|By Matt Jones||Friday, 20 Jul 2007|
You know, I’ve owned every 2K football game since, well, NFL2K, but I hate to say that I’m very disappointed in APF2K8.
Maybe I need some time to get over the loss of the NFL license, but I don’t think that’s the big part. I don’t see this as a game where you can just invite your friends over and play. Why? Because that’s exactly what I did on Tuesday, and we all had to create a team or play with the team I originally created. There’s no option to use some randomized team of greats, whether it be truly random or the one the computer makes up to play against you. I really like franchise mode. Have ever since I first had it on the N64 Maddens. No franchise here. Big disappointment.
I’ll give the game this: it’s really great gameplay-wise. I punted more than usual while playing my buddies. It wasn’t a shootout, the run game really helped determine the outcome, getting stops on third were huge. It felt as close to real football as it could get while still having the total feeling of control that’s always been there in the 2K football series.
But, I mean, this is Xbox 360. Old chugging issues after plays are not forgivable after three years and a whole new generation of hardware. They STILL have really weird jaggie problems near any scoreboard that I saw. The “field pass” moments were almost so bad, they were good. Presentation-wise, it was clearly hampered by not having the ESPN license, but even then, I thought they did a very weak job outside of the commentating, which was stout as always. Dan Stevens and Peter O’Keefe really are the raison d’etre for me in this series. They are far and away the best commenting crew in sports gaming, and one of the few things that has remained exceptional throughout this series. But what hurts the most about that is the opening when Dan and Peter talk about the two opposing teams, and it’s awesome, then they freaking have two of the gold players talking to each other, saying stupid crap like in the “field pass” segments. IT RUINS THE MOOD.
You know, I was honestly really, really devastated when the Dreamcast was cancelled. I still hold a grudge against the PS2 because of it. I changed my whole outlook on gaming when that fortuitous day arrived. But at the very least, I knew that NFL2K would continue on and I would be happy. Then, they took away the NFL from that equation, and it was like being punched in the gut all over again. So I waited and waited. I freaking put Dan Stevens and Peter O’Keefe in my signature. I was overjoyed at the prospect of 2K returning to football. I was anticipating this so much. This is a series I would never, EVER want to tarnish. I mean, this is like getting beaten up all over again, and it hurts me so much, but I think I’m going to have to return this game tomorrow. I just can’t see myself satisfied with it as it stands today.