User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 89 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 80 out of 89
  2. Negative: 5 out of 89

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  1. PaulC.
    Aug 4, 2004
    10
    20 bucks ??? are they kidding?? my wife came in the room and asked if football season started already she thought i was watching a game nuff said
  2. NeilV.
    Sep 5, 2004
    10
    I'm with Jake here, trying to balance out an erroneous rating. To me, particularly on X-Box, the 2K5 controls are less cumbersome, more intuitive and the game is more enjoyable. Additionally, there is no comparison with the presentation. Yes, Madden did make strides with appearance and options this year, but Sega's series is hands down the champion, as it pretty much has been. I I'm with Jake here, trying to balance out an erroneous rating. To me, particularly on X-Box, the 2K5 controls are less cumbersome, more intuitive and the game is more enjoyable. Additionally, there is no comparison with the presentation. Yes, Madden did make strides with appearance and options this year, but Sega's series is hands down the champion, as it pretty much has been. I first saw 2K as a development for the Dreamcast at E3 in May of 1999 and I knew it was going to be something special. BUY THIS GAME. Expand
  3. Matt
    Mar 7, 2005
    10
    One of the best football games ever made. its a shame we probably won't see this game next year due to EA buying the nfl license for 5 years.
  4. CoryK.
    May 7, 2005
    10
    This is the best football game of 2005. Yes, that is correct. It is better than the almighty Madden 2005 and it's only $20. Too bad there won't be a ESPN NFL 2K6 because EA Sports can't take losing.
  5. RichardS.
    Aug 19, 2005
    10
    As usual, the competition out-do EA Sports. Every EA Sports game is a disappointment and over hyped: FIFA is rubbish compared to Pro Evo; Rugby 2005 was a joke; Cricket is an embarassment with Brian Lara a better game. EA Hockey sucks compared to ESPN's and the same goes for NFL (though Madden is the ONLY EA Sports game they do remotely well). ESPN is a better all-round game and as As usual, the competition out-do EA Sports. Every EA Sports game is a disappointment and over hyped: FIFA is rubbish compared to Pro Evo; Rugby 2005 was a joke; Cricket is an embarassment with Brian Lara a better game. EA Hockey sucks compared to ESPN's and the same goes for NFL (though Madden is the ONLY EA Sports game they do remotely well). ESPN is a better all-round game and as usual, a much more playable game than anything EA produce. Expand
  6. TylerG.
    Aug 7, 2007
    10
    Truly the greatest football game ever created. I think everyone can agree this game is perfect in every area.
  7. JobA.
    Oct 6, 2009
    10
    Where is the 11?It is October of 2009 and I've been still playing this game since it came out.Look-Madden has absolutley nothing on this game.Madden 10 is out now and still none of the Madden's have anything on Espn Nfl 2k5.It is the best football game ever made and will always be until 2K gets the exclusive license back.Allstar football 2k8 was good but disappointing.I cant say Where is the 11?It is October of 2009 and I've been still playing this game since it came out.Look-Madden has absolutley nothing on this game.Madden 10 is out now and still none of the Madden's have anything on Espn Nfl 2k5.It is the best football game ever made and will always be until 2K gets the exclusive license back.Allstar football 2k8 was good but disappointing.I cant say enough great stuff about this game even 5 years after it came out.That is the mark of an unbelievable game and that is how a game should be made.EA had the money and got scared cause they new the 2K series was just getting better and better.I'm disappointed what they have done with the baseball licence but the point is,is that I get the chills still playing this game after all these years.I'm sure there is thousands if not millions of people that agree with me because I'm not saying a word that isn't true.5 years from now when Madden 15 is out they still wont have the knowledge or capability to understand how to make a football game this good because this is in the minds and hearts of the 2K people and sega.Unbelivable game! Expand
  8. DonP.
    Jul 20, 2004
    10
    A new Standard in sports gaming!
