|Image shamelessly linked from Adventure Amigos.
"I choose" the realistic offensive strategies, but the defensive strategies
are tough - does that mean they're not realistic? Or are they both
tough AND realistic? Can the game possibly live up to this box art?
I must begin this review with a bit of history, nostalgia, and a confession. As I write this, I'm reeling from the news that the Kansas City Royals, long the proverbial butt of many a baseball joke, have won the World Series against the New York Mets. Though I don't consider myself a sports fan, I got a little bit of whiplash with that announcement, and had to check my calendar to make sure it wasn't 1985 again. I was a fan of baseball for many years, as a kid, until the player strike brought the ugly realization that athletes can often be petty, whining oafs that are just money hungry. Granted, they're not all like that, but the strike certainly gave me a new perspective on things. So while my love for baseball lasted a number of years, my interest in professional football was relatively short-lived. In 1985 and 1986, I fancied myself a pro football fan, if only to impress my classmates and the neighbor kids, who all thought I was a giant dork (spoiler alert: I was). I told people I was into the Dolphins and the Bengals, and that Dan Marino was pretty much the best quarterback on the planet. Of course, I never really watched any football games, because we had 1 TV in the house, my parents weren't into pro football, and none of my friends invited me over to watch with them. Subsequently, my neighborhood kids (and kids at school) saw through my petty charade. Yes, I was destined to be a nerd.
Continue reading Play Action Football, 1990
Do you like football video games? Do you like EA Sports' Madden franchise? If you don't and you wish that NFL 2Kx would return, I've got some bad news for you. EA Sports, the NFL, and the NFL Players Association have extended the current video game exclusivity contract by three years. Now there will be no other pro football game other than the one EA makes until the end of the 2012 season, which ends in February of 2013.
Yup. The only professional football game on the market for the next five years will be Madden. Sad news for those of you who loved 2K's football series before the contract in 2005, or if you liked NFL Blitz when it had pro teams.
Peter Moore, head of EA Sports (formerly head of Microsoft's Gaming Division, and Sega), stated in a press release: "For nearly two decades, EA SPORTS has been bringing sports fans closer to the great game of football through the breakthrough interactive experiences of our videogames. Game quality is our top priority, and we're committed to pushing our gameplay innovation, connecting football fans via rich online experiences and delivering the most visually stunning sports games on the market." Yeah. Game quality is their top priority...
In that same press release, the head of NFL Ventures, Eric Grubman declared "This is all about bringing authenticity and realism to NFL videogames...EA SPORTS continually works to maintain the cutting edge for NFL products across a variety of gaming platforms. We like the fact that they never rest." You know who else never rested? 2K Sports and Sony's 989 Sports. They both had good games (in fact, 989 was reworking NFL Gameday before the EA contract), but unfortunately, the NFL license had to go to the highest bidder.
However, the most worrysome thing to arise out of this development is a quote Peter Moore said in an interview with Kotaku: "Sports has that opportunity... to have levels or different types of teams delivered digitally, but I think we are a long way away from that...The model we currently have, where we have the game on the disc and updates every few weeks and some micro-transactions works for us. We continue to look at that, but we're still away from truly episodic." Oh boy, that might mean what all of you here love so much, DOWNLOADABLE EPISODIC CONTENT! Why do I think he's alluding to a future in which you will not buy Madden at a store, but rather over the internet and bulding your own game? An interesting concept, but I don't think it would work well with a football game, nor would it go over well with many gamers.
So, are you ready for some EA controlled football?!