6 Star Movies, Game Reviews, Live Action Movies, Reviews

Soccer Review


It’s time to go further back in time to the NES. Now that I’ve played through all of the non story based SNES games it’s time to do the same for the NES. I’ve got over 30 titles to work on for this console so I imagine this will take some time to wrap up. What better way to start than with Soccer since I played Super Soccer pretty recently? I actually preferred this one to the super version. It may be less intricate but sometimes less is more. I felt like this version was just a lot more fun. It was very entertaining and that’s what counts.

The only real mode here is playing Soccer of course although you can play it single player or multiplayer. The goal is to kick the ball into the other team’s net of course. You can run, pass, and kick the ball. That’s it so the rest is up to your skills. Try to run in front of the opponent and you’ll be able to steal their shot. I played on the various difficulties and wrecked the opponent twice on 1, but lost on the higher levels. The game can be quite challenging but it’s very fast paced which I like. You can keep on running up and down the field until you manage to score.

One tactic that worked to me was shooting the ball at the opponent even when I was way too far. This allowed me to run in and get the ball again where I now had a better shot. The opponents usually wouldn’t try for the ball once I had shot it which I found interesting. That may be an exploit or something, I’m not sure but it was effective. On higher difficulties it was less useful since the computers would steal the ball as soon as I obtained it anyway. They were quite relentless and it was just hard to keep up with them at all. It’s almost like they had super speed although I don’t think the computer was cheating or anything. They just had the controls totally mastered.

The graphics aren’t very good or anything, but this is a very old game. All of the sprites have minimal details on them but you can always tell what is happening on screen which is the important part. The backgrounds for the stage is interesting but I would have liked more of a variety. I only saw one stage but maybe there is a way to switch it somewhere. There really isn’t much of a soundtrack so don’t count on that. This isn’t that kind of game.

Overall, Soccer is a fun game. If I had to explain why I preferred it to the sequel, I’d say it’s because I felt like I was more in control here. The fundamental gameplay here was on point and I took quite a lot of shots until I got the goals in. It’s all about try, try again until you make it. You can keep running in front of the ball when the goalie throws it out so effectively you can take unlimited shots. It was pretty satisfying to launch this but it is tricky to get the timing just right. I can see myself having a good amount of fun here and if you like Soccer then I definitely recommend giving it a spin. You may be surprised at how good such an old game can be.

Overall 6/10

7 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

FIFA 13 Review


It feels like it’s been a long time since I got to play a FIFA game so this was pretty nostalgic. Interestingly the game only lets you operate the menus with a wireless controller so I had to break out my original PS3 controller over the wired one I’ve been using for a while now. I do prefer the wireless one in general, but the controls have been glitched for a little while where it moves to the left and right at times. Fortunately this didn’t have a real impact on the gameplay since it’s too subtle to register while running all over the place.

There are a ton of modes to check out here including a franchise, training, quick games, and more. Naturally I went straight to the quick game because that’s just how I roll. I don’t need build up or anything like that, I’m just ready to jump in and have a blast. While the game is loading you can practice your shots on an empty field. Then it’s game time after that. I’ve played quite a few FIFA games before so the controls were all pretty familiar. FIFA is one of those games that doesn’t really change a whole lot after all. The graphics may improve a little and all, but that’s about it.

The goal of the game is to kick the ball into the opponent’s net. Once you’ve done this then you will be awarded a point. You then have to prevent the opponent from doing the same to you. The games are around 90 minutes but the matches don’t take that long in real time. I was able to finish 3 games in an hour so they take around 20 minutes a piece. You can shoot or pass the ball and on defense you can slam into opponents or go for a passive block. I prefer lunging but you do have to be careful when you do it because it’s very easy to rack up some fouls this way. You don’t want to be thrown out of the game or anything, but it seems like it would take a very long time for that to happen so I wouldn’t even worry about that all that much.

I actually did very well in the first match as I won 3-1. It’s rare for me to really score at all so that was pretty cool. I lost the second game 2-1 and lost in overtime after being tied 1-1 during the game. It’s still a pretty difficult game if you ask me since it’s so hard to score, but it does make it very satisfying when you do eventually find the net. If you keep at it long enough then eventually you are bound to score a goal. Passing is the key here but it’s hard to get the A.I. to go where you want them to. If you can have one of your partners above or under you when closing in on the net then it will be an easy goal. Pass and shoot as soon as you get the ball. You have to do this quickly though because the other team runs in very quickly and definitely won’t give you time to catch your breath. They want the goals just as badly.

