The dog days of summer are upon us and, as most sports fans are acutely aware, we are at least two months of boring, mostly inconsequential mid-season baseball and the Olympics away from the return of football season.
Thankfully, for more than 15 years, EA Sports has helped combat national pigskin withdrawal with its “NCAA Football” franchise, the latest installment of which was released Tuesday for PlayStation 3, XBOX 360 and several other consoles.
For me, the game represents an annual rite of passage.
My purchase of it signifies that the end of summer, and the sporting wasteland that often accompanies the season, is near and it’s not at all premature to again get excited about fall.
But my enjoyment of the game is far from solely symbolic.
The graphics are visually striking and several of the game’s modes, particularly the Dynasty Mode, are deep, engrossing and seriously addictive.
These achievements are particularly impressive when you consider the sky-high expectations for this franchise.
A cursory glance at any Internet message board run by devotees of the game indicate a rabid following, and its fans always are looking for developers to up the ante.
And up it they did with “NCAA Football 2013.”
This year’s game is an impressive chapter in the history of this iconic game and worth every cent of its $60 pricetag.