  9. Bob
    Jul 22, 2004
    10
    This game is amazing! The control is sharp, the interface even sharper and the graphics could cut diamond. The new features patched every hole in last year's release. The graphics in this game are truly stunning! The VIP system is pure genious and the new Crib features add to the replayability of the game. $20 and you have the best football game ever made? God I love Sega!
  10. VicM.
    Jul 24, 2004
    10
    The football game to have. ESPN NFL has gone and beyond my expectations this year. The replays at the half and at the end of the gae are so realistic it's scary. I tend to forget I'm playing a video game. And the controls of the game are better than last year. Madden is and always has been about the hype, what do I care if some of the NFL players are in the Madden game saying if The football game to have. ESPN NFL has gone and beyond my expectations this year. The replays at the half and at the end of the gae are so realistic it's scary. I tend to forget I'm playing a video game. And the controls of the game are better than last year. Madden is and always has been about the hype, what do I care if some of the NFL players are in the Madden game saying if it's in the game it's the game, who cares. ESPN at a price of $20 or if it would have been $50 this is the game to get! Expand
  11. DonalN.
    Jul 24, 2004
    10
    Astonishing, this game is outstanding, top quality presentation all the features you could ever dream of and the best gameplay I've experienced in a sports game since I first played Sensible Soccer back in the vortex of time. I would go so far as to say this IS the best sports game EVER made and literally the only game in it's league is Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer series Astonishing, this game is outstanding, top quality presentation all the features you could ever dream of and the best gameplay I've experienced in a sports game since I first played Sensible Soccer back in the vortex of time. I would go so far as to say this IS the best sports game EVER made and literally the only game in it's league is Konami's Pro Evolution Soccer series in terms of graphics, features and playability. Notice I haven't mentioned the price yet? Everybody thought Sega was taking a big risk releasing this game at only 20 bucks but after playing it you know there was no risk at all. When I went to pick it up at Harold Square in NYC the queue was out the door everyone wanted a copy. A lot of people who didn't consider last years installment were picking up this copy simply because of the price. What chance does Madden have now? At $50 it would need to be more than twice as good a game as this, which simply it wont be. How could it? On a final note the VIP feature is going to revolutionise gaming... Expand
  12. B.K.
    Jul 25, 2004
    10
    1 word for this game:AMAZING.
  13. ChrisC.
    Jul 30, 2004
    9
    Great fun. The graphics, presentation, and gameplay are fantastic. Only complaint is that I wish the crowd noise could be more pumped up. Nevertheless, a superb game and you can't beat the price!
  14. FuriousS.
    Jul 31, 2004
    10
    I have played every football game from the Intellivision,Atari, and Coleco football games to the Genesis and other 16-bit sytems as well as our present day consoles. ESPN NFL 2K5 on the XBOX is the ultimate NFL football simulator. It is EVERYTHING a sport simulator should be. Congratulations to VIsual Concepts and SEGA for an amazing title!
