UEFA isn’t FIFA. Americans tend to be mostly ignorant of this fact, but the Europe-only league has its own feel. While national teams have lots of talent and little chemistry, these clubs work together much better and compensate for their relatively low skill level.
UEFA Champions League is little more than an adaptation of its FIFA series. Despite that, there are some attempts to make this game unique, like a Treble Mode that tries to faithfully recreates the entire UEFA process, and a Quiz Mode for hardcore UEFA fans. This may seem like a niche entry, but honestly, the differences between this title and FIFA are really geared toward niche fans.
As a standalone title, UEFA doesn’t disappoint too much. The graphics look great on the PSP’s small screen and the controls are solid. The commentary is as detailed as FIFA, and there are even some UEFA-specific comments occasionally. Everything you can do gameplay-wise in FIFA is here, and unlike some of the other EA Sports games, there’s no using last year’s engine and graphics for secondary titles.
Since EA’s PS2 and PSP entries are usually almost identical, a new feature in UEFA seems like a no-brainer. Players can connect their PSP to their PS2 via USB and transfer their Treble mode progress to the portable. This allows for playing on the go or on the big screen, and it’s a nice addition.
UEFA is deep, solid and well-done, just like most EA titles. It’s flashy, polished and will hold your attention for hours. Unfortunately, it gets outclassed by its big brother, FIFA. Hardcore fans might pick up both, but the casual gamer just needs one soccer game.