The graphics are pretty solid. You always know what is happening on screen and the FIFA games have never disappointed there. It’s hard to fault anything about the game on those merits. The soundtrack is more on the nonexistent side but it won’t bother you much while you’re busy trying to make plays. In terms of replay value there is quite a lot here. Naturally you won’t be able to play online at this point, but that won’t stop you from playing a lot of soccer games over and over. That is ultimately the reason you would buy a soccer game in the first place right? So there’s no shortage of content here and since you can buy the game for a dollar or two that’s not a bad idea.

Overall, FIFA 13 is a pretty solid Soccer game. It can hold its own with all of the entries. As always you do have to consider the fact that there is really little reason to buy this one when you can buy a newer one for the same price, but that doesn’t mean the game is any worse in comparison. It’s just how it goes. With this I have nearly all of the FIFA games which is pretty cool. I don’t buy sport games quite as frequently as I used to, but they are still nice for a change of pace. Madden and NBA will always be my two favorite though. I just feel more in control in those titles and the gameplay is so explosive. I don’t know which sport game I’ll review next. Only time will tell.

Overall 7/10

5 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Super Soccer Review


We’re getting closer and closer to knocking out all of the SNES games. Only 5 remain which include an RPG, a LOZ title, and 2 side scrollers. It’s been a good run, but this tells me that Nintendo needs to hurry up and start adding more games to the lineup. I don’t want to have to go back to the NES games just yet, but I will if necessary. That one still has a whole bunch that I haven’t checked out to be honest. This Soccer title isn’t all that good. Of course the controls were limited for its time, but even so it just doesn’t age too well and you won’t be playing it for very long.

The film throws you onto the soccer field and the camera angle is from above so think of it like playing Foosball from the old arcades. Instead of flipping the pieces you still do run for the ball, but everyone moves like one unit. When you’re on defense you are controlling all of the players on screen at the same time which is definitely pretty interesting. It means that there is a lot of team unity here, but at the same time it also means that it can be difficult to cover multiple people. Defense was pretty challenging here and I lost my first game 6-1. It’s definitely not like the other Soccer games where I barely even allow 1 goal.

Then we’ve got offense gameplay. On this side of the ball it really feels like you can’t do anything. You can move, shoot, and pass and that’s it. Without a way to accelerate the other players would always trip me up from behind. I’d try to pass it away, but they steal the ball in midair. The defensive players really were not playing around at all and just kept getting in the way over and over again. They were all like perfect players. I appreciate the A.I. being pretty sound but it was getting out of hand. I don’t even begin to guess what the answer to this would be. How do you get around such gameplay? The gameplay doesn’t even seem that bad, it’s just not all that balanced.

I scored a total of one goal across two games. After this I figured I should at least try the Penalty Shootout mode. I played that one twice, but still couldn’t score once while they made all of their shots. Super Soccer is definitely not for casual soccer players. I definitely see that now as I was completely crushed in the end. The computers just aren’t playing around here.

As for the graphics, they look pretty good. It’s not going to be something to write home about but at least you can always tell what is happening. There isn’t really a soundtrack, but that should come as no surprise. In terms of replay value there isn’t a whole lot to do in the game after you play a few rounds. The same can be said for most sport games, but especially one as old as this. There are just better soccer games to play whether you like the realistic FIFA titles or want something more like Ubisoft soccer. Either way this one wouldn’t make the cut.

Overall, Super Soccer is not a game that you will remember very well. It’ll get lost to the ages of time, but it’s still nice to have been able to play it at least once. If you’ve got the Switch online then you should check it out. It really can’t hurt to play it for a while since the game is free right? That being said, you’ll quickly move on to the next title as I have. This was the last SNES sport title I hadn’t played so next time it’s back to more of the side scrolling type!

Overall 5/10

6 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

FIFA World Cup: Germany 2006 Review


It’s been a while, but now it’s time to go up against a team in soccer. This is also the first time in a very long while that I got to play a small console sport game. Typically I just play the home console versions so it’s a nice change of pace to see how it goes on the handheld. It’s pretty smooth and the PSP has always been particularly great at emulating the home console experience. That being said, aside from Madden I can’t picture myself playing any sport game on the go for very long.

