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First Impressions.....



right then, I started playing on RC2006 today and have played a couple of games as Wales against poor and good teams.
First off, it certainly looks and plays a lot more like rugby compared to WCR, the pitches feel narrower, but not too clostraphobic. IMO currently it certainly seems like the best adaptation of a rugby field into computer game, the gaps are there and it invites you to run with the player and try and pick out the gaps, most of the time the gap is smaller than it actually looks and you'll get tackled but there is the option for a pop pass which, if it comes off, means you've got an overlap or chance to score.

The forwards in the backs isn't as bad as WCR either, I found in WCR you'll find yourself with an overlap and a chance to score but just as the ball is about to be caught by the winger to run away for a game winning try you realise its a prop and scream in anger as you see your winger regaining consciencious from the bottom of the ruck!

Like I said about it being inviting for the player a good example of this is when I was playing against England, 17-14 down, in my own goal area with 82 minutes on the clock, what to do?! it was a great 'france' moment of genius madness a few first time passes out to Mark Taylor on the wing(?!) and a quick side step saw him free and running down the wing, hand off the fullback, but slowed sufficiently to be tackled by a defender, only to pop it off to a forward and a few quick passes see's shane williams on the other wing going for line! If you time it right, it has the flow of JLR, its brilliantly fun to play when things are going right, but a pain in the
when things are going wrong! (just like JLR!) The feeling of momentum gets killed when as your sprinting to the line, get tackled from behind, but dont fall to the ground sliding...no, you stop, stand, then fall backwards, its a real shame, sometimes the tackle animations are spot on and you will fall down in one fluid movement, but its hit and miss, its a shame.

As for quick ball from rucks and whatever, I'd say 60% of the time it works well, if you bash X and get a load of players in there, and you've got sufficient momentum you can win a ruck rather quickly, plus! one thing I like is that as soon as you see yourself winning the ruck just keep bashing the pass button, or pick up and run and the scrum half will launch it out before the bar has dissapeared and your forwards have had time to land their butts on the ground! quick ball is possible...
AI seems to be very good (for a rugby game) its certainly the best I've seen, positions are held, for the most part, and like I said, gaps are flashed for you, putting you in that, pass it out and play it safe or go for the gap and loose momentum and good field position?! its very varied.

The possibility to score great tries is certainly there too! an arrow will show available passes to the left or right so you know who its going to. my first try against England was particularly nice, 5m scrum, pretty much under the posts, passed to the blind side, back inside to my full back steaming through and a miss pass out to the wing saw shane williams dive into the corner, it certainly looked good in the replays! Kicking.........no complaints, its certainly a very well polished way of doing it, the easiest to grasp out of any rugby game, choose your distance, place the ball, angle it up taking the wind into account, then choose your power, and the stop the moving line as close to the middle as possible the speed of the line depends on the power of the kick, its simple to understand but its still challenging enough to put pressure on those important kicks

overall, its loooking pretty good, any q's? feel free
Are the scrums easier to win?

Can you swap player's postitions around during a match?
the scrums are pretty simple, stop the spinning dot in the highlighted area..... if you stop it closer to the middle than the computer then you get the push..... its quite good that its simple but its a bit too simple, it does mean that you can win the ball against the head though, but a little dissapointing as its just a better formed Maul!
I haven't tried any substitutions yet or changes, I've only really gone through training modes (which are...OK, there some good challenges) and a few friendlies and six nations....the RBS 6 Nations loading screen is quite nice though..adds a bit of atmosphere.

The Roof of the millennium stadium can be open or closed, I'm not sure if it is a option, but I've played with the roof closed, unfortunately it still seems that wind is a factor when it is closed!
I have had a few advantages, but not penalties! 3 maybe in as many games...
most smaller shops have copies in advance of release and some, although they shouldnt, let them go before official release..... ask around maybe.

Shane Williams........he's good! I haven't used any other wingers, but he is VERY quick and very useful, Mark Taylor is on the other wing for wales with Henson and Shanklin in the Centre, the rest is as could be expected. Sonny Parker is amongst the subs, I haven't used the editing yet so don't know if national squads can be changed, will be very handy if it is possible though, or if you can change players in the squad because the welsh subs are pretty useless, as well as parker there is Sweeney and Cooper to choose from in the backs...not great!

erm, I'm just adding stuff as I remember, as far as team ratings go, its in the old STAR format again from what I can remember its

South Africa

all four stars and New Zealand have 5 stars, I think Sctoland and italy are 3 1/2 and 3 respectively....
local retailer here in Leicester.
try and check out the small retailers near you... or even ask in places like Game, you might get lucky.....

oh, I'm planning on doing a proper play and testing everything tomorow so will be able to let you know some more.
Only 4 more days to official release, so I should have my copy by then. But I may have a look around some small retailers near me.

Nope sorry, I'm near Cambridge, I'm just an avid Leicester supporter. Let's win the Heineken Cup this year!!!

I'm not a Leicester fan, just live here, although living here does make me 'support' them in a way, I like to keep up to date with them, whens the cup match? they've moved it to Walkers ground I heared, I was at Welford road last weekend with its glorious MFI Stand!
is the forward play good on there

can you do dummies
are hand offs good

what charvis like?
wow another person mentions bashing button x. seems to be a familar theme coming from most people that have played the game. shane williams seems to be overrated a long way in this game, that or morris is playing on easy mode.

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