NFL Blitz Pro (PS2)

The biggest problem with NFL Blitz: Pro’s isn’t its graphics, sound, or even gameplay. It’s with the game’s identity itself.

The original line of NFL Blitz games were all about being extreme — so extreme, in fact, that they inspired the short-lived Xtreme Football League. Players on fire, smashing each other into oblivion. Games were short, fast, and wild.

NFL Blitz: Pro has changed its face this time around. The first thing veterans of the series will notice is that each team has eleven men on the field instead of seven, and first downs are every ten yards, not twenty. Sure, the over-the-top bashes and smashes are still there, but with toned-down graphics and gameplay, NFL Blitz is starting to look a lot like all the “other” NFL games.

And that’s too bad, really. Electronic Arts and Sega both make really good football games, and there’s really no need for yet another clone. That’s not to say NFL Blitz: Pro is a straight-up football sim, but is certainly a step closer in that direction from past efforts.

NFL Blitz: Pro manages to keep one foot in the arcade field with features like unlockable characters, stats, and moves, but even with all of those features it still feels like it’s lost it’s “extreme” personality.

IGN gave NFL Blitz: Pro 8/10, but then again IGN runs ads for this game on their website and we don’t. Fans of sims should stick with EA or Sega football. Fans of NFL Blitz should stick with 2002 or 2003. If you always thought, “damn, this Blitz game would be better if there were more men on the field,” then by all means give it a rent and check it out.

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