Since this FIFA is specifically about the World Cup all of the modes focus on this as well. The main mode has you jump right into the World Cup and aim for success. Naturally I was repping the USA as I jumped in to take names. To my credit I actually scored a goal and then held the lead for most of the game. Then as always seems to be the case for these titles the computer’s difficulty level suddenly spiked without warning and they scored with only about 10 seconds left in the game. I can tell you now that this felt really crazy. Just like that I had lost my win and had to settle for a tie. Since it was only round one of the World Cup they didn’t have us play extra time and just ended the game there. I felt a little cheated to be honest, but I was glad that I at least scored a goal. The next game was more of a standard 0-0. I ended up losing the World Cup since my record wasn’t enough but it was a good run while it lasted. The computer evidently didn’t think I was good enough to keep tying though as I had it simulate some games in another World Cup and I lost almost every one.

I do like the World Cup format although it’s not like it makes a huge amount of difference to me as whether I do a quick game or a world cup match it’s basically the same outcome. As expected the graphics here are definitely pretty solid. The soundtrack stands out more than some of the others as a song pops up whenever you pause the game. The tunes seem reasonable enough, but you likely won’t be hearing them enough to ultimately form much of an opinion. You’ll be too busy gearing up for the second half or starting the next game.

There’s a solid amount of replay value here. The games are a little too long to easily play on the go, but since the PSP can just go into standby mode you don’t necessarily have to actually finish a game. You can just do most of it and then just dip out of there. That’s always been a pretty nice plus for the PSP in general. I think how much you play the game will depend on if you already play FIFA on the home console games and are just using this as a change of pace or if this is your main FIFA experience. If it’s the latter then I can easily see you spending a bunch of time here.

Really the only difference between this one and a home console title in terms of gameplay is that it’s not quite as clear since you’re on a smaller screen. You’ll feel a little more constricted, but that’s more mental than anything. It’s really still the same game through and through and feels like a direct port. It’s definitely still fun even if you may have a hard time scoring.

I really feel like FIFA and NHL have more in common with each other than any other sport title. If you ignore the terrain (Ice vs Grass) there really aren’t any substantial differences with the two. The way you shoot and pass is the same and you’ve got around the same amount of players. Even the distance of the field is the same. I wouldn’t be surprised if EA is able to copy a lot of the code to use in between the two games. As a result I feel like my NHL training as of late transferred over into FIFA even if I wasn’t quite able to secure a solid win. I came close at least.

Overall, World Cup 2006 feels like a true soccer title and it’s a fun concept for a spinoff. It slightly scales the title down which is quite convenient for the PSP in general. This was the only sport game I had left on my portable backlog so you likely won’t be seeing another one again for a very long time. For the first time I’ve actually gotten my sport backlog down to 20 games so it’ll be quite the milestone to have that one empty at last. Finally I will have more time for trophy hunting, general video game lounging, and getting unstuck in some of the trickier games on the backlog. Lets not get ahead of ourselves though.

Overall 6/10

6 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

Pro Evolution Soccer 2011 Review


It’s time to look at another soccer game. This one takes things to the next level with it’s more arcade-like gameplay and I’d even put it on the level of the main FIFA titles. Pure Futbol will always be the definitive football game for me, but this one does a good job of handling the sport and scoring actually feels possible. I was actually dominating in one of the rounds although as a disclaimer I do need to mention that the game was on Easy mode.

I tried out quite a few difficulty levels but the rest were too tricky for me to win. On normal mode it was pretty close but it was definitely back to being a shut out type game. As I went to expert and master the opposing team started to destroy me. I just can’t figure out how to drive the ball without it getting stolen. If I try to pass the ball then they intercept it and if I try doing it myself then I get stone walled. These defenders definitely aren’t playing around and really do their best to stay one step ahead. I guess I still need to work on some fundamentals.

Playing on easy at least once does help in a tutorial sort of way though. You get to experiment with a lot of different styles and techniques against a team that isn’t really fighting back. You can’t get too crazy or anything, but it’s still a good way to prep yourself. Then it is a little sad to get completely destroyed in the follow up round, but that’s just how it is sometimes. You gotta take the Ls along with the wins. As I mentioned this one does throw in more of the momentum and speed compared to the other soccer games which is a good thing.

One part of the game that felt pretty rewarding was passing into a shot. Using plays with assists was always my go to strategy in Mario Strikers and it also felt pretty realistic because you always see the players passing the ball when you watch real soccer matches. It just makes sense that you would have one player distract the goalie while the other fires. It worked like clockwork and at least you get a feel for where you should be when you make the goal. At the same time, the tough part is getting that far.

