FRONT PAGE FOOTBALL is an American Football managing game which puts you in as Head Coach of your
favourite (or as close to it as legally / copyright possible) NFL team. This is a strategy game which can take as
long to play one match as it does in real life or you can simply select to see the result.
The first thing you need to do is name your Coach - this is you but you don't have to use your real name, so you
can be Coach Jones or Mike Ditka or Dan Marino if you want. Then you select the team you want to coach from
the list available. This list shows the City name and then their team name but although the cities are actual NFL
cities with teams, the team names, and all the players, have been changed to protect the
Coaches are given all the necessary team information: the Roster of players, the Field (where training sessions are
assigned), the League (Front Page News news) Standings (League Tables) Schedule (Games played and to be played)
Statistics - player and match stats according to the type of game played and the result etc. This is a stat-based strategy
game, just the same as the NFL itself is.
Games last 60 minutes, 4 x 15 minute quarters, and is played in real time. During the game you get to select each play,
Offence or Defence, depending on whether your team is attacking or defending and you only get 30 seconds unless you
use a Time-Out and you don't get many of those.
Whether you are on Offence or Defence you are given a list, a menu if you like, of plays from which to choose. Simply
highlight your selection and click the left button - the players then implement your choice to the best of their abilities.
When it comes to Kick-Off, Punts, Field Goals and PATs the team goes into automatic - you don't have to choose. I
would think that there is a button to allow you to select going for 2 points but I was so caught up in the game that there
was no time during the game to look for it - besides the moment I scored a Touchdown the players immediately lined
up for the Point After; there was no 30 second leeway.
If you choose to just get the result you only have to press the button and all the live action is immediately bypassed to
the score. However you not only get the score you also get the stats from the game, the yardage won and lost, for all
Running and Catching yards, the Quarterbacks ratings, the Sacks and Tackles. In fact all you need to make notes so that
you can adjust your training methods.
Under Traning (Field) you are presented with rows and columns of boxes. In each box there opens a menu of just a few
options which include choices of Offence, Defence, QB, Team, Scrimmages, Video watching, Physical, Tensity, training
modes; you can, on some of them, also select the specific player to put through their paces. This is a very involved game.
I mentioned the Cities and Teams earlier. Here is a list of the teams you can select. Once selected you can change the name
to whatever you want.
Detroit Wildcats, Minnesota Northmen, Green Bay Loggers, Chicago Grizzlies, Tampa Bay Pirates, Atlanta Wings,
New Orleans Knights, Carolina Leopards, San Francisco Goldminers, Seattle Hornets, Arizona Jays, St Louis Goats,
Dallas Gunslingers, Washington Indians, New York Cyclops, Philadelphia Hawks, Miami Sharks, Houston Gunners.
As you can see, the designers have tried to name the teams as close to their original names or what the city may be known
for: Chicago Grizzlies (Bears), Detroit Wildcats (Lions), SanFrancisco Goldminers (49ers) etc.
I'm not going to tell you that this is the best NFL game I have played either for its action or player interaction, but it did
get me involved and I spent a good 3-4 hours after installing it playing 2 full games and several Results Only games on the
bounce. It gives satisfaction when you choose the right play and gain yards or stop yards and anguish/frustration when you
are outmaneuvered by the games fairly decent A.I. It doesn't have the edge of the seat excitement that you get from games
like Madden where you are furiously wiggling your joystick and pressing buttons like mad as the player with the ball goes
on a crazy run with you controlling either him or the player chasing him.
Overall though, Front Page Football delivers.