Kick Off Revival – Early Thoughts

It’s easy to become cynical when another name from yesteryear, pops out the woodwork to revive a classic.

But let’s not fall into that trap, let’s look a little closer shall we.

No really, what did happen to the Dino Dini generation of the 90’s?

Dino Dini… what a fantastic name! It’s also a name I hadn’t seen for a long time. So imagine my surprise when I came across Kick Off revival.

Update – Time passes. A review appears.

Kick Off Revival screenshot

So far, So Kick Off. Good.

Kick Off is 27 years old now. In the intervening years I hadn’t given too much thought as to what happened to, not just Dino Dini, but any of the game makers of that era. The Bullfrogs, Bitmap Brothers and Sensible Software’s have long passed into legend. I assume most creators moved on, kept their heads down, or maybe some even did a Sid Meier, guiding the next generation. Before the internet you didn’t question the existence of a Dino Dini, it just was.

The following video is an interview with Dino Dini and is hugely insightful, but if you can’t watch it right now (bloody work ey’) I’ll sum it up below, it is 10 minutes after all.

The Playstation and its ilk came along, stomping around, roaring and smashing everything up, with their prodigy dance music and backwards caps. The independent bloke making games from his shed couldn’t afford a development kit for the princely sum of $20,000. How does an independent Dino Dini afford that in 1990? Money makes money ‘ey.

Plus it’s a misconception to say everything was better in the old days. Publishers have always been dicks, even 20 years ago.

So to summarise: –

  • Terrible rip-off publishers, in a more naive time.
  • A new generation of consoles courting big publishers, excluding independent talent…
  • …together a weakening of the home computer.  The Amiga and Atari ST were withering away and PC gaming was bloody expensive.

A whole generation of gaming pioneers, lost. Pretty grim when you consider the potential games we didn’t get to see. Give clever sods more tools, freedom and technical wiggle room and they can come up with incredible things on a budget. Force them into a publishing powerhouse and watch their voices curtailed.

The barrier between what the audience craves and what marketing departments presume we want, have been eroded with the ‘indie’ revival, affordable pc development and kickstarter campaigns. It helps to connect directly with the creators.

Which brings us nicely to Kick Off Revival.

Dino Dini’s Kick Off Revival is coming exclusively to PS4 and PS Vita

I was a fan of Kick Off 2. I was also a massive fan of Sensible Soccer. In an even more ludicrous twist, I played and enjoyed both. I’d never understood why liking one thing instantly excludes another.

Dino Dini's Goal

Really liked Goal! Dino Dini’s Soccer, tis a silly name.

Only insane people create rivalries in their own mind.

Previews are a silly thing. No one knows if the game will be any good. I do know one thing. There’s room in my heart for a brand new Kick Off and it wasn’t too long ago I was whinging about a lack of choice.

The technology gold rush squeezed out a lot of individual voices.

Welcome home those who wish to return. Plenty of room at the online table.

Plenty of room for football asteroids.

kick off 2

Fast, Frantic, barely in control and nothing like football really. Was good.