I tried out a lot of things while playing and one tactic that works a little bit is quickly making a circle. The defender will then be on the wrong side of you so you get closer to the goalie. The problem is that even at that point there is nobody to pass it to so then you’ve just traded one problem for another which is not good. I made a lot of shot attempts, but I just couldn’t make any goals after the opening goal. The goalie truly feels impossible on this level and your teammates aren’t helping much so it’s like 1 player against an army.

As always I have to give the disclaimer that I’m sure the game is balanced well enough. I just need to figure out the tricks to get through or I’ll never be ready for the tournaments. I think a truly good game is one where you have fun even if you’re always losing and this title passes that test. Winning would be a nice change of pace but I’ll just have to wait a little longer before I can claim that kind of glory.

The graphics are also very solid. They may not have the realism of FIFA, but you don’t need that to still be considered as a top tier contender. You always know what is happening and the plays are very smooth. The ball stands out without being distracting. There isn’t much of a soundtrack to speak of since I didn’t stick to the main menu for long. It was always time to just keep on going to the next match.

There’s definitely a lot of replay value here since aside from quick matches you can practice and jump into a season. That may sound like there isn’t a lot of content here, but you have to understand that a game about soccer is going to focus on the sport. As it stands there is enough to keep you busy here for a very long time. Keep on polishing your skills until you can defeat an opponent at any level. I feel like that would take me months or even a year but if this is the game that you choose to dedicate yourself to then you should be fine.

Overall, This is definitely a game to check out. It’s only around 2-3 dollars so it’s a steal and you’ll gain a better appreciation of soccer by the time you are done with it. With this game done I’ll be heading to the Hockey series next but I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of the soccer reviews. There’s always another sport game right around the corner after all.

Overall 6/10

5 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

UEFA Euro 2008 Review


It’s time to look at a soccer game that I’ve had for a while. This one isn’t FIFA so I definitely am not familiar with it. Right away you could also tell that things were a little different since the United States team isn’t available. It does say Euro in the title though so I suppose that is to be expected. It’s fun enough for big soccer fans, but it’s not really for me. I still can’t figure out how to score which is definitely rough. I need to score!

When you jump into a game you are given the option to play as the whole team or to just be one player and hope that your teammates pass it to you. It’s a novel concept, but after trying it for a while I can’t really imagine playing that way for long. I like to be in control of what’s going to happen and I can’t assume direct control if I’m locked to one player. As a result this strategy just doesn’t work for me. I also played a game as the whole team of course and that was a lot better. Of course, in that game my team didn’t score so there’s a flip side.

The rules of the game are similar to Basketball. You have to kick your ball into the opposing team’s net in order to score a goal. Whoever scores the most goals will end up winning and claiming the title. The problem of course is that scoring is incredibly difficult. The goalkeeper seems to be able to block any kind of shot that you hit his way and you are never given the opportunity to even get close because the other team is constantly stealing the ball or knocking you to the side. This game just feels like a mystery to me because nothing would work. This traditionally does happen in soccer games though. The only one where I was really able to get into the zone was Mario Strikers and that game has always been particularly awesome so that isn’t really much of a surprise. For all I know the Nintendo just really aces the sport.

Of course, a lot of people play these soccer games and score so it’s not that the game is glitched or anything. I like to think of these games as puzzles and this is one puzzle that I just haven’t cracked yet. Hopefully I will be able to soon as I will have a few more opportunities with soccer games coming up. I believe I at least have one more and then it’s on to the NHL. The graphics definitely look pretty good here even if they aren’t as polished as the other sport titles. You can always clearly see what is happening and that is absolutely the most important part to the graphics here. You’ve gotta be able to see in order to make the key plays after all.

In terms of replay value, this game’s still got a lot to do. There is definitely less content than FIFA, but there’s still a ton to do as long as you enjoy soccer. You can keep on playing games over and over again and you can really refine your play by choosing to lock yourself as one player I guess. It’s definitely not the option I would choose, but I’m sure that there are a lot of people who would enjoy doing that.

I guess one ironic part of the soccer games is that it’s one of the only sports where I’m better at defense than offense. I typically hold the other team to 1 point at best. I may lose the match, but it’s always a very respectable final score so that’s something I can be pretty proud of. It doesn’t really help with making the game more exciting though. A low scoring match like that just shows me even more why soccer just isn’t my thing. I really love high powered offenses and points, which isn’t really the point of soccer. This is possibly a game where a 1 hour tutorial actually could have ended up helping me out quite a bit. Interestingly the computer doesn’t get a whole lot better when you increase the difficulty or at least I couldn’t notice. I still can’t score, but neither can they so it evens out.

