While the England cricket team does its best to both captivate and confound its fans in the Ashes test series against Australia, those same long-suffering followers can at least take some consolation from this digital representation of the sport.
Just like the real thing, EA Cricket 10 is comprising three key areas: battling, bowling and fielding.
As our school days have taught us, batting is easily the most exciting part of cricket and the same idiom applies here. Using the mobile phone’s D-pad, you can position your batsman on the crease as well as selecting how defensive or aggressive he will be with his upcoming shot.
Naturally, forceful play will result in a massive swing which if connected probably will go for a six, but you’re more likely to be caught out. If the odds are against you and the opposition is fielding brilliantly then it’s best to opt for a more defensive ground stroke, which can often result in a surprisingly large run tally for your team.
Actually making the shot involves stopping a marker in the green area of a power bar: the more powerful your shot, the smaller the sweet spot will be. Get it in the red area of the bar and the results won’t be pretty.
Bowling makes use of power bars to judge the success of your throw, and you’re also able to select where you’d like to place the ball, as well as how much spin you’d like to apply.
If you assumed that fielding - traditionally the most boring assignment in cricket - was free from such power bar-related malarkey, then you’d be wrong. Making a successful catch also involves stopping the marker in the correct place.
EA Cricket 10 contains incredible depth for a mobile phone release. You might assume that fitting an entire game of cricket inside your humble handset would result in corners being cut, but Distinctive Developments has succeeded in cramming in everything, including unique Challenge modes, a robust tutorial and even a World Cup mode.
Add to this some excellent visuals and fantastic sound (which even includes the familiar shouts and bellows that accompany a traditional cricket match) and you’ve got a game that is sure to hit both fans and newcomers for an effortless six.