College Football USA 97
College Football USA '97 fills the coliseum with the best amateur athletics money can buy. Unfortunately, though some new features have been added to enhance last year's excellent game, this year's version is mostly a rehash.
Everyone and Their Grandmother
One hundred sixteen official collegiate teams are represented, including Stanford, the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame, and all your favorite Nebraska felons. New features include a create-a-player option, overtime games, and the ability to make your own schedule.
Where EA academically excels is in true-to-life gameplay. Teams are ranked during the season by performance and toughness of opponent in order to give you added incentive to pile up points late in the game. The computer picks an MVP and even keeps track of the all-time records for longest pass, run, punt, and so on. Players dive and hurdle over tacklers, authentic plays like the Wishbone are in every playbook, and there are complete stats and substitutions for every position.
On the field, the players look exactly like last season's—no new animations or graphics. The large, smooth sprites move effortlessly and quickly across the screen, but some improvement would have been nice. As for sounds, all the same cheers, jeers, and whistles from the original game fill the background, and while they're also nothing new, they're still effective.
Two-Time Heisman Winner
Football fans new to the Genesis should buy College Football when it hits the stores. Owners of last year's game, however, might want to rent it first to make sure the slight changes are worth the price of admission.
- When you can't find any receivers open, let your QB run for the first down.
- When you see defenders blitzing up the middle, pitch the ball to one of your running backs to exploit the open hole.
- The Wishbone works well to confuse the defense on two- point conversions because there are too many options to defend.