Throwback Friday: Dino Dini’s Kick Off 2


I’ll forgive you if you do not know Dino Dini from Adam, but in 1990 he gave us one of the finest and fun football games to grace the Amiga. Before Sensible Soccer there was Kick Off 2 and it’s predecessor which oddly enough was called Kick Off. I owned number two and it led to a seven year war with one of my best mates, just who was the best at Kick Off 2.

Kick Off 2 Box Art

Kick Off 2 was a top down football game with the maddest ball physics you’re likely to encounter in a game of this ilk. The action was fast and frantic and quite often hilarious. The game moved at an almost lightning pace as the ball moved constantly from one end of the pitch to the other. Ball controls were quite simple but underneath that simplicity was a control system full of quirks and depth. In general once the ball was intercepted it would stick to the players feet for the most part. Passes were handled by either tapping the button for short passes or holding it down for long ones, after touch could be added to the ball by moving the joystick in different directions while passing and shooting. Bending the ball for shots on goal was a skill that needed to be mastered, as the goalie was always controlled by the computer and done a very good job at saving all but the most spectacular shots.

Kick Off 2 Screenie

Match options allowed you to create custom colours for your on screen team and more importantly choose a referee for the game. The one rule myself and my friend would always follow was to choose S. Screech as ref for all games. Mr Screech was a particularly nasty ref and wouldn’t tolerate any sort of mischief on the pitch. More often than not we would end up with half a dozen players sent off in the course of a match. Injuries were also a good way of getting your opponent off the pitch and putting the odds back in your favour. The best way to win a game we found was to try and injure each others goalie with sliding tackles, a substitute goalie would take his place but he was never as good at saving goals. This wasn’t the only dirty trick that could be used to get the upper hand. From the kick off spot at the start of each half a goal could nearly always be gained from lobbing the ball half the length of the pitch and over the goalies head.

In our seven year battle for the pitch I don’t think either of us really was an outright winner, oh all right I’ll admit it I lost far more than I won. But you know what it didn’t matter, Kick Off 2 was such a fun game. Later on Sensible Soccer took the crown and the limelight away and Kick Off faded into obscurity which is a real shame. I for one would have preferred to see Kick Off 2 on XBLA rather than Sensi, but it’ll always live on in my heart.

    • psilas
    • October 7th, 2009

    Sorry, but they’re BOTH 2nd best.

    If you want the real ‘retro’ deal, then Dino Dini’s Soccer aka….GOAL.. is the the main man.

    Well, imho!

    I still love goal,its sooo smooth and I’m lucky in that I managed to find an updated 2004 edition,as a genesis ROM.


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