  15. JaredR.
    Aug 12, 2004
    10
    I have always been a casual NFL videogamer. My favorite football game of all time is Sega NFL2K for the Dreamcast. I always thought it was far superior to Madden based on enjoyability alone. Now on to the review. Game will be scored on Graphics, Sound, Features, Presentation, Gameplay, Playability and Overall Level of Fun. Graphics: 9.5/10 Visually, this is one of the best sports games I I have always been a casual NFL videogamer. My favorite football game of all time is Sega NFL2K for the Dreamcast. I always thought it was far superior to Madden based on enjoyability alone. Now on to the review. Game will be scored on Graphics, Sound, Features, Presentation, Gameplay, Playability and Overall Level of Fun. Graphics: 9.5/10 Visually, this is one of the best sports games I have ever seen in my LIFE. You can see bulging veins on the character's arms. Faces are well captured. This was another one of those games where my dad walks in the room and asks 'What are the Pats doing on ESPN this early?' and I have to explain that videogames are this graphically amazing. The character's movements are very fluid and they react to impacts exactly as you would expect... to chilling extents in some cases. The crowd is paper thin when in play and during the opening fly over sequences it looks like the stadium is empty from some angles. However there are crowd closeups and these models are quite well done. The only graphical flaw I have seen is in First Person Mode. When you get hit in the head, there is a SLIGHT clipping problem. Those two minor problems aside, this game definately deserves the 9.5. Fix the clipping problem and make the seats look a little more filled and it will be complete. Sound: 10/10 Unbelievable. The ESPN Sportsound is great. The included music is not the greatest but that is why the Xbox is so good, you just add your own. The commentary is flawless. There's a ton of dialogue and it all flows together seemlessly. On the field sound is perfect. The crowds heckle VERY accurately based on circumstances and the commentary is spot on. As good as the hits look in the game, the way they sound is even more disturbing. I've seen at least two or three really big hits in my few hours of playing that shook the controller, pounded out of the speaker and made me wince. There's a little bit of mumbling too. When a bad play is made, they sometimes cut to the coach and you can hear him mumbling madly under his breath. The same goes for players that are disappointed in the last plays they made. Features: 9/10 Everything you can ask for in a football game and a little more. The franchise mode fits you more into the role of the coach rather than the owner. This mode is alot more fun than the Dynasty Mode of the EA games. Finances aren't my bag. You can get right into the coaches shoes and really nail down to just ONE player what kind of training needs to be done during the week of a game. The 'Crib' mode is kind of a cute feature. Not entirely necessary but it lets you reward yourself. First Person Mode is a neat feature but it's more of an 'interesting' feature rather than one that adds to the experience. XBL supports your standard Optimatch and Quickmatch as well as season, playoff and league modes. Very cool. I can't think of anything else I'd want, but lets leave that one point out and maybe next year they can fill it up to a 10/10. Presentation: 10/10 Holy crap, it's ESPN. Right down to the results and the Sportscenter format. I can't even describe how well presented this game is. It features all the big ESPN faces and their voices and it's just a flawless presentation. Get a look at it yourself and you'll understand. Gameplay: 9/10 Game plays just like you'd expect it with no surprises in gameplay. Take the quick tutorial to get used to some of the advanced controls. First Person mode needs a bit more tweaking though. Playability: 9.5/10 Very easy to bring to a party and get it playing without too much work. You can definately pick it up and play without looking at the directions but it's worth learning. Overall Level of Fun: 10/10 It's hard for a game like this to NOT be fun. You'll be screaming at the screen and jumping for joy at all your good plays. Just remember to have your headset turned down on XBL though Overall: 9.6/10... if you average it out... but I give this game a 9.8/10 because it's only $19.99. Value value value! If you have an Xbox, get this. Expand
  16. MarcusA.
    Aug 2, 2004
    9
    this game has great graphics and gameplay,but they could have made it better by making the franchise better. Don't get me wrong i'm a major madden fan,but by the way this game is looking I might have a change of heart.
  17. [Anonymous]
    Aug 2, 2004
    9
    First football game I've had on a console system and it's great fun! Poor gameplay?! I'm not sure where that fits in the game. No strategy? How can you have a football game without strategy? Also, tapping the A button has a small effect in the game, it's certainly not a game breaker move...I've broken at most 5 tackles in like 6-7 games...
  18. PaulR.
    Aug 3, 2004
    9
    Great game. $20 is a steal. The VIP system is amazing and will give you and edge when playing that friend that always kicks your butt!!!
  19. MikeB.
    Aug 6, 2004
    9
    This is the best football game I have played! The gameplay and graphics are top notch as are all the added features. Halftime highlights, challenging plays, First Person mode to play as a player... all very neat! I have bought Madden in the past and the only reason I picked this up was it's price tag of $19.99. It is well worth it. I like Madden, but this game is just flat out better...
