• Publisher: SCEA
  • Release Date: Jul 14, 2004
  • Also On: PC

Mixed or average reviews - based on 57 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 57
  2. Negative: 8 out of 57
  1. 45
    If you have little cousins who don't care what kind of games you buy them, but just enjoy getting new games for their PlayStation 2, this is what you can get them. If you got it for yourself, you'd probably forget you owned it in about a week.
  2. The lack of a proper Olympic mode does come as a surprise but is not a major flaw and anyone looking for a solid athletics title with many more sports thrown in could do worse.
  3. Basic controller requirements, repetitive presentation and an incredibly satisfying multiplayer mode add up to a sporting title that fares far better as a party game than a single player experience.
  4. But at least the dance mat support lends enough to the experience to make it something different and worthwhile -- at least for a rent -- and turns it into a fine workout too.
  5. Let’s be brutally honest, the Olympics is nothing more than a repetitive set of action events compressed, in this modern world, into tedious technical fine tuning of human machinery, buoyed only by ancient tradition rather than entertainment value.
  6. This is the kind of game that I would expect to find in a cereal box. At least that way I'd have some cereal to look forward to for the rest of the week.
  7. The biggest fault of the game is the controls scheme. Alternately pressing the X and O buttons for hours will not only result in cramped and blistered fingers, but a concentrated tiredness of the game.
  8. The dance pad support might make for a fun party-game right now while the games are on, but then you also must realize that as far as dance pad games though, this doesn’t even hold a camera to Dance Dance Revolution itself.
  9. The single player mode is really missing that premier mode that I only wish was there. If they had a good solid career mode you would have seen a much higher score.
  10. The variety of the controls is overdone, making the game complex and confusing, and there's no customisable multiplayer. Nonetheless, this is a welcoming, capable and entertaining take on what gaming used to mean. [Aug 2004, p.106]
  11. To learn how to perform each event, you need to check the directions from the pause menu; what happened to just explaining the mechanics onscreen? [Sept 2004, p.102]
  12. There's little alternative out there if you're hankering after some old-fashioned twitch gaming wrapped up in beautifully presented threads, but our advice is to make sure you've got some mates to play it with first, or it's likely to end up as one of those titles that you'll quickly tire of if you're on your lonesome.
  13. This Olympic hopeful loses its flavor after you play through each event just once or twice. [Aug 2004, p.100]
  14. A decent Olympics title that’s manages to offer a variety of events while not burning out players by focusing on button mashing mechanics.
  15. Athens 2004 might be the least customizable sports game I’ve ever played. You can participate as any one of 64 countries, but you can’t create an athlete. There are no stats, no training, and no career. You pick your country and gender, and the game then just gives you a pre-set runner/jumper/thrower/swimmer who looks the part, ethnically speaking.
  16. 59
    The disappointing thing about Athens 2004 is the party-style button-mashing gameplay.
  17. 70
    The actual variety among the different events is rather low, a problem that stems in large part from the repetitive, button-bashing nature of most events.
  18. Some events are a lot of fun and will have you pushing hard for that world record that you're so close to, but you'll lose interest in other events in a manner of minutes.
  19. Good multiplayer options will bring out your competitive side, but there are no online modes.
  20. A game that can only really be recommended to gamers who’ll regularly make use of the multiplayer play.
  21. With a focus on realism, it's very difficult to have fun with Athens unless you have a group of people and a dance pad. Even with some friends and the right accessories, unless you're really into the athletics scene, your overall enjoyment of the title will be hampered.
  22. The multiplayer offers one of the most addictive and accessible experience since the EyeToy, everyone can play and have fun doing so.
  23. Best enjoyed as a party game when you can gather a few friends together. The lack of depth, repetitive nature, and missing online feature of the game hamper its long-term appeal.
  24. It's only the aesthetics that truly let Athens 2004 down. With a clean, unfussy menu system, it's disappointing to find this gives way to rough in-game visuals and limited animation....Nevertheless, the substandard veneer doesn't dim the shine of the gameplay. [Aug 2004, p.113]
  25. Athens 2004 certainly looks better than past Olympic Games, but the gameplay itself honestly doesn't improve much on the button mashing and timing-based gameplay that Konami built Track & Field on more than 20 years ago.
  26. An exercise in masochism, as you'll find that the world records within the game are generally easily knocked over. It's only when you can look across the sofa at tired, sore and elated faces and realise that you just lunged over the line at the last second to grasp victory that you'll find Athens 2004 a really worthwhile game.
  27. 85
    It's solid enough, with only minor bugaboos as a single-player game, but it really kicks butt with its multiplay.
  28. Above all, what Athens 2004 fails to do is capture the spirit of the Olympic games.
  29. Athens 2004 maybe mostly a button-mashers paradise, but the game is also a great deal of fun. If you like athletic competition on the console systems, this is an easy recommendation.
  30. It’s a great buy at 40 dollars that will leave you with blistered fingers, bruised egos, and tired muscles.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 12 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 10
  2. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. HenrikS.
    Mar 3, 2006
    Some of the disciplines are quite fun to play, but in general it´s a boring title.
  2. AShea
    Jan 17, 2005
    Fun but tedious. Some games are morre fun than others. Discus is very hard to do. Still entertaining.
  3. JesseW.
    Nov 23, 2004
    Cool but boring and is hard to control.