I started playing the FIFA series in late 2009 with a demo of FIFA '10 on my Xbox 360, which I still have. The game was fun and there was an extreme rush of adrenaline when I scored a goal, thus I was hooked. Later I happened upon a FIFA game for the SNES, and even with it's isometric point of view it was still pretty playable.
This lead me to venture out into Nintendo's Soccer for the NES, as well as Technos' World Cup Soccer, both of which I like. Although I don't fall into the whole need to own every FIFA due to the ever changing roster, I will pick them up due to technical enhancements through the aging of the game. But I don't need every football game ever made.
FIFA '04 isn't really that far apart from it's 6 year younger brother FIFA '10, although a great majority of the changes are undoubtedly due to the whole different system in which I'm playing it. The graphics and gameplay are a bit choppy at times, but overall pretty much on par with what I expect of a game from 2003.
My only real complaint is the over saturation of shitty Euro pop music in the sound track. This isn't an issue strictly with FIFA as EA loves to license completely irrelevant music for games that these songs have no business in. Need for Speed Underground 2 is pumped full of easily licensed, yet completely worthless, rap songs, and they don't make turning them off an easy task.
The reason why this review seems to have very little to do with FIFA itself is the simple fact that FIFA 04 is simply good enough to stand on it's own. It has minor flaws, as all games do, but since I don't know much about football I can't really make judgement on anything other than the gameplay I experience, which is thoroughly enjoyable! FIFA '04 was well worth the pick up and perhaps if I find a newer version I'll give it a try as well, I just don't see myself going and paying retail for any FIFA game.