NCAA Football 14 Review: Bringing The Game of College Football Back To Life
NCAA Football 14
PlayStation 3 (Also on Xbox 360)
Another year of college football has arrived, bringing fans more exciting moments from the game they love. There are a number of new changes this year in NCAA Football 14, including a new user interface, new game modes, and enhancements to the overall gameplay. One thing that I find quite amazing is how refreshing the game actually feels this year. EA completely redesigned the menus and, for whatever reason, it actually makes the entire setup feel welcoming. When I am browsing through menus, looking at my team, viewing stats and standings, it all feels more authentic. It really improves on the overall experience as well.
The gameplay also feels much smoother than last years, especially when it comes to the passing game. It’s by far more fluid with the routes, the timing of plays, and the overall execution. I am able to command the field and execute a strong passing game. It almost feels easy at times, even against the toughest of defenses. I’ve still made my share of mistakes, though, by throwing more than enough interceptions. But the overall passing game is primed for air domination. This does lead to some difficulty when playing defense and dealing with a tough offense, but it makes the game more intense and exciting, especially when stopping the opponent’s offensive progression.
There are still plenty of wonky tackles that we’ve come to expect from NCAA Football, but for the most part I am extremely happy with the feel of the game. EA has introduced new real-time physics in the game where a player’s weight and momentum factor in to the outcome. It feels so good to be running full force ahead and to completely run over a player who has no momentum, though it doesn’t always work out that way. This is a college football game that has been fine-tuned time and time again, and we have a great option to go with here.
Speaking of option, the option play is another piece of the game that has been worked on. EA has added 30 new option types, along with marking key opponents on defense that players must be aware of. It works incredibly well, though it tends to give me a tendency to always want to pitch the ball instead of trying to keep it. I’m still extremely satisfied with what it adds to the offensive gameplay as well. Again, the entire concept of the college game seems to be hit spot on with this version.
A new addition this year is the Play a Season mode which allows players to partake in a quick, single season without having to deal with off-field activities like recruiting. Now, it takes away from the fun of building a dynasty, but it still serves a purpose for getting players into a season, game by game, without putting up with other factors. It’s perfect for a quick single season only and it still comes packed with bowl games and trophies to win.
NCAA Football 14 brings a fantastic focus back on the offense and the overall gameplay, which leads to my favorite NCAA Football experience in years. It was back in the early 2000’s when I would play season after season of NCAA Football, and for the first time since then, I want to continue playing season after season again.