Continuing in the path of its predecessor, World Tour Soccer, World Tour Soccer 06 combines solid arcade gameplay with ample control and different features that will keep gamers busy for hours. However, there have been a few changes made to this version that may keep hardcore football fans away from it.
While it’s doubtful that anyone would have a problem with the game getting the online options the original version lacked, many in fact will have a problem when they see that there are only 71 teams available in World Tour Soccer 06, compared to a whopping 245 in the original.
In an effort to speed the original game’s horrible loading times, developer Sony Computer Entertainment Europe took out many of the teams they believed players didn’t use frequently enough in an effort to speed up the game. Unfortunately, long loading times are still a problem in this year’s version, detracting from the overall fun at times, making the game not nearly as gratifying on a long bus or train ride like a portable game should be.
Player models in World Tour Soccer 06 also fail to rank up with the other soccer games on the PSP, but are saved by solid animations and a decent frame rate. While the game isn’t atrocious to look at, fans playing FIFA or Winning Eleven will find this game much less aesthetically pleasing.
On a positive note, the actual gameplay in World Tour Soccer is its saving grace. The game is easy and fun to play for all ages and has a skill-point system that promotes solid play on offense and defense. Players can even unlock items such as All-Star teams when they play exceptionally. While it doesn’t make up for the lack of teams or mediocre graphics, it does warrant a purchase for those who don’t require the glitz and glamor of the FIFA series to enjoy themselves.
Overall, World Cup Soccer Tour 06 is a solid choice for any soccer fan that isn’t looking for as deep a game as FIFA and doesn’t mind playing at home than on the road, considering the horrendous loading times. Fans serious about their soccer should give it a try, but nevertheless should stick with FIFA or Winning Eleven.
Patrick Hickey Jr.
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