How Do FUT Packs Work?

How Do FUT Packs Work?

There are so many things about FUT Packs that we don’t know. iamstrgl will help us to discover how they are made, which ones are the best and if EA manipulate pack odds and player accounts. This is a brilliant text written by this developer by day, DJ and r/FIFA moderator by night, that you can’t miss.

 

How do FUT Packs Work?

What we still don’t know about FUT Packs

Let’s talk about FUT Packs, everybody’s favourite part of FIFA Ultimate Team. I’m pretty sure that we all love opening packs. I know I sure do. Packs and the potential they offer are what keep you coming back to the game. That’s why by the end of the game there are probably over double the number of cards that the game started with (I didn’t count, someone else did the math). You’ve probably seen a post about the lure of packs and the way EA keep you coming back with flashy lights and sounds, the whole pack opening experience is a fanfare. It was right in the most parts so I’m not going to touch too much on that. Instead, I’m going to look at what we can discern from packs for the most part.

There are a lot of players in the database and it would be hard to pack a specific one even if it were an equal chance of getting them all. FUT Packs with more players give you a better chance of packing someone good. Packs with only rare items reduce the potential players you can get by 66% roughly making it 3 times more likely to pack someone good (if it were equal chance). EA likely can manipulate pack weights for specific accounts because it’s their game and assuming they built it with the intent to do so it wouldn’t even be difficult. But I’m not saying they do only that it would make more sense than scripting, handicapping and momentum.

 
 

How are FUT Packs Made?

How Do FUT Packs Work?

OK so for this I’m going to mostly ignore anything that isn’t a player cause let’s be honest you couldn’t give a crap about packing Tuca Ferretti, the only Brazilian gold manager in the game who has somehow eluded me until now since I refuse to pay 4k for him! Ahem.

Let’s assume every player in the database has a percentage chance assigned to it at any given time. And, for ease of discussion, let’s assume it’s the same number for everyone. Whilst we are at it let’s also only look at 75 and above rated players (gold basically). Cool. So we have around 3,120 players in that bracket. Let’s say 3,100 just to round down (although I’m sure there are less than that since I just grabbed a number from Futbin that includes POTM, SBCs and other cards that can’t be packed).

100 / 3,120 = 0.032% chance of packing any one specific player. Assuming the chance was equal.

However, we ALL know that the chance isn’t equal and here’s where things get interesting. First of all, you’d assume that higher rated cards have a lower percentage chance of being selected. But this rule is not set in stone. I will freely admit this could be confirmation bias, but I feel as though the transfer market and price are the best indications of this. Gerard Moreno (1,000) and Gabriel Jesus (3,000). Both 83 rated but price and price range are vastly different. Why? Well, chances are with the popularity of the Premier League, Gabriel Jesus has been made more difficult to pack. In fact, even compared to a higher rated card such as William Carvalho (3,000) you would hazard a guess that Gabriel Jesus is still more difficult to pack.

So the rarity of a card, for the most part, is based on rating, but not solely. Here’s likely what EA do: EA likely make an assessment based on football knowledge (haha, I know but stay with me here). They assume players in the top leagues will be more desirable and use data from how often players are packed and then put straight on to the market, as opposed to playing a few games with them. The method they use to calculate this doesn’t really matter. The important take away is that there are certain players who do not conform to the ‘higher rating rule = less likely to pack’ rule. Whether this is by league, club or individual is unknown but I’m fairly certain it occurs.

Of the players that are available in FUT packs, they probably use a Random Number Generator ((RNG), yes people that is what it actually stands for) to select a player rating. So let’s say we need a number between 0 – 100 and, pulling the odds of the packs in store, we’ll say if it’s between 0 and 80 it will select a 75 – 82 rated player. Between 80 – 96 it’ll select 82 – 84 rated player. And between 96 – 100 it will select an 84 plus rated player. Once it knows what rating group of player you’ll get it will likely generate another number to select which specific player you’ll get. Let’s say for instance you get an 81 on the first RNG, meaning you’ll get a player from the 82 – 84 group, so then on the second, it’ll look for a number between, let’s say 0 – 1000 and that will determine which player you get. Each player likely has a certain amount of values assigned to them which more desirable players having fewer values. For example, Gerard Moreno might be numbered 0 – 49, but Gabriel Jesus might be 50 – 59, meaning you are 5 times as likely to pack Moreno as you are Jesus.

Let me reiterate here, this is a guess. I don’t know how packs are picked but I’m inferring this from the pack odds that are given to us from the store. They may just pull a player straight away without assigning players to different pools, but that’s the way they grouped them in the store. (If you go to the store and press start/option over a gold pack you’ll see the percentages). If you now factor in how many players are in the game and how even an equal chance would make a specific player difficult to pack, you can see why getting a walkout isn’t as easy as you might think.

Speaking of walkouts, just to reiterate why I think my method is more likely (but again this could be confirmation bias), I’ve noticed that when the walkout animation does trigger, there are certain players that are more likely to come out than others. I have seen Pjanic and Hamsik, for example, pop up fairly regularly as opposed to similarly rated cards, which could be down to them not featuring in a lot of teams/their less desirable nations/low price on Transfer Market. Hence why, in conjunction with the odds on the FUT packs, I believe they first select the pool for each card and then select the player.

