Adrian Niculae has always loved FIFA.
When he arrived at EA Redwood Shores for the FIFA 17 Campus Champions tournament, he was ready. Even if the airline lost his luggage.
Niculae won the first ever FIFA 17 Campus Champions tournament, held around the world at EA.
It was a long way from how he first started playing FIFA, hanging with friends after school in the third grade.
Niculae starting playing competitively at an internet cafe in his hometown of Curtea de Arges, Romania. And it didn’t take him long to figure out that he had a special talent.
“No one from this town could beat me,” he says.
Niculae moved to Bucharest after college, which was “100x bigger” than his hometown, and played FIFA professionally between 2005 and 2010. During this timeframe, he won several online and offline events and played for the national team of Romania for 3 years in a row.
“We had to use chat bots that gave details about the matches highlights in real time,” he says. “There was no livestreaming back then.”
Niculae is proud of his accomplishments and knew his competitive background prepared him for the event. “Training for this event and playing the offline finals reminded me of the good old days”, he says.
He enjoyed a ton of support from back home. His team in Bucharest stayed up late to cheer him on in the finals.
For winning the tournament, Niculae took home an Xbox One, a trophy, bragging rights and a signed Marco Reus kit, which he had framed and mounted on the floor where the QA FIFA team is located in Bucharest.
Niculae works on the QA team as a Project Manager here at EA. He has been with EA Romania since 2008 and assigned on EA SPORTS FIFA for the past four years. He turned his passion for FIFA into a career.
“I started as a game tester,” he says. “This was my dream, to be a part of this title.”
And he knows how special the experience has been for him.
“I enjoyed every moment and I’m looking forward to continue being part of this wonderful team,” he says.
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