FAQ/Strategy Guide by GammaBetaAlpha

Updated: 05/13/12 | Printable Version

                                  Madden '97
                                   Game Boy
           Developer: Tiertex Design Studios   Publisher: Black Pearl
                              By: GammaBetaAlpha

                               Table of Contents

                        How To Play                 [HELP]
                        Offensive Playbook          [OFFP]
                        Defensive Playbook          [DEFP]
                        Donations/Amazon            [DONT]
                        Contact Info                [CONT]
                        Credits                     [CRED]

                                  How to Play


        These are all the following types of game modes that you can play.

        Exhibition is a single-game affair. Here, you can play as any team, and
play against any team, even having the same team play against itself.

Sudden Death
        In here, you can choose your team and the team to play against. Each
team will make their plays until one team scores, ending the sudden death.

New Season
        New Season will have you start from the very first game of the season
and allow you to run through all sixteen games. Should you end off with a
sufficient record, you will head to the playoffs as well. The actual schedules
for each team are based off their 1996 NFL season schedules, so if you wish to
know who you will be playing against and in what order, look up the schedule of
the team you are playing as. After each game you will be given a password.

New Playoffs
        This mode allows you to skip the season altogether and start in the
playoffs, in the Wildcard round. After each game you will be given a password.

Cont. Season
        By using a password that you should obtain at the end of every game, you
can resume play in the season.

Cont. Playoffs
        By using a password that you should obtain at the end of every game, you
can resume play in the playoffs.

        In addition to the different type of modes, you will also have a few
options you can toggle in several of the modes.

Game Time
        Here, you can change the length of each game, with options of 20 minutes
(5 minute quarters), 40 minutes (10 minute quarters), or a full 60 minute game
(15 minute quarters).

        Using this, you can toggle weather options such as rain on or off.


Choosing a Play
        Prior to the start of each play, you can choose a play to use in the
next play. Read the playbook listed in this guide for a description of each
play. If you are playing Offense, press Select to go down to three options. NO
HUD means no huddle, where you will skip straight to the play when you select
your play. FLIP means that your play will be reversed from its normal

        If you fail to select a play before time runs out, then you will
automatically go through the play you used prior.

Start Menu
        During the Play options menu, press Start to open up a menu with several
options. Some of these options are not available if you open the Start Menu up
during actual play.

        Resume Game - Go back to the game

        Call Timeout - Allows you to call a timeout. Given that the Start menu
is itself a pause screen, you should use a timeout only if the play clock is
about to run out on you. The number of timeouts remaining is indicated on the
left hand of the screen while choosing your play.

        Substitutions - Lets you substitute out a player.

        Drive Summary - Shows the number of plays on the current drive by
passing and rushing and number of yards by both.

        Set Audibles - Allows you to assign up to four audibles, two on offense
and defense.

        Injury Report - Gives a report on injured players, if any.

        Set Music - Music options

        Set SFX - Toggle special effects on and off.

        Statistics - Shows the score, number of plays and number of yards for
                     the game in total by your team.

A - Audible
B - Start the kick, end the kick
Left, Right - Control the direction of the kick

        When you first line up, you can press A for an audible. To start the
kick, press the B button. You will be given a meter that will rise up and then
fall back down. Press the B button again to stop the meter, and depending on how
high it is, the further your kick will go. Do NOT stop the meter at the very
top, as it will cause the football to go out of bounds at the endzone.

        Additionally, there is a second meter that you can manually adjust while
the first meter is moving. Press the left or right D-pad button to move the
meter, which controls the direction you kick it in.

        To perform an Onside Kick, press A to do an audible for all your players
to band together to the right side. When you kick, press right on your D-Pad to
kick the ball to the right, and hit the B button when it is on its way down and
very low.

Punt/Field Goal
A - Audible
B - Start the kick, end the kick
Left, Right - Control the direction of the kick

        The set-ups for both punt and the field goal are close to the same.
After pressing B for a snap, you will get a vertical and horizontal meter. You
can press left and right to control the direction of the ball, and press B when
the vertical meter is at the top to get as powerful a kick as possible.

        With field goals, you will want to adjust the direction very slightly to
the left (or right if you have a flipped play) to adjust for the kick being off
-center from the goalposts.

Punt Return/Kick Return
D-Pad - Move your receiver around

        Much like with Punt and Field Goal, both the Punt Return and Kick Return
share the same controls in general. As soon as the opposing team kicks, the ball
will fly into the sky. Your receiver will generally catch it with no problems,
although he may ignore it if it will result in a touchback. Once you have the
ball, you can move forward as far as possible before getting tackled and knocked

Offense (Pre-Snap)
B - Use Audible (prior to snap)
    Snap the Ball
A - Open up Audibles (prior to snap)
    Use Audible (prior to snap)

        You can use audibles prior to your snap, by pressing A to first indicate
you wish to use an audible, and then pressing either A or B to yell out
preassigned audibles. After, you can press B to start the ball.