  20. AlanC.
    Aug 7, 2004
    8
    This game is great...but its still the 2nd best football game on the market....2k5 has awesome presentation..the halftime replays are fun to watch and u even get a polygonal chris berman doing the show..the commentary is pretty good...but since espn is so all over this game..with even a weekly sportscenter to watch..they should replace the fictional commentators with their own crew..danThis game is great...but its still the 2nd best football game on the market....2k5 has awesome presentation..the halftime replays are fun to watch and u even get a polygonal chris berman doing the show..the commentary is pretty good...but since espn is so all over this game..with even a weekly sportscenter to watch..they should replace the fictional commentators with their own crew..dan patrick and joe theisman...that would be great...the graphics are top notch...best looking football game ever made....but the gameplay is where it comes in 2nd place.....the game is a blast to play...the running game is great...but the passing game stinks...it just doesnt feel as real as madden.....and ill take gameplay over a halftime show anyday.....this game could.....go.....all...the.....way.....but it tripped and fell at the 1. Expand
  21. BenL.
    Sep 25, 2004
    10
    Excellent. The most FUN football game ever made. Period. Oh, sure, gameplay is what football games should be all about right? Not entirly. It's if it's fun or not. This is, and has been right next to halo in my top games to play in the dorm.
  22. Psymons
    Sep 5, 2004
    9
    All hail the new king. Everyone I have talked to about this game bashes it due to the fact that it threatens their beloved Madden. This game is more fun, realistic looking and the AI seems to be a step ahead of Madden.
  23. MartyM.
    Nov 15, 2005
    10
    best dam football game i ever played. Friend of mine told me at work he was playing football on ps2 all weekend. I said what man i dunno how u do it those Madden games suck. He said no no i play espn 2k5 yea that madden s..t sucks ass. Told me i should buy the game and try it i would like it. I bought it and fell in love with it and it was only 20 bucks i might add alot better than any best dam football game i ever played. Friend of mine told me at work he was playing football on ps2 all weekend. I said what man i dunno how u do it those Madden games suck. He said no no i play espn 2k5 yea that madden s..t sucks ass. Told me i should buy the game and try it i would like it. I bought it and fell in love with it and it was only 20 bucks i might add alot better than any madden game i ever played. Its a shame their not making 2k6 for football. Expand
  24. JeffM.
    Feb 17, 2005
    10
    This is by far the best football game of all time curse you EA for taking it away from us.
  25. BobM.
    Feb 1, 2005
    9
    This is an awesome game! When i score a TD snoop comes on while Chad Johnson does a TD dance. The run game is so much better than madden. The routes the WR's run are clear as to where they are going. Great game.
  26. Paul
    Feb 26, 2005
    10
    Looks real to me, got in an argument with my brother about madden ve espn. He said the players don't look like there running fast, like on madden, I told him after looking at espn players I could not even play madden as the all look the same. At least on espn you can tell the difference between a guy 200 an someone 300, shows height correct also, hands down way better, FORGET MADDEN!!!
  27. AngelR.
    Mar 10, 2005
    10
    is the best game period even better than all the maddens combined.
  28. BlueFalcon
    Apr 16, 2005
    10
    In 2001-2004 I was a big Madden fan and didn't really consider giving any other franchise my football gaming money. But this year ESPN was released 1st so I gave it a shot. Now I regret buying this years Madden since it's so outclassed. Graphics, gameplay, and all the subtle but significant touches are better in ESPN. I don't intend to ever return to Madden unless In 2001-2004 I was a big Madden fan and didn't really consider giving any other franchise my football gaming money. But this year ESPN was released 1st so I gave it a shot. Now I regret buying this years Madden since it's so outclassed. Graphics, gameplay, and all the subtle but significant touches are better in ESPN. I don't intend to ever return to Madden unless Sega's franchise ends. Expand
  29. JohnR.
    Aug 14, 2005
    10
    ESPN is the best football game ever made. the players look real.madden players look fake they got big heads and little bodys and they run slow they hated on ESPN because it was going to take over EA sports. now what football game we got to play i aint going to buy madden because it's no compition.
