TV Sports Football
Copyright/Publisher: Cinemaware, Lead programmer: Daniel Lucas, Programmed by: Craig Seastrom, Graphics by:
Ken Hard, Sound: Jim Simmons, Release Year: 1989, Genre: American Football, Number Of Players: 1 to 28

Note: Make a copy of your disk for use as a League disk before playing TV Sports Football. Your game disk contains league and season data that is permanently modified when you play "League " games. IMPORTANT: You must format the copy disk as a single sided disk! See your computer owner's manual if you need help with making disk copies. Always keep the original disk write-protected.

Insert the disk in the internal drive, turn on your computer. The game loads automatically. When prompted to insert your league disk, place that disk in your internal drive.

Before you start league play in TV Sports Football you need to format a blank disk. When you play the game for the first time, leave the game disk in the drive at the prompt to insert your League Disk. After you have edited as many teams as you desire, insert your blank disk, then select Save League. This is now your League Disk.

The main menu has five options: EXHIBITION, LEAGUE, PRACTICE, SCHEDULES, and STANDINGS. Select an option by moving the joystick port 2 up or down until the cursor is next to your selection. Press the button.

When the EXHIBITION options appear, select one and press the button. Select a Visiting Team from the clip board by moving the pencil to the desired team and pressing the button. In ONE PLAYER mode, the FIRST team you choose (The Visiting Team) is the team YOU will control, and is highlighted in BLUE. The SECOND team you select (the home team) is your opponent, and is highlighted in RED. The color that highlights each team is the color the team wears on the field. For TWO PLAYER games use a second joystick, plugged into PORT 1, when selecting the home team.

The Cinemaware Football League (CWFL) consists of 28 teams; each team has either a HUMAN or COMPUTER "owner". (To change ownership from COMPUTER to HUMAN, see paragraph EDITING A TEAM found later in these manual.) You may have a league solely consisting of computer teams, and watch seasons progress as a spectator.

Or you may change one computer team to a HUMAN team and control it through a rigorous schedule of computer opponents. Or you may compete in a league with up to 27 of your friends, each friend choosing a team to "own" while any remaining teams are controlled by the computer. In multi-player leagues, some of your games may be against COMPUTER teams and some may be against other HUMANS.

After you select LEAGUE (refer to making a league disk) from the Main Menu, you may choose to CONTINUE a SEASON in progress, or start a NEW SEASON. If you decide to start a new season, you may choose to EDIT TEAM. After you have edited as many teams as you care to, SAVE LEAGUE to save your changes to your League Disk. This returns you to the NEW SEASON Menu.

WARNING: When you play a game in a NEW SEASON, you permanently erase all games played on the previous season on your league disk! When you edit a team and SAVE LEAGUE, you permanently modify that team on your disk! You are only allowed one season and one league per disk. You cannot modify a team in mid-season; attempting to do so will reses the league to week 1. To run more than one season at a time, simply make an another League Disk.

When you are ready to play, go to CONTINUE SEASON and press the button. You will see a schedule of the current week's games. A blue C indicates COMPUTER controlled teams. A red H marks the teams that are HUMAN controlled (if your team is not marked with an H, it means you forgot to change ownership and you must start over).

Move the pencil to the game that features your team and press the button. This game will now be highlighted. To begin, choose PLAY at the bottom of the screen. Choose MAIN MENU to exit.

The right side of the weekly schedule screen has a status schedule indicating whether a game is in HOLD or AUTO mode. Notice that the games with one or more HUMAN owners default to HOLD mode, while all computer vs. computer games default to AUTO.

This means those games will be played automatically, while the human games will be held until a later time. While playing your league game on the screen, all the games in AUTO mode are actually being decided off- screen. Also, if you don't select a game before you push PLAY all the games in AUTO mode will be resolved. You can toggle games between the two modes by moving the pencil to the status column of the appropriate game and pressing the button.

This allows two things; first, you can HOLD a computer vs. computer game and watch it later, either to study your next opponent or just to enjoy a big game; And Second, if you're competing in a multi-player league and one of the players isn't available for his game he can elect to have the computer simulation decide the game for him almost instantly!

NO ONE can advance to the next week until all games from the current week have been decided, either by playing or by computer simulation.

Football is a game of fundamentals, and the only way to improve your fundamentals is by practicing. This option allows you to practice handoffs, pitches, field goals and (most importantly!) passing.

The play calling screen remains up for an indefinite amount of time allowing you to analyze the play diagrams. Once you have selected a play you can hike the ball immediately. You return to the play calling screen whenever the play ends: by running out of bounds, throwing an incomplete pass, or by scoring a touchdown.

You have unlimited downs, no time limits, no penalties, and you are returned to the 20-yard line after each play. The team used in practice is not a real team, but a perfect team, all players have an 8 in each skill. (Refer to ranking and skills later in the manual.

