my general route notes

By jymotionjymotion Last updated

none of this is final or proven best. just getting it written down.




• limit turnovers. you get ball first so if both teams score every possession, you win.
• avoid long defensive possessions. either force a turnover in the opponent's side of the field or allow them to score quickly.
• most games require a 2pt conversion for a 5-possession win. if you don't have one player capable of passing and one player capable of catching, you'll probably need a 6th possession.


Custom team

• mobile qbs are OP. no point calling a running play if you can scramble out of a passing play.
• you can live with level 0 blockers. even if your blocker gets pancaked immediately, that animation takes enough time for you to beat them off the edge with a fast ballhandler.
• I'm currently going with 15 passing, 20 speed, 11 agility, 15 runpower, 18 carrying and 15 tackling at QB. No points assigned to any other players.



• since i'm running with my qb nearly all the time, i just need a pass-catcher for 2pt conversions. those are short passes so I prioritize hands over explosiveness. Jerry Rice seems the best choice among the opening 8 teams.
• unlock pass-catcher immediately, then start with the harder fields first so resets come sooner. for my quick rushing offense, that's narrow fields and rough terrain: Beach ➞ Courtyard ➞ Roof ➞ Snow ➞ Mud ➞ Indoors ➞ Legends ➞ Grass.



• call trips out wide, audible to streak routes, flip the formation if necessary so there's an open sideline on the other side of them. if the defense is in man, run away from the wideouts. if the defense is in zone, run towards them and use them as blockers.
• try to get to the sidelines in case of fumble. on narrower fields, it might be necessary to cut to the middle of the field to avoid getting pushed out of bounds early.
• when about to be tackled, let go of style and protect the ball. if you're unlikely to break the tackle and stay inbounds, just step out. better to step out before a line marker (1st & 1) than after (1st & long).
• juking is an option, like if there's a defender in front of and behind you, but Ive deprioritized that attribute so it's not all that explosive.
• if the d-lineman you're rushing towards is making a move on the outside, you should be able to but through the middle between your linemen.
• this offense doesn't have much of a counter for when the defense rushes the corners. there's usually not room up the middle. you can try passing to Jerry Rice, but if he tips it in the air, it's usually a turnover. might just be best to take the quick sack on early downs.
• there's a safety blitz that can also be tricky. dont have a pre-planned solution for this yet. can't stiff arm or juke in the backfield, so running towards the safety isn't a great option. I typically improvise running up the middle or behind my receivers.
• on PATs and 4th & shorts, run Crosses and bootleg right. Jerry should be switched to the left wideout and he'll be running your direction. if he's open, get it to him. if not, you should be able to run for it. annoyingly, Jerry will sometimes catch it 1yd short of the PAT.



• 5/7 players are worthless so just mash to call the first play. formation's not gonna make a difference.
• rush from the outside with the quickest player (in this case, the custom player). if there's 4 blockers, rush from the opposite side and hope there's a pitch. same for if all 3 wr/rb are in the backfield.
• ive had very little success stealing pitches on options. unlike humans the cpu usually only pitches it if you start to tackle the qb, usually leaving no one to catch the pitch.
• if they're in a non-pitch formation, either go for the sack or let them score. just keep your distance on the long runs so they don't rack up gamebreaker.
• if they're on 4th down or need a 2pt conversion, you can try defending the pass or tackling them short, but you're on your own. your db's can't keep up with their receivers.
• gamebreakers are better used on defense, since a turnover with good field position speeds up your offense anyway. that said, gamebreakers are not guaranteed to work with this mostly slow team.
• if one of the zero-skill custom players is in position to recover a fumble, it's best to have them dive on it. if they pick it up and start running, I recommend juking to try to make them slip and fall. they have zero carrying and are likely to fumble if tackled.



• cpu seems to usually run for 1 on PATs until they need 2. e.g. if they're in shotgun after the first td, it's often an rb direct snap.
• second TD seems to always get close to earning a gamebreaker, but not quite. in my earlier attempts, id intentionally run oob after each first down line to maximize style+first down combos. unclear if the time wasted doing this (and running around styling for no gain) are worth the extra gamebreaker over the course of a game. (probably not worth it)
• im most uncertain about spending points on run power. usually if you break a tackle, the animation takes long enough that another defender comes in to finish you off. agility seems to work more often, at least with the standard body type. however, run power might help with gaining an extra yard when tackled, which can be useful on the goal line.
• also unsure if level 20 is "worth it". it costs 915 dev points to go from level 0 to level 16. it costs 1900 to go from level 18 to level 20. even if i reset run power and tackling to 0, it'd only move me from level 17 carrying to level 18.
• no idea if height/weight matters for this playstyle. the manual suggests height matters for jumping up to catch a pass and weight matters if you want gigantic linemen, but it doesn't specify if it's actually factored into quickness or tackling or anything.
• i play the PS2 version on a fat PS2 via the hard drive slot. This likely provides a load time advantage over reading discs (my disc is pretty scratched at this point). I turn "chatter" volume all the way down to zero, which seems to disable the celebration cutscenes. I also disable music, rumble, and camera shake, though I doubt any of that makes a real difference. I play in widescreen instead of 4:3 which could also theoretically slow it down, but the extra vision is a real advantage.