Good old Sony - when it comes to sports games, they just refuse to lie down and take a beating.
Over here it's with the This is Football titles, which just keep on coming despite PES and FIFA kicking them into touch year after year. And in the States, just as EA bags a load of official licenses and declares its intention to release a game based on every sport ever invented, and probably patent the words "ball", "net" and "pitch" into the bargain, up pops Sony with new American football franchise Road To Sunday.
But this sports sim has a twist which might just make it stand out from the EA crowd. RTS is billed as "the first ever sports entertainment drama", blending action both on and off the field to create a mission-based storyline. Sort of like the WWE SmackDown series. Or TOCA Race Driver. OH DAMN AND BLAST IT.
It follows the adventure of sports mogul Blake Doogan, who inherits a professional football team after his dad is killed in a mysterious explosion whilst on holiday in Jamaica.
Turns out Pops was involved with some dodgy deals with a local crimelord over there and borrowed a load of cash off him, and Blake has inherited the debt as well as the team.
So now, with the help of sidekick Harry and a bunch of blokes in shoulder pads, Blake has to win the championship, pay off the kingpin and probably learn a valuable lesson about the price of victory and the value of friendship or something, and sharpish.
During matches you can take on various team roles thanks to the "position specific gameplay" feature, and you have to complete individual tasks as well as win the game.
When you're not on the field you'll find yourself caught up in a seedy underworld of guns, gambling, scary men and naked ladies. You can also join the kingpin's underground fighting league, providing you remember that the first rule of the underground fighting league is that you don't talk about the underground fighting league etc.
Road to Sunday will launch in the States this winter, but there's no word yet on a European release. We'll keep you posted.
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