Electronic Arts Tiburon
PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
January 4, 2012
NFL Blitz comes from a franchise not to long ago that dominated the 1990s. This game was a response to a well received NBA Jam that was resurrected from another successful franchise of the past. This game is not your typical presentation of a sports title; this game depicts all its NFL players as overly muscular meat heads with the only intention of scoring touchdowns.
When you first load up this game its takes you to the center of a football stadium, fans are in the stands, cameras are flashing, and you’re the main attraction. At the menu your presented with options to play different modes: Play Now, Blitz Gauntlet, Blitz Battle, Elite League, Online Co-op, Blitz Store, and Help/Options. In every mode that you decide to play this game you must first select a team. When shown the team select screen your presented with all your favorite current teams from the NFL and their stats based on three things: Offence, Defense, and Speed. Once selected its off to the game. While your game loads you’re presented with an option that brings back ideas from previous generations, the code screen. At this screen your presented with three slots containing various symbols and its up to the player to plug in the right combination in order to use cheats and tricks, but you only have a limited amount of time so be quick. Your then brought to loading screens that rotate in and out, featuring some scantly dress cheerleaders along with advice on playing the game. Although I found some advice useful, I spent a majority of the time ogling the lovely ladies of NFL Blitz.
The current generation of consoles are capable of so much in regards of realism and visual displays. Although this title does not take complete advantage of these capabilities, this game is exactly what you expect from it when it comes to visuals. Because this game is a parody of NFL Football, the player disregards the inaccuracy’s of how detailed the graphics really are. In my experience playing this title I came to realize that I expected the game to be funny looking. The colors are very accurate to the players jerseys in real life, but skin tones are just varied among a few select colors. The players are all built under the same generic body structure, which is comical in the sense that they are overly muscular and look as though they have taken performance enhancements. The environments are not completely rich and elaborate but are at par when it comes to this type of game; I say this because a majority of your focus is on the actual players moving across the field rather than the surroundings of the players, which is why the environments are fine the way they are made.
Although this game is loads of fun I believe that in sound and music this game is lacking. The game plays the same boring music on repeat and can be quite a bore. If playing for long periods of time (which most gamers do) the music and sounds can get on your nerves quick. Sounds of players grunting and hurting sound limited and it seems that there could have been more done in this field. One thing I looked for and was surprised to not find was the option to play my own music from my Hard Drive, but to my dismay this option was left out. This could have easily changed how I played this game. This option can be found on most titles nowadays and was left out. The sports announcers on the other hand are what made the sounds in this game enjoyable. Their quirky attitudes and remarks would always put a smile on my face during gameplay. Had more been done in the sound and music of this game, I am certain the title would have had me playing this hours on end.
This game is fairly easy to play, even for those with no sports game experience under their belt. The commands are fairly simple in comparison with other football titles. The game pretty much uses only a handful of inputs for things like passing, turbo, jumping tackling, spinning, and stiff arms. If you have never played football in your life then here is what the objective of the game is: get the ball to the opposing teams side and beat them in total points. There are many options on how to play this game and I will go into them one by one so you have a better understanding on what each one really is. The Play Now option allows players to dive in immediate in to the action that is NFL Blitz. In this mode your able to pick the teams that play currently in 2012, along with who at home wants to play. In Blitz Gauntlet your given a totem pole like tournament in which you have to move you one game at a time in order to beat every team. This mode includes unlockable characters and teams that you must beat in order to use them. Blitz Battles is an online form of the game in which you can play people from around the world and earn points in order for you to move up in the Blitz Battle Board. This was actually pretty fun in the sense that I have never really been immersed into online sports game play, but because the game itself is fun and your able to play with multiple people at your own home against teams on line this really defined how I look at spots games. There are three battle boards that are online, local, regional and national. These are where you can see your ranking in your respective areas. I thought this feature was pretty neat because in many games you only see a generalized board for national and world levels, but this game went as far as going local and regional. In Online Co-op mode you have the option of playing with two local players versus teams online. The way this plays out though, is for every series of defense and offence, you and your partner switch out for the position of quarterback. This can be extremely fun or annoying depending on whom you decide to team up with at home. In my case I have a brother who always go for the extra point, which led us in defeat every time, but I digress. The Elite league option lends itself towards the idea of a card game; the idea of this is that you start off with what’s called a “starter pack”. This is a group of players that you can build your custom team off of. You can customize your team and build off of their strengths and weaknesses. Once you have done this its off to the races. Once you start playing online you can risk a player in a game, the opponent must do the same; winner of this game receives the risked player. Based on how skilled you are at building your team and playing the game, you can manage to walk away with some pretty valuable players and a really good team. I loved the way this played online but saw only one shortcoming. I would be paired up a majority of the time with players who were way more skilled than I was. This led me to lose a lot of good players. I think had they implemented a way of having a ranking system based off the individual players on the teams rather than the wins a player had would have been more efficient.
I would have to say with all the unlockables that are available and all the online modes that are playable, this game can be played over and over again. This game has me coming back more and more to try and move up the battle boards. What also keeps me playing is the Elite League mode, which I try and struggle at my best to unlock and keep certain players on my team, time and time again.
All in all this game is a solid title for those who love the game of football and even for those who have a slight interest for it. I would have to say that for the price, this is defiantly one game that every gamer should pick up. It is solid all around aside from some discrepancies I had with the sound and music. If your in the market for a game that won’t take too much time off your hands or for a title that will keep you playing hours into the night, then NFL Blitz is for you.