Even though “World Cup” isn’t in the game’s title, this year’s tournament is represented here in its entirety. You can jump right into the 2007 Cup as one of dozens of international sides; help New Zealand’s legendary All Blacks regain the title that’s eluded them since the inaugural tournament in 1987, pilot their archrival Aussies to the championship, captain the defending champs England in pursuit of a repeat, or take any of the other qualified countries through pool play to the Finals.
Once the Cup has come and gone, though, there are plenty of other ways to mix it up. Our personal favorite is the Challenge Mode, which dumps you in historical World Cup scenarios and gives you the chance to accomplish some feats that did - and didn’t - happen in the past. There are also some other licensed tournaments, featuring both international and club play. Lastly is the World League, similar to Winning Eleven’s Master League mode. You take a third-division squad, manage the players, team chemistry, salaries, and transfer markets with the goal of advancing up a rung each season. The World League in particular really gives Rugby 08 some legs, although it’s no easy task to turn your chumps into world champs.