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EA said this ability was “only temporary for that session within the web app”, and they were only able to do it to their own account.
However, it’s the long list of kill switches – and their associated values set for an account – that caught the attention of players. For example, players noticed a setting called “PackOddsLowPercentageLocalizationThreshold”. EA said this setting was previously used to determine the threshold for when the pack probabilities screen displays a value as <1%. The company insisted that while this setting is displayed in the debug menu, it is no longer used in the FUT web app.
Other eye-catching kill switches include “dreamSquadEnabled”. What is a dream squad? “enablePlayerTraits” suggests EA can turn off player traits for specific users. And “championsGlickoRatingMultiplier” suggests the Glicko rating system can be used for matchmaking in FUT Champions to varying degrees.
Other tools include “free coins”, and “free packs”, as well as the option to create items by ID, and send players to club – although it should be stressed no-one was able to make this work within the debug menu when it was live.
So, what caused this debug menu to be shown in the FUT web app in the first place? EA said it made a “mistake” in the release process for the FUT web app. That’s one hell of a mistake.
It appears no significant harm was done here, but it is yet another negative headline in what has been a torrid time for FIFA and EA lately. This week, EA was forced to suspend all discretionary content granting indefinitely amid the ongoing “EA Gate” scandal that has rocked the FIFA series.
Earlier in March Eurogamer reported on how the FIFA community had unearthed direct messages that appeared to show an EA employee selling coveted Ultimate Team cards for thousands of pounds on the black market. EA later admitted “one or more EA accounts, which were either compromised or being used inappropriately by someone within EA, directly entitled items to these individual accounts”. EA’s investigation is ongoing.
And this week a Eurogamer investigation revealed rampant user-generated racism within the Pro Clubs mode, which led to a promise from EA to do better.
An EA spokesperson told Eurogamer: “Yesterday an issue surfaced during a regular update to our web app. This ended up causing debug menu tools, that are used for internal testing and development, to be visible to players. The issue was quickly recognised and has since been fixed. Though the tools were visible, players couldn’t use them to add content or make permanent changes to their own or anyone else’s accounts. To be clear, no one was able to receive in-game benefits from this issue, despite some claims we’ve seen online.”