 
 

Which FUT Packs are Best?

How Do FUT Packs Work?

So I know this seems obvious, but the FUT packs that contain the most amount of players generally yield the greatest returns. Obvious right? They quick sell for more and for the most part consumables have a price range of up to 5k whereas most players max price range is 10k. Well, I’ve seen a few posts about the validity of opening a greater amount of smaller packs as opposed to a smaller amount of bigger packs so we’ll talk about this in a second (In this scenario smaller and bigger refer to the cost of the pack rather than how many items you receive). Let’s be honest, when we open a pack we want a good player, not a consumable. So straight off the bat, the packs that contain more players are likely to have a better chance of getting you what you want. Packs that have the most amount of rare players are obviously better for you as all the best players are rare.

I mentioned earlier about it being a 0.032% chance of getting a player if it were equal. Well in a pack where you can only pack rare players, icons and the current TOTW (assuming no promo) you have almost a 0.1% chance of packing one of the 1,300 players (rough estimate, again assuming equal chance). That’s around 3 times as likely.

Let’s take an example. The choices are this: open one single 100k pack, Jumbo Rare Players Pack, or open 13 (I’m rounding down since after 13 you’d not have enough coins/points to open another pack) premium gold packs. If we look at a Premium Gold Pack then you get 12 items divided up between players and consumables. Usually (I could be wrong here) you get between 3 to 5 players. You also get a random assortment of consumables which again aren’t really going to get you riled up. You also only have three rares, which could also be consumables. We want players. I’m not going to say which is better between the two I’m just going to say this:
You have a better chance of packing better players from packs that have more players in it. I have little evidence to back that up besides this: You cannot pack the same player twice in one pack. At least I’ve never seen that.

Let me explain it like this, say I have a hat with three balls in it. Two white, one red. If you pick the red ball and you win a prize. You, however, can only pick one ball at a time. Assuming no influence or bias, the odds of you picking the red ball and winning the prize is 1 in 3 (33.3*%). Meaning you have a 2 in 3 (66.6*%) chance of picking a white ball. Say you have a go and pick a white ball so you want another go. There’s one very important thing I do before I let you have another go. I put the ball back in the hat. Meaning that you once again have a 33% chance of picking the right ball. Every single time. However, let’s assume I let you pick two balls instead of just one. Well, the first ball you pick is white, which you had a 33.3*% chance of picking. Only now for your second pick, there are only two balls in the hat meaning you now have a 1 in 2 (50%) chance of picking the right ball.

This is why bigger FUT packs SHOULD, if someone could collate enough data for it to be a fair experiment, show that they most likely pack better players inside them. When you open a Jumbo Rare Players pack and the game starts building it, if the first player it selects isn’t Messi, then the next player it selects has a slightly greater chance of being Messi. And if that one isn’t Messi then the next one has an even greater chance of being Messi. And so on and so forth all the way up to that last player. As opposed to opening lots of smaller value packs where you could theoretically pack the same crappy players over and over again.

The problem with all this is that, like winning the lottery, the chance of packing a good player is still very slim even if 23 other players have been removed from the pool of players possible to pack, it’s an increased chance of packing a player than normal for sure, but it’s still a very low chance. As it should be if we are honest with ourselves.

This is why higher ranks in Squad Battles/Division Rivals/Fut Champs offer packs with more players and more rares. The idea is they are trying to give you a better chance to pack a better player. It sucks when you work hard and don’t pack someone good but that’s how chance works.

 
 

Do EA Manipulate FUT Pack Odds?

How Do FUT Packs Work?

Do FUT packs from certain SBC’s/Rewards yield better returns? Do EA manipulate pack odds?
Short answer: Nobody knows.
Long Answer: Nobody knows. Let me ask you this. Have you ever seen/heard someone say:

Hey you need to do the {{insert SBC here}} cause the rewards are through the roof! I packed {{insert_high_rated_player_here}}!!!

To that, I say thank you for the information about your thorough and well thought out an experiment with a sample size of 1. In other news, I went out of my house yesterday and it was raining so you should all take an umbrella with you tomorrow. My mate also won the lottery by buying his ticket online whilst he had a cold so if you have a cold I’d buy your lottery ticket online cause it’s practically a cheat code.

Honestly, I don’t mean to poke fun I’m just trying to point out the ridiculousness of the situation. You can’t with any certainty say what is or isn’t true for everyone. If you wanted to determine whether a coin was fairly balanced and you had a 50% chance of getting either heads or tails you’d need to flip it at least 10,000 times and even then you could only say it’s true with a 99.9% level of confidence. And that’s an experiment with only two outcomes! If we as a community came together and documented our results we could definitely get a peek behind EA’s curtain, but the coordination it would take is unprecedented.

