The difference between FIFA and eFootball?

For several decades, FIFA has been the undisputed king of football games. For a long time, it was the only game that featured real-life teams and players. During the 90s and 2000s, the major rival to FIFA was Pro Evolution Soccer from Konami. In recent years, however, the latter has ‘evolved’ into a new game, called ‘eFootball’.

So, what does this mean to the average football fan looking to play a video game version of their favourite sport?

Licensing differences

FIFA 23 will be the last game to feature FIFA branding. It has most of the major teams (though several major Italian clubs like the all-conquering Napoli are missing). For obvious reasons, the Russian league is also not represented.

The roster for eFootball isn’t quite as deep, but it does include several major names which are omitted from FIFA. Those Italian clubs we mentioned, for example, are included here.

Graphical differences

Both games are more realistic than ever, but FIFA holds a significant advantage when it comes to animation and player likeness. The more famous a player, in general, the better their likeness will be to their real-life counterparts.

3d modelling is something that takes time and effort from skilled 3d artists, and so it’s only a few hundred players that actually resemble their real-life counterparts. When you consider that most players will play as the big teams, this might not come as a surprise. Stars like Virgil van Dijk, Lionel Messi and cover star Kylian Mbappe will be convincing; recently-emerged players like Khvicha Kvaratskheli, not so much.


FIFA comes with a wealth of gameplay options and modes, while eFootball tends to put the focus on the core 11v11 match mechanics. Longtime PES aficionados might hold that the Konami game is actually more enjoyable to play, but this is a matter of opinion. The reviews have been extremely negative, with many users complaining that the eFootball game is a significant downgrade from previous incarnations of PES, and that Konami’s focus is on the mobile gaming market.


Let’s address the elephant in the room. FIFA costs around £70 when you buy it new on release, while eFootball is free to play. Except that, if you want access to certain features within the game, then you’ll have to pay. So, you might consider the free version of the game as akin to a glorified demo mode. Both games are swimming in microtransactions and extra costs. In fact, a court in Austria recently ruled that FIFA Ultimate Team consitutes ‘illegal gambling’. But, on balance, the Konami offering is probably more egregious.

Jenna Jose
Jenna Jose
Jenna Jose is an experienced gaming editor with a journalism degree and a passion for RPGs and strategy games. She's your go-to source for the latest gaming news and comprehensive game lists. Off the clock, she's all about retro games and board game nights.


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