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Backbreaker News Post

GamerPros has posted their hands-on preview of Backbreaker.

Quote:
"The game plays as one would hope. As the wide receivers takes off from the line of scrimmage and starts to run his route, the defensive back covering him will backpedal with him. When the receiver breaks, the defender will break with him. He’ll then keep one eye on the ball, and the other on his man.

Speaking of passing, tossing the pigskin is mapped to right stick. You scan the field with the right stick, and when you find an open receiver, you flick up to pass. You can also pre-select receivers in focus mode."

Game: BackbreakerReader Score: 6/10 - Vote Now
Platform: PS3 / Xbox 360Votes for game: 50 - View All
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Member Comments
# 1 SouthernBrick @ 03/02/10 03:17 AM
Looks like they did stick with the same control scheme. I like the depth of the scheme a lot. I just hope It translates well into the game. Hopefully they'll have a few different schemes, If not I trust they'll likely have It working well.

"The level of customization will keep players engrossed."

Thank you Donald.

“you can create your high school team, your college team, or even your pro team. You can make the team you always wanted to make.”

To bad you can't take these teams online against anyone that isn't in your friends list but, I got enough friends to play with.
 
# 2 KBLover @ 03/02/10 04:20 AM
Finally, some more info.

Interesting control scheme. That will be an adjustment for sure.

The camera view and Road to Backbreaker sound pretty unique as well.
 
# 3 SouthernBrick @ 03/02/10 04:28 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Afrikan
you can always add people as friends right before you play them....
Oh I know. Thats what I meant by I have enough friends already to play with although It would be nice to play random people but, Its understandable why they done this.
 
# 4 statnut @ 03/02/10 10:43 AM
I added one paragraph to the story this morning.

"One play in particular stood out. The quarterback dropped back to pass, and found himself in trouble. Scrambling right, he evaded a tackle and started scrambling right. He then pulled off a spin, and switched to aggressive mode, picking up 5-10 yards on the play. What was remarkable about it was how natural the whole play looked from start to finish, from the quarterback escaping pressure to the defensive players pursuing and attempting to tackle him."
 
# 5 kjcheezhead @ 03/02/10 10:55 AM
"The player rating system seems to be different from other games. Said Donald, “Our attribute system is not as in your face. We’re not presenting a massive grid of players. There are gold, silver, and bronze players. The attribute system works hand in hand with euphoria, takes it away from becoming a dice rolling system.”

It sounds like this game has ratings like APF2k8 but it says the system is different from other games. Interesting that they don't feel its a dice roll system, now I'm wondering how this works and how/if players will progress.
 
# 6 roadman @ 03/02/10 11:09 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kjcheezhead
"The player rating system seems to be different from other games. Said Donald, “Our attribute system is not as in your face. We’re not presenting a massive grid of players. There are gold, silver, and bronze players. The attribute system works hand in hand with euphoria, takes it away from becoming a dice rolling system.”

It sounds like this game has ratings like APF2k8 but it says the system is different from other games. Interesting that they don't feel its a dice roll system, now I'm wondering how this works and how/if players will progress.
That was my exact same thoughts. When I read , gold, sliver and bronze, I'm like, what, APF had that too.
 
# 7 stiffarmleft @ 03/02/10 11:48 AM
As far as right stick passing, can you throw the ball to any location on the field, or does it lock on to a receiver, also can you lead and overthrow receivers.
 
# 8 allBthere @ 03/02/10 12:02 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stiffarmleft
As far as right stick passing, can you throw the ball to any location on the field, or does it lock on to a receiver, also can you lead and overthrow receivers.
great question.

I really can't wait to buy this and play the **** out of it.
 
# 9 adamgod8 @ 03/02/10 12:12 PM
You switch between receivers by scanning the field with the right stick...if you want to "lock-on" to a player the L2 button is a focus mode that tracks your targeted receiver and makes your pass more accurate but takes away from your peripheal visio, leaving you more likely to be blindsided. As for leading the reciever, I have no idea.
 
# 10 KBLover @ 03/02/10 12:22 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kjcheezhead
It sounds like this game has ratings like APF2k8 but it says the system is different from other games. Interesting that they don't feel its a dice roll system, now I'm wondering how this works and how/if players will progress.
It probably will be absolute with adjustments based on angle and whatnot.

