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Tecmo Bowl

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Nintendo 3DS
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The most popular American football game to hit the NES console, Tecmo Bowl pits the player vs. the computer in 11 game single-elimination playoff action, or you can go head-to-head with a human opponent in action or coach mode. There are 12 teams of real NFL players (circa 1988) to choose from, but don't look for official NFL team logos or mascots like Bears or Dolphins--Tecmo Bowl has the NFLPA but not the NFL license.

The play perspective is top-down and the screen scrolls horizontally. Player graphics are large and colorful, which is made possible by limiting the number of players to nine per team. Animated cut-scenes are shown following touchdowns and at half-time, and crowds are shown filling the endzone seats.

There are four plays to choose from on offense--usually two runs and two passes. The player takes control of the quarterback before the snap and then either hands off to the running back or works through his receiver progression from the top to the bottom of the screen. Defense consists of trying to guess which offensive play the opponent will select and then taking control of one of the defensive players before the snap. A very simple power meter system is used for kicking field goals, extra points, and punts.

There are no game or season stats and there is no way to save your season, but there is a password feature allowing you to resume tournament play where you left off.


Tecmo Bowl Arcade Kick-Off.
Tecmo Bowl NES Title
Tecmo Bowl NES The ball is marked with X. This field goal wasn't very successful...
Tecmo Bowl Game Boy The game is about to begin - Kick Off!

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The Press Says

Digital Press - Classic Video Games NES Jan 03, 2005 9 out of 10 90
The Video Game Critic NES Aug 11, 2004 B+ 83
All Game Guide NES 1998 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
All Game Guide Game Boy 1998 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
Joystick (French) Game Boy Dec, 1991 77 out of 100 77
Nintendo Life Wii Mar 13, 2007 7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars7 Stars 70
Gamervision NES Jan 15, 2008 7 out of 10 70
IGN Wii Mar 13, 2007 7 out of 10 70
Nintendo Power Magazine Game Boy Sep, 1991 3.3 out of 5 66
Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) Game Boy Nov, 1991 6.5 out of 10 65


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Tecmo Bowl was voted # 38 in Game Informer Magazine's Top 100 Games of All Time poll ("100 Issue Spectacular," August 2001).
Contributed to by PCGamer77 (3028), Michael Cassidy (4507), chirinea (33100) and Sciere (234463)