Offense (Passing Play)
D-Pad - Control the QB/Receiver
A - Open up the viewing screen for QB to throw, toggle viewing screen
B - Throw the ball

        On a passing play, the ball will be snapped to the QB, who will drop
back. Use the A button to open up the viewing screen, and you can toggle between
the three different windows, again using the A button. Throw the ball using the
B button.

        When the ball begins to land, you should see an X marked in the ground
with a circle around it. Get your receiver once you have control of him to stand
on the crossmark X to catch the ball, and then run.

Offense (Rushing Play)
D-Pad - Control the ball carrier
B - Spin out of an opponent's grasp
    Stiff arm an opponent before running into him
A - Press to do a dive for extra yardage
    Hold to jump over players lying on the ground

        When you are doing a rushing play, the hand-off or short pass by the QB
is automatically done after the snap, so you need not worry about that. Instead,
you need to focus on getting yourself upfield to the goal line. On your way, you
should encounter several opposing players. You can use the B button to try and
knock them aside while going up.

D-Pad - Move around
B - Use Audible (prior to snap)
    Switch control to the player nearest the ball holder
A - Make a (diving) tackle
    Open up Audibles (prior to snap)
    Use Audible (prior to snap)

        Prior to the offense's snap, you can use the B button to toggle between
players. Afterwards, pressing the B button will switch to the player closest to
the ball-holder. Use the A button to go into Audibles, and you can press A or B
to use your preassigned Audible.

        Once you get close to the ball-holder, use the A button to make a

        If the opposing quarterback throws the ball, there is no way to
intercept or knock the ball out of the air. The best way to stop the ball is
either to push against the opposing team's receiver to move him away from the
crossmark X, or to tackle him right as he catches the ball to knock it out of
his hands, resulting in an inconvenience.

        There are a couple of noticable quirks in the gameplay for Madden '97.

        •First, sometimes if the opposing team is playing 3rd and Long, they
will punt right then instead of going to a 4th down.

        •The line of scrimmage is considered to be where the O-line is lined up
when you are playing defense. Quite literally, you can bring your player up to
the nose of an O-lineman and not be called offside.

                              Offensive Playbook

        A major thanks goes to VinnyVideo, whose playbook descriptions from his
Madden 2000 guide for the Game Boy Color both of the playbooks are copied and
pasted from, with formatting changes to reflect this guide's own formatting. You
can locate his Madden 2000 guide at:


FAR/NEAR (18 plays)
        This formation is best for running, although it contains several passing
plays. The only difference between the "Far" and "Near" formations is whether or
not your halfback is on the same side of the formation as the tight end.

HB Toss Sweep
        This is a sweep right play. You can frequently get a big gain, but if
the linebackers stop you in the backfield, you're looking at a loss of five. The
flipped version of the play tends to work more like an off tackle, reducing
both risk and reward.

HB Counter
        In a counter play, the running back steps in one direction to fake out
the defense, and then he runs the opposite direction. You can often get five
yards with this, especially if you have a good right tackle and a back who can
break a tackle or two. The play will be most effective if you run straight up
the hashmark.

HB Inside
        This play demonstrates the difficulty of running inside, even if you
have a good offensive line. You can't often gain more than a yard or two on this
play. Fortunately, you're also very unlikely to lose yardage. If you flip the
play, watch out for blitzing left outside linebackers.

Weak Flood
        All of your targets are on the strong side of the line on this play. The
fullback (3) works almost like a screen pass. The halfback (2) will be running
in real traffic, so your best target is the split end (1) on the slant.

FB Option Dive
This is basically a plain old fullback dive. If the middle linebacker blitzes
outside, you can gain some real yardage. Otherwise, you're looking at a safe
way to earn two yards. A good Mike Alstott play.

TE Corner
        On this play, all of your options are on the strong side of the field.
The halfback (1) runs a deep curl, while the tight end (3) and flanker (2)
cross. If the defense is blitzing the linebackers, this play works very well,
especially when throwing to the halfback.

Roll Out
        This is a good play to use with a scrambling quarterback. If the LOLB
sits back in coverage, you might want to take off running. Otherwise, look for
the tight end (1) on the post or the halfback (3) near the sideline, or go for
the home run with the flanker (2).

PA Far
        The quarterback takes a while to drop back, so you could use this play
as a quarterback draw. The best option is usually the split end (1) on the short
in pattern. The other options include a hooking tight end (3) and a flanker (2)
on a corner route.