Overall, UEFA Euro is a quality soccer game. It checks all of the boxes that it needs to and while it doesn’t ultimately differentiate itself as the definitive soccer game it does give players another option when heading into Gamestop. Not every game needs to be the next showstopper and there are no real weaknesses with this game that would make you want to skip it. At the end of the day it adapts the game of soccer pretty well and that’s all you really need. It’s only around 5 bucks so I’d recommend picking it up if you see it. If you don’t like soccer, then you definitely shouldn’t be buying a soccer game anyway.

Overall 5/10

7 Star Games, Game Reviews, Games, Reviews

FIFA 08 Review


My FIFA marathon is now at an end. 08 is the final game I own that I have not covered yet. It’s definitely been cool going through the years like this. I’m not sure what sport is next, but I think I’m in the mood for something super hype like Football so that’s probably gonna be the one. I’m out of Madden games (Aside from a Head Coach title) so most likely it’ll be college Football. Either way lets get back on topic. FIFA 08 is definitely not quite as good as 09 and 10 but it’s pretty close tbh. FIFA is definitely a game where you don’t see much of a difference in gameplay or graphics til we get even newer than that.

As always you’ve got a pretty good amount of options for which mode you want to play. You can jump right into a quick battle or head online. Well, the online is disabled so scratch that option. You can play a franchise mode which is honestly your best bet if you’re going to be playing this one for a long time. This way you can play a lot of games in a row and actually see yourself improve as you go through the matches. Even if you don’t make the playoffs it isn’t the end of the world as you can play more than one season. The franchise keeps on going until you decide to stop playing. In that sense the game never truly ends. There are also tutorials and practice mode to play which will help you hone your skills.

I am now confidently at the point where I can defeat the A.I. on the first dificulty level. Unfortunately after that it starts to get hairy. I fought the computer at the highest difficulty level in the game and only lost 2-0 so I felt pretty good about that. As always I am great on defense, it’s just the offensive side of the ball where I can’t really keep up. I don’t get how the players do it because it really doesn’t seem like there is any kind of opening. I really need to watch some Youtube videos or something. On defense if I play conservatively then I should usually be able to force a 0-0 game, but it gets tedious after a while so then I just start running in and hitting people. Obviously this will result in a lot of flags so it usually isn’t worth throwing the move out there without a plan. It’s fun though.

As I mentioned the graphics are basically the same as last time. The stages all look good and the player details are on point. I can’t really speak to the soundtrack much as you just won’t hear it while playing. On a technical level I also like how the celebrations are handled after a play and after a game. They’re actually pretty realistic and there are enough variations of them where you don’t feel like you are watching the same things over and over again. Having a solid selection of celebrations is about as important as having them in the first place if you ask me.

As for the gameplay, it’s pretty straight forward. As long as you know the rules of Soccer then you’ll definitely be able to get into the action here. The toughest part as I mentioned is kicking the ball. It’s hard to angle your kicks and taking the time to power them up is risky since the opponents will slide in. There’s a lot of strategy here so think of playing the game as trying to crack a code. Even if I was unable to crack the code I can definitely respect the fact that the gameplay was handled pretty well. There’s a lot of nuance here and attention to detail.

One technique I practiced a bit so I could at least say I tried to get into the deeper aspects of the game was the ball shuffle. I’m not sure what the exact term of this is, but by moving the right joystick on the controller you’re able to try and juke around the defenders. It didn’t work a single time so it seems to be about as useful as the juke in the Madden games. Usually in these games the computers just don’t fall for anything, but I do think it’ll probably work a whole lot better if I use it against real players. That’s when you know if you’ve mastered the technique or not. The only part where the human element doesn’t really come into play is the goalie so that’ll be tough regardless of who you’re playing.

Overall, FIFA 08 is definitely a fun game. There’s really no point in buying it at the moment since the later games already go for 1-2 dollars. Still, if you really want to collect all of the FIFA games then you might as well get it. Ignoring the fact that there are sequels, FIFA 08 still stands loud and proud as a solid video game. There really aren’t any glaring negatives. It’s just a very complete soccer game. There’s nothing to do but play soccer when playing FIFA 08, but why else would you get the game? So long as you enjoy playing the sport I’m sure you’ll enjoy this title.

Overall 7/10