Go back to Sensible Soccer: European Club Edition

Written by: Rik

Date posted: June 13, 2014

As far as I’m aware, PC Zone was the only magazine to review Sensible Soccer 2000 – which is probably because it was never released. Embarrassingly, though, it did occupy a place in the magazine’s ‘recommended’ section for a number of months afterwards.

Given the number of years that have passed and how easily most football games are forgotten, there’s not a whole lot of information around on what happened. Veteran videogame journalist (and former Sensible employee) Stuart Campbell, in a piece aimed largely at discussing the failings of Sensible Soccer 2006, alleges that this is all the result of a dodgy deal being done for an early review based on unfinished code (which, according to a ‘Sensible insider’ was missing such essentials as goalkeepers and opposition AI).

I don’t have the Zone issue in question, but I do have the one that followed it, complete with Sensible Soccer 2000‘s appearance in the list of top sports games. There’s also a big football head-to-head, with reviews of FIFA ’98 and Actua Soccer 2. The review of the latter, in summing up, includes the line, “It’s difficult to compare it to Sensi Soccer 2000, so I won’t even attempt to.”

I always thought that was a bit odd.

Incidentally, although Zone never reviewed Sensible ’98, their coverage of ECE made no mention of the whole saga, and the latter still received the same high score and lavish praise as “2000” had originally (although ECE was at least reviewed around release time).