FB Circle
        The split end (1) runs an out, while the flanker (2) fakes a slant and
runs a corner route. The fullback (3), who will be available in the flat, is a
great option against the ROLB blitz.

PA Near
        If your flanker (2) is fast, he might just get open downfield for a
touchdown! If he's covered, try the tight end (3) on the in pattern or the split
end (1) on the post.

Strong Flood
        All receiving options are on the strong side of the line, and every one
of them is moving toward the sidelines. This play can work against a deep zone,
but it's not great for first down.

HB Lead
        A good, effective running play. The fullback normally runs off tackle,
with the halfback as the lead blocker. If the strong-side linebacker isn't
blitzing, try running to the sideline as if this were a sweep; you'll probably
gain 50 yards. Otherwise, run the play as drawn.

HB Toss
This play is almost as great as it is in Madden '96. Once your back takes the
pitch, zoom right and turn when you reach the sideline. You get the ball deep
in the backfield, so you should have a good view of the field. Unless you get
stopped in the backfield, you'll be happy with the outcome.

FB Screen
        Your primary option for this screen pass is, of course, the fullback
(3). A fast fullback can sometimes zip down the sideline and score a touchdown,
but it's also possible to lose six or seven yards. You can also try the split
end (1), who fakes an in route, or the flanker (2) on the hook.

        The split end (1), tight end (3), and flanker (2) all run short hook
patterns. This play may flop if your opponents are using a short zone.

WR Screen
        An interesting play. Your flanker (2) stands still and receives the
pass. Meanwhile, the right tackle and fullback pull to block for the receiver.
In this game, though, the blockers are BEHIND the flanker, defeating the whole
purpose of the play. Don't forget about the streaking split end (1) and the
tight end (3) on the post - either of whom can make a big play if they're not

HB Sweep Right
        On this play, the halfback takes the pitch and must run all the way to
the sideline before turning. There's obviously a risk here, but a fast back can
"take it to the house."

Stop Clock
        In this play, the quarterback spikes the ball to stop the clock. It's
best used in two-minute drill situations when stopping the clock is worth losing
a down. In this game, though, it's usually quickest just to run a play. This
play appears in every formation.

"I" FORM (9)
        The I-Form has the fullback lined up between the quarterback and
halfback, forming an "I" shape.

Quick Slant
        On Quick Slant, your main target is the slanting split end (2). The
tight end (3) on the post can also be effective, while the halfback (1) in the
flat may face too much pressure, especially if the ROLB is blitzing.

WR Outs
        Both backs stay in to block, so you have a lot of time to throw to the
man of your choice. The receivers (1 and 2) run deep outs, and the tight end (3)
streaks. This play is exciting, fun, and quite effective.

HB Counter
        This counter play could definitely fool the defense into thinking the
fullback has the ball. Unless you can squirt through the middle, you won't often
gain more than a couple yards with this play.

FB Dive
        This play is exactly what it says it is - a fullback dive. 1-5 yards is
a frequent outcome, but at least you won't lose any yardage. This works well
against stacked lines, and it can also be very effective when the nose tackle
is guarding the outside rush.

HB Sprint Draw
        The linemen take a step backward here, which may fool the defense into
thinking this is actually a pass. It's a reliable way to earn 5-10 yards, and
more against a passive defense.

        All three receiving options run short curls. You'll be best off
releasing the ball right before the receivers turn. This is a great antidote to
deep zones, but it's good any time. The tight end (3) faces too much traffic
against standard 4-3 schemes, though.

HB Sweep
        Student Body Left. The halfback takes the pitch, trailing behind the
fullback and left guard. Let the blockers do the grunt work and you should have
a big gain. One of the best running plays, and a good choice as run audible.

TE Out and Up
        The split end (1) runs a nice in route that usually avoids most of the
interior congestion. The tight end (3) on the out and up route can get wide
open. The flanker (2) on the post will frequently draw double coverage, making
him a risky bet.

Stop Clock
        Use this play to stop the clock in a two-minute drill.

        This formation is full of plays that are useful only in short-yardage
situations, especially near the goal line. There are two backs, two tight ends,
and a receiver - ideally the one with the best "hands" rating. Reversing Goal
Line plays will have little effect.

HB Lead Left
        This is a halfback dive. If you need 1-2 yards, HB Lead Left is a good
play to use. However, it will occasionally fail spectacularly if the fullback
fails to pick up the nose tackle.

FB Pull
        The goal of this play is to avoid the congestion in the middle by
running off right tackle. Instead of trying to charge through the cloggage, the
fullback takes the pitch and runs outside.

HB Lead Right
        Just like HB Lead Left, although slightly safer and more effective.