Do EA manipulate pack odds? Most likely. Probably only FUT packs that you don’t buy, so stuff from SBC’s etc. Why do I say that? Well, let’s look at the facts only. Firstly, EA started offering untradeable packs either last year or the year before (possibly even the year before that). Untradeable packs are perfect for them as the cards have little value outside of personal value if you pack someone good. These cards can’t be sold and at best can be used to get another untradeable player/pack or a tradeable pack. They take money out of the market, sometimes forever. And the easiest way to get money back into the market is to buy FIFA Points. This year when pack odds are required to be disclosed in certain markets, packs that aren’t bought have no odds on them. Unless you see the odds change on paid for packs, and they do when a promotion is run (e.g. scream items are in packs), then they likely don’t change the odds for paid packs.

 
 

Do EA Manipulate Players Accounts?

How Do FUT Packs Work?

Do EA Manipulate certain players accounts to make them pack better players?
Ok so I wasn’t going to touch on this but due to a certain YouTuber posting a video where this was brought up I think it’s a good time to get into it. Let me start by saying I know no more than they do. I’m not going to say who it was, if you know then that’s great. I’m not calling anyone out I’m just going to present the facts as I see them. If you can understand that this is a healthy discussion then please continue.

The reason this almost made it into the SMH post is that people tend to think that SMH is a way for EA to manipulate players into getting angry and buying more FUT packs to have a better team so that they can win more games. That may be an oversimplification but the general gist is the same. Now the community doesn’t seem to have a consensus on what triggers this state, it just happens sometimes and most of us, me included, have felt what players are referring to. If EA wanted to make more money, and they do trust me on that one, rather than make a complicated intelligent system that makes you less likely to win games at certain times by “adjusting sliders” or what have you, wouldn’t it be far easier to incentivise players by letting their favourite internet personality pack better players more often? Regardless of whether that person was on really good terms with EA or not, if you have a loads of followers then surely it’s a lot easier to make 20 – 50 accounts have better luck than to manipulate an engine on a global scale for everyone, even those who have never bought a pack in their entire FIFA cycle. Why manipulate millions of people when they can manipulate 20 – 50 without their knowledge and then let them manipulate millions of people without even realising it?

Now, the person in question mentions that they’ve spoken to developers and said that it would be “nearly impossible” to manipulate packs for one account against everyone else’s. Now let me be clear before I explain what’s wrong with this: I’m just stating my view and how I came to that view. You can take off your tinfoil hats and put down your pitchforks. It’s just me trying to help the community understand. Got that? Good.

From my point of view, it’s entirely possible to do. And not even just possible but frankly not even difficult. Let’s look at things that everyone can understand. The other day there was a post on here about someone accidentally discarding a player. A few days later after contacting EA they got the player back. We also know that after some people had completed part of the Jadon Sancho SBC that they got the cards they submitted back. We also know that EA chat has often gifted people packs for inconvenience and other reasons. Now, none of this specifically says EA can give anyone better pack luck, but what it does tell us is that EA has records of player submissions and player ownership. It also tells us that EA has the ability to reissue cards or gift players cards if needed. It tells me that EA has the ability, without needing to rewrite any code, to manipulate a specific account. Now that to me sounds like the start of a compelling argument.

Let’s get a little more technical now. If EA have that level of control, and again we know they have from those examples, and if you have also read the rest of this post about how packs are built, would it be beyond the realm of reason to suggest that EA could bump up the weightings for higher rated players by, lets say 10x, for certain accounts? Or even to suggest that EA could reserve a slot in every 45th pack, with a random variance of 20, for an 86+ player? I don’t think it does. The fact is this situation isn’t only possible, it’s highly probable. Look at the event EA throws each year before the release of the game. In that, you can see certain accounts packing icons and high rated players etc. Now yes these accounts are obviously set up and staged specifically for this event, but my point is only that the technology for them to do that is there.

Now ‘probable’ isn’t the same as saying EA very clearly do this. As the person in question pointed out, and I hope I’ve made clear in my post, the more you attempt something the more chances you have of that thing happening. That doesn’t mean that they are more likely to pack better cards but that they have more chances to. From EA’s own website:

Any probability percentages that you see are on a pack-by-pack basis and are not cumulative. That means that each pack opening is an independent event; opening multiple packs does not change the likelihood of being awarded an item from a specific category. If you flip a coin three times and get heads each time, you still have a 50% chance of getting heads if you flip the coin again.

You have to be in it to win it and YouTubers likely open more packs than anyone. I’m just pointing out that everything in this game is supposed to make you feel good about buying more FUT packs. That’s why they made walkouts with all their flares and sparkle. They don’t want you to feel bad about the game. They want you to feel good. Because the better you feel the more likely they think you are to opening packs. It’s the same reason why gambling machines make lots of cool noises and sounds. When people are winning around you, it makes you feel like you can win too. Giving a few accounts increased odds of packing better players is a far more likely method for getting people to play and open packs than making them lose games every now and then.

 

This article was written by a guest contributor identified on the top of the page.

1 COMMENT

  1. It seem that when I use a player in a sbc, I get those cards right back in one of the next packs I open. Anyone else have that happen ?

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