NCAA Gamebreaker 2003

a game by 989 Sports
Platform: Playstation 2
Editor Rating: 8/10, based on 1 review
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With more publishers tapping into college sports, the market is beginning to get crowded, especially in the late summer, with football games. One newer addition, NCAA Gamebreaker 2003 from 989 Sports is attempting to push its way into the market, but with stiff competition, standing out is becoming more difficult. It does offer the full array of features including a coaching career mode, 117 Division I-A teams and stadiums, and all of the bowl games that most of its competition has but it also carries with it a number of moderate to major issues that will leave most fans disappointed.

To start, the graphical detail is well below what most of us expect from sports games anymore. The players don't seem to have a natural look to them and even appear to glide across the field without giving any feel to their actual weight or size. Before the ball is hiked, the defensive player you're controlling will actually slide without moving his feet unless moved far enough and the breath of the players appears as a white cloud that immediately disappears. It's not all disappointing however as the player animations do function adequately and although they lack in detail, they are entertaining and well designed.

The next issue is the commentating. Besides being generally mundane, there was even a play called incorrectly as a fumble that bounced out of bounds was called a turn over. Although it didn't take long to figure out it was a bad call, combined with the less than exciting commentating, it can actually distract from the gameplay.

One area that did stand out and help with the originality is the way plays are selected. Most football games give a number of small boxes with X's and O's showing the each play. NFL Gameday 2003, on the other hand, shows the play selection over top of the field, allowing you to better see how the play will be executed.

Although NCAA Gamebreaker 2003does have some redeeming qualities, compared with the other college level football games, the graphics and commentating really leave it out of the running. In addition, unlike its brother NFL Gameday 2003, it also doesn't have online capability, a feature that would have made it more appealing.

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