Oh, how I miss the days of Super Tecmo Bowl for my old Super NES. Those were the days. Every bomb Steve Young would throw was always caught by Jerry Rice and almost every run around the corner by Barry Sanders was good for thirty yards. I miss racking up the eighty-four points or more on the computer and playing crazy tournaments against my friends. Although those days are gone, I would still reminisce. That is, until the Dreamcast and Sega’s NFL2K came along.
Sega’s NFL2K is the best football game I’ve ever played. It looks like you’re watching a game on television. It is so impressive that every time a friend or relative comes over, they are completely overwhelmed by how realistic it looks. The graphics are amazing. What about the playing? Let me tell you.
Offensively it may take you only a few games to get a handle on the many buttons that come into play. I messed with the controller options and set it up to my liking and played endlessly. I threw most in the beginning because I was struggling with the spin moves, the stiff arms, and all the crazy things my running backs could do. Once I got these moves down smoothly, I was running through holes my offensive lineman would open up or break it to the outside. Throwing the ball is a little easier than running, but watch out for the charging defense. I took a lot more sacks in one game of NFL2K than in a season of Tecmo Bowl. The game goes fast and the playbook is expansive. The best addition is that with head to head play you can plug in your Sega VMU (Visual Memory Unit), which is both a memory card and a visual display, allowing you to pick your plays so that your buddies can’t see you choosing them onscreen. Fantastic.
On the defensive front, you’ll find it a bit more of a task. You can tap your button to get the man closest to the ball, but I’ve found that this drives me crazy. A few times I’ve found that once the ball leaves the quarterback’s hand, my defensive end will still hit the QB. Then I get a big fifteen yard penalty for roughing the passer instead of getting the defensive back closest to the ball that is flying through the air to a uncovered wide receiver. Minor, but still annoying.
Now come the robust options. You can create a player. This is the best I’ve ever seen. Also, you can create your own team from scratch. There is a tutorial that will teach you the ins and outs. An amazing option to equalize teams. Phew. I have to catch my breath. Then there are a handful of practice options, creating a play, fantasy seasons, tournaments that you can customize, playoffs, and much more. I guess you’ll just have to find out for yourself.
I guess I could go on and on gushing about how much I love this game, but instead I’m going to leave it at what I started out by saying. This is the greatest football game I’ve ever played. There’s no doubt about it.