Soccer Vision Games

The best classic football games from the 80's and 90's.

Welcome to Soccer Vision Games, here we cover all the old classic football games that might ring a bell if your in your 20's or 30's. Reviewing games from the old 80's arcade machines and those on the early consoles including the amiga we take a look back at what made these football games so popular.

Of course in today's market of video games, fans are overwhelmed with choice for first person and third person games as well as managerial styles games. Many well made football games can be played online as well, in particular managerial football games such as Football Manager and Hattrick.

In console games you can find a wide range of fifa and pro evolution football games with a new copy being released each year on consoles such as the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and the PC. Even so many football fans love to revisit and play the old classics such as Kick off and sensible soccer and these old classic's will always have a place in the heart of many gaming fans.

If you are looking for the real thing then you may want to check out the BBC's coverage of the English Premier League, one of the most exciting football leagues in the world.

More about Classic Football Games

Since football and gaming have been a pivotal part of the last 25 years, hundreds of games have been released to dozens of platforms. Regardless of what we will consider to be a classic game in the next 25 years, the ones that we have on our list now are simply retro and all of them are still played by old skool gamers all over the world. In this guide, we will explore a few of these games.

Sensible Soccer

Released for the Atari back in 1992, Sensible Soccer has been re-released several times now on various consoles; however, none of them 'found fame' like the original. At the time this game was truly groundbreaking as it offered over 20 different leagues. This 3rd person football simulator was one of the first to use both the overhead 2D match view and imitations of real life players.

However, the biggest development that this game offered the market was its speed and ease of use when you compared it to other football simulations. Unlike others, players did not have to take control of the ball before they passed it, which meant that moving the ball around was faster. All of these points made the game much quicker than anything else that was out at the time.

Kick Off

Kick Off has to be defined as a classic because it was one of the first football simulations released on any console. Even though Kick Off 2 would eventually go on and take away the plaudits, this game was probably the most influential console football game ever. Clearly Kick Off was a genre defining game but this was not because it was particularly amazing, it was because this was the first game to get everything right. At the time the game-play and graphics were unbeatable by any other football simulation, in fact, there were few other games on the market that could rival it.


Released in 1992 for the Atari, Striker was played from a 3D viewpoint and was one of the first games to offer this, which was a huge breakthrough. Even though the 3D match engine was criticised, developers had to take that step eventually. Although the graphics (3D view) and speed were brought into question, the playability of the game was undoubtedly brilliant for the time.

In my opinion, when you compare this 3D match engine to those that were released even a couple of years later it still fared well; therefore, I believe Striker was a couple of years in front of the competition.

Critically, the game received one of the most mixed receptions that a game has every received. Some critics rated the game as high as 9.5/10 while others rated it as low as 6/10. With all this being said, Striker still has a large cult following today, and I am sure these gamers would be more than happy to give it a positive review.

Virtua Striker

Virtua Striker is by far the most popular classic football simulations because of its high standing in arcades around the world. Regardless of if you are on a pier or in an arcade in Japan, you will be able to find a Virtua Striker machine.

As it was not on a console you did not have to own anything to play it, which is why it picked up a huge cult following. Even now, after 17 years and 11 versions, people will still pay 'full price' to play any one of these versions, even if it is just for nostalgic reasons. Ultimately, these points mean you can define this game as a classic.

The game is and was popular because it had terrific graphics for an arcade simulation. Alongside this, the atmosphere that you felt when playing the game on a large CRT screen with huge speakers in the base unit was second to none. Anybody that went to the arcade wanted to get involved in a Virtua Striker tournament, one which picked up a crowd of people.

Even though there are still no signs of licensing, and one credit may have only lasted a couple of minutes, this game will never be topped by another arcade football simulation because if the reputation it has built.

Player Manager

Football Manager sells in its millions every year, and is always at the top of the PC gaming chart for months after its release; however, none of this would have been possible without the master class that was Player Manager.

Some of the developers who worked on the Player Manager also worked on the second Kick Off game, which meant that you could move your players between games, and this was the first development of its kind, and to this day has been replicated a bunch of times.

The game was extremely popular because unlike all of today's football management simulations you could not choose which league you started in, and instead you had to start in the third division (league two) of the English league and work your way up. When you look back at it, you can see that this was a bold move; however, it was one that worked. Even though this development made it very hard to do anything worthwhile in your first couple of seasons, the game had enough to keep your interest.

Playing as a player (or a team) and managing them turned out to be very rewarding because you felt that you had total control. Just like all the other games there were a few development and design errors, but this has all added to the 'charm' of the game today, and is another reason why people are still buying it.


As you can see from the five games above, classic football simulation and management games still have a place in today's world. You will often find that people that do not like football or even gaming will make an exception to play one of these because they have heard so much about them, and for me, this is what defines a true classic.

Pocket League Story

Managing your own football team and controlling every aspect of their development sounds pretty fun, doesn’t it? Pocket League Story allows you to do just that. Negotiate player deals, train your superstars up and take charge of your own mini football empire in this quaint little football simulator game. Find Out More About Pocket League Story.