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A few years ago, the GameDay series was one of the most dominant football games on the market. Now, I don't even think I could put this in a top five. The biggest problem I found was that I couldn't decipher whether 989 Sports was trying to make this a realistic game, or something out of the arcade. If you really want to play this game, I recommend renting it first.
If this particular incarnation of the game were strictly a PSOne effort, it would be a very good one. However, it falls well short of the mark for the PlayStation 2. Avid fans of the GameDay series may enjoy this title, but would probably benefit from renting it first. Everybody else is probably better off with Madden NFL 2001 or Sega's NFL2K1.
GameDay 2001 for the PlayStation 2 is basically a cleaner looking version of its PlayStation counterpart. That may be good enough for fans who swear by the GameDay series, but those who've seen and played Madden on the PlayStation 2 will immediately see the difference and recognize that NFL GameDay 2001 is merely a PlayStation game posing as a PlayStation 2 product.
There are a lot of cool options including a solid create-a-player feature and decent stat tracking and roster management. But, none of it matters if you can't get past the AI and gameplay issues.
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I wish I could go back and change the score on my PSX review of Gameday 2001. I gave that game a 59 overall, including a pair of fifties in gameplay and replay value. But then again, I gave 989 the benefit of the doubt on the 32-bit hardware. On the PS2, I expect something at least a little better. Instead I got a regurgitation of the same game that sucked then. Guess what? It sucks now.
We don't feel this way just because the game is far below the standards set by the first generation of PlayStation2 games. It's also because this horrible travesty might cheat a couple of otherwise unsuspecting parents, who meant to buy Madden, out of their hard-earned money with a game that even a chimpanzee with a transplanted goldfish brain could see was unfinished.
Back when PlayStation first debuted, EA canned Madden '96 because it was not up to their standards. Maybe Sony should have paid attention and followed suit with GameDay 2001. Not only is this game just plain bad (believe us, it's wretched), but it's simply nowhere near complete. It's full of problems that don't just show up sporadically, but in almost every single play.