  30. KennyNoGetIt
    Nov 16, 2004
    10
    Frickin ridiculous. I especially like franchise mode with fantasy roster mode. So satisfying to build a 100/100 team and beat everyone else to a pulp with it. And Kenny, try telling someone who cares.
  31. Bill
    Dec 4, 2004
    10
    $19.99 vs. $49.95 It's nice to play this years teams during the season. I really enjoyed this game, but honestly haven't played many competitors. $19.99 sold me, and I've think this is one of the greatest bangs for the buck on xbox. I am a football fan, and I enjoy franchise mode where I can play my team each week before the real game.
  32. L.john
    Jul 20, 2004
    10
    Many improvements over last years make this the best one yet. This is a very good game...and for 20 bucks it cannot be beat.
  33. DannyR.
    Jul 21, 2004
    10
    It looks like Sega has passed Madden. :)
  34. Ken
    Jul 21, 2004
    9
    Just picked this one up and my first impression is that it's an unbeatable value at $20. Graphics and animations are extremely sharp. The new cut scenes with Berman and Kolber really make the excellent presentation complete. In-game audio seems improved as well. Madden is going to have a tough time topping this package. If Visual concepts added a crowd-involvement feature similar to Just picked this one up and my first impression is that it's an unbeatable value at $20. Graphics and animations are extremely sharp. The new cut scenes with Berman and Kolber really make the excellent presentation complete. In-game audio seems improved as well. Madden is going to have a tough time topping this package. If Visual concepts added a crowd-involvement feature similar to what's in EA NCAA '05 they would have made the ultimate video football game. As it stands, they came pretty close. Expand
  35. Brent
    Jul 22, 2004
    10
    Wow This is an excellent game and for only $20 the "Steal of the Century" ESPN is implemented greatly, plus the graphics and animations are top notch. To see Hines Ward drop a pass right as he gets nailed, then get up wanting a flag is amazing. Kudos to Sega/VC!
  36. MikeK.
    Jul 22, 2004
    10
    I'm sick of people loving Madden just because it's Madden (ahem EGM). Any game where there's an average of more than 5 turnovers per game-Madden- does not deserve the praise it recieves. Sure Madden may be a little more involved, but when it comes to fun factor, ESPN has it all over Madden. I haven't been playing 2K5 very long but can already tell it trumps 2K4. Great job
  37. J.D.
    Jul 22, 2004
    10
    Sega/Visual Concepts is crushing the price point and this is a sacrifice that all gamers should appreciate even as a statement alone; it's a Hail Mary $19.99! Not $49.99 but -nineteen ninety nine-. Allow that to sink in. Add to that fact that you are getting a 1st tier, fully featured, fully online capable behemoth of a grid-iron simulation along with being *less than half the price* Sega/Visual Concepts is crushing the price point and this is a sacrifice that all gamers should appreciate even as a statement alone; it's a Hail Mary $19.99! Not $49.99 but -nineteen ninety nine-. Allow that to sink in. Add to that fact that you are getting a 1st tier, fully featured, fully online capable behemoth of a grid-iron simulation along with being *less than half the price* of the competition and you'll realize how much more you're paying to hear Madden's tired coaching commentary. The King is dead. Long live the King -- ESPN NFL 2K5, I salute you! Expand
  38. B.L
    Jul 22, 2004
    9
    This game is incredible!
  39. BobL.
    Jul 23, 2004
    10
    Nice! Very nice! The price may be 20$ but the game is still a 50$ game. This will give Madden 2005 a challenge. This has everything from last year and much more. You will be pleased.
  40. JustinK.
    Jul 26, 2004
    9
    For the price it's the best out there! The graphics are awesome, the play is outstanding, the player attributes and the controls are also real life. I was a big fan of NFL Fever 2004, but now that game has been put to sleep. ESPN 2K5 is the real deal. How can a game this innovative be this cheap? Don't let the price fool you it's a nice buy.
