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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Tecmo Super Bowl to be revived as Tecmo Bowl Throwback on Xbox 360 and PS3



Fans of the classic football game franchise, Tecmo Super Bowl, are cheering.

Game publisher Tecmo officially announced on Tuesday a downloadable console game based on the Nintendo classic. The Entertainment Software Rating Board ruined the surprise a couple weeks ago when it leaked info about the game before the publisher was ready to hike.

Tbt-3 Tecmo Bowl Throwback is a remake of the Super Nintendo game that redefined the genre. We called the original, along with Super Mario Bros. and Legend of Zelda (excluding Oregon Trail), a timeless classic.

Throwback will be available via download in the spring on Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade and Sony's PlayStation Network. Players will be able to play online against friends, who can debate whether to set the play mode to the new 3-D or old-school 2-D graphic style. Online leaderboards will track stats.

Unlike the original, the game will not feature actual NFL team and player names. That's because Electronic Arts has an exclusive agreement with the league, led by its dominating Madden franchise. Throwback will instead allow players to customize names and uniforms.

Other games have tried to wiggle into the huge football gaming market without the blessing of the NFL and have mostly failed.

All-Pro Football 2K8, the spiritual successor to the NFL 2K series and ESPN games, saw one iteration before disappearing. Blitz: The League, which tried to make up for a lack of NFL endorsement with edgy content like steroid use, likewise did not gain a major following.

A new entrant called Backbreaker will try its hand in May, relying on visual magic to woo gamers. But Tecmo is hoping to capitalize on the warm and fuzzy feelings many have about their first digital football love.

In the Throwback news release, the company adds that the game has been rated "E for everyone" by the ESRB. The publisher somehow managed not to refer to the ratings board as "blabbermouths."

-- Mark Milian

Image credits: Tecmo