For example, if the Player A has 50 STR and Player B has 30 STR

And the "rules":

If hit from the side, the first player will "lose" 50% of his strength in staying upright or whatever.

If a ball carrier is hit by a tackler with at least 50% of his strength rating he will be slowed down and have to regain his top speed.

Player A will always win against player B in a straight up hit, but player A will be slowed down some (50 * 50% = 25, and player B's strength is higher than that, so he doesn't bring Player A down, but does slow him down some. Maybe some higher strength LBs can come finish him off.

However, Player B will always win against player A if hitting from the side (50 * 50% = 25, which is less than Player B's 30 STR). So if B is able to hit and wrap from the side he can force A down, but A will continue moving forward before going down due to physics and not being strong enough to stop A's momentum completely.

Things like that can make it not be a die roll system, but still use their physics/Euphoria to determine when/where/how/what state the ballcarrier (in this example) was hit from and the result.

For example, if A is slowed from B's straight on hit - perhaps a "rule" could be that if a ballcarrier is stumbling, he loses 50% of his strength until he regains his balance. So now another player of B's strength could hit player A straight on while he's stumbling and knock/bring him to the ground.

Everything is absolute, but still will "feel" random because of physics and the angles, etc.
 
# 11 stiffarmleft @ 03/02/10 12:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by adamgod8
You switch between receivers by scanning the field with the right stick...if you want to "lock-on" to a player the L2 button is a focus mode that tracks your targeted receiver and makes your pass more accurate but takes away from your peripheal visio, leaving you more likely to be blindsided. As for leading the reciever, I have no idea.
Thanks, I hope inaccurate passing is represented well and the ability to lead receivers is implemented. Being able to throw to an area of the field instead of a particular receiver would be a nice feature, but i'm not quite sure how you could do this. For the most part this game looks to have addressed a lot of what I want to see in a football game, plus some things I never thought of, these English blokes seem to have a good handle on American football. I hope it sells well so that it has a chance to improve with future releases, but I have a feeling this will not be an annual release.
 
# 12 strawberryshortcake @ 03/03/10 05:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by thedude213
Insightful. Informative. Short, simple, sweet and to the point.

I see features as the cherry on top. Solid gameplay will essentially make solid features that much sweeter. However, I was hoping for a little bit (a lot) more insight. I was hopnig for more insight with regards to actual on-the-field-player-player-interactions, including off-ball player-player interactions, and off-ball defensive and offensive artificial intelligence, and situational/procedural awareness.

Hopefully we'll get articles delving into these aspects as they show up in the upcoming days/week(s) from early previews, especially those at these preview events. Sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, I believe we’ll be getting the same type of reviews that will continue to only touch on the surface of backbreaker’s euphoria technology and game features (e.g. franchise, etc.), rather than on the field football fundamentals.

Seeing as how 3rd person camera will actually magnify a player's demeanor, behavior, movements, situational awareness and on the field football intelligence, it would have actually have been crucial for team NaturalMotion to have gone deeper into these aspects with those fortunate enough to be present at these preview events. Features are nice, but let's talk gameplay (other than tackles) and what a “backbreaker football player” is capable of doing on the field, and how closely it resembles what a real live, real football player can do. Right now, euphoria (& naturalmotion tech) = physics. But the question remains what part of NaturalMotion’s tech = football intelligence/ football physics?

As of right now, we are seeing more and more partial snippets of gameplay, all I really know definitively is tackle intelligence. It has been stated that defenders are programmed (and modified to numb ultra aggression) to take down the offensive ball handler at all cost. Tackling is a small part of football, but what about the segment prior and between snap-and-tackle. What about player-player interaction without the ball? (OL vs DL; WR vs. DB, etc.). Tackles is the end product, but what about all the flavors that coat Backbreaker immediately before and after the football snap? How will they stand up to the test?

I would like future developer's diary to present videos to (finally) illustrate CPU vs. CPU artificial intelligence, situational and procedural awareness. With each passing interview and developer's diary that continue to solely focus on what we already know, I grow more concerned. Gameplay CPU vs. CPU match-ups (offensive and defensive cameras) without “player vs. CPU” or “player vs. player” involvements.