  41. Timm
    Jul 28, 2004
    10
    Where else can you get a new released game for $20 that is as high quality as this one. Thanks ESPN for saving video game football!!!
  42. MarkC.
    Jul 29, 2004
    10
    Madden Who?
  43. JakeH.
    Aug 25, 2004
    10
    Just trying to balance out Buried in the Box's misplaced review of Madden in the ESPN section! Obviously Buried is attempting to bury Madden, not ESPN with his 5 rating.
  44. AlJ.
    Aug 6, 2004
    10
    It's great.
  45. HarrisonB.
    Aug 8, 2004
    10
    I just bought this game yesterday(8/7/04). I love it. Outstanding graphics, and it's only $20 dollars. $20 DOLLARS!!!! It's the cheapest sports game I've ever bought. My mom bought me ESPN NFL Football for Christmas and I thought it was very good. But this one is better. Even, you know it's kinda the same. But nevertheless, it is my favorite football game. Unbelievable.
  46. MikeM.
    Jul 29, 2005
    10
    NFL 2k5 was the best football game of all time and got better every year since it began in 2k. EA has cheated us by taking away its competition and our enjoyment of top quality graphics & game play our only option is to don't buy Madden. Thats the only way to even the score! NFL2k5 is the Best! Don't support EA - we deserve the right to choose and EA took that away, say No to Madden.
  47. FredB.
    Oct 16, 2006
    8
    I think its one of the best football games ever but, what brings the game down is the fact that they drop the ball a lot, even if they are wide open. But other then that the game rocks.
  48. SamF.
    Jun 4, 2006
    10
    This game has so much to offer. I loved this because all the modes and controlls were spectacular. You can never get bored of this game it's absolutely worth a buy. So exit this get youre shoes on and get this game! I'm not kidding!
  49. JustinC.
    Jul 26, 2006
    10
    Best football game ever. I still play it 2 years later. I wish they could make new ones, b/c Madden is just plain terrible.
  50. TimS.
    Mar 27, 2007
    10
    Best FootBall game ever! Traded in my Xbox360 , and went back to PS2 fo rthis game, modified to 2007 rosters, and it TOTALLY - to this day - still blows me AWAY how good this game was, and still is. Maddens not bad, but its NOT CLOSE to ESPNs game.
  51. LoganR.
    Nov 16, 2004
    10
    Hands down, the best game that $20 can buy. And one of the best games that $50 can buy. Graphics are far more realistic (and, more importantly, *fluid*) than any sports game out there and the controls are intuitive and capable of allowing the newbie to play without a steep learning curve, while still letting the hardcore football fanatic utilize advanced strategy to fine-tune his game. Hands down, the best game that $20 can buy. And one of the best games that $50 can buy. Graphics are far more realistic (and, more importantly, *fluid*) than any sports game out there and the controls are intuitive and capable of allowing the newbie to play without a steep learning curve, while still letting the hardcore football fanatic utilize advanced strategy to fine-tune his game. Excellent. Expand
  52. Nick
    Nov 22, 2004
    10
    This is by far the best football game that I have ever played. The gameplay is so smooth and the graphics are so real. For $20 brand new, this game cannot be passed up. If you are a Madden fan (which I was) then this game will change your mind about that. It's so much more realistic, the running style, the blocks, the tackle breaking and just everything. The franchise mode is so This is by far the best football game that I have ever played. The gameplay is so smooth and the graphics are so real. For $20 brand new, this game cannot be passed up. If you are a Madden fan (which I was) then this game will change your mind about that. It's so much more realistic, the running style, the blocks, the tackle breaking and just everything. The franchise mode is so in-depth it's not even funny. You can do so much more with your players than you can imagine. The training that you decide to put them through can either make or break them in the next weeks game. It's just incredible. Then to be able to watch Sportscenter after every week of play, how cool is that. It looks so real when you watch it. It's almost like you're watching ESPN, the skycam, and all the other camera views are awesome. It is just so much better, I couldn't believe it when I first got it. The only thing that I found it does lack that madden has, is the create-a-team ability. While you can do it, this is one thing that Madden does have that is a little bit better. But this game still has so much more over that game, than you can think of. You will be absolutely amazed at the difference and I guarantee you will love every minute of this game. A must for sports gamers everywhere! Expand
