One on One (Irving vs. Bird) Download (1984 Sports Game)

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Julius Erving and Larry Bird Go One-On-One pits the high-flying Dr. J of the Philadelphia 76'ers against the sharp-shooting "Hick from French Lick" of the Boston Celtics. Both players were involved in and gave their expert advice during development sessions for the game and were photographed playing actual games of one-on-one in order for the programmers to better design their moves (this was long before motion capture animation). The skills and attributes of the onscreen players mimic those of their real life superstar counterparts. For example, Larry Bird does a great job of rebounding and three-point shooting while Dr. J executes that quick first step to the basket and his fancy inside moves.

Just like they do while playing in the real world for their respective teams, the two pros in the game grow fatigued after extended minutes on the court. Tired players don't shoot, dribble or defend as well as fresh ones. Calling time out gives both contestants a full rest by reducing the Fatigue Bars to nil. Fouling and free throw shooting are also part of this one-on-one basketball simulation. Players can be called for traveling, charging, blocking, hacking and violating the 24-second shot clock.

There is no "Hot Streak Bar" to indicate consecutive shot making but the manual claims the feature is built into the game. You simply have to "feel" it happening and test your skill (and luck) at hitting more outside jumpers. If you make an especially nice play (such as a 180-degree dunk), the computer may treat you with a slow motion instant replay. You can also shatter the backboard when you execute a particularly ferocious dunk.

Four skill levels are available: Park and Rec, Varsity, College and Pro. You can play winner's outs or loser's outs against a computer-controlled opponent or a human opponent. Other options include playing to a predetermined amount of time or to a set score of any two-digit number.

Control either Julius Erving or Larry Bird in front of a single basket, in a game of one on one. The user can select to play either to a certain score or for a certain amount of time. When on offense, the player can rotate to keep away from his rival, take a shot from a distance or move in to the basket for special up-close slam-dunks. When on defense, you can try to take your rival's ball or jump up to block a shot. Particularly good set-ups get a slow-motion replay. You can even smash the glass on the backboard, which will send an irate janitor onto the court to clean up the mess.

Oldie basketball game based on the televised "one-on-one" basketball exhibitions of the 60's, featuring Julius Irving and Larry Bird. One of EA's first games, the C64 version was one of the biggest hits in the early days of the classic home computer, although the PC version wasn't that successful. William Hunter's capsule review for MobyGames says it all about what makes this a classic:

"One on One was a seminal sports game, one no self-respecting owner of one of the early PCs would have ignored. Its large, detailed sprites representing the players were nothing short of revolutionary at the time, along with a variety of different shot types triggered by the distance and angle the player was to the basket. You must also keep an eye on the energy level of each player, in order not to overexert them and end up too exhausted to play effectively. The audio portion of the game was also a standout, from the various sound effects on court to the impressive theme song (sounded better on the SID chip on the 64 than the tinny PC speaker). The smashing of the backboard was another irresistable detail to the game. There were also quite a few different play options available to lend variety to the game.

The Bad:

The AI was pretty simplistic, and even at Pro level it didn't take long to work out a pattern where you could consistently shut out the competition.

The Bottom Line:

This is a classic piece of early computer gaming, just another EA product that raised the bar of quality about 20 meters." A must-have for all basketball fans. Be sure to also check out the 1988 remake version, also on this site.

How to run this game on modern Windows PC?

This game has been set up to work on modern Windows (11/10/8/7/Vista/XP 64/32-bit) computers without problems. Please choose Download - Easy Setup (1.37 MB).


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