Boom!

Boom!

"Kicking a football is an art form. With the right spin, the ball can bounce backward and die on the 5-yard line, forcing the return man to chase it into oncoming defenders. Or it can be a nigh un-returnable 'squib kick,' football's equivalent of the knuckleball; it's nearly impossible to catch on the fly."

Brian Easton addresses "The Art of Kicking" and why games still haven't gotten it right.

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The Skill-Stick Revolution

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"If you'd told me at E3 that the most innovative hockey game of the next year would be released on the 360 and not the Nintendo Wii, I'd have laughed at you. After all, Microsoft was releasing a glorified Xbox with a PS2 controller, and the Wii was making a device clearly designed by a sports fan. Surely, Nintendo had this round wrapped up? EA showed me how wrong I was with NHL 07 for the 360."

Dana Massey explains how a simple control innovation could revolutionize the way sports games are played.

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"Then there's Toribash, a physics-based fighting game like no other. It's hard to call Toribash a sports game, as such - too much dismemberment and decapitation - but you have to admire a cutting-edge simulation that lets you dynamically control your fighter's individual butt cheeks."

Allen Varney explores the seamy world of "Offbeat Sports Games."

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"Everything we do is intent on being the best, on being innovative and revolutionary, from a product and a company standpoint. We truly have aspirations of being the best in the world at what we do. From top to bottom, this company will operate with a very different mandate in every aspect, from how we treat our employees, how our employees are compensated and their vested interest in the profitability of the company to every ounce of every product we produce."

Joe Blancato interviews Curt Shilling, pitcher for the Boston Red Sox and CEO of Green Monster Games.

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"And the trick is that football, more than any other major sport, is one of constant fluidity. Others have lots of handholding for the viewer, with regular stops and short bursts of play before the game comes to rest again, giving the observer a chance to consider. Football, compared to baseball or American football or even basketball, never stops. ... Sensible Soccer's simplified form showed me the structures to watch for, in platonic-perfection. Sensible Soccer explained it all."

Kieron Gillen explains how a simple soccer game for the Amiga made him a better son, soccer fan and Englishman.