System: Nintendo 64
Capabilities: Controller Pak & Rumble Pak Compatible
Acclaims first leap into next generation football games. Acclaim must of had high hopes for the N64 at the time, because this was an N64 exclusive. Iguana, the same people who developed the Turok games, were behind this title, and it was going against strong competition this year, that being Madden Football 64. Did the game have what it take to beat the competition? Lets get onto the review and find out.
Well, at the time, these graphics were the best thing on the N64. Everything was in high-resolution, so graphics were, nice, clear, and crisp. Dont believe me, take a look in the instant replay, you can zoom in so close that you can see the players name on the back of their jerseys and the black makeup on their face! Everythings polygonal, so the players look a bit more on the real side. Even though all of them looked about the same size, think again though that this is 1997, and size proportioning of the players didnt even cross the minds of many football developers at the time.
The arenas look great, detailed down to every point, like the welcome arena, 3Com park where the 49ers play. The play selections menu are nicely laid out, and you can easily tell how all the formations will turn out. Theres nice weather effects too like rain drops, snow flakes, etc. The animation is quite well of the players too, you can see them juke, spin, dive, block, wither in pain from an injury, etc. Theres also nice pin ups of the players too in the post-play info box, where it displays, the yards gained and all that stuff. There really isnt anything bad with the graphics, and its probably the best part in the game, the only part that disappointed me was the ending you get after winning the super bowl, I mean, I played a whole season, and went through the playoff and all undefeated, and all I get is a Vince Lombardi trophy pinup, and a message saying: 49ers, Super Bowl Champions! Now is that cheap or what?
Now sound has to be one of the weakest parts of the game. The only thing thats pulled off quite well is the sound effects, where you hear all the regular stuff like the ugs of the players and their helmets colliding and all that fun stuff. The background music is alright, I guess it fits the ESPN sports center them pretty good, but it plays over and over and only lasts about 20 seconds, and its also used for the touchdown celebration. Marv Albert brings over commentary for the game. And man, does he stink. He sounds like a robot while calling the plays with little enthusiasm. This has gotta be one of the worst announcers ever, next to the one from Excitebike 64. But overall, sounds not the greatest in this game.
The game controls quite well, on offense and defense each player has their own share of moves to do, like on offense, theres speed burst, spin, juke, and dive, on defense theres speed burst, dive, and block when the balls in the air. Unlike most other football game, the running games a lot easier than the passing game because the ball stays in the air quite a while before it finally gets to its designated landing area, and during that time your opponent can easily knock you away(im sure everybody loves to play with the defense pass interference penalty off any ways), so it gets rather annoying when playing against a friend. But once you actually manage to get past this major flaw, the game can be quite enjoyable.
Theres a lot of modes, theres quick start where you can just jump right into a game and skip customizing the rules and stuff. Then theres exhibition where you pick your teams and customize all the fun stuff like penalties, quarter length, weather, etc. Theres also a Fantasy Draft mode, where all players are free agents and they enter a draft for all the teams. Next, theres Season mode, where you go through a season and you can play as many or as few games of it you want, the game keeps track of all the stats and all through the games battery. Next up is playoffs where you can just skip the season and go right on the road to the super bowl. But whats really fun is the custom options where you can make your own players and arrange all his attributes for him and sign him on any team, or the create-a-team, where you can customize your own teams uniforms, city name, and everything, its really great too when you can make your own team of all-stars.
The game has all the modes, stats, and extras to keep you hooked here for a while, plus add to the fact that up to 4 players can play the game makes it even better. At the time this game was a blast to play with 4 people. Now its just considered dated, but I remember having 4 player frenzies with my friends in this game 3 years ago. It was a blast. Also the games only competition on the N64 this year was Madden 64, and unfortunately it didnt have the NFL team license, so all the real logos and teams werent there, and because of that unfortunate flaw, QB Club 98 went on to be more popular.
The Final Ratings Rundown
Game play: 8.1
Replay Value: 7.9
Rounded to fit GameFAQs Score: 7
The game was a great first title from Acclaim. In fact this game was way better than madden 64, and it outsold it too. The rest of the QB Club series went on a downfall after this game unfortunately with QB Club 99 and 2000 proving to be disastrous efforts from Acclaim against the better Madden games. QB Club 2001 looks to be a better game though, and hopefully it will prove to be better than 98 which is by far, the best of the rest of the QB Club games.