To exit the practice mode and return to the main menu, press the button when you are on the playcalling screen without making a play selection.

This option displays a weekly schedule of league games. The PREV WEEK and NEXT WEEK options at the bottom of the screen allow you to go forward or backward on the schedule. Move the pencil to your choice and press the button.

Scores of games that have already been resolved appear on the weekly schedules. Those in red indicate losing efforts, while those in blue scores mark victories. When viewing playoff schedules in mid-season, all teams appear as T.B.D. (to be determined). Choose MAIN MENU to exit.

The STANDINGS screen lets you analyze the record of every team in every division. From left to right you can see: Wins, Losses, Ties, accumulated Points For, and accumulated Points Against.

Also, by moving the pencil up and clicking on a team, you can view its schedule. The Schedule shows a complete listing of opponents and tracks scores of games that have already been played.

After you choose the type of game you want to play, the broadcast begins! A short graphic and musical sequence introduces the game (this sequence can be skipped with a button press).

Following this, a coin toss determines who kicks off and who receives to start the game. The VISITING team always makes the initial selection of HEADS or TAILS.

The team that wins the toss can choose whether they want to KICK or RECEIVE (the team that receives the opening kickoff will kickoff to start the second half).

You control the flashing player. On the RED (Home) Team, the player flashes yellow and red. On the BLUE team he flashes blue and cyan.

TV Sports Football was designed to be easy for beginners, so the game will play all by itself, even in the TWO PLAYER mode. Until you move the joystick to "take over", the computer will always control the flashing player. On offense, the player with the ball always flashes and, once you have "taken control" by moving your joystick, the computer cannot regain control, even if you release the stick.

After the coin toss, the game goes begins with the opening kickoff. A player on the RECEIVING team gets the ball after the kick. After he "returns" the ball upfield and either scores a touchdown, is tackled by the defense, or runs out of bounds, the play ends and the PLAYCALLING SCREEN appears.

The playcalling screen is not only used for calling plays, but also functions as a scoreboard showing the game clock, team names (the small football icon marks the offensive team), the score by quarter (the current quarter is indicated by the last quarter that has a score), and the total score, the DOWN number 1-4, the yards TO GO for a first down, and the position of the football ON the field.

The arrow after the word ON indicates which half of the field the ball occupies. If it is pointing UP it means the football is past the 50 yard line and in the defensive team's half of the field. Conversely, if it is pointing DOWN it means the ball is more than 50 yards from the opponent's goal line.

Also displayed on the playcalling screen are 6 yellow lights showing the number of timeouts remaining for each team. Each team is allowed 3 timeouts per half.

To call a play, whether you are on offense or defense, refer to the two joystick icons in the lower half of the screen. Choose a formation by moving the joystick diagonally toward the formation you have selected. When both sides have made their decisions, the offensive and defensive PLAYS are displayed.

Again, move the joystick diagonally to make your selection. If you have not called a formation or play in about 15 seconds, the computer will call one for you. However, if no joystick input was detected on the previous play, the computer will begin calling plays in about 5 seconds to speed up the game.

TV Sports: Football, over a period of time, actually learns your playcalling tendencies. So, whenever your team calls plays on its own (say you had to leave the room for a few minutes), the computer attempts to make the same choices you would have made.

Note: You can double the number of offensive plays by reversing them. To do this hold down the fire button while calling your play. The pitch left now becomes a pitch right, crossing patterns to the left become crossing patterns to the right, etc.

CALLING TIME-OUTS (Pausing The Game)
To call a timeout, you must push the button before a formatation is selected! The game is now paused. To return to play, push the button again. Time-outs are useful because they stop the game clock until the START of the next play.

The game clock also stops automatically at the end of every quarter and following an incomplete pass, a run out of bounds, or a change of possession.



As the quarterback you are the initial ball handler and responsible for making last second decisions "at the line". One decision a quarterback must make is whether to send his wide receiver in motion. To do this, move the joystick left or right before the play begins. You can "snap" the ball, and initiate play, as soon as the down and yards to go message disappears from the screen. There are three ways to start the play.

Pushing down on the button to snap the ball means you want the quarterback to follow the diagrammed play and make a handoff or pitch at the earliest opportunity. You CANNOT pass the ball if you snap it with a button press. As soon as the running back has the ball he will begin to run automatically. Move the joystick at any time to take control.

If you want total control over the quarterback pull the joystick back for a longer time. Tapping the joystick makes the quarterback drop back about 3 to 4 yards and you may continue pulling back to drop back even farther.

You can drop back, roll to the left or right, or even attempt to run the ball (a quarterback sneak). You can make handoffs and pitches by pushing your button when a running back is near (the timing on this is critical). The ball will go to the nearest running back.

