As a game made to give football enthusiast an alternative to the popular EA Sports franchise, Doug Flutie Maximum Football series by default will always have at least lukewarm interest. So today, let’s find out if Maximum Football 20 is a quality option for football fans to enjoy.
Now, we must get it out the way, but the first thing most will notice about Maximum Football 2020 is the visuals, or lack thereof for a 2020 title. Now I wasn’t expecting Madden 21 in terms of graphics. However, I was surprised I was getting something not much better than Madden 04 on PS2. That was also around the time where you could charge more than $10 on a game with visuals this bad and nobody would say anything. True, the team that created this game isn’t that big. That said, they still have to be able to earn the price tag put on their game. In terms of overall presentation, they fall behind by a lot. Just looking at Maximum Football 2020 is like playing a computer game that can’t handle the graphics while simultaneously already being on low settings. The game also lacks any type of commentary team which puts more focus on the less than stellar ‘on the field’ presentation. As it currently stands, don’t expect much in terms of look. There is huge room for improvement here.
As for gameplay, I will commend the team for what they’ve achieved. For a game with lackluster visuals, gameplay needs to compensate. Sadly, it didn’t and actually is the biggest problem with the game. The physics based tackling system does lead to some interesting collisions at times. Unfortunately, at other times you wonder how that player didn’t just break his leg. The passing game seems disjointed and the most success I had early on was simply zig zagging with my left stick through traffic. Playing the computer does gives you a bit of a challenge, but there are way too many A.I. errors to ignore. One major positive I did find with the gameplay was it does offer a pretty deep non-team specific list of formations and plays. This definitely helps keep the gameplay from getting stale quicker.
Arguably, the main attraction for Maximum Football 20 is the continuation of its College Football Dynasty Mode. I warn you, those who already are thinking about having actual college teams, due to legal reasons, sharing and downloading custom rosters isn’t available. You will have to get use to that legendary Tuscaloosa vs Baton Rouge rivalry in your mind. In all seriousness, I was surprised at the amount of depth in this mode, as it gives any college football dynasty fan everything they could want as far as the building a team/recruiting process goes. However, due to the gameplay, the most value I can see from this mode is a strong simulation dynasty for gamers who prefer sim to playing. Still, I’m excited how this mode in particular is built upon going into its 3rd installment.
New to Maximum Football 2020 is a fully built play designer that instantly takes me back to Madden of old where I was creating random plays that went nowhere. The amount of details in this is impressive and something I would like Madden to add if they ever decide to put play a play creator back in the game.
The visuals and gameplay can cause the game to get stale pretty quickly. On top of that, the load times cycling between certain things will turn likely deter the impatient fanbase. The parts of the game outside of actually playing are what’s going to keep gamers intrigued. From the full customobility of team names, colors, uniforms and players, to make your own football league, to their growing dynasty mode, this could keep those who are interested in that aspect of the game busy for a while. While other curious football fans will pick this up and never play it after the first few days.
In closing, this game still needs plenty of work and I hope they get the help they need to clear up some glaring problems this game has. They are close to giving football fans a legit option instead of Madden. The Dynasty Mode is enough of a gem to hope this game takes the next leap. Unfortunately, as it currently stands the game isn’t worth its $30 price tag and I would wait for it to drop dramatically before considering it. Unfortunately, gamers looking for an alternative to Madden will need to keep looking.
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