AGH Atari 2600 Review:

by M-Network (Mattel)

Super Challenge Football
The simplicity of early video football contests is its biggest weakness but also can be considered one if its best assets. Sure, realism is nice (take a look at Madden for the newer systems), but sometimes it's neat to be able to play a game based on a complex sport without having to consult a 100-page manual just to get started. C'mon, admit it. You played the heck out of Atari 2600 Football!

Anyways, Super Challenge Football, along with Atari's RealSports Football, represented the second generation of 2600 Football games, and they strived to add more realism than what the originals did. First of all, there are more players on the field. Also, you can individually program each player to perform a particular function before each snap of the football. This is a time when knowledge of workable strategy is a distinct advantae. There may be several linemen sent out on a pass pplay, for instance, even though only one receiver may be programmed. This should confuse the other team for awhile.

Of course, this is still football for the Atari 2600 that we're talking about here, so don't expect much complexity or realism. Your players cannot and do not kick. Linemen who run off the field at one end of the screen will reappear on the other end. This is not, for those of you who may be unaware, acceptable football procedure. Here in the video version, however, a move like this comes in quite handy when your linebacker is way behind the quarterback in a pass situation. Running off the screen and then on again places the linebacker in a great field position.

With the exception of the lack of kicking option, this is a respectable video game version of football. The graphics are less appealing and detailed than Intellivision NFL Football (from which it's derived from), but that's to be expected. You can tell who or what has the ball at any given point in time, so at least that's a plus. Super Challenge Football's biggest flaw, however, is also the same one that's inherent in the Intellivision version. This game is for two players and two players only. So don't bother plugging in this cart for solitaire action because you won't get any. Because of this, I'm putting this one a notch below Atari's RealSports Football.

Title Super Challenge Football
Publisher M-Network
System Atari 2600 (VCS)
Graphics 7
Sound 6
Gameplay 6
Overall 6
Reviewer Keita Iida

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