rizzla's Madden NFL 07 (Wii) review

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Europeans take on an old American Football game

Not since the days of the Sega Mega Drive have I touched a Madden game. I never understood the rules back then and I know them just as well today, but who needs rules when your having so much fun?

Hearing the bone crunching tackle as you sack the opposing Quarter Back, then seeing them get up injured clutching their hand is a satisfaction for the blood thirsty gamer and I want more. I have to say when I do hit a pretty nasty looking tackle and there is no injury involved I feel a little sad inside.

This game has a tonne of modes. Firstly you have the Learn Madden option, this is a must, firstly if you haven't played an American Football game in awhile or ever and secondly to get used to how the wii-mote works in the game. It's presented in short little mini-games, like throwing to a certain receiver, stopping an offensive run and kicking field goals.

The controls are brilliantly realised on the wii-mote, it's fun and it works. The only thing that took me a little time to get used to is the field goals. For this you have to swing the wii-mote, like you do in Wii Sports bowling, the problem is sometimes it doesn't recognise the swing, especially if you don't want to kick it too hard and it adds a huge amount of slice. It can get frustrating when you start off but you eventually get used to it.

To throw the ball, you guessed it, you gesture with the wii-mote like your throwing a ball. Fast for a bullet pass, slow for a lob and regular for a regular pass. To tackle you push the wii-motes forward, I don't do this much there is an alternate way and that's to push the B button, I find it's easier and more responsive.

You can stiff arm by shaking the wii-mote left or right. Duke by shaking the nun-chuk left or right. Catch the ball by raising the controller. Swat the ball by lowering the controller. It really is a very innovative use of the motion sensoring capabilities and in turn makes the game more accessible.

The main mode of play would be Franchise mode, where you pick a team and play with them for 3 decades. You have to make all the important decisions, how much the concessions, parking, merchandise and advertising are going to be. You make hirings and firings. Set up fan appreciation days. It really is very in depth but presents all the information in an easy to navigate format. Never did I feel like I was being overwhelmed with stats, figure or options. You can view the coaches game plan against the next team, check the local or national newspaper sports section and read your e-mails. You don't have to read all this to enjoy the game, I just checked them out and went on playing the game but if you are really into American Football and are a stats freak you will get much more than your money's worth.

As for the actual game play, you use the wii-mote as a pointer, selecting your plays and players. It is so easy, and if you just want to pick up and play it you can press the Z button and Madden will make a suggestion on the type of play you should do, this option is very handy to get used to the game and the plays.

On the graphical side of things I was impressed. In the replays you do notice some graphical glitches with textures but nothing that detracts from the game.

The sound is done excellently. When you change a play you hear you quarter Back through your wii-mote's speaker. The licensed soundtrack is pretty cool too. But the crunching tackles are what really impressed me, they sound so brutal.

The replay value is there, and with 4 wii-motes hooked up to the system you could play it for hours at a time. As for the franchise mode though, once you complete it once, I doubt you would be wanting to commit so much time to the game to do it again.

There is a lot more options I have not talked about. Mainly because I should be doing a college assignment now. But there's a create a player option, not hugely in depth but good all the same. There's a create a fan option too, haven't tried this out yet.

Another mode I haven't tried out yet is Multi player, due to my lack of wii-motes. But reading up n this it seems like fun.

Overall I have put a lot of hours into this game and am still enjoying it. You really get into the matches and the controls work perfectly. I would recommend this to anyone, even if your not a fan of American Football.  


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