There have been some pretty significant changes in shooting in FIFA 14. Especially due to the Pure Shot system and the addition of Real Ball Physics, there are a few things to catch up on if you're playing FIFA 14 after experience with other versions. Naturally though, many concepts have remained the same and are explained below as well.
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The regular, laces shot is best for long range shooting, but it is also quite effective from closer ranges as well. You perform the regular shot with your console's default shooting button alone: B on Xbox, and the Circle button for Playstation. It is always important to set your player up with a good touch before shooting. A number of factors, such as pressure or player skill, play a significant role in how successful your shot ends up being, but one of the most important is your set up shot. This is especially true for FIFA 14, with the addition of the Pure Shot system.
Finesse shots are sidefooted strikes which are particularly useful when shooting from in and around the penalty box. Finesse shots are generally more accurate than regular shots, but will be much less powerful. Expect a lot of curve to occur, as in FIFA 13, Finesse Shots tend to really curve. This can be useful for picking out corners when you get the hang of things. To execute a finesse shot on Xbox 360, hold down RB while shooting, and R1 while shooting on PS3. Because they are so useful for aiming for the corners, these shots can be particularly effective when on a breakaway to finish.
Something that has always been true in the FIFA brand is that headers are extremely effective. This is of course still true in FIFA 14. With decent crossing, you could end up scoring the majority of your goals directly from headers, so it is worth it to figure out how to best position yourself for the header. When the ball is in the air, jockey for position with the shoot button. The key is to get yourself in a better position that will allow your player to jump directly upward for the header and reach the ball at the apex of your jump. This sounds like it could be difficult, but fortunately FIFA 14 automatically does this kind of positioning for you. Also, when you are crossing, it makes a world of difference to aim for the taller players.
A new feature in FIFA 14 is the debut of the Pure Shot system, which attemps to add more realism to the technique players use to shoot. If you have a lot of time to set up for a shot, a player will wind up for the shot with a very concerted, realistic technique that tends to result in a more accurate and/or powerful shot. If you want to read more about Pure Shot, check out our detailed tutorial.
With skillful players (amount of star-skills required changes per fancy shot), you have the ability to control the occurrence of acrobatic shots such as bicycle kicks or diving headers. To do so, you obviously need to be set up correctly, including having the ball in the air. For Xbox, hold down LT as you shoot, and L2 for Playstation. For lower shots, such as double-tap or triple-tap low crosses, you can do the same thing and pull off some cheeky little flicks and backheels. It's really quite simple, but it's more about the timing and set up than anything, but you can pull off some really spectacular goals if you do this well.
Chip shots are useful shots which are used to cheekily loop the ball over the goalkeeper and into the goal. A chip shot has a high arc and is not very powerful, but is useful for when the goalkeeper is not on his line and a bit farther away from the goal than he should be. This scenario occurs a lot when a player is on a breakaway and the opponent rushes his goalkeeper out too early, giving you enough time to chip it over him before he gets too close to cut off your angle. Sometimes in FIFA 14, goalkeepers are off their line for no good reason, so you should look for this and give it a try if he is. Ultimately though, your best chance at pulling this off will be on a 1v1 breakaway with the keeper. On Xbox, chip shots are executed by holding down LB as you are pressing the shoot button, and likewise for PS3 although you want to hold down the L1 button instead.
By default, FIFA 14 is set to assisted shooting. This means that whenever you take a shot, the computer ultimately directs the shot and determines its power for you in relation to where you directed the shot and how long you held the stick for. Once you set your shooting settings to manual, you will realize just how much the computer helps you get your shots on target. When you first set manual settings, don't be discouraged by how your shots go everywhere but into the net. You will improve over time and in the end it will be worth it as your shots will be determined 100% by your command. This means that once you get good, you can hit the far corners out of the keepers reach much more frequently than if you'd spent the same amount of time practicing shooting with assisted settings. Definitely consider practicing manual shots to utilize the potential they can offer if you are good at them.