The Super Nintendo Entertainment System forever changed my life. As a matter of fact, it revolutionized gaming in America. The system was durable, developers churned out games for the console, and the graphics were unlike anything else we had seen at the time. One game in particular allowed me to reach gaming addict level 3 on a 3-point scale, that game was Tecmo Super Bowl III. I had played the original Tecmo Bowl on the NES as well as Super Tecmo Bowl on the SNES and they were both good games. The 3rd installment took the title to another level altogether. The developers brought back the same pick up and play style. The simplistic play calling and game controls allowed just about anyone to play the game with ease. You could literally be in the middle of a game 30 seconds after turning on the consel. The graphics were slightly improved over the previous titles, and a few features such as juke moves, spin’s, and hurdles were thrown into the mix as well. The third and final edition of TSB also introduced the player creator. We could actually create a limited number of players for each position on the field and play with them during the game using earned skill points to make them better over the course of time. For young kids like me who grew up dreaming about playing professional football it was a thrill to see my name underneath the player scoring touchdowns on the game. TSB III also included the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars and the Carolina Panthers which at the time was a big deal!
TSB was the perfect game for me for several reasons. First off, I was a huge football fan and the game was easy enough for me to play…And DOMINATE all competition with my favorite teams and players. With 5 minute quarters and the fast paced play I could get through entire seasons in a weekend. Sometimes, my parents would drag me off somewhere and I would leave the game paused or at the play selection screen, hours later we would return to the house and there it would be waiting for me to select a play and finish the game.
My cousins and I would get together during the summer, or during family reunions, and play season after season competing to see who would be the “King of Tecmo.” The game never grew old to us. We knew every player on every team and would constantly refer to players in real life based on their TSB ratings. Many an argument was settled over a head to head match-up only to be followed by a rematch, followed by best out of 3, 5, and 10. TSB was like football 101 for me growing up. It took everything exciting about the sport and packed it into a game cartridge for me to enjoy for hours at a time. If I owned a SNES gaming system today I would play it from time to time with my buddies just to make sure I was still the undisputed king. I grew up in a time when gaming was simpler. Before online play and MMORPG’s we had 16-bit plat-formers and consels you could drop from your 2nd floor window and not break. Take that and my favorite sport and you can see why Tecmo Super Bowl III is my all-time favorite game!