Tap Sports Football is finally here, which means you can experience the thrill of football even out of season. This NFL app has it all: every single one of your favorite players, the chance to put your dream team together, quick strategic gameplay, and fast and efficient matchmaking that will pit your skills against other people in the online field. The power is literally in your hands, so get ready for the mother of all portable touchdowns with Tap Sports Football.
Assemble Your Team
Don’t be fooled by Tap Sports Football’s mobile nature. The game boasts an impressive array of options that allow you to put together the best football team imaginable.
• Draft real players from an extensive and up-to-date virtual roster, including Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, Demarco Murray and more!
• Customize your team’s uniform in both professional and college styles.
• Hire coaches and coordinators to improve your players’ performances.
When your team is ready for action, it’s time to take them into the field and see what they can do. Like real football, your success in Tap Sports Football will be determined by fast reflexes and a head for strategy.
• Challenge your friends or go up against strangers for a quick match using the app’s built-in matchmaking service.
• Choose your overall strategy. Be aggressive, be conservative, run first, pass first, blitz through and so on.
• Precisely time your actions to pass the ball and dodge defending players.
• Tap wisely to determine how much air you put into your throws.
• Use an Audible to alter your strategy mid-game and trip up your opponent.
It’s a Touchdown!
Tap Sports Football is the ultimate free NFL app. With its in-depth team-building options, amazing list of star athletes, fast-paced action, strategic gameplay, and easy-to-use multiplayer, it’s got all you could possibly want to scratch that pigskin itch. The fact that it doesn’t need to cost you a dime is the sweet cherry on top. What are you waiting for? If you consider yourself a fan of the sport, then download Tap Sports Football and hike the ball today!
Football on the Go
Football games are sadly a rarity in the mobile game market, though the reason why is pretty understandable. It’s a very complicated game that doesn’t quite suit the casual pick-up-and-play nature of the platform. However, the folks over at Glu Gaming have decided to tackle that challenge with a free mobile game called Tap Sports Football. Did they do a good job with it? The answer would mostly be no. The app is indeed simple; it’s controlled entirely via screen tapping, just as the name implies. Pretty much anyone can learn how to play it. For all intents and purposes, it looks like football, and it even features many of the NFL’s players. Unfortunately, it seems like it might be too simple to do the sport any justice.
Not Much to Look At
The presentation of the game is not much to talk about. Most of the time, you’re going to be looking at menus. They’re sharp, readable and easy to navigate, so there’s nothing to complain about on that front. The music that plays over them is admittedly pretty catchy as well.
The football portion of the game looks similarly competent, but that’s really all it is. The field looks like a field, the people look like people, and as long as the uniforms use different color schemes, you’ll be able to tell one team from the other. The character animations look a little wonky, but since the camera is pulled so far back, you probably won’t care. It’s still amusing to watch players push, tackle and dog-pile one another.
Most sport simulators have a management aspect, and Tap Sports Football is no different. It’s no full-on football manager; it’s much simpler than that. Your options largely consist of what players you want to hire, what upgrades you want to make, and how you want their uniforms to look.
In true football manager fashion, every player has a different set of statistics that affect their performance on the field, but it’s very simplistic. There are only three attributes, all of which are determined by the player’s predetermined position. For example, quarterbacks have Arm, Vision and Scramble, tight ends have Short, Deep and Catch, and offensive line players have Run Block, Pass Block and Discipline. On the surface, you can tell there really aren’t a whole lot of strategic options here. You can’t arrange your team how you like. All you can do is fill all the spots up with the best player you can get.
Speaking of which, the process of hiring players is by and large a pretty random process. One of the appeals to a sport manager sim is the ability to assemble a team featuring all your favorite athletes. While there is always a degree of luck involved, Tap Sports Football takes it to new levels. You can’t just shop around from the list of available players; the whole thing is carried out via a draft pick. More expensive drafts give you access to better players, but you never get to choose who that specific person is going to be. The most you can do is hire a five-star player like Drew Brees for five games, but that’s not a viable long-term solution.
If you can’t get the players you want, then you can always improve the ones you have from the upgrade store. Upgrades are given fanciful names that make it seem like you’re hiring better coaches and coordinators who will train your players to be better. However, they’re really little more than flat percentage bonuses. You’ll want to get upgrades when you can, but it’s not really going to feel like you’re seriously managing a team and overseeing its training.
A Simple Play
The management portion of the app may not be much to write about, but is the actual football gameplay fun? The answer is not much. Glu Games attempted to make the game viable to play via one-touch controls, but something as nuanced as football really can’t be boiled down to that level of simplicity. For one thing, there are no defensive plays; you can only ever determine your offensive strategy. The game gives you a number of options, such as being aggressive or conservative, choosing to run or pass first, and so on. However, when you see things in action, it’s impossible to tell if those strategies even make a difference. It honestly seems like everything you do is a crapshoot.
The actual play mechanics feel overly simplistic as well. You don’t control any of your players’ actions. Instead, they act autonomously based on their statistics, which means there aren’t a whole lot of ways for you to control the course of the match. The only input you’re responsible for is the initial pass. The game will automatically designate the player you must pass to, plot out his run, and mark the point where he must catch the ball. Careful timing is involved here, and getting it down can be tricky, but once the ball’s in the air, all you can do is simply watch how things go. It’s possible to make a perfect pass, only for the ball-carrier to thrown to the ground immediately afterwards. There’s an autoplay option that will simply crunch the numbers and determine the outcome of the game automatically, and while it may not be flashy, it does feel a bit more honest.
However, for all its faults, football matches are admittedly quick. If you need a brief distraction while you’re on break at the office, Tap Sports Football can be entertaining for a brief spurt. The matchmaking service allows you to challenge strangers and friends alike online, and beating them with your superior team can be at least a little satisfying.
Conclusion: It Fumbles
Glu Games certainly deserves credit for trying to simplify football for a mobile system, but one can’t help but think that they simplified it too much. Tap Sports Football just isn’t very exciting. There’s not a whole lot of skill and strategy involved. Everything comes down to the players on your team, and how well they do will in turn be determined by how much money you’re willing to sink into the app. You can try playing it for free if you want, but soft currency trickles in very slowly. Getting your team up to snuff will take a very long time, and the best stuff is still locked behind a pay wall. This app is recommended only to the most ardent of football fans, and even they might be more tempted to simply buy a commercial football manager.
– Review by David Galvin
Dave Galvin is a freelance writer and avid gamer. Somehow, he managed to find a way to combine the two passions.
(Android – For most Android based phones and tablets.
See download page for specific requirements.)
(iOS – For most iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch devices.
See download page for specific requirements.)