Tuesday, October 10, 2006

In Tecmo Memory of Tommie Agee

What up. This blog is nearing the end of its 7th Tecmo Super Bowl season in the last month. Here are some trends that this blog has noticed so far:

-The Computer A.I. is a bastard when you win too many games. The primary way the COM enforces its will is by making you fumble at an alarming rate. This blog recently lost a game 12-7 in which the team Pun City was controlling fumbled at the opponent's 1, 32, 20, and 10 yard lines. One of the fumbles was returned for a touchdown, and the other led to a touchdown. Both extra points were blocked by Pun City. Frustrating as all get-out.

-The computer doesn't like the Cowboys' Tommie Agee. Agee has been injured 7 separate occasions, including 6 of the 7 seasons. One of the seasons, the computer seemed to have forgotten to injure him, until he got injured in the 4th quarter of the 17th (and final) game.

-The computer likes the 49ers. The 49ers have been to the 2nd round of the playoffs in every season, winning 2 Super Bowls, losing another, and playing in 5 NFC championship games. (The playoffs haven't gotten underway for the 7th season, but San Francisco has qualified as the #1 seed in the NFC).

-All facets of the game become more challenging during the final 6 regular-season games. Most notably is the running game, because the linebackers are more aggressive and fill the gaps normally left open in the first 10 games. If you are somehow able to get past the linebackers, it's pretty easy to break away for about 20-25 yards. Then the suddenly-faster and less forgiving safeties catch you. This significantly deters one from running late in the season (unless a major weapon like Bo Jackson or Barry Sanders is on the team).

-Passing becomes difficult as well, but passing plays do work, albeit unconventionally. The main problem is the computer's propensity to call the correct play about every 3rd play. Even if the right play isn't called, the receivers are typically all covered late in the season. This leaves the unpleasant option (hiyo) of running the quarterback. QBs are normally slow, have trouble breaking tackles, and are a frequent target for the forced fumble. That said, you can still get about 8 yards per carry even with the slowest of these bums. This is a slow, methodical way to win. If you're lucky enough to have enough time to go on this type of deliberate drive, you'll probably win.

-Unfortunately....the computer will normally do one of the following:
A) Force a fumble, which it then recovers, or
B) Let you go slowly down the field when you don't have time to sustain this type of a drive (i.e. right before the half or near the end of the game.

-This is rough. The best ways this blog has found to deal with it are:
A) Run right next to the sidelines so even if (when) you do fumble, there's a good chance it goes out of bounds and you retain possession.

B) Run out of bounds at the slightest sign of contact. They can't force the fumble if you're out of bounds. A disadvantage to this option is that you lose at least 2 yards every time. Especially problematic on 4th downs. An advantage is that it stops the clock, helpful in 2-minute situations.

C) Try and hit open, short-pattern receivers. Throwing the ball is extremely risky because the computer seems to intercept the ball more in the last 6 games as well. Especially ridiculous interceptions such as the linebacker jumping 20 feet in the air, blocked players springing up from the ground to jump in front of the pass, or a normally accurate QB inexplicably deciding to overthrow the receiver by 10 yards (or wide right, or some other previously unbelievable act of treason). This blog usually tries to make the throw as short as possible by moving the QB to the same "height" on the field as the receiver. This limits the defense's opportunity to disrupt the play, assuming a blitz hasn't interfered already.

D) Pick pass plays with short routes, especially those with the 1st or 2nd option in the pattern on a short route. This helps gain positive yardage even if the computer calls your play. The one advantage of the computer guessing your play is that, if you are able to get the pass off, most of the defense has already been dispatched to the backfield. The field opens up beyond the line of scrimmage, and a lot of this blog's big plays in the last 6 games come on this type of move.

Alright, that's a Super Tecmo primer. Maybe it was self-evident, it almost certainly wasn't visionary, but it's what Pun City runs. Maybe this blog can put that on its resume and apply for Super Tecmo Bowl coaching jobs.


Anonymous Tony said...

Face it, you're a loser in the eyes of Tecmo.

9:42 PM  
Blogger Cooler Brian said...

Just the eyes of Tecmo? Sweet!

9:11 AM  

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