While controlling the movements of the quarterback behind the line of scrimmage (the position of the ball when the play started), release the joystick so the quarterback stops moving to enter pass mode. By moving the joystick left and right you can make him "point" to virtually any spot on the field.

To break out of this mode and run, you must move the joystick either up or down. To pass the ball in the direction you are pointing, press and hold your joystick button. The WHITE X shows you where the ball will land, and marks the middle of the "catchable range".

As long as you hold your finger on the button, the X will continue to move up the field (the STRENGTH rating of the quarterback determines how far the ball can ultimately travel). At the moment you release your button, the X will stop moving. The nearest eligible receiver will be activated and begin running toward the X, and the ball will be halfway between it and the quarterback.

It is VERY important to lead you receivers. This means that you should throw the ball far enough in front of them so that they get to the X the same time the ball does. Practice your first few games. Soon, you will learn to "read" the defense, and your interception rate will go down while your pass completion percentage goes up.

The X on the field marks the middle of the catchable range. The closer an offensive player is to the X when the ball comes down, the better chance he has of catching it. However, if a defensive player is there at the same time, it is possible that, based on the HANDS ratings of the two players, the ball will be knocked down or even intercepted.

To try a diving catch, press your button while pushing the joystick in the direction you want to dive. The player you are controlling will dive. Sometimes this is the only way to catch a ball that has been overthrown or underthrown. Practice diving catched int he PRACTICE mode before attempting one in a game situation.

There are two types of running plays: runs up the middle and runs to the outside. Running up the middle requires a good offensive line; it is their responsibility to open a hole for you to run through. When you find the hole, get through it as quickly as possible, before the linebackers have a chance to react. Running to the outside requires more speed and quickness.

Whenever you carry the ball you should never just run right at a defender. Let him get close, then cut to the left or right and try to avoid him. This works best when your AGILITY rating is better than his.

Punting the ball is similar to throwing a long pass from the shotgun. Snap the ball by pulling down on the stick. When the punter catches it, move your joystick left or right to point in the direction you want to kick. Hold the button the punt the ball.

The distanace a punter (or a place kicker) can kick the ball is determined by his POWER rating, which is the average of the four skill ratings: Speed, Hands, Strength and Agility.



Before the play begins you have three defensive options: you can switch control to any of four defensive backs or linebackers, you can move the defense around, or you can change the assignment of any player to BLITZ or MAN TO MAN.

You can change defensive players (before the play only), by pressing the button. Keep pressing it until the player you want to control is flashing. Be careful not to push the button while the ball is snapped (after the quarterback leans into his stance) or your player will dive and you won't be able to control him until he gets up back again.

While a player is activated you can move him anywhere on the field, even across the line of scrimmage. However, if you move across the line and make contact with an offensive player, you will be called for encroachment. If you are past the line when the quarterback hikes the ball, you will get an offsides penalty.

Before the ball has been snapped, activate the player you want to BLITZ, then hold down your button and pull DOWN on the stick to change his assignment. You may change his assignment to a MAN TO MAN pass coverage by holding down the button and pushing UP on the stick.

It doesn't matter what his assignment was, and you can change as many players as you like, or have time to change. It's sometimes a useful strategy to BLITZ a cornerback if there are no wide receivers lined up opposite him on the field.

However, be careful the offense doesn't send a wide receiver in motion, or you could leave him uncovered. On the other hand, assigning MAN TO MAN coverage works well against a pass, but leaves his area open for an outside pass.

Your defensive players must move close enough to the ballcarrier to tackle him in order to stop the play and prevent a touchdown. When a defender is in range, he may or may not be able to make the tackle, depending on his STRENGTH and AGILITY.

You may also attempt a diving tackle. To make a diving tackÍle, press your button while pushing your joystick in the direction you want to dive. There are several advantages and one big disadvantage in attempting a diving tackle.

The advantages are: diving tackles cause more fumbles, it may be the only way to catch a speedier player, and if you hit the ball carrier head on you will push him back a few yards.

The big disadvantage is that you are committing yourself, because you only get one chance to make the tackle. If you miss you could be giving up a touchdown.

Fumbles occur randomly based on the STRENGTH of the tackler, the HANDS of the ball carrier, and the severity of the hit (diving tackles cause almost twice as many fumbles). After a fumble, the first person to push and hold his button will recover the ball.

There are two ways to kick a field goal. You can let the computer attempt the kick (if so, do nothing), or you can try to kick it yourself (hike the ball by pulling back on the stick). Both attempts will be based on the ratings of the kicker and the timing of the kick.

There is a box in the lower right corner of the field goal screen with a picture of a football. Use this as a guide to where on the football you want to kick it. As soon as the ball is hiked a horizontal line starts to move from the bottom of the football, push the button to stop it.