Flood Left
        There aren't many passing plays in the Goal Line formation, but this is
one of them. Personally, however, I prefer Play Action, the other passing play
in the Goal Line formation. The backup tight end (1) on the out is your most
effective option, as he's the least likely to be in considerable traffic. You
could also roll out to the right and run for the score.

FB Cut Left
        Another fullback sweep, but since there's less blocking on the weak
side, this isn't as good as FB Pull.

HB Cut Right
        I don't like this halfback off tackle play too much; the right tackle
has trouble holding back the defensive end, who frequently stops the play for a

QB Sneak
        The Quarterback Sneak is a pretty low-risk play, but don't expect to
gain much more than a yard or two. But it's very good at getting that one yard!
This play succeeds a very high percentage of the time.

Play Action
        The quarterback fakes a handoff on this play. Try throwing hard to the
halfback (1) in the flat. If he's well covered, try the second or third
receivers. This is the better of the two Goal Line passing plays.

Stop Clock
        It's unlikely that you'll use this clock-stopping play from the Goal
Line formation.

        I don't like this form of the Single Back formation and rarely use it.
The problem is that your only running back lines up very close to the
quarterback, so the back can't get much momentum on running plays, and there's
no fullback to tie up defenders. And while this formation is OK for passing, I
usually prefer more wide outs and/or a shotgun snap on obvious passing

HB Toss
        This sweep right can easily lose a lot of yardage, but if your back is
quick enough, you can turn the corner and make a big play. Watch out for
cornerbacks, especially against Dime defenses.

HB Sweep
        This is basically a flipped version of HB Toss.

Rollout Pass
        On this play, the quarterback rolls out of the pocket, so don't take
control of him until he's out of the pocket. The tight end (1) on the deep post
is your primary option, as the other tight end (2) and the flanker (3) often run
into too much trouble to be particularly useful.

HB Counter
        As with other counter plays, the back fakes a step in the opposite
direction before running the intended route. It's possible to lose big yardage
with this play, and a lot of the time you'll just gain three or four yards, and
rarely more than ten. It's not my favorite play in the book.

Quick Screen
        This play is designed as a quick screen pass to the flanker (3). You can
gain a lot of yardage with a quick receiver. The split end's (1) route is too
short to be of much use, although you might consider going deep to the tight end

Circle Pass
        The back (1), who runs a circle pattern, is your primary target. The
tight end (2) and flanker (3), who cross, provide more of the deep-ball threat.

HB Dive
        See what I mean about the lack of momentum? This is a low-risk, low-
reward play that can sometimes gain five yards. Flipping it usually reduces its
effectiveness. There's not much to say about this meat-and-potatoes play.

PA Streak
        Where's Reggie Wayne when you need him? This is a very effective Peyton
Manning-style play - fake a handoff, then throw deep to one of three streaking
receivers. This is a great way to hurl a bomb when your opponent isn't
expecting one.

Stop Clock
        I really shouldn't have to tell you this again, but the Stop Clock play
spikes the ball so the clock will stop.

        The shotgun formation is good for passing because of its "shotgun" snap
- the quarterback gets the ball several yards behind the yard of scrimmage
instead of from right under center. It isn't great for running, though.

Hail Mary
        All your receivers head deep. This is best used in desperate situations
where a quick touchdown is needed, although you could try it when you really
want to shock the opponents.

Short Posts
        If you're in a two-minute drill, it's hard to beat a hard, quick pass to
the split end (1) on the out. Both the third receiver (2) and flanker (3) run
short post patterns.

HB Toss
        Outside running isn't easy in the Shotgun formation, but good blocking
will reward you with a big gain. As risky as it can be, it can easily gain 25
yards. Call an audible in the unlikely event your opponent has eight men in the

HB Draw Trap
        This can earn a surprising amount of yardage if the defense is expecting
a pass. Try to hit the hole between the pulling right guard and the left tackle,
and you should gain about seven yards. Good blocking can take you even further.
A bold player can try using this play as a sweep right, but that's risky against
a Nickel or Dime.

QB Waggle
        You've got to love plays with cute names like this. Normally you roll
out to the right and throw to one of the receivers (probably the slot receiver
in the second window) on post patterns, but you might prefer to take off running
if you have an agile quarterback.

Deep Outs
        Your main targets here are your exterior receivers (1 and 3), who can
make some pretty big plays. If they're well-covered, you'll probably be able to
dump the ball off to the halfback (2). This play is best if you need quick
yardage, especially in a two-minute drill.

        All three receiving options run hooks in this play. Your best option is
the tight end (3). It's hard to throw to the flanker (2) with success because
the halfback (1) usually catches the pass even though it's not intended for him.
Oh well.

