North American arcade flyer.
|Arcade system||Irem M-52 hardware|
|CPU||Z80 @ 4 MHz|
10-Yard Fight is viewed in a top-down perspective and is vertical scrolling. The player does not select plays for either offense or defense. On offense, the player simply receives the ball upon the snap and either attempts to run with the quarterback, toss the ball to a running back, or throw the ball to the one long distance receiver - basically the option offense. On defense, the player chooses one of two players to control, and the computer manipulates the others. The ball can also be punted or a field goal can be attempted.
The game has five levels of increasing difficulty: high school, college, professional, playoff, and Super Bowl. If the player wins both halves of an "accelerated real time" 30-minute half at an easier level, the player advances to the next level of difficulty, like a career mode.
The arcade game was later ported to the Famicom by Irem first in Japan, and later published in North America and Europe by Nintendo in 1985 for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). The arcade game was also ported to the MSX home computer also by Irem, but exclusively in Japan.
While graphically similar, there are some fundamental differences between the arcade and NES versions of the game. The arcade version only seeks to simulate the offense, with the team attempting to score a touchdown, which ultimately leads the player to the next level. The NES version was developed to allow both defense and offense, as well as a simultaneous 2-player mode.
On May 2, 2018 a port for the Nintendo Switch was released by HAMSTER as part of their Arcade Archives series.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette called it the "patriarch of football games". Adam Duerson of Sports Illustrated stated that while no one remembered it or could say what makes it great, it is worth recognition for the fact that it brought football games out of the Atari era, setting a simple precedent for future football games. Adam Swiderski of UGO Networks called it "downright advanced" compared to earlier football titles. He added that while it looked neat and had a quality soundtrack, it didn't play like "real football". Nick Chordas of The Columbus Dispatch said that it was realistic for the time, commenting that the players looked like real people. N-Sider called it more like a racing game than a football game, due to the objective being racing for a first down to increase players' time. Author Bj Klein, however, called it less realistic than Tecmo Bowl.The Journal News called it an "immortal classic".