Football Superstars – Review
Football Superstars is a free to play online soccer game that offers players intense, competitive soccer matches featuring high-quality graphics and animations. Football Superstars is developed and published by Monumental Games, the same company behind the recently released browser-based Striker Superstars. Football Superstars features real-time soccer action in a variety of forms, from 5-a-side friendlies up to full-on 11-a-side competitive games. There’s very few online games that offer real-time soccer, although Empire of Sports and Kicks Online both gave it a shot, and another upcoming MMO is tackling the genre, Global Soccer.
Character creation is quite extensive in Football Superstars, offering you the opportunity to change your characters skin, hair and facial features. As there are no classes, you don’t have to make any definite decisions outside of your appearance. Originally Football Superstars didn’t include much of a tutorial but an update last year introduced the Puma Academy, an innovative tutorial system that uses various NPC’s to introduce new players to the various mechanics and features in the game. The tutorial takes about 15 minutes to complete for a new player but it really is essential as Football Superstars is not your typical free online game.
There are three types of matches in Football Superstars, Football Superstars Clubs (FSC), Player Managed Clubs (PMC) and Friendlies. There are four FSC clubs available to choose from, Ashtun, Calderfax, Milcester and Frestby. Each team is complete with their own kit, mascot and area of the game world. FSC’s form the foundations of the game as players compete in FSC’s with random teammates, and against random opposition, to earn experience points and in-game currency. Players are free to switch between FSC clubs but are rewarded if they remain at the same FSC for the duration of a season. PMC’s represent the competitive aspect of the game and work in a similar way to guild systems used in other free RPG games, players create their own PMC, kit and badge and can invite other players to join their team. The PMC teams can then compete in various competitions and tournaments, with the majority offering premium currency or item mall equipment as rewards. The PMC games offer a competitive experience unlike anything you’ll find in other online games, there’s something special about the thrill of a cup final that nothing else can compare to.
The matches themselves are mainly based around skill, although stats and in-game abilities play a part. Every kick, run, header and shot has to be controlled with high attention to accuracy and power. There are two types of passes, an automatic pass with space and a manual pass using the left mouse button. These two distinctly different passing techniques offer players complete control over performing brilliant one-two maneuvers or that deadly, defense splitting pass down the middle. The controls themselves resemble those usually associated with free online FPS games, so players used to the fast paced controls and action of a FPS title will feel right at home in Football Superstars.
Overall, Football Superstars is easily the greatest online, real-time soccer game. It offers extensive amounts of character customization and players progress through the levels, regular competitive tournaments and leagues and dozens of different items to create your perfect soccer superstar.
by Blaine Smith
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