Review by LuckyART

"Real Football on your PS2"

I have to admit that I have not experienced everything the game has to offer(I am only on week 15 in the first season of my franchise with the Rams)but I know I can write a good review.

Graphics: 9/10

Absolutely stunning. The graphics are superior to other football games and the attention to detail is amazing. The animations are superb and the colission detection is right on target.In this game, the angle, force and direction of the tackle actually affect the way the player responds.The timing for special move animations like the spin is superb.My only gripe is that the referee's and sideline people's faces look blurry.....but this doesnt affect gameplay at all.

Sound: 10/10

Everything from the sound effects to the music and crowd chants is realistic and well done.The announcers are sometimes funny, but always on par with the action. You can adjust the level of presentation to make it feel like a live ESPN broadcast( and it succeeds) or you can tune it to feel like you are watching the game live.

Control: 10/10

The control is a little problematic, not because it is poorly designed, but because it requires timing and getting used too...this is not a designer's fault, so I am not taking the score down.Also, after you have mastered the standard controls, you are ready to try the Total Passing mode that is even more challenging and equally exciting.

Gameplay: 10/10

WOW!!! I am not a real life fan of American Football, but this game has turned me into one.I played arcade style games like Blitz before, but never a simulation so demanding like this game is(I refuse to call Madden a sim cause it is really easy).You have to learn a lot to beat the game cause even on rookie level, the game is hard.

On offense you have to track receiver's routes and be wise with the use of your blockers on running plays. The running game is really hard, but not just needs practice and know...know when to outsmart the defense.The passing mode is even better when you master Total Passing and start assigning multiple hot routes.The Defense never backs down and always challenges you to try your best.

On the defensive side..well...I didnt knew much defense, but I learned with the game.I was forced to download a FAQ from this site that gives tips on improving your game in order to fully dominate it.I even turned out to have the best defense in the league(in both, passing and rushing) with a more offensive minded team like the Rams. It just takes practice...I am not a master yet, but I have made some amazing plays. I suggest that you take the time practicing different defensive plays aganist different formations(I have learned that most Goaline defenses also work well aganist the Jokers package, even when you are not in the Goaline).This is a game that FORCES you to practice and I love it!!

My only small gripe is that it needs more plays for kick-off returns and punt returns, cause Madden has more and I miss some of them in this game.

Presentation: 10/10

ESPN is the best thing that has happened to this game....from the great commentary, the awesome Instant Replay, the insightful reports..everything is absolutely gorgoeus.

Overall: 10/10

I have started to watch football and even classic games on ESPN Classic simply cause I love this game....I have even tried stuff I see on TV!!! I never though of a game that would hook me soooooooo much and make me like something I considered boring. I suggest you BUY this baby!!!

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 05/02/03, Updated 05/02/03

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