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TAFKAC'S GUIDE TO RUNNING | TAFKAC'S GUIDE TO RUNNING, PART DEUX. | Defensive Game Plan | Hellion's Guide to Running/Part 1 | Hellion's Guide to Running/Part 2 | Hellions Guide to Running/Part 3 | Hellions Guide to Running/The Moves | PS2 Tips | Control the Ball | The PSX2 Pass Rush Guide | Favorite Links | Contact Me
Thinking Man's Guide to Madden
Hellions Guide to Running/Part 3

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How to actually DO it- You probably got the exhilarating feel right away that running the ball in this game is very realistic. Runner lean feels very real, and intuitive. You are able to create so many different types of running styles before you ever push a button to do a real move. Constantly changing directions will make you a little harder to track and may result in some big plays, but keeping your momentum forward and making smaller adjustments probably helps the most. Depending on your settings, defenders will get off blocks slow or fast. Either way can be used to your advantage. You can head in the general direction (once you get past the line) of the middle of the field, and when a guy whos being blocked rips to the inside, calmly change directions to the outside. In general, the harder your settings are the more dangerous the description Run to Daylight becomes. Running straight toward daylight will sometimes get you stuffed once the defense breaks their blocks. Against harder settings, run in the general direction of your own blockers while keeping room to make changes, and this will confuse the defense more. Go to practice without a defense and run some plays. Notice how you wont get caught up on your own blockers as much as in previous games? There is a little push and shove and give that goes on there, so dont be afraid to hide behind the trees. The level I play on (as mentioned) is Madden, but with the settings turned down quite a bit because the default settings are so impossible. The defense still gets off blocks VERY quick on this level, especially the good defenses, and making sure I always keep them guessing is how I create my yards. The settings I have permit that sometimes my line will dominate and sometimes it wont. Its not the plays that they dominate (knock two or three guys down or have the whole defense on its heels) that Im talking about. Its those every-down plays where some of your guys are winning and some are losing.

Run to the style of your back. I was going to do a description of different types of backs but I just read TAFKACs guide to running and Ill defer to that. He lists the all around back, the Phat Back, and the Scatback (might not have called it exactly that) as the main types of backs. Refer to his guide for a description of those types. While running with an all around guy, defer to your current mood as to what to do. You might want to just run people over or make them miss, or do a combo of both. Dont try to juke a lot with a bigger back. Limit change of direction to moving back and forth between angles you could take and hiding behind your blockers until you have to explode out into the open. With a scat-type back, you may want to run a little more dangerously, and try to avoid contact at all costs. Its up to the your style and the style of your back.

Patience is the key to the outside run, permitting its not getting blown up. If you have a spare moment (backside protection is tidy) to fake inside of your contain block on the outside, do it. It will gain you so many yards once you hit that speed burst and take it up field. The worst thing you can do is get the ball, hit speed burst and immediately try to take it wide. The defense will adjust their angles and meet you every time. Give your blockers a chance. If youre running outside and a blocker gets run over on the contain, consider pushing directly backward (usually diagonal and down) from where you were going and then after that pushing directly up. What this will create is sort of a quick front-foot stop and stutter step that leaves the defender heading outside and you inside of that guy with some room to run it up in there. Sometimes the misses can be VERY close, never give up on this. Ive run through some tiny-ass holes. If you are running to the outside and you want to change directions and take it back inside of a defensive player, DONT push down like before. In previous installments on the PSX this created a quick slowdown effect. On this game it creates a stop effect. This takes away your momentum. What you want to do is give a quick fake outside, take your finger off the knob momentarily, and then sharply cut to the inside and get on the speed burst to create separation. It still doesnt work every time, and is a difficult move to do.

Seeing the running lanes is really important. Know what types of lanes are going to result if you see certain things. If the defensive end falls down on any play, your biggest yards will usually be gained by going diagonally through a huge lane that opens up behind the outside linebacker that is being broken off upon. If a DT gets blown up, that lane is going to be straight up the middle, and immediately look for a way to avoid the safety if he gets off his block early. If you have a good block in the bag on the MLB, your lane will again be diagonal, from the tackle on the side youre running toward the opposite safety. If you see a safety go down, just run like a mother straight as you can. These are general rules to look for, because trying to bust is straight up the middle when your lane was to the outside really hurt. Obviously, there are so many variables that these rules arent concrete, just general ideas to draw from.

Finally, as far as controlling your guy goes, the best thing you can do is go to practice mode without a defense opposing you and just see how many things you can make the guy do without even using a button. You can change speeds, stutter stop, do small jukes, etc. without even pushing a button.

A quick word about controller selection: By this I dont mean which controller should you use, but are you going to use the D-pad or the stick? The D-pad is supposedly analog, but even if it is (hasnt been proven to me yet) its not nearly as responsive and doesnt give you nearly as many options as the stick does. Start using it right away if you dont, would be my advice. It takes a couple of games to get used to, but not nearly as long as youd think. And, it gives you a HUGE advantage over the D-pad. If youre hella good and reading this and think, Ive seen your stats or whatever and you do just as good as me with the D-pad Youd be MUCH better than me with the stick, once you got used to it. Nuff said.