  53. GabrielR.
    Dec 9, 2004
    10
    The best game of the year no question about it. Great graphics, good on the field play and best of all, the celebrations when you score a touchdown. There's nothing better to do but to shove right into the opponents face.
  54. ChuckieB.
    Jul 21, 2004
    10
    Simply put...Stunning!!! Takes one back to the good ole days where you know you have found something special!
  55. LaughingBuddha
    Jul 22, 2004
    9
    Visual Concepts converted me!!! I grew up playing Madden way back in the Genesis days and was a fan ever since. Then when the Dreamcast was released and EA decided not to support it I figured I would try the NFL 2k series. Right from the start I was blown away, mainly by the graphics, commentary and presentation and in these areas it hands down beat Madden. On the gameplay side it needed Visual Concepts converted me!!! I grew up playing Madden way back in the Genesis days and was a fan ever since. Then when the Dreamcast was released and EA decided not to support it I figured I would try the NFL 2k series. Right from the start I was blown away, mainly by the graphics, commentary and presentation and in these areas it hands down beat Madden. On the gameplay side it needed some work and for that reason I switched back to Madden. Well, they?ve had 3 years to improve the franchise? Fast forward to present day with two franchises dropping out of the race leaving only Madden($50) and ESPN 2k5($20) to vie for the largest market share and what do you have? The biggest franchise war the industry has ever seen. I find it commendable of SEGA to put their money wear their mouth is and release their game at such a low price. They are basically giving their game away saying to EA and their loyal fans ?Hey, we feel our game is just as good if not better than Madden, so good in fact we are willing to give it away because we know come next year you will think twice before deciding on which brand to buy!? Expand
  56. GlennP.
    Jul 24, 2004
    10
    I am completely blown away by the graphics, the features and the absolute fun this game is to play - all for just $20!!! I'll probably buy maddes as well, but I may change my mind in the next 3 weeks as I'm already addicted to this game. Even the new Crib feature is pretty fun. The television style presentation of the game is amazing - Chris Berman's halftime and end of I am completely blown away by the graphics, the features and the absolute fun this game is to play - all for just $20!!! I'll probably buy maddes as well, but I may change my mind in the next 3 weeks as I'm already addicted to this game. Even the new Crib feature is pretty fun. The television style presentation of the game is amazing - Chris Berman's halftime and end of game reports are great, and you can even watch a sportcenter recap of the week's games with highlights. Heck they even have post game interviews for the player of the game! Kind of cheesy but really fun. This game is awesome, and Xbox live makes it even more fun. Expand
  57. LouC.
    Jul 25, 2004
    10
    Best football game ever.
  58. SpencerM.
    Jul 26, 2004
    10
    Best football game that i've ever played.
  59. BrannK.
    Aug 12, 2004
    10
    Honestly, the best game ever, unless you're one of those freaks who thinks scoring 90 points a game like in Madden is entertaining.
  60. JohnK.
    Aug 24, 2004
    9
    Much better than Madden! I gave the game a 9 because it is not perfect, but it beats Madden in every way. Much better graphics, better game play, and far superior TV style presentation! The only flaw in the game is that there is no good QB spy defense to stop QB runs, so players like Vick (and even lesser QB's) can run all over you. Yes, the game claims you can tell a defensive Much better than Madden! I gave the game a 9 because it is not perfect, but it beats Madden in every way. Much better graphics, better game play, and far superior TV style presentation! The only flaw in the game is that there is no good QB spy defense to stop QB runs, so players like Vick (and even lesser QB's) can run all over you. Yes, the game claims you can tell a defensive player to act as a spy, but if it works at all, it doesn't work well. But not to harp on the negative, this is an amazingly fun game to play! Just make sure if you are going to play someone with a running QB, that you have one that can run too so that you can do it right back at him. Expand
  61. ZachB.
    Nov 8, 2005
    9
    Great features overall.
