NCAA Football 08 impressions

Posted July 14th, 2007 at 2:59 am
NCAA Football 08 sdsu

***I'll be updating this with impressions. At least one time on Sunday and another on Monday. I may be able to squeeze an extra one or two in there also. So check back every day for the latest. 

(7/14 – AM)

Coming out of the demo I really wasn't very enthusiastic about NCAA Football. It just didn't do much for me, especially when seeing how Madden seems to be shaping up better than ever. The 60fps clearly was a huge improvement, and there were several gameplay additions that made the game better. Still though it felt too familiar and on the boring side…but in the end I knew it was just a demo. I attributed some of that feeling to the Varsity difficulty setting, lack of commentary/atmosphere, and that the demo didn't have the things I was most looking forward to from NCAA anyway.

Now after one day with the full game I can say that I feel completely differently. Ironically, I didn't spend much time just playing the game. Most of my concentration was on learning the gameplay, starting my Campus Legend and capturing video/screens. Basically it was all project based. And I enjoyed everything about that.

I don't know what it is, but whether its Burnout Revenge, Forza, or now NCAA Football, having the ability to show off videos and screenshots and viewing those put up by others in some ways appeals to me more than actually playing the game. It was exciting when EA got the easportsworld website up in the evening. Then it was learning how that site works and what it offers. I've since downloaded the videos and re-uploaded them to keep around for good. Since it only holds five clips at a time, when a new one comes in the old one is deleted off the server. You still have it on your 360 though if you don't delete it, so its not like its gone for good. But I like having them on my computer for safe keeping. The pic above comes out of the process of uploading to the easportsworld website, downloading to my computer, and then resizing and hosting it independently. 

So Campus Legend (and in Madden-Superstar) is the mode that I really look forward to for offline play. Keep tracking along with my Campus Legend reports which I plan on continuing beyond the official release date of the game, although it won't be at the pace I'm going at currently. Putting together the highlight videos with my capture card is a lengthy process but still fun for me to do. With that I can get actual gameplay footage instead of just the replay looks that you'll see on the easportsworld website.  So far so good in the mode, as I'm still in the High School tournament portion. The camera angles thankfully are much better, and every position is playable because of that. I chose CB which is probably the most challenging position for the mode. Requires a little more patience, but when you make a big play it is much more rewarding. Check out my upcoming posting that will have a screenshot of the camera angle for every Campus Legend position.

Super Sim is fantastic, at least in Campus Legend which is all I've tried it with so far. Skipping ahead to just the plays where my guy is on the field makes things flow so much better. Its always nice to have the option to watch those plays, or jump back in within normal games. 

Another thing that fascinated me is the new Weather Channel feature. I spent several minutes just flipping through stadiums looking at the current weather at those locations. Saw it was 106 degrees in Vegas. It was raining in Florida with the sun already down on the east coast. It was a pleasant 76 and sunny in Seattle. I ended up starting a game at one of the schools in Louisiana where it was raining at the time.

All-American difficulty felt solid in the limited amount of time I was able to play in normal games. Online I got one game in against Terrorblaze on All-American with five minute quarters, and he ended up winning 17-14. The game was essentially lag free, although it did have a slightly "heavier" feel to it as you would expect after playing any game offline and then going online. Its just a slight adjustment and soon enough it wasn't noticeable. Its great that even after online games, you have the chance to go through all the plays from the game and save them so that you can upload them to the easportsworld site. Great for leagues, competitions, or even just online rivalries.

Currently in the works:

-Getting more time in with regular gameplay. Will then add those impressions to this posting.

-Answering the questions that have been posed to me here. I have the first set of responses up now as of AM 7/14.

-More Campus Legend updates to come. A screenshot of the camera angle for each position in the mode will go up soon.

-Work on a couple videos and getting screenshots to those who requested them here.

-Get some more time in online to give full impressions of its performance and options

Its a busy time for me, and I gave up any sleep I normally would've gotten on Friday. I suspect that will be the case most of Saturday as well. So if it seems I'm neglecting any of those areas, just know that I am continually working on them and have not forgotten.