Review by DBZSSJoCOM
"Closer To Perfection"
I was never really a big football game fan, until I rented Madden 2002 a few months back. Ever since, I have loved pretty much all the EA sports games. The 2k series is too arcade-like for my tastes. EA has managed to further improve the gameplay and mode selection as the years go on, and NCAA is no exception.
The graphics, for the most part, are absolutely stunning. The player models and the animations are jaw-droppingly real, my friends sometime even then I'm watching a real game when I'm actually playing the game.The textures are very high quality, and none of them are blurry contrary to the ps2 version. The reflections on the players' helmets are rendered in real-time and reflect the stadium, sky, and other players. Every model also casts a realistic shadow on the field. The field gets damaged as the game goes on, and in the rain, the field even gets muddy. The player's uniforms get dirty during raining games, also. A few gripes though, the faces of the players still look zombified, I think the players' jerseys could be bump-mapped, or perhaps the field could. Also a tiny bit of slowdown during dog piles. Besides that, no complaints for graphics.
NCAA Football 2003 really shines in the audio department. A dream-team of play-by-play announcers that say thousands of different things, as well as actually talk about the game as it happens, not delayed commentary like previous versions. There are hundreds of fight songs as well, all recorded perfectly. Perfect.
The gameplay is really solid. The running game has been VASTLY improved, and running up the middle is now quite effective. You can no longer run to the side around the defensive line for a TD, and the defensive AI is also very improved. When you throw the ball to the left, the safeties and corner backs will run and jump to try to intercept the pass. Really fantastic, the gameplay is down-pat.
I felt I had to include this section to talk about the dynasty mode. In dynasty mode (which is very similar to franchise from Madden,)You can take a team and a coach through a whopping 60-year dynasty, win awards from a huge variety of them, and draft your star players into Madden 2003. In the off season, you can recruit star players, and train your players also. A fantastic mode. Other modes include Rivalry games, and mascot games.
Definitely a buy for any sports fan, the dynasty mode is fantastic, and the rivalry games are a blast. It didn't receive a 10/10 because of the graphics gripes, but still, a solid sports title. Yo, pick it up =)
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 08/04/02, Updated 08/04/02
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