Brutal Football


Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 5

Sound: 3

Gameplay: 7

Overall: 6

brutalfootball4.jpg (53317 bytes)Sports games rarely age well. Sure, that first year is heavenly, then the company releases an update the following year and that previous game falls to the wayside. There are of course those that don't follow this trend. Games lacking any major license and a heavy dose of arcade style gameplay tend to stand the test the time. Brutal Football is a great example in that 10 years later, it's no worse for the wear.

Following in the vein of the cult favorite Mutant League Football on the Genesis, Brutal Football puts players in control of a team made up of lizards, Vikings, rhinos, and the oddball goats. Each "species" has various teams that can be chosen made up of all the same sprites. Each team has their own set of strengths and weaknesses that will affect their play on the field. Modes include leagues, tournaments, unfriendly (exhibition), and knock-outs. Knock-outs can only be played with the Vikings.

On the field, you'll not only be faced with an opposing team, but axes, bombs, swords, freezing cubes, and other various power-ups. The rules only follow football slightly. Grabbing the ball and running to the opposite end is the only requirement. Beware of the goalie guarding the end zone. It's not necessary to put your entire body in. You can toss it in as well. Opponents will do all they can to stop you, even taking off your head if necessary. You can win by either scoring the most goals by the end of second half or killing the entire opposing team.

brutalfootball5.jpg (41768 bytes)Graphically unspectacular, Brutal Football features decent looking sprites and some minor blood spattering, but the frame rate really drags this one down. It can be very difficult to track what is going on at times, especially during some of the faster paced moments. Animation is serviceable but still lacking. The backdrop is always the same as well. Some variety in the stadiums would've helped this one a bit.

Even though the graphics are weak, the sound is even worse. Mere words do nothing to describe the atrocious music that plays during the game. A grinding mix of 80's heavy metal and awful classical, this is one of the worst soundtracks you'll ever encounter in a video game. Granted it can be turned off, but then you're left with nothing but NES-styled sound effects that do little to enhance the experience.

Though the presentation leaves a bit to be desired, this one is still a blast to play, especially with a friend. Punching and stabbing his/her entire team is priceless and will surely start a few arguments. It's a very competitive game and it's obviously programmed to be so. Memorable moments are sure to ensue and make this one a worthy addition to a CD32 library.

Note: The Atari Jaguar was a recipient of this game as well. It's actually better there. The frame rate has been punched up a bit (though it's still an issue) and it's more playable because of it. Note that a few of the modes have been excised from that version.


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Last updated: Sunday, September 25, 2005 05:18 PM