Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Backbreaker Embargo Lifts

I'm finishing up some work on the review, testing some things out before putting my final verdict on it.

But I will spare you the long version and cut right to it:

This is a great tech demo. The collision detection and free flowing unpredictability and animations are wonderful.

But as a game, this is not nearly ready for primetime. Not even close. So much needs to be done before the game actually matches the tech from playcalling AI to blocking patterns to offensive AI (this part is REALLY bad).

Is this sort of tech the future of football? I think so, yes.

Is Backbreaker worth buying in its current state at full price?

No. It's not.

There is going to be a vocal support group for this game, but I am not one of them until things get fixed.

1 comment:

wco81 said...

I'd like to be as bullish about physics being the future of football games but EA really hasn't demonstrated that it's interested in innovating.

I'd defended the exclusive license, because I figured that they would struggle to sell 5 million units a year in competition with other video games, even if there were no longer other NFL video games.

But it's clear now that although their sales growth has stalled, they sell enough to feed their complacency.

While games like FIFA and NHL have improved a lot to catch up to or pass their competition, Tiburon is still working on putting in all the features from the last gen versions. Or putting some in and taking them out next year. This generation has been stagnant for Madden (and a far cry from the infamous concept video they showed before releasing the first 360 version) and nothing like the leap they made when they developed the 3D engine for the first version on the PS2.

It's a tough environment for EA. They're trying to squeeze every cent of profit these days (look at the code you need to play online) and still laying people off. They don't look to be in a mood to take risks and make investments in things like physics unless they feel competitive pressure.