Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Below the Cut: Tecmo Cup: Soccer Game (NES)

Tecmo Cup: Soccer Game - Rating(2 RPP)
1) 1 - Character Advancement: practice/experience based advancement, stat or level increases, multiple classes or characters, customize characters
2) 1 - Combat: character stats used for combat, additional combat options, turn based
3) 0 - Items and Equipment: store to buy and sell, equipment decisions, item decisions
4) 0 - Story: main story at the forefront; world full of hints and lore; descriptions for objects, people, and places
5) 0 - Exploration: open world from the beginning, visited locations remain open
6) 0 - Quests and Puzzles: side quests not related to the main quest, puzzles and riddles to solve

As far as I can tell, this is even less of an RPG than the RPG mode in Pinball Quest. Sports based role-playing games may have their day, but not today. Even considering the sport itself as combat, this game seems to have very little depth . Offensive options are to dribble, shoot, and pass, and defensive options are to tackle, cut, or wait. Every character has these, some at higher costs than others, but there's no indication that one character is better than another. Stats are invisible, and if they improve, I didn't see it happen.

It's nice to see a sports game with a story, but it's such a light touch that rarely goes beyond "good luck in the next match" or "watch out for Eric, he's a strong player." There's no exploration, quests, or equipment. The turn based shots, blocking, and random encounters on the field with invisible opponents blocking the ball felt like it lacked control over my player's actions, which hurts a sports game. There's a Genesis version that adds a few more details, but the game is basically the same.

For those looking forward to Cosmic Fantasy 2, the posts are delayed as my TurboDuo CD stopped playing music. While I can do without music, this is a sign of bad capacitors that could damage the whole system. I'm waiting on a capacitor kit that once replaced should fix the issue. If it doesn't, then I may move on to Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest until I can find another solution.

4 comments:

  1. Another cut game, Gemfire, is a personal favorite of mine, though by no means a RPG. Pretty good fantasy strategy game with a particularity catchy soundtrack. Like many early KOEI games it received quite a few ports. Gemfire wound up being a sub-par PC game, a serviceable NES game (and one of the largest released in the US), and an excellent SNES/Genesis game.

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    1. I've heard of Gemfire, but never played it myself. If I do, then I'll probably pick up the SNES version.

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  2. There are some wrestling games that are better at the sports/RPGish thing than that, probably the first one would be the Japan only Super Fire Prowrestling Special one of the earliest games Suda51 worked on. I still don't know that it would fit your criteria, but it would be a bit closer than this, particularly with character advancement and story. Come to think of it, many of the WWE Smackdown, vs Raw, year, 2kyear have modes that would fit your categories pretty well other than exploration and puzzles. Probably still not something you'd cover, just thinking out loud what seeing this below the cut brought to mind.

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    1. I'm not sure what I'd envision for a sports-RPG, but wrestling probably wouldn't be my first pick. Most wrestling games I've played felt incredibly random, and favored button mashing over character choice.

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