More NCAA 2006 Talk

I started my Race for the Heisman game last night; little ‘ol freshman quarterback Jonathan Calvert took the field for #92 North Texas down in Louisiana against #9 LSU. The results were pretty much as expected – my ass was handed to me, 35-21.

I have written many times that I almost always start my games on the default level, Varsity in the case of NCAA 2006, so I can get a better feel for what the developers intended for the average player and/or mass-market target audience. It has always been my experience that I can more easily “tune” a game when I start with the defaults, but these days I do not have the time or patience to tune games. Anyway, on Varsity it was obvious that LSU was much better than the Mean Green. My next game was at Middle Tennessee State, and I ran away 42-14; in this year’s game there is clearly a different between top programs and the bottom of the barrel.

General impressions are favorable; so far, so good. While I am seeing some dropped passes, they do not see as blatant as with last year’s game. The running game seems improved, especially for the AI. LSU pounded the crap out of me the entire game, but Middle Tennessee could do next to nothing on the ground. Interestingly enough the Middle Tennessee did continue to try to establish a ground game, but they were really over matched by my swarming defense.

As mentioned in my previous post, the CPU almost always manages to get rid of the ball instead of taking a sack once the throwing motion starts, but human players have no such luck. This may not bother many of you, but it pisses the heck out of me that EA cannot fix this problem. I know the developers are trying to enhance the game to make it more challenging (or maybe more realistic), but it needs to be applied fairly to humans and the CPU.

The new slow-mo action that takes place when an impact player makes a big play is actually growing on me. I figured it would be annoying, but now it builds some anticipation because I know something interesting is about to happen. Well, most of the time something interesting happens.

At this point the Heisman mode thing seems to be more of a gimmick instead of having substance. You cannot set your rosters except during the in-game setup screen. The fan letters are stupid to the point of being absolutely pointless. And I have no idea what the playbook feature does. It is suppose to let you improve your attributes, but I cannot really make heads or tails of it doing anything.

More still to come …


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