The spot where the white and brown lines intersect is the spot where you kick the football. To kick the ball high and short you would stop the white line near the bottom of the football diagram. To kick it long and low (the lower it is the greater chance it has of being blocked, see BLOCKING THE KICK, below) you would leave the line at the halfway point without going past.

If you go past the halfway point you will top it and send it tumbling along the ground. To kick to the left you should aim the the brown line to the right side. And if the goal posts are to the right you should position the brown line to the left. If you attempt a straight kick but it sails off to the left or right the kicker probably has a low ACCURACY rating.

The POWER rating will determine the maximum distance the kicker can kick, although no field goals may be attempted beyond the 50- yard line. (The kicker's ACCURACY rating is figured by adding his HANDS and his AGILITY. His POWER rating is figured by adding his STRENGTH and SPEED).

It is very difficult to block a field goal. It must be a low kick and your timing has to be perfect. Move your joystick left and right to position the middle linebacker between the kicker and the goal posts, and just after the ball is in the air push your button to jump.

Whenever you start a new season, you have the option to EDIT TEAM. You may edit the team name, team abbreviation, and players' names; toggle the ownership between COMP. and HUMAN; and alter player ranking and skills. Just move the pencil to the item you want to change and press the button.

When you select a name or abbreviation, a flashing black cursor should appear at the end of the old data. Use space to delete the entire line. When you select a ranking or skill, its box will turn black to indicate that you have selected it. Just type the appropriate number and press . You may move the joystick to cancel an edit.

When changing rankings you mist type in a leading 0 for ranks 1 to 9 - 01, 02 etc. Becouse the computer requires a two digit number.

When you are done, select ACCEPT and press the button. This makes a temporary copy of your new team in memory. You may now edit another team, or save your changes to disk with the SAVE LEAGUE option.

An editing session permanently modifies the team on disk. Several sessions may be used to create a multi-player league. When all players are satisfied with their teams, select CONTINUE SEASON to begin league play.

IMPORTANT: You cannot modify a team in mid-season; attempting to do so will reset the league to week 1. However you may examine teams during the season. Choose EDIT TEAM, then look at any tam you wish. When you are finished leave by selecting CANCEL. This does not reset the league.

All players are ranked from 1 to 18. The rankings determine the total number of "talent points" that a player is allocated. The best player on your team is given 24 points, the second best player gets 23 points, and so on down to the worst player who has 7 points.

The points are then divided among four different skills: SPEED, STRENGTH, HANDS, and AGILITY. You cannot give a player more or less total points than he was allocated. So if a player has 20 talent points and you have given him 5 points in each of the first three areas, the computer will only accept a 5 in AGILITY.

The Four Skill Levels Are:
Speed - Determines how fast he can run.
Strength - For th QB, determines how far he can throw the ball. Strengths of ballcarriers and defensive players are compared when determining whether a tackle is made.

Hands - Is a factor in determining whether a player catches the ball or which player (if any) catches it if several are in range.

Agility - Determines how quickly a player can change direction when running this becomes a factor when a receiver must come back to the ball to make the reception, or when a ballcarrier is trying to evade a tackle.

1. There are many variations on each offensive play. Use PRACTICE mode to experiment. During a game, learn to set up your opponent by running a different variation of a play the the defense has seen. For example, pitch the ball to your left halfback several times. Then when you need a big play, roll to the left like you normally do on a pitch play, but when the defense moves down to contain the run, stop and fire a quick pass upfield to your wide receiver.

2. On defense, the computer defenders respond to the pass more quickly in PASS DEFENSE.

3. Football is a game of reading and reacting. Learn to read the defense before you begin each play, and after the play has started. There is a big difference between passing to a man who is in zone coverage and a man who is being covered man to man. If you don't like what is happening downfield, try to dump off a short pass to the nearest running back, or keep the ball yourself and run with it. If the defense is blitzing and you can't find an open receiver, try to throw the ball out of bounds. It beats being sacked behind the line of scrimmage and it's certainly better than throwing an interception.

4. Remember that a 6-1 defense, while not allowing many holes to open in the offensive line, gives you only one man deep. This isn't alot of protection if the QB comes up in the shotgun and decides to throw a bomb. Be careful - don't get burned! (The 4-3 has two men deep, and the 3-4 defense has four).

5. If you don't like the play or formation you've chosen on the playcalling screen, you can pick a new one as long as the play or formation is still visible on the screen.

6. If you don't have time to play all 16 games on your schedule, let the computer play the first 8, using AUTO mode.

7. If you decide to run a multi-player league, elect one player, or even a non-player, to be the Commissioner. The Commissioner's responsibilities could include: collecting a small entry fee from all the contestants (for buying trophies etc.) and setting time limits for every game (contestants have a week to resolve all games before the commissioner uses the AUTO play mode).