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FIFA Soccer 2002 (GameCube) artwork

FIFA Soccer 2002 (GameCube) review


"For a game that prides itself on international play, and whose main gameplay mode is ''World Cup Qualification,'' I was incredibly disappointed at the lack of an actual World Cup tournament. Considering this is a 2002 title, this is unforgivable, and has caused me to not recommend the game to anyone who wants to take their team to the world championship. "



I'll admit it: I've just recently become a fan of international football, or, for fellow Yankees, soccer. It's a wonderful sport, with subtle tackles, monstrous drop-kicks, and elegant goal-scoring. Though I'm still predominantly a fan of American football (and hockey, of course), there's no doubt in my mind that rest-of-the-world football is the best sport on Earth, and EA's Fifa Soccer 2002 falls just short of capturing the essence of international play.

Granted, the gameplay is excellent: it fully captures the splendor of every sliding tackle, every lob pass, every play, save, and header; EA did a wonderful job recreating real-life football. The controls are simple, with B for a lob pass/sliding tackle, A for a ground pass/change of current defensive player, Y for sprinting, and X for a shot/conservative (poke) tackle. It is flawless, and every element of the game has been taken into consideration.

The graphics, although not to the GameCube's full potential, are great, with full player detail and field detail used to perfection. The grass looks real, and the crowd is actually fully animated. The players are surprisingly detailed for a game with tons of players--almost every national team in existence is represented, including Major League Soccer teams. The ball moves realistically, and the player animations are, for the most part, believable. One thing I did notice, though not affecting the gameplay--or immersion--at all, is that, when the ball hits the back of the net, the exact same animation plays for the net, no matter how hard the ball entered it. It's only really noticable in replay anyway, and, of course, doesn't affect the game at all.

What does affect the game, however, are the countless bugs and horrible presentation. One time, while playing through a match, the game literally froze beyond repair. The only solution was to shut off the power on the GameCube, losing all the files that I hadn't saved up to that point (which was only that one match, one that I had to play three times before finally actually finishing it). Also, clipping does sometimes occur, though collision detection is, for the most part, spot-on.

For a game that prides itself on international play, and whose main gameplay mode is ''World Cup Qualification,'' I was incredibly disappointed at the lack of an actual World Cup tournament. Considering this is a 2002 title, this is unforgivable, and has caused me to not recommend the game to anyone who wants to take their team to the world championship. Luckily, there is a complete Season mode, whose only main use is for the MLS anyway.

Overall, Fifa Soccer 2002 is an incredible disappointment, and, although the gameplay is stellar, I can't recommend this game as a justifiable purchase, but for a rental, it should welcome lots of fun, multiplayer action, or a few single-player matches for good, old fashioned international football.

Rating: 6.9/10

Knux's avatar
Staff review by Zack M (Date unavailable)

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