HB Shovel Pass
        This play is designed to be a shovel pass to your running back (1).
Expect to gain 5-10 yards against a Nickel defense without much risk, although
the completion percentage isn't as good as it should be. Against a 4-3, the
shovel pass can sometimes be stopped for a loss. If you feel lucky or your
opponent is still in a 4-3 (or you see an open receiver), you can throw deep to
the crossing tight end (3) and flanker (2).

Stop Clock
        Our old friend Stop Clock also makes an appearance in the Shotgun
formation, where it's probably most likely to be used.

        Those boring plays where the scrawny (and nearly always Caucasian) guy
kicks the pigskin. No offense intended.

Fake Punt
        A fake punt pass. As you know, fake punts are risky, but they can
definitely "change the whole complexion of the game." Look for your receivers
and throw to whoever's open. The man in the second window is safest, while 1 and
3 are best for longer gains. This play can be quite effective against human
players, if just for the shock value alone.

        When it's fourth down and too far to kick, you will usually want to
punt. And this is the play to select when you wish to do so.

Fake F.G.
        Fake field goals are very risky, so use them carefully. This is a
standard passing fake field goal. Your best bet is the 2 option. Ignore the
kicking meter. As with fake punts, fake field goals work best against human

Field Goal
        This play lets you kick a field goal. What a surprise! This is also the
play to select when you want to kick an extra point after a touchdown. Don't try
to kick a field goal unless you're inside the opposition 30 or so, though.

The Pro Form formation, also known as Split Backs or other names, is very
similar to Far/Near. It's good for both running and passing, and it's probably
the formation I use most frequently. The Pro Form has the largest play
selection of any set in the game (except Far/Near, which is really two
formations in one).

Roll Out
        As with other rollouts, you want the quarterback to leave the pocket
before you take control of him. You should have plenty of time for someone to
get open, since both backs are blocking. The split end (1) on the post often
draws double coverage, but if he's open, throw to him! Your tight end (3) and
flanker (2) are safer options, and they can get pretty good results. Don't rule
out the possibility of running, either.

Cross Pass
        The #1 receiver runs a slant pattern. If you throw to him, make sure to
deposit the ball quickly. The tight end (3) runs an out pattern that usually
crosses with the flanker (2).

FB Trap
        This is a rare play that really gives your fullback a chance to shine.
If you have a fullback who runs effectively and an offensive line that blocks
for the run well, you can easily gain 10 yards with this up-the-middle handoff
to the fullback. If the middle linebacker blitzes, though, you're looking at a
big loss.

Quick Posts
        All three receiving options run short post patterns in this passing
play. The tight end will be wide open if the safeties cover the outside. This is
one of my favorites, so I suggest using it as one of your audibles.

Off Tackle
        The halfback runs between the right tackle and tight end. What more can
you say? This is a good general-purpose run that should gain about five yards
without much risk. A good choice as your run audible.

Hook Outs
        You can go deep with the wide outs (1 or 2), or weave through traffic
with the tight end (3) on the post. Depending on when you release the ball, this
can be a short, safe pass or a long bomb.

FB Counter
        If your fullback runs well, this is a pretty good play. A skilled player
can often gain 10 yards. Unless the defense has eight men in the box, you're
unlikely to lose yardage.

All Streak
        Here's a good passing play. You'll have a choice of three streaking
receivers to choose from - and one should be open. Usually it's easiest to go

HB Sweep
        The success of this play rests on the blocking abilities of your right
guard, right tackle, tight end, fullback, and flanker. Dash to near the
sideline, and if your men make their blocks, you'll be gone! If they don't block
well (or if the LOLB blitzes), you can easily lose five yards. You can also use
this play as an off-tackle if you want to reduce risk (and also minimize

Inside Run
        Basically a fullback dive, this play will succeed with good blocking and
an effective rushing-oriented fullback. It takes a little while to develop, so
I'd use something else on 4th and inches.

Play Action
        This is another good play to use when you want to go deep on first down.
The split end (1) and tight end (3) are on deep posts, and the flanker (2) fakes
a slant and runs downfield. This play isn't likely to succeed against a deep

Circle Pass
        This play resembles other plays with "circle" in their names, although
on this one, you must get rid of the ball quickly. If he's open and you're
quick, the streaking #1 receiver will produce a big gain. The flanker (2) on the
out is also a good option, while the halfback (3) is in too much traffic to be

HB Toss
        The key on this play is to avoid the outside linebacker and cornerback.
After that, you'll hit pay dirt and gain at least 15 yards! This is a nice play,
but there are other running plays that produce as much or more gain with less
risk. The mirrored diagram of the play is generally less effective than the non
-flipped form, although it depends on the hashmarks.

