Track And Field 2
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4  |  Track and Field 2 Review
larsoncc , 1/16/2003 4:57:33 AM

I know Kung Fu! (pic) When I first played Track and Field II on the NES so many years ago, I couldn't believe the graphics.  Now, I still can't believe the graphics, but NOT IN A GOOD WAY.  I picked this game up again for a whopping $2, at FunCoLand, which usually prices games a bit high.  All the quality games go in the "please steal me" bin, which is where I found this gem.

Anyway, there's about a billion events in Track and Field 2.  The events are themed after Olympic events, or (as the title suggests) track and field events.   All of them involve mashing buttons.  Your fingers will be sore, unless you have the NES Max.  Basically, fencing and the karate event are identical in that you hold down the turbo button and the right arrow.  In karate (Tae Kwon Do, actually), the action is interrupted about every two seconds when your opponent falls to the floor in a heap.  I remembered that as being cool - my memory is flawed.  It sucks.

The running, pole vaulting, high jump, etc etc events are all the same, too.  That is to say, they're all similarly terrible.  There's a certain satisfaction in them - they remind me a lot of Track and Field, where you and a buddy mash buttons at the same time to win a foot race.  But the magic of this style of play (alternating mashing of buttons) fades fast.  You start to realize "Hey!  I'm never going to get this time of my life BACK!"

The artwork in the game has gone from incredible to interesting over the years.  I am still amazed by what they could manage to do with 16 on screen colors, and the sprite size (size of the characters) was huge, relative to other NES games.  They really did have some talented people working on Track and Field 2.  It's also not flawed in terms of gameplay - I don't LIKE the game, but at least I was able to pick it up again, after all these years, with no instruction manual.  Even playing the Archery section wasn't like brain surgery.  I was happy to be able to play something that wasn't bottom of the barrel bad.  I have a sneaking suspicion that this game will sit on my shelf for some time before I pick it up again, though. 

I give Track and Field 2 a 4/10.  Not hideous, but still a failure.

Other Screen Shots: Archery | Fencing | Title Screen

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