Game review: NCAA College Football 14

Michael Klein, Editor in Chief

EA Sports has greatly profited from its exclusive licensing agreements with both the NCAA and NFL and essentially monopolized the football sports genre of video games.The problem for fans, however, is that EA’s motto “It’s in the game,” has been a hit or miss proposition. Every year seems to bring a gimmicky addition that replaces beloved staple features of years past. NCAA Football ’14 and Madden 25 are no exception.

As far as in-game gameplay is concerned, though, NCAA took a major step forward and fans of the series have reason for optimism. Better runner control, especially during the option where you can finally pick your hole and hit it, finally gives players the ability to control their players and create highlight worthy replays.

The Dynasty Mode continues to be the most valuable mode, despite its flaws. Recruitment is essential to maintaining a successful dynasty. Developers made it much easier in ’14 and, sadly, dumbed it down so much that it loses the control of previous years. Also, sloppily added RPG elements seem forced in and distracting.

A valuable returning “new” feature, and a personal favorite of mine, allows the transfer of rookie draft prospects from the college game to Madden. The subtraction of this from last year’s game was a major letdown because it added unequivocal value to both titles. Plus, EA allows file sharing between gamers and makes it possible to replace the generic “QB #4” with players’ actual names. The real NCAA is in hot water over using student athletes’ likenesses for profit. There are folks online trying to do the same thing with the names by charging up to $20 for the rosters.

Casual fans will enjoy freely scampering about while long-time fans may be let down by a cheapened overall Dynasty Mode. EA manages to give just enough to make up for what it takes away. Let’s hope that next year they can put it all together.