World Cup 2014: Play It, Watch It, Or Both?

World Cup 2014 by EA Sports for PS3 and Xbox 360 recently released gives a true favour of the real thing happening soon in Brazil, of course. But does the real thing inform your gaming? And do you prefer to down your console for the duration, or play alongside the real thing following each of the games?

This is a tough question for real aficionados. But perhaps the best tactic is to watch the real games first? This World Cup promises to be the greatest of all the tournaments so far – courtesy of the fact that it will be the first to have been held in Brazil since 1950. And Brazil have won the tournament more times than any other country on earth with five wins in total since their first back in Sweden 1958.

They’re followed on the all-time list by Italy with four wins and Germany on three. Meanwhile, the current holders Spain are expected to put up a big show over in Brazil – and they’ve also won back to back European Championships in 2008 and 2012 – so a win in Brazil would surely mark them as the greatest side in soccer history?

But that’s not the way the market sees it despite the fact that Spain haven’t really put a foot wrong. As things stand, Brazil is the bookmakers’ firm on home soil for the first time ever. They’re followed closely by two-time winners Argentina, then Germany.

Oh and by the way – yes that’s right, Brazil didn’t win in Rio de Janeiro where the final was held in the purpose-built Maracana stadium in 1950. In fact, there wasn’t really a final as such that year because the four winning teams from four World Cup finals leagues played-off in a round-robin tournament. Nevertheless, had Brazil won their final game against neighbours Uruguay, they would have won the tournament. And they went one-nil up as the world-record near 200k fans crammed into the stadium fully expected. But then the unthinkable happened and Uruguay won their second World Cup with a 2-1 win.

This year, the final will again be held in what is now a completely re-vamped Maracana Stadium on July 13th. But will home “advantage” nerves get to the Brazilians again? Or maybe they won’t even be there – who knows?

As for the official 2014 World Cup video game version – maybe you can play alongside the real thing and replicate the games to see who comes out on top in your own house?

This is about as close to the real thing as anything has yet comes with improved features from the South Africa 2010 equivalent game thanks to better dribbling and better passing accuracy, in particular. Also, the “Road to Rio de Janeiro” mode allows you to play in an online tournament over all 12 venues of the forthcoming tournament – so best to get it sorted quickly if you’re planning to try and run alongside the real thing.