  62. RockyK.
    Jul 31, 2005
    10
    This game is way better than Madden. The gameplay is so smooth and fluid in this game. There is nothing madden has over this game, nothing at all. too bad there wont be a 2k6. what a disappointment.
  63. BryanM.
    Nov 27, 2006
    10
    This game is the 2nd best football game the only one better is madden 04. This game has great graphics and there is no dum ask madden junk. If you have a xbox or even a PS2 I recommend you get this game. I only hope it will be playable soon on the xbox 360.
  64. Feb 6, 2011
    10
    Just to let everyone know,I'm Job A. but that was the other version of metacritic.Here we are at 2-11 and I will stick to what I said in my other review,this game knocks the shxx out of every madden including Madden 11 when it comes to straight up game play.2K was WAY ahead of there time with football,all of there past football titles were top notch but ESPN NFL 2K5 just blew the doors offJust to let everyone know,I'm Job A. but that was the other version of metacritic.Here we are at 2-11 and I will stick to what I said in my other review,this game knocks the shxx out of every madden including Madden 11 when it comes to straight up game play.2K was WAY ahead of there time with football,all of there past football titles were top notch but ESPN NFL 2K5 just blew the doors off of what was or is expected in a football game.Please after you read this play this game on your original xbox and you will see really how amazing it is!10 10 10 10 10. Expand
  65. Mar 27, 2011
    10
    Even after all these years, this stands the time as one of the best football games ever made. The presentation is unparalleled and the game is so packed with features that it still has life nearly 7 years after its initial release. ESPN NFL 2K5 is our generation's Tecmo Bowl.
  66. Dec 27, 2013
    10
    This has got to be the greatest football to todays date. Amazing graphics for its time. gameplay is fast and in a good way unpredictable. running the ball and shoulder charging ppl is so satisfying.
  67. Jan 18, 2014
    10
    Still the best football game to date. To think that this came out 9 years ago for only 20 dollars... wow.
    Graphics were ahead of its time.
    Gameplay wasn't the best, but for 2005, it was fantastic. CPU AI and teammate AI was more intelligent than any Madden. ESPN presentation, pregame-halftime and postgame show, player interviews and Sportscenter weekly wrap ups still = the best
    Still the best football game to date. To think that this came out 9 years ago for only 20 dollars... wow.
    Graphics were ahead of its time.
    Gameplay wasn't the best, but for 2005, it was fantastic.
    CPU AI and teammate AI was more intelligent than any Madden.
    ESPN presentation, pregame-halftime and postgame show, player interviews and Sportscenter weekly wrap ups still = the best presentation in a sports game.
    Even though the announcers are fictional, they are still great.
    The "Crib" is still one of the coolest features in a sports game... if only 2K would add that to NBA 2K...

    All in all, the greatest football (and maybe sports) game ever.
    Expand
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 42 out of 42
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 42
  3. Negative: 0 out of 42
  1. A few less than spectacular extra features complete the package. Worth mention only for reference these include annoying celebrity matches, and a frustrating ESPN 25th anniversary mode, where the top 25 plays in football are reenacted by the player.
  2. You just never know how the AI will react, but at least they do take the timeouts and run the hurry up offense when they are down. It doesn't play dumb. In fact, the AI will go into a no-huddle offense, just to throw you off occasionally. How cool is that!!
  3. 100
    The biggest advancement is the VIP system, which studies your habits on the field and develops a profile based on how you play the game.