He’s Got Open Field: NCAA Football 11 Review
Before I start, let me explain something. I’m a hardcore football fan and hardcore sports gamer that fell off the bandwagon a few years ago. Every year I would rent, or if I had the money, buy the latest Madden or NCAA title. Between the two, I always preferred Madden. But with the release of EA Sports and Tiburon’s new title NCAA Football 11, that might change.
The newest feature this year is the Locomotion Running Engine, which makes the running game much more fluid and realistic than it has been in the past. For example, in past NCAA titles, if you were at the goal line and you ran just past the end zone line, you suddenly stopped, somehow breaking Newton’s first law of physics. Now when you run past the line you slow down and stop. This adds more realism and less eye rolling for the player. Locomotion improves the offensive lines’ blocking as there are more holes than in previous games and the blocking is much more realistic. I found myself running more than in any previous NCAA title.
The presentation is also superb. The graphics are some of the most realistic I’ve ever seen in a sports game despite the occasional hiccup during touchdown celebrations. Shadows, realistic weather effects and player interaction are all great graphical additions to the game.
The two other modes, besides straight up exhibition play, are the Dynasty and Road to Glory modes. In Dynasty mode you’re the head coach of a team for an unlimited amount of seasons. This mode is incredibly addictive. Whether you are reading news stories on the season progression, recruiting or just plain playing the game, Dynasty mode is a fun experience which will take up hours of your playing time (in a good way). Road to Glory mode is a bit of a step down. This mode allows you to play as a player from the High School playoffs through your Senior year of College. While it is fun it’s less addictive and fulfilling than Dynasty mode and only needs to be played once.
Now for some of the negatives. The commentary is getting very old. I could’ve sworn I heard the same bits of commentary in the 2006 edition. The pass blocking is atrocious and you will often find yourself surrounded by two or three defensive linemen about to sack you. Receiver magnet catches still exist and cornerbacks are extremely overpowered. It seems as if every receiver is double covered. It appears as if this was the year of the run. Hopefully next year they can fix some of the passing problems of this years’ installment.
NCAA Football 11 is a great game. The new running mechanics and graphics add more realistic and fun and add to the football gaming experience. Dynasty mode will keep you hooked for hours and you’ll be trying to school your buddies for months to come. NCAA Football 11 is a solid title with minor flaws. If you’re a football fan and a gamer, you must pick this title up.
About the Author - Matthew Byrd
Matthew is a senior at Jones College Prep. He regularly writes about Movies, Politics, Sports, and Video Games at his blog byrdsplace.tumblr.com and records podcasts for libraryofgames.org and does a film podcast called "The Final Cut Film Podcast" with fellow LoGer Taylor Bayless.