It’s been a while since I played one of the Madden rivals. This one I hadn’t even heard about before I bought it and well…it is definitely the low budget version to be sure but it’s always nice to have more Football options. If it could just clean up a lot of the bugs and glitches while giving us more options that could really do the trick. As it stands, it’s a pretty good game but there is virtually 0 reason to ever play it because Madden and NCAA just offer better products. You can buy a Madden game from 10 years ago for a dollar or two and it’s better than this one.
So the game has 8 teams that you can play as. I thought they were made up at first but it seems that these are college teams. The play now mode was disabled for some reason but you can jump right into a season to have fun there. The drawback is that unlike most season modes, you don’t actually get to play as a team and automatically go through the season. Instead you have to manually select the team and game each time, then simulate the rest. The annoying thing about this is that’s a lot of extra clicks each time and it turns what should have been a completely automatic process into something that’s super manual.
I would also note that the games are much longer than Madden but I’m sure you can alter the settings somewhere (Hopefully) so that’s not really a negative. But to put it one way, one game took me around 2 hours to complete while the average Madden game is closer to 30-40 minutes. It’s because there is no accelerated clock running or an easier way to run back and do your next play. You can speed it up with the hurry up offense but the game is just missing all of the bells and whistles that really allow you to move quickly. That is what the game is lacking here without a doubt.
I mentioned glitches earlier and those are very noticeable throughout the game. You’ll have characters teleporting as if they just fell through a portal and there is actual lag sometimes which is weird for an offline game. When you are controlling the defense it doesn’t feel like you have complete control with how the characters will move and miss obvious interceptions. It’s like you’re always a few steps too late no matter what you do. Now there is a slight positive here which is that you can actually throw deep balls here without worrying about being picked off all the time.
Now your receiver won’t always move to catch it so that’s a new worry but still it’s a part of the game that I have missed. One thing’s for sure though, running in this game is incredibly overpowered. Your players are always faster than the defense. It doesn’t matter if you use a WR, RB, or the QB, you will be able to run at will. Once I scored over 100 points in the game and it was still the 3rd quarter I decided to run out the time by running around the field. You’re so much faster that you can keep running the defense in a circle to just waste all of the time out. It is a lot of fun since I love to run but they should probably make the guy a bit slower.
Of course your QB is Doug Flutie himself so maybe the game just wanted to make sure that his stats were through the roof. They definitely succeeded if that was the aim and I got quite a few trophies while playing as him. There may not be a ton of replay value here due to the limited amount of modes but I could see this being fun if you have someone to play it with. Then the shaky mechanics and low budget nature of the game would become an endearing part of the experience instead of something that holds it back.
You can see the players stop moving in the distance once they are further than what the game processes and it looks funny at least. Everyone just gets frozen and it certainly makes it easy for you to really take your time and pick who you want to throw the ball too. If the game did really well maybe a sequel would get a higher budget. I do think it needs some kind of explosive factor to get this on the map. Until then people may not like Madden but it still offers the better Football product so people are going to gravitate to that. That’s just how this works, you want the game that better simulates the Football experience.
While the graphics may be very sub par, at least it does work in a retro sense. It looks like a PS2 era title and one thing those did have going for it were the really bright colors. There’s something nice about seeing the uniforms without a whole lot of detail, all of the colors really contrast. There isn’t much of a soundtrack but you don’t really want music while playing much anyway. For the menu I didn’t even notice it much but you should probably have something very energetic there to really keep people on their toes.
Overall, Considering that the game is only a few bucks to buy I had a good amount of fun with it. The fact that it goes for $5 is a warning bell in itself but if you’re looking for something a little different than Madden then this is the game to pick up. You can march up and down the field at will and just relax with how easy it all is. Then when you go back to Madden you’ll have more appreciation for how much work was put in there. It’s certainly true that they haven’t innovated in a very long time but even just having the amount of features and quality of life updates over the years still makes Madden a definitive product that I really don’t see being overtaken anytime soon.