FB Dive
        Another fullback dive, but this one is unique. The fullback takes a
pitch as he's moving forward, so there's practically no chance of a loss.
Unfortunately, you're unlikely to gain more than a couple of yards. Good for
short yardage situations.

End Around
        In an end around, the quarterback hands off to a wide receiver who's
coming around the bend. Not surprisingly, this play is very risky but can net a
big gain. When you take the snap, watch how the blocking sets up and decide
whether you should run off left tackle or right tackle. If your opponents'
defensive line is better than your O-line, the answer is probably right tackle.
End arounds are also beneficial for keeping human players on their toes.

All In
        This play's name is pretty self-explanatory; every receiving option runs
toward the middle of the field. Your receivers (1 and 2) are your best options,
although the halfback (3) may be open against a deep zone.

FB Center Trap
        This is another fullback run, which can be effective if your fullback
runs well. Be patient and let the blockers block. However, it's extremely
vulnerable against certain blitzes. Interestingly, while Madden '94 and '95 have
nearly identical offensive playbooks, FB Center Trap is replaced by Hook 'n'
Ladder in Madden '95.

Stop Clock
        As with the Stop Clock play found in other formations, the quarterback
spikes the ball to stop the clock. It's best used in two-minute drill situations
when stopping the clock is worth the cost of losing a down.

        The Run-Shoot formation is named after the Run 'n' Shoot offensive
system, as this was the formation that system usually employed. It's similar to
Single Back, except that it has four wide receivers and one running back instead
of two receivers, two tight ends, and a back. Effective use of the Run & Shoot
formation demands a deep crop of effective wide receivers, as well as an
offensive line that pass blocks well. Flipping these plays won't usually affect
much. Because the field is "spread out," you may find it easier for the
quarterback to scramble, especially up the middle. Don't forget to use the slot
receivers, who often remain uncovered or covered by a linebacker or safety
(especially against a standard 4-3).

In And Out
        The streaking left-hand slot receiver (1) is your best bet if he's open.
Otherwise, look for the #2 receiver on the in route or the flanker (3) on the
out. Alternatively, try sneaking up the middle with your quarterback and
sliding - a fun way to grab 5-10 yards.

PA Pass
        A play action pass seems a little weird in this formation, but this play
is reasonably good nonetheless. If the 1 or 2 receivers aren't open deep, try
dumping the ball off to the receiver in the third window.

HB Counter
        Counter Left is a good general running play for Run & Shoot fans that
can usually gain at least three yards. The line will develop a massive hole, but
that has a drawback. Stay left at the start of the play, or you might get
clobbered by a defensive tackle.

Post Corner
        The 1 and 2 receivers cross on posts, and the halfback (3) serves as a
safety net in the left flat.

HB Toss
        A good running play, although riskier than some. Normally you'll run
off-tackle, although I prefer to use this play as a sweep if the blocking holds
up. Be warned, however: If the defense rushes aggressively, you may lose yardage
in the way that makes 320-pound men make ridiculous dances.

        The 2 and 3 receivers will hook after about ten yards, providing safe,
sane options. If you want to go for the bomb, the split end will run straight

Deep Post
        A pretty ordinary passing play. The Y receiver on the out and up is an
interception risk if you don't throw the ball quickly enough, whereas the
crossing 2 and 3 receivers are a bit safer.

WR Screen
        In a wide receiver screen pass, the line pulls to the right to block for
the 3 receiver, the intended recipient of the pass. If you just want to be
different, you can throw to the halfback (1) in the flat or the 2 receiver on
the post. I liked this play in the console Madden games, but here the linemen
don't really block for the receiver.

Stop Clock
        This rarely-used play stops the clock in a high-pressure situation.

                              Defensive Playbook

        A major thanks goes to VinnyVideo, whose playbook descriptions from his
Madden 2000 guide for the Game Boy Color both of the playbooks are copied and
pasted from, with formatting changes to reflect this guide's own formatting. You
can locate his Madden 2000 guide at:


4-3 (15)
The 4-3 defense is the defensive set used by most teams in most situations.

Monster Blitz
        The middle linebacker blitzes, crushing the inside running game and
putting enormous pressure on the quarterback. A pass up the middle could be
dangerous, though.

Jam Middle
        Both outside linebackers blitz, while the linemen rush toward the middle
of the line. This play is good at stopping the inside run but is weaker against
sweeps and passes to the flats.

Cheat Left
        All of your linemen rush toward the left side of the defensive line. The
idea is to block the left tackle and allow the blitzing RLB to come around to
sack the quarterback or stop left outside rushes. It'll take some time for this
to happen, though, especially if you don't have a fast linebacker. I recommend
that you control the RLB if you want a sack. The receivers and tight end will be
matched up in single coverage.

