Before I begin it should be noted that I have only played the demo of FIFA Street 3 and as a result the game may be better in actual production...
...but I doubt it.
I loved the early FIFA Streets because the tricks were spectacular and the game was relatively easy, though still challengng enough to be enjoyable. If the demo is anything to go by, EA Sports BIG have destroyed everything that was good in the previous FS games.
Firstly there is the gameplay. The tricks are performe using the current FIFA set up - right analog stick as trickstick. This seems simple enough (and it is) but the tricks are nowhere near as exciting or diverse as in the other FS games, particularly FS2, and it is oftenhard to see what your player is doing at all. Besides which, a well timed tackle prevents tricks being performed meaning that beating players with a cheeky nutmeg becomes a whole load more difficult. This problem is emphasised by the poor camera choice, though I suspect that will be changeable in the final game.
The running up walls idea is a novel new feature, but doeslittle to make up for the dodgy tricking and the fact that passes have to be exactly aimed - unlike in FS2 where you could bounce passes off walls easily. The gamebreaker has also become irrelevant in FS3 as it is seemingly of no benefit. Even when you have it it can be stolen, only for the other team to have no benefit which raises the question of why would we care?
The goalkeepers have also been given superpowers and beating them is like trying to thread a needle with a hippopotamus in the way. It is possible, but it takes a frustrating amountof effort. Street football is supposed to be about loads of goals - not super goalies...
Then there is the fact that the ball can go out of play. Not a huge problem and it is realistic, but it isn't realism I want - if I wanted that I would buy FIFA 08. It's just annoying to be building up a lovely attack only to see a wayward lob fly over a low fence and hand possesion back to the opposition.
My final gripe with EA is their decision to exaggerate the players looks. Why? It doesn't make the game any better or funnier. It just leaves you thinking why they bothered. Making Crouch lanky is fair enough, but I can't imagine Roney will be terribly impressed by his squashed face - which you can't see during most gameplay anyway. I was also unaware that Buffon is obese and that Micah Richards is fatter than Rooney.
Perhaps if EA had spent less time amusing themselves by giving Crouch no calf muscles and spent more time on the gameplay FIFA Street 3 would have been better. Perhpas the actual game will be better. But as my mate put it - They've ruined it. It was my favourite game and they've ruined it. I'm inclined to agree with him - EA have cocked up BIG time.