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Reviewed: NFL Fever 2000
Author: Chris Kim       Date: November 13th 1999
Page: 3

The game has multiplayer support on the same PC. Players can hook up with up to three other friends for a total of four players playing on the same computer. While it is fun, it can be a bit old after playing with the same people over and over again. But, because most sport games require a lot of bandwidth and extremely low latency to play smoothly on the internet. Even direct modem connections are slow at times.

As said before, the AI in the game is very supercharged, and sometimes, even too much for its own good. There are three modes of difficulty, rookie, veteran, and pro. Rookie is the easiest mode of play, with the computer being relaxed on all sides of the field, offense and defense. The rookie mode really isn't too challenging and shouldn't keep most players on this difficulty for too long. The veteran mode is probably the most desirable setting to play on as it gives an equal performance on both the offensive and defensive ends of the game. Pro, on the other hand is extremely difficult, and one should proceed with caution on this level, it wouldn't be surprising if every pass was intercepted or every play the quarterback would get sacked on. While this may seem attractive at first, but after playing a bit, the AI tends to seem a bit flawed on the veteran and pro levels. On both difficulty levels, the running game is taken out by the excessively strong defensive line. Just about every time, the running back will get a loss of three yards or more. One really good side of the game is how the AI grows on the player. As the player's strategies and method of play is recognized, the computer opponent will learn from the past mistakes and use a more appropriate defensive or offensive setup.

Home Free
Scatter Defense
Nothing for Miles on End

Grabbing control of the game is relatively simple for those that are already accustomed to playing football games. There are several buttons for pass, dekes, spin moves, speed burst, tackle, and other actions. A gamepad is the most desirable control setup on the game, but the keyboard can be used to some extent. The only slight flaw with the game controllers is the difficulty in configuring the controller. Rather than assigning commands to one keystroke, one button must be totally swapped of all control mechanisms. The button must be completely swapped, A will become B for instance. The player cannot just switch one command on offense to defense.

The interface for the most part is pretty similar to the setup in Microsoft's own NBA Inside Drive 2000 in how the menus are almost exclusively divided up into little tabs on notebooks. At first, it might be a bit confusing, but after a little work and messing around with, the interface is easily learned. The only complaint, is how slow the games simulate in season mode.

Barreled Over
Hmm... What's Happening?
Long Bomb

The graphical engine used in the game really is something amazing, kudos is given because the game even surpasses the graphical splendor of the very good Madden series. All the player models are done with lots of detail, muscles, jerseys, and animations all alike are done with painstaking detail. Jerseys have ripples, different types of shadowing, muscles on the players almost move, and the animations are top notch. One the replay, the animations are really shown off, the running model looks very nice and when being tackled, it looks quite realistic. The only gripe about the animations, is after a player is tackled, both the tackler and the tackled will both roll over on their back and then get up, kinda odd. The stadiums are all done quite well, while they might not have every detail down the notch, they are fairly accurate. Degrading stadium conditions are also a great display of realism. Players will slip and fall, lose grip, and the degradation of the field can be visibly seen. The field will gain a darkish tanning color of the grass. The replay graphics are simply amazing, the up close zooms are something to really see. With graphical support from 640x480 up to 1024x768, is something that is really amazing and keeping the frame rate very high. The only slight problem is a smallish problem with clipping.

Safety!
First Down
Diving Catch

Most sport games need very good sound usage. NFL Fever 2000 is slightly above average in the sound department. Most of the sound effects and hard hitting collisions are pretty common and nothing special. Just a bunch of thuds and crashes are what fill up the stage of sound while in the game. The only other common sounds are the sound of hikes and fake calls. The game commentators are also only of average quality. The commentators will often just use a minimal play-by-play speech and use usually call what is happening. Like, "Brister with the ball, passes to Sharpe, touchdown!" something along the lines of that. The color commentator, really doesn't say much, at all. He'll once in a while, say cool remarks about how the team is doing, such as "The team has zero for four on fourth down conversions, don't think this one will succeed".

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Added:  Saturday, November 13, 1999
Reviewer:  Chris Kim
Score:
Page: 3/5

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