Cheat Right
        The same as Cheat Left, only to the right. Consider taking control of
the LLB. Even if you don't get the quarterback, you might be able to tip his

Man/Zone 2
        The linebackers play to stop the run, while both safeties play deep to
back up the cornerbacks. A good first-down call.

Wide Zone 2
        This is a fairly standard zone defense.

Mad Tiger Blitz
        All three linebackers are blitzing. The offensive line won't be able to
hold back the seven-man rush for long. However, the receivers will be in single
coverage, since only four men are in coverage.

Short Zone 2
        Needless to say, this is a short zone defense. It's designed to contain
the short pass without being too weak against the rushing game and deep threats.

Man/Zone 1
        Eight men are guarding the run, so it won't be easy to run against this
defense. The long ball could be a problem, though, since only one safety is
covering the pass.

Medium Zone
        This is a medium zone defense, which contains the pass effectively but
may have difficulty against the ground game, especially runs off guard.

Wide Zone 3
        Four men are playing deep to protect against the long ball, but watch
out for runs and passes up the middle.

Triple Zone
        Triple Zone will usually put the opposition flanker in triple coverage,
but the split end will have just one man to beat. The linebackers are playing
man-to-man to stop the run.

Jet Blitz
        The LLB is blitzing, and the DLE and DLT are on a stunt. The safeties
are playing to stop the run.

Tuf Bronco
        Basically a mirrored former of Jet Blitz, except the safety is playing
more on the flanker's side of the field.

Short Zone 1
        This short zone is very similar to Short Zone 2, except with more "bump
and run" coverage.

3-4 (15)
        The 3-4 is similar to the 4-3 in many aspects, but there are
differences. The 3-4 has three linemen and four linebackers, whereas the 4-3
uses four linemen and three linebackers. The primary advantage of a 3-4 is it
allows teams to put more pressure on the quarterback in unpredictable ways. The
disadvantage is it requires specialized personnel, such as a massive nose
tackle. A real team may have some difficulty regularly switching between a 3-4
and a 4-3, but you can do it as much as you want in a video game. In real life,
only four NFL defenses used the 3-4 in 1999: Buffalo, Cincinnati, New York Jets,
and Pittsburgh.

Jet Blitz
        This is the equivalent of the 4-3 Jet Blitz. In this man-to-man system,
the LLB blitzes, and the safeties play close to the line.

Jam Middle
        This is one of the most run-oriented 3-4 defenses. Three linebackers are
rushing, and both safeties guard the run.

Man/Zone 1
        No one blitzes here. With all the linebackers in coverage, it's going to
be tough to find someone open, especially in the short zones.

Wide Zone 1
        This play is designed to clog up the short zones. Good against two-tight
end sets and passes to the flats.

Safety Blitz
        Yikes! All four linebackers are blitzing, in addition to the safety.
Wavers of the Terrible Towel will like this. Of course, only three players are
protecting against the pass.

Short Zone
        This is basically an ordinary short zone, although the safeties play
fairly deep. This will be effective against stopping passes to the flats.

Man/Zone 2
        Another good versatile 3-4 scheme. The defensive linemen rush toward the
left side of the offensive line, and the safeties cover the sidelines.

Medium Zone
        Medium Zone will shut down a pass of 15-20 yards, but a run may cause

Wide Zone 2
        This is a lot like Wide Zone 1. You'll cover the pass, but you aren't
likely to touch the quarterback.

Triple Zone
        Not too different from the 4-3 version of Triple Zone; both safeties
focus on shutting down passes to the flanker. The DLE and NT are on a stunt.

Man Left
        A man-to-man defense, with more protection on the left side of the field
than the right.

Man Right
        Basically the reverse of Man Left. Helps contain the tight end and

Tight Man
        This is tight man coverage with three linebackers blitzing.

Wide Zone 3
        Just like Wide Zones 2 and 1.

Monster Blitz
        Three linebackers are blitzing, and the safeties are playing the run.
Not a good play to run against.

        The Nickel defense is best used in passing situations, as there are five
defensive backs instead of four.

Red Dog
        Woof! Both linebackers are blitzing, so this is a good way to put
pressure on the quarterback without forsaking the deep zones. It's best to take
control of one of the linebackers and move him closer to the line of scrimmage.

Tight Man
        One linebacker is blitzing, and the defensive backs are in man coverage.
The defensive line is rushing towards the center, so the inside run won't be
able to do much, but an off left tackle could be dangerous.

Double FL
        This double-teams the flanker (or more often, the split end). A good way
to shut down a particularly dangerous receiver.

