Friday, August 17, 2007

Saturday's Gaming in the Journal

The weekly Gaming page has been sent to the printing press, and folks, this week you're in for a treat. OK, I say that most weeks — if it makes you feel better, I'll tell you right now, next week's isn't too special.

BUT, this week, if you go to page 2C in Saturday's Sports section, you will see a comprehensive review of Madden NFL 08 for the Xbox 360, written by yours truly. It's informative and entertaining, if I do say so myself. You can read an excerpt from it a few posts below this one. I'll throw a link up to it as soon as the story is on the Journal's Web site.

We also have a fantasy football advice column worth reading. All in all, it's a good way to spend a Saturday morning.

I'll tell you, though, one part of "Madden" that I did not get to touch upon in the main review is the advertising within the game. I think EA Sports has gone too far — at least too far if they still intend on charging us full price for the game.

As you wait for games to load, you see a Snickers sign with their slogan "Why Wait?" When you get to the Red Zone, a big advertisement for Reebok's Under Armor pops up, complete with a picture of the guy who screams "We must protect this house!" on the commercials. The popup is big and inconvenient and BRIGHT RED. It would almost be comical, if only they included an audio file of the guy screaming "WE MUST PROTECT THIS HOUSE!" everytime it pops up — but no such luck.

I don't mind the subtle product placement along the facing of a stadium or small on a scoreboard — but this bigger advertising is going a little far for a game I'm paying $59.99 for. I pay for HBO too, and they don't give me ads. Why does EA?

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