Gamespot Review

Discussion in 'Rugby Video Games & Apps' started by shiznit, Feb 16, 2005.

  1. shiznit

    shiznit Guest

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  3. shiznit

    shiznit Guest

    theres also 30 or so new screens i havent seen before.
  4. Great find fo shizzle! Looks like quite a few new screens. Very nice. Here's the article:

    When most Americans think of rugby, they think of thick-necked lugs sporting J. Crew casual wear while ramming one another's heads into the ground with alarming fury. While the sport hasn't really caught on beyond college campuses here in the States, there's no denying its worldwide popularity, especially among the Pacific Rim territories, including Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and the like. Apparently, the folks at EA Sports believe there must be a market for rugby games here, because this is the second installment in a row the publisher has released on the Playstation 2 and Xbox. We recently hopped into the scrum with Rugby 2005 to see how the game is progressing in advance of its early March release.

    The best phrase we've heard used to describe rugby is "Option football on crack." Indeed, the main component of rugby does resemble Nebraska Cornhusker football circa 1995, with tons of sideline-to-sideline running and lateral passing. In fact, forward passing is illegal in the sport. Instead, you advance the ball by running and tossing the ball behind you, progressing downfield via a quickly moving wedge of backs. Inevitably you'll be tackled by one of the 15 members of the opposing team. Assuming your team can maintain possession of the ball in the ruck (a sort of mini-scrum that takes place after the ball is downed), you continue down the field in the same wedgelike manner as before.

    In Rugby 2005, running is controlled with the left analog stick, while passing is controlled either by face buttons (on the Xbox controller) or triggers (on the PS2 controller). Sprinting is accomplished with a shoulder button, and while the game's tutorial claims that players can tire if they run too hard, we didn't see fatigue set in with any of our players during our time with this work in progress. There are also a number of special moves you can execute when in possession of the ball, including sidesteps and charges, by moving the right analog stick in relation to the direction your player is heading. To sidestep, move the right stick 90 degrees away from the direction of the left thumbstick. To charge, move the two sticks parallel. It's a bit confusing at first, but, truthfully, at the default difficulty levels, we didn't see much need for these types of special moves.

    The other obvious method for advancing the ball up the pitch is kicking, whether through soccer-style short kicks or by punting the ball long distances when trapped deep in your own territory. While you control the power of a kick through a face button on your controller, you can also aim your kicks with the left control stick to ensure your kickoffs, punts, and drop goal kicks land where you want them to. The only exception is the conversion kick, essentially a two-point extra point attempt controlled by using a kick meter that should be familiar to anyone who's ever played an NFL video game.

    Scrums and rucks are fairly automatic affairs, though you must manually "feed" a ruck by adding individual players to the pile. In a scrum, you'll drop the ball into the pile and perform a hook to gain possession, all while pushing the analog stick in the direction you wish to drive the scrum. If you keep possession of the ball, you simply then toss it to your backs and continue your way down the field, looking to either score a "try" (essentially a five-point touchdown) or make a successful drop kick through the narrow uprights to earn a three-point drop goal kick.

    The defensive controls are quite simple. Movement and sprinting are executed as normal, and dive tackles are tied to a face button on your controller. Perhaps the trickiest part of defense, especially for those new to the game, is making sure you don't cross over the offsides line during a ruck, which is something we did too many times to count during our first hour or two with the game.

    Rugby 2005 features leagues and teams from all over the international rugby map, including associations such as the Super 12, Representative, European, and International. Well-known teams such as the All Blacks from New Zealand and the Australia (Qantas) Wallabies are on hand, as are European league teams such as Bath, Gloucester, Leicester, and the London Wasps. Additionally, you'll find that teams from disparate locations like South Africa, Fiji, Canada, and Italy are all playable. And in case you're wondering, there is a US team as well, though it's one of the lowest-rated teams in the game. If you're looking for some early success, you'd be better served by choosing another squad as your favorite team.

    Graphically, the game won't turn any heads, if only because the camera is drawn back quite far to take in as much of the field as possible. The default side-view camera can make drop goal kicks practically impossible, but switching the camera view to "classic" (an up-and-down view of the field) cures that problem immediately. Ian Robertson's play-by-play commentary is well executed and understated, which is something that can't be said for the musical soundtrack, a typical roster of in-your-face rock cuts courtesy of EA Trax.

