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Old 07-31-2003, 01:16 PM   #1
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EGM Review

I just got my EGM yesterday. I don’t think this has been posted but if it has sorry. I will just post it in all the football forums if the mods want to adjust that go ahead. Please don’t shoot the messenger especially since it took me forever and a week to type all of this. I am sorry in advance for any spelling errors or what not.

Here is the review for Madden 2004.

Bryan: The king of the gridiron returns with several small but oh-so-effective gameplay improvements that one again cement Madden’s superiority in the football genre. It all starts with the fantastic new playmaker control features—with a quick flick of the right analog stick, you can move receivers to open spots in the defensive coverage or, in running plays, you can redirect the blocks of your lineman. This gives you an unprecedented amount of control, so you actually feel like you commanding the whole team not just the QB. It’s a tough maneuver to master, but worth it—no other game offers control like this. Other on-field subtleties include varying camera angles for rollouts and play-action passes; cooler tackles; and the slick new playcalling menu that speeds up gameplay. Put simply, this is the best-playing madden ever.
Want more? The additions to franchise mode really deepen the experience. Playing as an NFL owner, you can set hot dog prices, renovate your stadium, or even move the team to another city. Sure this type of realism might bore the light weight fans, but serious football nuts like me will love the attention to detail. Futhermore, playing online (PS2 only) is much better this go-around, thanks to voice chat and online tournaments.
So, is the game flawless? Not quite. Covering receivers remains too difficult, and listening to John “I state the obvious” Madden makes me wonder why he’s still broadcasting. Minor issues aside, Madden is yet again the game to get.

G. Ford: We are in the midst of a dynasty here, with no end in sight. Madden 2004 looks great, plays quicksilver-smooth, and offers tons of insanely detailed options (especially if you, like Bryan, long to price stadium concessions), but the whole package is more evolution than revolution. If you have 2003, there’s really no harm sticking with it another year. But if the new features and updated rosters sound compelling , 2004 is near perfect. The ol’ wind bag still delivers.

Official Playstation Mag—Chris B: I think I have finally figured out the secret to Madden’s success. If it’s not the lifelike visuals, massive playbook, or incoherent commentary—it’s that there’s always hope. Just like in real NFL matchups, a single play or two—that missed field goal, that successful fourth-down conversion, ect.—often makes all the difference. The bells and whistles Bryan mentioned add a lot to the package, but you just can’t beat the core gameplay of Madden.

Bryan = 9.5 G. Ford = 9.0 Chris B. = 9.5

Here is the review for ESPN Football.

Bryan: Sega’s football franchise trained its guts out this off-season. I welcomes the new Madden-esque playcalling menu and the healthy injection of ESPN telecast elements into the game’s presentation. Yet, even with these changes and enhanced running game, ESPN NFL Football remains second string behind Madden; its franchise optio0ns don’t stack up to Johnny boy’s title. And while I applaud the attempt at first person football this so-called revolutionary feature is disorienting, not to mention boring when you play any other position than quarterback.

G. Ford: There’s a lot to like about this game: solid controls, the ESPN presentation, the cool fan close-ups, and the good (but repetitive) announcers. The first person mode, however, is a beautiful-looking disaster. Manually swinging your view around and anticipating blitzes is to hard. Gimmick aside the heart of the game delivers.

OPM—Chris B: Sega’s ESPN is packed with goodness—most notably the ultraslick ESPN presentation, awesome eight-players-at-once online play, and snappy commentary. However, the unforgiving running game takes a lot of getting used to if you usually play Madden. Still, a solid pigskin offering.

Bryan = 8.0 G. Ford = 7.5 Chris B. = 8.5

Here’s a review for Fever 2004

Bryan: Fever has somewhat recovered from its disappointing sophomore season. It feels less arcadey, and the birth of xsnsports.com (where players can create leagues and tournaments) is an online gamer’s dream. But when you’re up against ESPN and Madden, you’ve really got to sweat the details—and that’s where fever fails. Problems plague the player models, the camera is too high, the dynasty mode is still shallow, and Fever’s announcers make Madden’s demented ramblings sound smart. A stronger showing, but I’m calling for another year of practice.

G. Ford: While fever does plenty right , it has its problems. The graphics fail to impress (by Xbox standards), and the overly tough kicking game needs improvement (it’s not realistic to routinely miss extra-point attempts). Overall, Fever gives a fine showing, but it’s just not memorable enough to draw you away from the fierce competition.

OPM—Chris B: Fever certainly looks nice, and I’m a big fan of the coaches’ audible interaction (they offer useful scouting advice). Actual gameplay, however, leaves much to be desired, with less-than-intuitive playcalling and dull atmophere only making things worse. Choose this only over Madden if the xsnsports stuff excites you.

Bryan = 6.5 G. Ford = 6.5 Chris B. = 6.0
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Old 07-31-2003, 01:19 PM   #2
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Re: EGM Review

Sort of what I expected. Thanks for all of your time typing it up and everything.
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Old 07-31-2003, 07:49 PM   #3
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Re: EGM Review

Thats what i expected too, i figured the first person mode in ESPN would be hard and kind of pointles. (although it is a great first effort by SEGA)
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Old 08-01-2003, 12:38 AM   #4
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Re: EGM Review

Looks like Madden is going to be the best for yet another year. I'm not really surprised though. Hail to the King baby!
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Old 08-02-2003, 03:30 AM   #5
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Re: EGM Review

Yeah, I am also not surprised although I am getting both games this year. Both games look great this year anyway
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