Developer: Gameloft
Price: Free
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★½☆☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★☆☆☆
Playtime: Rating: ★☆☆☆☆
Replay Value Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

Overall Rating: ★½☆☆☆

I can safely say that I have played the worst football game ever made, and it is NFL Pro 2013. Now, being the worst is a bold claim, and there have been bad football games before. I am confident this is the worst because it takes free-to-play monetization to insulting new levels that only could have been dreamed up in a corporate boardroom intent on sucking players’ wallets dry.

How insulting is it? Well, certain play types have to be bought to be used in the game itself with credits. Yes, to run certain play types it requires spending in-game money to temporarily access them. Oh, and there’s an energy mechanic too. This is essentially a game that doesn’t want to be played, and requires a poor sucker to keep dropping bills in the machine to be functional at all.

The football isn’t even that fun! The controls are clunky, especially kicking, where even PATs feel like they can wind up short. Is it possibly due to the player upgrade mechanic that seems to require lots of money to make a decent team. The one creative element, a first-person quarterback view, is challenging but at least realistic. Of course, scrambling is enabled by even a light tilt forward of one’s device, and that perfect pass opportunity could be immediately ruined. Oh, and the game doesn’t have the NFLPA license, but that didn’t stop Gameloft from using barely-changed names. Like Chicago QB Jay Gamfer. It is insultingly lazy, and likely grounds for a lawsuit.

But the moment when I decided that this game was a ridiculous abomination was when the terrible AI decided to punt from the opponent’s 37 yard line, and on the return gave me an open lane down the right sideline like the Red Sea had parted. There I was, thinking I was about to score when suddenly a prompt appears that I have leveled up. This naturally messed me up, and left me tackled by a nearby defender. Of course, the button under my thumb when this happened? The “share to Facebook” button. That’s this game’s priority: self-promotion over gameplay.

NFL Pro 2013 is so bad that anyone who plays it and enjoys it should be shunned by their friends and fellow mobile gamers because they’re ruining gaming for the rest of us. Gameloft should have to put out a public apology for how godawful this game is. This game is bad and Gameloft should feel bad. Seriously, don’t even download this on a lark. Go download Madden instead. Or that Tecmo Bowl remake that came out last year. It may be flawed, but it’s worlds ahead of this plague upon the earth. I didn’t think Gameloft could do a worse job with free-to-play than they did with Let’s Golf 3, but they sure did! Now please Gameloft, just stop. This is embarrassing.

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