NFL Blitz 2002
Review of NFL Blitz 2002
Midway has come out with a PS2 version of their irreverent NFL Blitz series. What’s changed is there are more players on the field and more control by you, the gamer, over the action and certain players.
The graphics on this game are not particularly stunning, but they are certainly above average. The players are proportional to the field and are sized comparably to their real-life counterparts. You can see some of the notable polygon edging on the players, but they move pretty smoothly and relatively realistic. For some reason, Midway has not attempted to replicate the stadiums the teams play in. For the most part it’s a generic stadium with a non-descript crowd with some banners on the side telling you who the home team is. The surface appears to be grass-like, but that’s about it. There are no changes in playing surfaces.
If you’re not familiar with the NFL Blitz series, it’s billed as a no-holds-barred NFL experience. In previous versions there were five players a side. Now it’s been increased to 8 players a side. There are no penalties and you’re free to rub it in on the player who’s just been tackled. Rather than the standard down and distance, this game has 30-yard downs. It seems impossible at first, but you’ll notice this game gets yardage in huge chunks.
Playability is improved and more like you’re used to in a standard NFL game. The play selection, however, differs greatly. There are several modes you can choose from, pro-set, sandlot, and standard team. Essentially all of these are goofy go-long pass plays. There aren’t any running plays, but you wouldn’t want to try anyway since you have so far to go. On each down, there is an impact player, and you can set what you want the player to do. On defense he can blitz, cover, etc. On offense, he can protect, go deep, etc. These are nice features and help to add to the gameplay. Other nice features are the fact that this game, unlike some ‘normal’ football games, has enough AI to know to put special teams on the plays page. You can’t opt for a special teams play until 4th down, however, so no chance of a last-second field goal. But since the point of this game is not to win, it’s probably a moot point. One thing I’d like to see, since this is a no rules game, to turn on some injuries. I’d like to see the QB limp into the huddle, or the receiver who’s just taken a mean hit not really run a full pattern the next time.
There are many customizable options including the weather and time of day. Want to recreate the Oakland – New England snow bowl? Here’s your chance. Most of the other options are not that special.
There are four playing modes to choose from. Quickplay – pretty self-explanatory. Exhibition – this allows you and up to 3 other players to compete side-by-side against other NFL teams. Season – a full 16-game NFL season. And finally, Tournament Mode – With a multi-tap you and up to seven other friends can play each other in a single-elimination tournament.
The sound effects are really good, there’s a lot of generic trash talk and the sounds of the hits are realistic and appropriate. The play-by-play features no one of any significance, but don’t detract from the game. They have enough canned phrases saved to keep it from being repetitive.
OUR PLEDGE: We promise that we have fully played 'NFL Blitz 2002' before writing this review. The scores given above are our honest opinion and were not influenced in any way by the manufacturer or distributor of the game.
This review was written by Tom Downey © Absolute PlayStation
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