"An Average game at best."

EA Sports Cricket 2007, much like its predecessors, failed to live up to expectations. Although they touched on a new aspect of batting, the Century Stick, the rest of the game is really a mediocre regurgitation of past titles.

Gameplay: The new 'Century Stick' control is actually a rather nice addition. In Cricket 05, I found it difficult to just get the ball past the fielder, but the Century Stick allows for precision aiming anywhere in the ground, with simple use of the joysticks. This concept can go a long way. Sadly, though, the Century Stick is really one of the only highlights of the gameplay. Bowling is again, monotonous, especially since most of the pace bowlers have the same action. A lot of aspects of the gameplay are just too unrealistic. The fielding system, although a nice concept, fails. The fielder can throw it to the keeper, even if they facing the opposite direction. All in all, the Century Stick really does improve batting, but bowling and fielding are as average as before.

As for Game Modes, there's the usual Play Now, then the tours, test series, one day series, championships etc. But what really stands out is the 2006-07 3 Mobile Ashes Series. There is also a 2005 nPower Ashes Series Scenarios, which are pretty good and fun.5/10

Graphics: The graphics in this game just aren't smooth, to put it bluntly. It seems to be hazed out, or blurred, and isn't even matching Ricky Ponting '05 graphics. A good point though, is that the stadiums were designed in a great amount of detail, and you should be able to recognise which one is which. Close ups of the players looks smooth, probably because they aren't blurred out. Bat designs are accurate, jerseys are nearly exact, menus haven't really changed, but the menu backgrounds are nice. The crowd is dreadful however, and they are, well, two dimensional, not really up to par. 4/10

Sound: Well, its a cricket game, so the main sounds are from the commentators. The crowd are pretty much the same as in previous editions, with just a little buzz, cheering for boundaries and wickets, as we do. Commentary has seen the inclusion of Mark Nicolas, which, I think, wasn't that bad of a move. Richie Benaud's commentary seems recycled and, as usual, is like "Ponting...hits it to..long on" all in a different tone of voice. Mark Nicolas' commentary sounds very much like his in real life (lol), and he does the introduction for the Ashes and Batting Videos. Menu music depends on personal taste, I liked a couple of the songs, there weren't a very many though. 5/10

Other Stuff: The content of Cricket 07 is actually quite amazing, its a statistics lovers dream. There's plenty of stats for you to view, I believe there is stat tracking, trophies and the like. The Create A Player mode is so-so. You get plenty of options for the type of player, country and stuff, but I didn't really like the actual face making, the options were too few, such as only three skin tones and the like, but otherwise Create A Player is good. The bad thing is, if you put your player say into the England squad and the New South Wales squad, when you play the other team, your player will be there, which is sorta annoying. There are plenty of bats to choose from as well, except their missing MRF (the one I personally use) but yea, thats also a good part of the game. Finally, EA Canada only got licensing for Australia, England, South Africa, New Zealand, all of the County teams and all of the Australian State teams. The rest are faked, but they give you the option to rename the players, much like RPIC2005, so its all good. 8/10

Replayability: Well most sports games are often replayable anyway, and this one isn't different. There's a fair bit to unlock, such as trophies and videos, and playing two player is pretty good.7/10

Pros
+Century Stick
+Licensing for most countries, ability to rename players
+Large array of stats
+Unlockables

Cons
-Lack of licensing for some countries (but you get to rename..so yea)
-Mediocre Graphics
-Mediocre Sound
-Game can get boring quite frequently

Rent or Buy?
Definately rent first, and if it tickles your fancy, then buy it. I got mine for AU$50 at a stocktake sale, so it wasn't that bad, but if its at full price, don't bother, wait till it drops down.


Reviewer's Score: 6/10 | Originally Posted: 01/01/07


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