There's no hot air when it comes to this year's FIFA. Anyone who has caught the TV spots for the console edition can't fail to have noticed FIFA 10's theme - football getting big.
In a year where Ronaldo's career got 'Real' for a massive £80 million, it could hardly be a more appropriate tagline.
The big game deserves a big game, and though the mobile edition might not be gracing the grandest of formats, to its credit it manages to toe the party line. No other mobile football sim has ever matched the sheer amount of official leagues and teams that come with FIFA 10 - it's perhaps the pinnacle of the genre on that score.
The proof, however, is in the playing. Like its rival Real Football 2010, FIFA 10 has a passing ethic, the idea being to slot your way through the pack before slamming it past the keeper in the box. The problem here is that its side-on 2D view (as opposed to Real's isometric style) means you only get a narrow field of vision, with a number of players off screen and impossible to track.
Unless you have your formation down to a tee, it's easy to lose your way when trying a long pass or through ball, successful passes relying on arrows at the side of the screen pointing to available players.
That, however, is counteracted by play that, on the whole, feels more responsive and based in reality than some of its rivals. The AI feels like a step up from Real Football, while free kicks are particularly good, balls flying into the net in a manner that would even make Cristiano feel a little bit proud.
FIFA's Be a Pro mode - which lets you take charge of one player, turning them into a star match after match - also has an advantage over Real Football's alternative, Enter the Legend.
Be a Pro lets you retain control of the whole squad rather than just your chosen trailblazer, thus avoiding the camera issues that blighted its rival's sub-par substitute. It's one of the areas where FIFA appears to be better equipped, EA's years of experience paying off smartly.
But FIFA 10's imbalance between a focus on reality and its narrow-view means it's harder to take matches quite as seriously as you should. As a result, a game that has all the licenses and all the leagues somehow feels a little arcadey.
It's perfectly possible to partake in a problem-free, entertaining season of footie in FIFA 10, though, with EA's trademark professionalism making it easy to immerse yourself in the game.
Although the score at the bottom of this screen is identical to its closest foe, Gameloft's Real Football franchise just about remains the more playable game of choice for football aficionados wanting to see out ninety minutes on the go. In FIFA 10, though, EA has produced a worthy alternative.