Demo Daze: NCAA 10

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Being the only sports gamer(besides Vlambo) I felt it was my duty to write up my recent experiences with NCAA 10 for the 360. Since I decided not to buy 09 because of too many similarities with 08, I was definitely looking forward to the next iteration and to see if they had fixed some of the things that drove me crazy.

EA released the demo about a week ago, but I’m just now getting around to downloading it and trying it out and from the first game I played, and I must say it is a rather nice leap in gameplay over the last two.

Hit the jump to see if the demo is bearing fruit or not.

The demo only allows you to play one game, 2 minute quarters of last year’s championship game, Florida vs Oklahoma. First thing that hit me was that Florida was A+ in every category: overall, defense and offense. Somehow, I don’t think any team should be perfect, but that’s just me.

From the demo I can tell they have definitely upgraded the passing game. It’s a very smooth experience now, with non of the DB’s or Safeties having the ‘Rocket Feet’ syndrome or homing in on the ball like king when he sees japanese girls. Also, there is non of the ‘QB vacuum’ where a DT or DE magically jumps 3 inches on the screen to sack you. There was an instance where I was Bradford and a guy was wrapping my ankles up and I was able to get rid of the ball as I fell. Very nice.

Another big upgrade has been the tackling mechanics. Very realistic this time around. Also, camera angles have been tweaked to give you a better view on defense. If you click in the left thumbstick, the camera turns from looking behind the offensive line to behind the defensive line. Nice for blitzing, horrible for pass defense so be careful. There’s also a player lock mechanic that keeps a player doing a specific action no matter the play. So you can set a safety to always play deep even on play-action plays. Can be handy when used correctly.

Last thing to mention is their new gameplay system. For each part of the team, offense and defense, you can set individual levels of aggressions for different aspects such as pass defense, running attack and blocking. There are three levels of aggression, conservative, balanced and aggressive. Obviously aggressive level will have a better chance of making the big play while at the same time raising the chances of penalties. Vice versa for conservative.

Overall, I’m impressed with the demo. Gameplay wise, the game has improved a lot. Whether they’ve restructured their recruitment system, the worst part of 08′, is yet to be seen. But I’m definitely keeping my eyes out on this one.

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