Cricket 07

Format: PS2
EA Sports

5 030930 052720
Age Restrictions: 3+
23 November 2006

With embellished gameplay, a wealth of tournaments, genuine equipment and authoritative new commentary from Mark Nicholas and Richie Benaud, you won't experience cricket this authentic without donning whites and walking down the pavilion steps yourself...

I'm going to state the obvious here, but if you are not a cricket fan then this game will seem as slow and tedious as the real thing. However, for fans of the sport, Cricket 07 is as close to a real cricket simulator as you can get at present.

With its fully licensed squads, new control system and more natural camera perspective, EA Sports's latest game in the franchise is the most authentic to date. With the new century stick control system, batting has become more intuitive, responsive and rewarding than previously.

The century stick system allows players to uses both analogue sticks to bat. The left thumbstick allows you to alter your foot choice and placement of your batter, while the right thumbstick allows you to select shots and change the amount of power. This system works much better than the old one and produces much better batter control. Power is determined by how far the stick is moved - a slight tap can nudge the ball for a quick single or a firm push can send the ball whizzing away to the boundary.

The game also introduces new camera angles offering views from behind the batsman, and a reworked broadcast camera gives you a wider view of the play for better coverage.

While I have to admit that this game is undoubtedly the best in EA Games's Cricket franchise to date, there is nothing here for those with only a passing interest in cricket - or those who fancy whacking the ball all over the place for more than 10 minutes. However, if you are a true cricket fanatic, you'll get a lot of enjoyment out of this title.

Nick Smithson

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