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RC2006 for serious fans?

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toup

Guest
Got hold of my copy yesterday (PC - from France) and as I am far from the first person to play it, I thought I would stay away from a full scale review, and instead look at this in terms of WCR (a lot of people seem to want to know how it differs) and also how it caters to serious rugby gaming beyond it's arcade intentions.

I decided to start with some of the training games (which are a nice feature and do a good job of teaching the basics), and immediately noticed the game is slightly slower, and a feels a little more 'solid' than its predecessor - this is no simulation, but it feels a little more lifelike this time around. The graphics remain charicatured and chunky, but much more detailed (particularly the licensed kits) than last time.

After I'd got used to the basics (which admittedly are easy to get to grips with if you've played WCR) I went into a friendly and was very impressed by the licensed strips and some of the player likenesses... but we all know gameplay is the key factor. Following a decent kick off, I resorted to the old WCR tactic of big hitting the catcher to force a turn over... imagine my surprise then, when despite my big hit, the opposition retained possession and following a controlled ruck, kicked a decent clearance. Although some have criticised this game for having too few turnovers, I think this is a positive thing - in real rugby turnovers are infrequent, and I like the fact that sometimes you just have to concentrate and pin the opposition in their own half until you can turn them over.

The rucking system is basic, but I think that it wroks quite well - the key for me is piling in players when you can see the opponent isolated, but pulling them out if it's clearly a lost ball and add numbers to your defensive line. Contrary to some reviews, I think it actually does involve a lot of strategy, and rather than pouring all your forwards into every ruck, it is better to keep some out and hope to pounce at the next breakdown. I have turned over much better sides using these tactics.

Another criticism has been the stamina bar. I agree this is not my preference, but I like the fact that backs can sprint a lot longer this time, and I have managed some breakaway tries. This is another aspect which adds a little depth in my opinion, as a sudden sprint when you see a gap can result in some very exciting line breaks, and the support play means that if you run the right line and time the pass then it should be try time - just like real rugby.

The passing system is fluid as ever, and whilst the occasional banana pass still occurs, I do like how slick it is. Offloads do seem a little hit and miss to me at the moment, but timing the draw and pass is so easy that I have not had to use them too much. When they do work, you quite often end up getting caught pretty soon, but I have scored a couple of great tries from offloads. I am curious to see if offloads, like sidesteps etc, will become more useful when I have had time to master them.

The kicking system is great for place kicks, although kicking in open play is tricky as you get closed down very rapidly at first receiver, and it is also worth noting that turnovers are few and far between, so possession is crucial!

This game was always going to be geared towards a more arcade-like experience, and it doesn't disappoint - it is fast without being ridiculous and does have a few more simulation aspects to it this time. A lot of bugs have been ironed out, and passing straight to the winger no longer works. I love the fact that you can beat the defence with clever lines of running or well timed passes and offloads (although yet to get fends and sidesteps to work effectively), and when you break the line then look for support this game is very exciting.

It is certainly no simulation, and as a serious rugby fan I think I will prefer EA's effort this year, but I reckon some excellent clashes between mates are to be had here. If you have the money for this very reasonably priced offering then I can heartily recommend it - it's not going to set the gaming world alight, but it encapsulates what 'fun' sports games are about.
 
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TheBokke

Guest
Nice one Toup good review fun reading a bit of need to know mixed with not alot gained about the game
a bit like how the game plays by the sound of it.
 
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toup

Guest
Well I'm happy to answer any questions. I agree though, it's a very mixed game - some bits are great and other bits are very much open to personal taste. I'm yet to try it with other people, and whilst the AI is far from perfect, it is challenging at least. I am waiting to see if the advanced techniques add a little more variety, but I have already scored some very nice tries.
 
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THE CHIROPRACTOR101

Guest
cool stuff tup..nice

who is the fastest player in the game?.....well that you have come across and how is teams like samoa,fiji,tonga do they have chances against the likes of england and nz.
 
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disco123

Guest
Yes , nice review toup , what are your thoughts on defence , a few other reviewers were getting p....ed off with it ??
 
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toup

Guest
Originally posted by THE CHIROPRACTOR101@Jan 31 2006, 01:54 PM
cool stuff tup..nice

who is the fastest player in the game?.....well that you have come across and how is teams like samoa,fiji,tonga do they have chances against the likes of england and nz.
Couldn't give you any stats or anything, but seems to be pretty accurate with who's fast and who isn't (I mainly played as european clubs, but the flyers really do stand out for pace). I am pretty sure Fiji have 3 stars - I played as them last night against Ireland and struggled to win any of their ball, but was fine holding onto possession and they have some real gas-men. When I managed to break the line there were some very good support runs and although I lost the game, I think with a bit more practice I could have won it - there certainly was hope and opportunities. When I get better at it I will try against england etc.
 
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Paddy

Guest
Originally posted by THE CHIROPRACTOR101@Feb 1 2006, 01:54 AM
cool stuff tup..nice

who is the fastest player in the game?.....well that you have come across and how is teams like samoa,fiji,tonga do they have chances against the likes of england and nz.
Fastest player is Robinson - he has 100 for speed.
 
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toup

Guest
Originally posted by disco123@Jan 31 2006, 02:02 PM
Yes , nice review toup , what are your thoughts on defence , a few other reviewers were getting p....ed off with it ??
I've been pretty happy with it. Turning over ball is hard, especially against better teams, but I think it is more technical than some people give it credit for. For example, the big hit button should be used sparingly and only when you're sure you have the beating of your man physically.