I am always excited to see new Backbreaker footage, but it's getting little bit frustrating not seeing more focus on off-ball player awareness, player-player interactions, and artificial intelligence. If they are not natural (in 'motion') it could very well be a problem even if we can completely customize the NFL from scratch. I believe more off-ball player interactions and situational awareness segments (and not simply brief moments) would give this game strong football credibility, if and if it replicates football.

I believe NaturalMotion should have forked over true gameplay footage much, much earlier rather than keeping it secretive until 2 months before release. Any issues or problems that critics see with this game could have been better fleshed out and polished if the developers worked closer with the community, especially critics.
If I was a new and upcoming developer, I would want all the negatives that critics can dish out. I would want to prove them wrong. Plus, if you want to understand how something works, ask the experts. Ask those who have first hand experience. I am hoping NaturalMotion enlisted the help of real football players at each and every single position. Based on gameplay footage and web reactions, right now, NaturalMotion is falling short.

I will remain optimistic at this point but it’s rather difficult based on recent gameplay footages and knowing the time is ticking, fast. Two months is a very short time frame. Regardless, I will be supporting this game when it comes out hoping that it will give other developers (i.e. especially 2ksports) an understanding that a solid game of football is what truly works. Because guess what? Sales figure do dictate what developers do.

If sales figure for Backbreaker are solid, 2ksports must take notice that official NFL branding is not an absolute requirement to sell “video game football.”

EDIT:
On the flip side, the problem with Backbreaker not succeeding is that it gives 2ksports (or another developer) another reason not to create a generic and fully customizable football game. THIS is why backbreaker one needs to do well. Football fundamentals need to be fixed, quick. I pray for Backbreaker success.
 
# 13 strawberryshortcake @ 03/03/10 08:21 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by granddogg
that said it about 2yrs they had former pro players and coach helping with insite
Sounds good, but would have preferred pro players and coaches to have given initial insights and also to be proactively involved during the entire development phase.

Meaning pro-players and coaches taking a look at actual gameplay footage including initial, initial-middle, middle, middle-final, near-final, pre-final AND pre-close to find build and dissect the football physics, football mechanics and football intelligence, and make crucial suggestions that developers take and implement. Basically, each and every step of the way. Personally, I hate to see the “final build” so close to release date. If the “final build” was 6 to 7 months out, at least the window of opportunity to fix any issues would be easier.

Quick points. Unbiased critics and even fans of backbreaker have noted is that OL/DL interaction, WR/DB interaction along with QB throwing motion and other things seems off. Here's hoping the final build is at minimum 10 times better than what we've seen in preliminary gameplay footage.

Developers (or anyone) can take notes of what experts/critics/pro-players/coaches have to say, but unless the experts/critics/pro-players/coaches see it in action (hands-on), they won't know how well their initial insights on paper will translate on screen.

Here’s one quick example (hopefully, and really needs to be fixed in the final build) of poor football intelligence, and it’s things like this where coaches/pro-players/experts would have caught this even before the “half-way build” of the game. Happens in the very beginning of the video:

@0:19 – 0:30 mark [ Missed Block ]
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xnmSCoQgIQ
1. QB#19 scrambles out of the pocket and commits to running the ball.
2. Offensive player (WR#?) allows DL#79 a free pass to tackle the QB.
3. Offensive player fails to make a block or even motion/attempt to make the block (or temporarily impede DL#79's progress, or simply change DL#79's pursuit angle)
4. Offensive player remains in static position, uncertain about what to do.
5. EDIT: Offensive player's should also be able to make "big hits" too, not just the defense.


 
# 14 cam21224 @ 03/04/10 04:45 AM
Sadly, users will not have the ability to share their rosters online, for legal reasons. However, you will be able to take your team online, and your friends can see what you’ve created.

That sucks, looking forward to playing this gm however lil disappointed cause it probably would have been some good rosters made by fellow members.
 
# 15 cam21224 @ 03/04/10 07:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by hatisback
We can still probably save and swap files using a flashdrive for PS3 or the transfer kit for 360. No worries.
Awesome.
 
# 16 CreatineKasey @ 03/04/10 07:50 PM
We can still run leagues online. We'd just need to all create our own individual teams and ensure our guys are in our friends list. I've been through enough of this in APF.
 

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