Review by MetalSlugMan
"Every game is played on the street now."
EA Big, the Canadian firm that brought you, both, SSX 3, and the NBA Street series, has tried it's hand at urbanizing football. I have to say, they do a pretty stinkin' good job at it, too, if you except a few flaws.
Of course, the gameplay is the most important feature in a sports game like this, since there is no story mode added.
There are four modes of play: Quick Game, Pickup Game, NFL Challenge, and Online. The ''quick game'' mode is just how it sounds. You pick your favorite team, then pick an opponent. You will play to a specified point value, which can be changed through the options menu. In the Pickup Game mode, you can choose your roster from the best NFL players. It's like two All-Star teams going head-to-head. However, the NFL Challenge is where the meat of the game is when playing off-line. This mode lets you create your own team from scratch, and build them up by using Dev. points, which can be won by doing challenges.
There are plenty of fields to choose from, and each has its own feel. The EA field has a huge difference from the later fields, like the Bronx. Since each field has slightly different dimensions, you'll be forced to modify your tactics accordingly. It's difficult to run down a really narrow field.
However, there are a few glitches in the game, or in at least my copy. These can often make you feel as if you've been cheated out of a major play, like a first down, or touchdown. Plus, there is no story mode, so it's easy for things to get a tad bland. And, the game is erratic with character switching during a play. Instead of giving you control of a character who's closest to the ball carrier, it'll make you control some guy you've got down field.
The game's sound effects are awesome. You can practically hear the quarterback's ribs crack when you make a huge sack. However, the in-game music is somewhat bland. EA tried to cover this up by using endless character chatter (Which can be reduced via options menu). The shame is, I found the menu music to be great. The in-game music is merely a techno-hip-hop type thing, with no lyrics, but the menus have REAL songs.
This is where I experience the glitches, from time to time. I will clearly be telling my running back to go forward, but he continues to run side-ways. I also find it difficult to do a stiff arm sometimes. Otherwise, it's pretty solid, especially with the ''Style Moves''.
I really enjoy sitting down with this game and going at it for about an hour. After that, I get a bit tired of it and go do something else. However, I always come back excited to play another hour. There's nothing more gratifying than watching the character you controlled run up to the camera and say ''Did you hear? SACK!''.
NFL Street is certainly a great pseudo-football game with style. However, if you're looking for something that can keep your interest all weekend, in one sitting, you shouldn't even glance at this game.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 02/05/04
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