I think goal line defence has been criticised too, but I have been fine - the key is patience. Instead of pouring every man into every ruck to try to win the ball back, it is better to keep more men in your defensive line to make the tackles, and then chuck men in for the turnover when they try to go wide and get isolated. Although it is a fast paced game, you really need to concentrate and wait for the right time to attempt a turnover - and pull men out if you tried and it looks like you are going to lose the ball - keep more out in the line to make the tackles.

It's not perfect but I would say it's perfectly useable and once you get the hang of it, pretty rewarding.
 
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Coco

Guest
Originally posted by Paddy+Jan 31 2006, 02:12 PM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Paddy @ Jan 31 2006, 02:12 PM)</div>
<!--QuoteBegin-THE CHIROPRACTOR101
@Feb 1 2006, 01:54 AM
cool stuff tup..nice

who is the fastest player in the game?.....well that you have come across and how is teams like samoa,fiji,tonga do they have chances against the likes of england and nz.
Fastest player is Robinson - he has 100 for speed. [/b]
What surely Varndell would be faster than him - 100 metres in 10.8 seconds IN SOCKS ON GRASS!

Coco
 
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Los Lover

Guest
Originally posted by Coco+Feb 1 2006, 06:21 AM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Coco @ Feb 1 2006, 06:21 AM)</div>
Originally posted by [email protected] 31 2006, 02:12 PM
<!--QuoteBegin-THE CHIROPRACTOR101
@Feb 1 2006, 01:54 AM
cool stuff tup..nice

who is the fastest player in the game?.....well that you have come across and how is teams like samoa,fiji,tonga do they have chances against the likes of england and nz.

Fastest player is Robinson - he has 100 for speed.
What surely Varndell would be faster than him - 100 metres in 10.8 seconds IN SOCKS ON GRASS!

Coco [/b]
robinson - 100

robin-who? he's retired isn't he?




swordfish <<shakes head>>
 
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raziel_eire

Guest
Originally posted by Los Lover@Feb 1 2006, 05:34 AM
robinson - 100

robin-who? he's retired isn't he?




swordfish <<shakes head>>

still plays for Sale Sharks,


...but then again, having him play for England would give you another chance to criticise Swordfish wouldn't it?


... From the clips of EA's R06 I've seen Umaga playing for NZ... didn't he retire from internatioanl rugby? ... but then again los you don't get as much enjoyment from trashing them do you?


los lover <<shakes head>>
 
A

ak47

Guest
Originally posted by toup@Jan 31 2006, 11:00 PM
The rucking system is basic, but I think that it wroks quite well - the key for me is piling in players when you can see the opponent isolated, but pulling them out if it's clearly a lost ball and add numbers to your defensive line. Contrary to some reviews, I think it actually does involve a lot of strategy, and rather than pouring all your forwards into every ruck, it is better to keep some out and hope to pounce at the next breakdown. I have turned over much better sides using these tactics.


doink, yoink

the sound of bashing the attack, and stealing the ball

more good news, as my bolter from the back of pack rounds the turn, with a 2nd wind in his tail.........its not over yet..........

mmmmmmm...........i'm lovin this particular comment the most

rather than pouring all your forwards into every ruck, it is better to keep some out and hope to pounce at the next breakdown.

YES YES YES
 
M

mickyb

Guest
Any news on the classic matches? What are they how they play, how they look etc etc
 
E

esoj

Guest
Originally posted by raziel_eire+Feb 1 2006, 08:15 AM--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (raziel_eire @ Feb 1 2006, 08:15 AM)</div>
<!--QuoteBegin-Los Lover
@Feb 1 2006, 05:34 AM

robinson - 100

robin-who? he's retired isn't he?




swordfish <<shakes head>>

still plays for Sale Sharks,


...but then again, having him play for England would give you another chance to criticise Swordfish wouldn't it?


... From the clips of EA's R06 I've seen Umaga playing for NZ... didn't he retire from internatioanl rugby? ... but then again los you don't get as much enjoyment from trashing them do you?


los lover <<shakes head>> [/b]
umaga has only recently annouced his retirement and way to late for ea to make a change. the game for all we know was finished before that annoucement was made. Robinson announced his retirement a long time ago from international rugby. and so long as you can edit the teams it doesn't really matter anyway as changing one player or so isn't that hard.

interesting review there toup. defintely going against the trend so far about the rucks.
 
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toup

Guest
I will stand by that comment after another evening's play. It is is very hard to turn over better teams, but that is how it should be isn't it? It certainly isn't random, and I have got a much better feeling now about when a ruck is won or lost - but it stands to reason that by keeping a few forwards out they will be first to the next breakdown! Just got to hope you make the tackles...
 
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ak47

Guest
Originally posted by toup@Feb 1 2006, 10:08 AM
I will stand by that comment after another evening's play. It is is very hard to turn over better teams, but that is how it should be isn't it? It certainly isn't random, and I have got a much better feeling now about when a ruck is won or lost - but it stands to reason that by keeping a few forwards out they will be first to the next breakdown! Just got to hope you make the tackles...
TOUPS

Can you confirm the rucking is more interactive in RC2006 than EA05
Can you confirm you feel really rewarded for turning the ball over, more so than EA05.
Can you confirm its the best rucking system since JLR and EA2001

No furthur questions at this time.
 

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