    The game's create-a-player mode lets you edit a number of preset faces, but it doesn't approach the level of depth found in other EA Sports titles, such as Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005 or Fight Night Round 2. The presence of a create-a-player mode seems odd, especially when you consider the game only includes three main modes: quick game, tournament, and practice (the latter of which includes some decent training exercises). Tournaments include the Super 12, European Trophy, and Lions Tour, as well as the Ten, Six, and Tri-Nations tourneys...and, of course, there's the World Championship. Lack of a franchise or career mode means you probably won't use your created player much in the first place, however.

    So far, we've had more fun learning about the ins and outs of rugby as a sport than we've had fun with Rugby 2005 as a game. We'll see if the final product, set for release in March, avails itself as something more than an interesting introduction to a game many American sports fans are completely oblivious to.

    By Brian Ekberg, GameSpot POSTED: 02/15/05 04:58 PM
  5. Okay, can we stop having Americans who view this as a novelty? Is that too much to ask?
  6. shiznit

    shiznit Guest

    i assume that the version they have is the American one.
    so the american version will have that american dude on the menu.
  7. yeah, looks like it, which is pretty cool and might bring awareness to a lot of people browsing in the video game section that America has a rugby team - provided you can see the emblem.

    Don't know if the English kits are licensed -- what's up with the crow for Gloucester?
  8. ak47

    ak47 Guest

    lack of franchise/career mode???..........its called world league Eckberg!!!!

    man this guy needs to be educated that no rugby game will turn out like US EA sports titles........NOT for a while anyway.

    This comment - So far, we've had more fun learning about the ins and outs of rugby as a sport than we've had fun with Rugby 2005 as a game.

    well take a time-out, u get 3 per half in ur game, learn more on rugby itself, then go back and play Rugby 2005....or better this preview off to the UK office, and get them to write it.

    Captain America - I think there's a market, for reviewing games that arent familiar in the USA..........go hit em up, coz this preview is insulting to Rugby itself, let alone our new KING!!!!
  9. Tell me about it -- I mean, I can understand giving it to someone who knows jack-all about the sport/game and seeing how they adapt, cause quite a few people in my country will be doing the same, but, damnit, there is a better way to do it -- and that's to not talk down or insult the sport.
  10. shiznit

    shiznit Guest

    yeah it was pretty shocking but ohhhh well.
    the new screens were more important to me than the actual preview itself.
  11. ak47

    ak47 Guest

    no i think, its an option in the menu like madden
    u can pick ur favourite team for menu background

    i remember going and seeing this option.
    funny thing was...........there's over 40 teams in the game..........but only the powerhouses of rugby could be selected as your fave..hence ur menu background
  12. shiznit

    shiznit Guest

    would the USA be considerd a powerhouse?
  13. Doh!

    Maybe you can choose those in-game menu countries in the countries where the game will be released.

    Scratch the idea about having Americans on the cover than . . .

    . . . well, you never know . . .

    *edited for better English
  14. ak47

    ak47 Guest

    u could be right

    on the verison i played in sydney, of the fave teams, it was only the 10 nations teams........or something along those lines.....all i know there wasnt the quota of intl teams in the game, let alone all the teams!!!!!!!!!!
  15. I might have to find him and explain things to him . . .
  16. locksley

    locksley Guest

    That's right! There's an option that asks you your favourite team from a list of international sides! you pick one, and pictures of various players from that team keep popping up on the menu screens! It works pretty well, although the music really stinks!!!!!
  17. umosay

    umosay Guest

    Why must american reviewers always start with the fact its not NFL!!!

    "In-fact, passing forward is not even allowed in this sport"

    Yes, Review for Dummies.
  18. -JJ-

    -JJ- Guest

    Ensure you fulla's check out the PS2 section (screenshots)...

  19. Gay-Guy

    Gay-Guy Guest

    Tell and where did Gridiron originate from? And then after that WHY? Now that may be interesting!
  20. NZL Fan

    NZL Fan Guest

    So who are those two Blues players??

    The shorter one could be Gibson??McAllister??, and the other fella??........ I thought Troy had come back for a moment......
  21. Boltman

    Boltman Guest

    I'm much closer to them than you, and I might before you do. [​IMG]

    All of you, dont get so down on the "States" view of Rugby, he doesn't "speak" for us masses.

    I've seen more video's on this game than him, and have more "Rugby knowledge" to boot.

    So ignore it, it is still going to sell well here, even much more so than 2004 ever did (yes I bought 2004 and still have it to this day).
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