Seven years ago or more, I discovered my favorite football game, Football Mogul.
Most football games require some degree of hand-eye coordination and dexterity. You've got to be able to hit the buttons in the right order at the right time, or else you get stomped by a 12-year-old. Football Mogul, though, was different. You were the GM – the guy making the decisions. You didn't play wide receiver; you decided which receiver was going to play. You decided which up-and-comer you were going to draft in the first round, and then you decided how much to pay him. Right down to the prices for the beer and nachos at the concession stands, you made the call. Then you sat back and watched your team perform, to see if you made the right decisions. No more missing a touchdown catch because you sneezed at the wrong time. No more button-mashing. And no more sneering 12-year-olds.
I played that old version of Football Mogul until the computer it was on crashed, tragically taking my dreams of dynasty with it. Now, there's Football Mogul 2010 and all of my favorite aspects of the game are still there (except the newspaper headlines — I really miss those). But there are two things that are new to me.
The first thing I noticed, which isn't new to this edition but is to me, is the in-game play calling. It's been around for a while, but it's an awesome feature which allows not control of the play itself, but the decision on which play is called. It really elevates Football Mogul to another level.
The additions that are getting the most attention, however, are the new roster options. You've got real rosters, which again has been around for a while, but new for Football Mogul 2010, you get rosters for any team all the way back to the AFL-NFL merger. You can replay the glory days of your favorite franchise, or take over a downtrodden team and see if you can turn them around. If you've ever wondered why a coach never played a certain backup QB, you can now find out (and maybe, just maybe, the coach was wrong). The old, no-names option is still there too for those hardcore fans who want to make their own history rather than replaying history.
Not so obvious (unless you've played previous versions) is that the game engine is faster. I noticed this right away, but figured it was just the difference between my shiny new laptop and my ancient, hamster-powered laptop. But no – the folks at Sports Mogul have refined the simulation engine so that the game actually is much faster, and that's a huge improvement.
Football Mogul 2010 has a lot going for it, and not much that I could find to complain about. What first attracted me to the game is still true today — unlike other football sims, you can't blame losing that big game on a poorly-timed sneeze. And, if those 12-year-olds still taunt you, well maybe football just isn't your game after all.
Football Mogul 2010 is rated E (Everyone) by the ESRB.