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The eight-on-eight, fast-paced twist on American football makes its Xbox debut courtesy of veteran publisher Electronic Arts. In addition to the official rules of the sport, the teams and players of the AFL, and the distinctive indoor venues, the game includes a number of features to help distinguish it from the company's Madden NFL series. Players can learn the game's quirky rules with optional onscreen visual cues that illustrate each player's role on offense or defense. Arena Football offers a slightly different atmosphere than in traditional sports games, with crowded indoor arenas abuzz with fireworks, rock music, cheering fans, and other activity. A new analog kicking system lets players attempt field goals from anywhere on the field, since each arena spans half the size of an NFL gridiron.
Another notable feature is the ability to take control of the wide receiver and either follow diagrammed routes or instantly create custom routes. Health plays a more important role in Arena Football than in other pigskin games, because six of the eight featured team members are actively involved on both offense and defense. Arena Football lets players monitor each athlete's physical prowess throughout the game with a real-time telemetry system. The telemetry feature not only lets players know when a team member should be substituted, but also the condition, scoring history, and offensive tendencies of their opponent. Arena Football includes support for custom teams and players as would-be managers guide their squad through a complete season or in Xbox Live matches against friends. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide