Winning One For the Little GuysThough THQ, 2K Sports and EA Sports dominate the sports game industry every year, some of 2010's most newsworthy developments did not come from the big three. QuickHit Football, the free-to-play online American football simulation, lands a rare license to use the National Football League's teams and symbols replica Patek Philippe 5107/1J Men's Watch one of only two video games other than Madden with such branding. NLL Lacrosse 2010, which ships over the Xbox Live Indie Games channel, becomes the first indie game fully licensed by a professional sports league and also using its players' likenesses.
Backbreaker, the console challenger to Madden, delivers a new gameplay perspective and ultra-realistic physics to the contact sport when it arrives in May. Critically panned at release, developer NaturalMotion Games regroups and delivers a patch that practically remakes the game by the time Madden NFL 11 ships in August. NaturalMotion sees more success with its Backbreaker iPhone apps, a port of the console game's popular “Tackle Alley” minigame. The U.K. based developer then confirms it is working on replica Patek Philippe 3802/200J Men's Watch an ice hockey simulation, “Icebreaker.”Million-Dollar BabyComing off an abysmal showing with MLB 2K9, 2K Sports ramps up the publicity machine for MLB 2K10, laying out a $1 million bounty for whomever throws the first perfect game (all 27 opposing batters retired without reaching base).
The studio scores the heartwarming PR coup of 2010 when the winner turns out to be Wade McGilberry of Semmes, Ala., an earnest, 23-year-old married man for whom a $60 video game purchase is something of an extravagance in the household budget. Wade, who came home from work and twirled the perfecto on release day, declares the prize money will go to pay off the mortgage on their home. And, with the security of a replica Patek Philippe 5066-1A Watch sum in a savings account, he and his wife, Katy, made plans to have their first child. “We were waiting for our finances to come together before we started,” Katy said. Thanks to a video game, “Now we can.”That's right. Bejeweled 3. PopCap Games' match-three puzzle game has sunk its casual claws into my mind and now I can't stop playing this thing.