989 Sports

989 Studios


NFL Xtreme 2 Review

By: John Doe

After last years attempt at the arcade football genre, I thought NFL Xtreme 2 would at least show some improvement. Unfortunately this game is a step sideways for the series. It goes to show that humour and football don't mix. This game tries so hard to be "in your face" that the whole idea of football seems to have been lost somewhere. "No rules" football is fine, but you have to know where to draw the line otherwise you create gridiron pandemonium and that's exactly what this game is.


Remember those guys in school who used to laugh at you every time they punched you in the arm or tripped you? If you don't, then playing NFL Xtreme 2 will jog your memory, because it seems 989 Sports modeled those idiots behavior for every player in this game. No matter what happens, someone is always taunting someone else in this game. The on-field shenanigans are so over-the-top that it will drive you mental before halftime. I want to play a fast game of football here; don't force me to watch crudely animated taunts every 5 seconds.

Due to the "Xtreme" nature of this game, virtually everyone on your team is a receiver. What a jumbled mess to try and sort out. At least if you are going to take rules out, leave the skeleton of the game intact, please. I can't believe that the Quarterback isn't able to throw a pass and then run out and catch it himself. Maybe that'll be in NFL Xtreme 3. Hey, that way you could eliminate all of the players and have 1 on 1 football. Wouldn't that be cool? Maybe they could dribble the ball too and use golf carts to get to the goalposts where they would then have to launch the football into the air with a catapult to see if it could get into the basket, which would be floating 100 feet in the air by some helium balloons, all the while being chased by lions and being careful not to fall into the shark-infested water-traps that litter the field. Now that's XTREME, NO RULES FOOTBALL!

If you think the field is confusing, how about those playbooks, huh? All of the plays are divided into 5 different playbooks. You have ten seconds to pick your play...GO! Now where are those running plays? This book? Nope. This book? Okay there are some, but not what I need...Oh how about...TIME"S UP. Oh goody, I selected punt on my first down. Awesome! If you spend a lot of time playing this game you'll eventually memorize the location of a few plays that work for you. Which means you'll probably only end up using two or three passing plays, 1 running play and maybe a punt. Not what I call leaving your options open.

The framerate in this game is fast, and for once I even think it's too fast for the gameplay. I found it hard to follow the action because every one is flying around out there and my Quarterback keeps trying to catch all of his own passes... The animations are laughable. Are you telling me these are the same guys who do Gameday? Did they all get drunk at a BBQ and go back and program this one? It's one thing to laugh with a game, but in the case of NFL Xtreme 2 you'll be laughing at it and that is rarely a good thing. The players are these freakish looking hybrids of real human heads stuck on what could only be described as enemies from Quake 2. If I was a real football player not only would I not be amused, but I'd be calling my lawyers about a lawsuit. Football players aren't pretty at the best of times but this is just plain mean.

Aside from the ton of gameplay options NFL Xtreme 2 gives you (way more than Blitz 2000) there is no other reason to bother with it. This game can't compare to the genius of Blitz, which is an oddity. Gameday is an amazing football game, and 989 Sports obviously knows football, so what is going on here? Demons, Leprachauns...what? This game should be so kick ass it hurts to sit down after playing it. But it limps along like a bad joke. I can't recommend it unless you simply want to see gridiron pandemonium at it's finest.






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