Double SE
        Identical to Double FL, except this puts the split end (or sometimes the
flanker) in double coverage.

Bump & Run
        In Bump & Run, the linebackers play outside to stop outside runs. The
defensive backs play man coverage.

        Everyone goes deep, so use this only when your opponents are in a two-
minute drill and are trying to gain yards quickly. It's best against a "Hail
Mary" or similar play.

Man Tiger
        Both linebackers blitz. Your center defensive back is also blitzing, but
he's too far away from the line of scrimmage to do anything unless you're
controlling him.

Safety Cheat
        The defensive tackles are on a stunt, while the center safety comes
charging forward. He won't reach the QB unless you take control of him manually,
though. This safety charge could leave a hole in the deep zone in the center of
the field.

Circle Zone
        This is a zone defense that's shaped in a circle. The weak point is the
middle of that circle, although even passes there aren't going to cause too much

Full Zone
        Every zone is covered here, including the flats. However, this play
could be very vulnerable to an inside run, particularly a draw play.

DIME (9)
        The Dime formation is even more pass-oriented, with six defensive backs
and just one linebacker. Since it's weak against most running plays, especially
the inside run, the Dime should generally be reserved for prevent situations.

CB Blitz
        One of the cornerbacks blitzes the quarterback here, while the rest of
the secondary is able to fill the hole.

Center Blitz
        The lone linebacker blitzes, while the secondary plays man coverage.

Double Blitz
        The second cornerback and linebacker blitz, with the other five
defensive backs providing the other assignments.

Short Zone
        The cornerbacks and linebacker protect against the short pass, while
your safeties drop back to provide a last line of defense.

Prevent 1
        The classic prevent defense. All of your defensive backs head deep to
prevent the big play. Because of its passive nature, you definitely don't want
to use it except when necessary.

Prevent 2
        This deep zone stops the outside pass but may be vulnerable against
passes up the middle. Good in a two-minute drill.

Safety Cheat
        One of your safeties will be blitzing, but unless you take manual
control of him, you won't come near the quarterback.

Double FL
        This play usually double-teams the split end.

Double SE
        This play double-teams the receiver lined up on the right side of the
offense, usually the flanker.

        The Goal Line formation counters the offensive version of the Goal Line.
This should only be used near the goal line or possibly in certain obvious
short-yardage situations.

        This is a general-purpose goal line defense that rushes toward the left
side of the line.

        This is more geared toward stopping the inside run.

        Very similar to Left.

Man Left 1
        In this man coverage system, the safety provides extra coverage on the
left side of the field.

Safety Blitz
        One of the defensive backs will blitz.

Man Right 1
        Similar to Man Left 1, except the safety covers the right side of the
field, and two pairs of linemen are on stunts.

Man Left 2
        This is more aimed at stopping the pass and the outside left run.

        This is a man-to-man defense that's good against the pass down the

Man Right 2
        Basically a mirrored Man Left 2.

        These plays are designed to defend against punts and field goals.

Punt Rush
        Here your team goes all out trying to block the punt, but you won't be
able to  get a return.

Punt Return
        Here your personnel will be blocking for your return man in an attempt
to get a good return.

Field Goal Block
        Use this if you know your opponent will be kicking a field goal.


        I don't really care too much about donations, but if you are feeling
generous, feel free to send one via PayPal to gammabetaalphafaqs AT gmail DOT

        Alternatively, if you ever order any items from Amazon.com, go to the
link below. You do not have to buy anything right away, but (if you do not clear
browser cookies often) any items you buy within the next 90 days will count as a
'referral order' to me, meaning I get anywhere from 4-6% as a referral/affiliate
payment of what you ordered (ie. order $100 worth of stuff, I get $4-6 from


        Other than that, considering this FAQ is for an obscure old game, if you
have any other obscure old games that you do not play anymore, consider sending
them to me (I will even pay the shipping cost!). I write FAQs for plenty of
obscure old games with no FAQs, and having a physical copy of the game (and even
better, a manual) is superior to not. You can email me if interested at
gammabetaalphafaqs AT gmail DOT com

                                 Contact Info

        Although I believe I have found everything there is to find in this
game, there is occasionally the possibility of some super secret level in an
obscure game that was never found because it was too obscure, or the like. If
you have anything that you feel needs to be includes, feel free to email me at
gammabetaalphafaqs AT gmail DOT com

        If you have any other information to contribute or notice any errors,
again, shoot me a notice at gammabetaalphafaqs AT gmail DOT com


        A major thanks to VinnyVideo, for allowing me to use his Playbook
descriptions from his Madden 2000 Game Boy Color guide, which make up the
bulk of this guide.

©2012 GammaBetaAlpha FAQs