live Events in various countries. The new qualifying format will give players more flexibility and even more opportunities to qualify for the Grand Final.

“The FIFA Interactive World Cup is the biggest online football tournament in the world. This year we have once again worked hard to ensure it is even more attractive than ever before. Our tournament partners EA SPORTS and Sony Computer Entertainment Europe have provided a fantastic combination of FIFA 11 and PlayStation3,” said FIFA Secretary General Jérôme Valcke ahead of the start of the first season.

FIFA 11 reinvents player authenticity – both on and off the ball – with the all-new “Personality+”. Individual abilities are now reflected in-game, allowing clear differentiation for every player on the pitch. Plus, players experience true freedom in man-to-man interactions with the “360° Fight for Possession” that transforms physical play from lateral jostling to full 360° collisions, and the new “Pro Passing”, where pass accuracy is determined by a gamer’s ability on the control pad and by player skill, situation and urgency on the pitch. For the first time ever in a football video game, players can now compete 11 versus 11 online, with control of all 22 players on the pitch in human hands.

The 24 best players on EA SPORTS™ FIFA 11 will then do battle in a thrilling final that will live up to this year’s memorable Grand Final at Barcelona’s Port Olimpic, which saw the USA’s Nenad Stojkovic crowned as FIFA Interactive World Player 2010. Once again, there will be prize money of USD 20,000 up for grabs as well as the prestigious title. But the prize that money cannot buy will once again be a trip to the FIFA Ballon d’Or gala in Zurich, where the best players in the men’s and women’s games will be crowned. The FIFA Interactive Player will also have the opportunity to chat with the stars behind the scenes, and to maybe challenge one or two of them to a match on a virtual pitch.

For information on how to take part in the online and live qualifying events, as well as for the dates and venues of upcoming tournaments, please click on the link to the right.