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Seven things we want to see in Madden 12

4) For the live-and-breathers: media machine

One of the coolest things NCAA Football 11 introduced was the ability for you to manage your dynasties and write online fan fiction via Dynasty Wire.  If the witty emails, hosted Ustreams, and hilarious game recaps from our current Madden online franchise are any indication (yes, we’re that into it), a Madden version of Dynasty Wire would be more entertaining than visiting ESPN.com on a typical day. How NCAA got Dynasty Wire and Madden didn’t, we’ll never know. That needs to change.


Above: See that helmet? That’s a college player. Please don’t make us jealous of his game 


3) For the always onliners: better access to our online teams

Would a real NFL coach be allowed to coach the team only on game days? Never. But that’s what some hardcore players are up against. If you’re lucky enough to be in a good online franchise league, you know how magical that can be. Competing against real people over multiple virtual seasons with trades and free agency is just sensational. However, there’s no way to use your online team’s roster offline for practice or, for that matter, anything else.


Above: Exhibit #1: It was “Any Given Sunday”, not “Only on Sunday”. What do you mean it doesn’t apply? It has Cameron Diaz and that guy who smells women 

All you can do is play the regularly scheduled games, and that’s it. The best way to fall in love with your drafted players and newly acquired vets is to get to know them in practices and exhibitions. Too bad that’s impossible right now.


2) For the as-seen-on-TVers: performance polish

Our biggest gripe about Madden 11 was the litany of small-but-annoying presentation issues that grated on us from the start. Between the crazily-flopping ball physics on certain incomplete passes, half-second hiccups when the ball is snapped, or the constantly-repeating, arm-pumping linebacker in the brief cutscene before the teams line up, you play enough Madden and these things drive you crazy. Once and for all, these nagging visual miscues need to go away; we’re too far into this generation to not have a silky-smooth experience like MLB The Show or NHL 11.


Above: Clay Matthews offers the developers a hug “THIS big” if they fix the presentation glitches for next year’s version 


1) For the rebuilding years: don’t create Madden 12

This is obviously the craziest idea of all, but how about instead of cranking out a solid-but-overall-very-much-the-same game, you just give us updated rosters and some franchise improvements for $10? We’d love to see Madden go through a 2-year development cycle so that each new release is something spectacular instead of just good. Based on the declining sales numbers, we have a feeling that there would be a whole lot of people who would love that too. While we understand that this is a foolish wish (clearly it’s more profitable for EA to build and sell full Maddens every year) it would ultimately make Madden more special and build a ton of goodwill. And if Madden alternated years with NCAA Football? You might see Madden’s decreases offset by some monster gains in NCAA.


Above: It’ll never happen, but we can dream, can’t we? 

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28 comments

  • philipshaw - February 8, 2011 3:09 p.m.

    I agree with the last point, take a year off so you can make a amazing game. Also the lack of competition is stagnating these games imo
  • jmcgrotty - February 8, 2011 8:19 a.m.

    2 things, neither of which will be addressed so far after the fact, but oh well: ViggoTheCarp, you completely 100% misrepresented the EA/"NFL Players Union" compensation situation, unless you meant EA were the rich getting richer. The fight is directly between the former players and EA, not with EA and the NFL Players Union (in fact, last year the NFLPA suggested that EA start scrambling the facial features and numbers of older players so they aren't sued by the players). And what the lawsuit is about is the compensation for players not getting pensions and other benefits, so there are thousands of players (6,000 are represented in the lawsuit) who played a very violent game that has only an average career span of 3 years, but before high wages started happening. The whole issue has nothing to do with the overpaid (and todays players are pathetically overpaid) players of today and have to do with a situation where you have a hall-of-fame Pittsburgh Steeler who just 9 years ago died while living in his truck/homeless (Mike Webster). Or Willie Wood, from the Packers, who also is in the hall-of-fame and played in the first two Super Bowls, but now is struggling with massive debt due to injuries from playing the game. THAT is who the issue is over. Not Tom Brady and Payton Manning. I'm not telling you which side of the argument to come down on, but know what the fuck you're talking about, please. Dontshootthereviewer, why do you think that a work stoppage would stop Madden from coming out? What difference would it make? They'd think of some garbage to release.
  • dontshootthereviewer - February 7, 2011 10:40 p.m.

    If there's a lockout then there won't be a madden 13....I guess that would count as a two year cycle
  • TheIronMaiden - February 7, 2011 7:13 p.m.

    sucks they already announced madden '12 as a full release. Coming out in august as usual...-sigh-
  • Dribblebib - February 7, 2011 4:53 p.m.

    I might actually buy thisagain if they moved to a 2 year development cycle.
  • skeletalbutton - February 7, 2011 4:29 p.m.

    Personally, I wouldn't want to see Madden 12 at all.
  • avantguardian - February 7, 2011 4:06 p.m.

    @neelevil: this is a good point, but i'm not complaining about the salary cap and such, as i am a firm believer in them (the lack of such discipline in professional baseball has almost chased me off of the sport entirely), and they're needed in the real world. i'm talking about the context for for a videoame... a game that punishes you for doing well is counter-intuitive to the whole idea of gamer empowerment/escapism...but it all comes down to personal preference i suppose:) @jameshalsey: nothing personal,i'm sure you can understand where i'm coming from...never seen the word "ratty" as an adjective:)
  • RicePuddingUK - February 7, 2011 3:40 p.m.

    Does anyone actually buy this shit?
  • Japanaman - February 7, 2011 2:29 p.m.

    I have a better idea. Why don't we just cancel Madden and get the NFL2K series back? It's just crazy enough to work!
  • NeelEvil - February 7, 2011 10:13 a.m.

    @ avantguardian If it wasn't for the salary cap & draft pick system the NFL would end up just like the English Premier League (Soccer). A few teams have all the money & best players, smaller teams end up with no chance to advance. The draft pick keeps things even, to drop would essentially reduce the whole NFL to a game of "Who's got the most cash? Congratulations! You've bought the Super Bowl!"
  • jameshalsey - February 7, 2011 9:34 a.m.

    @avantguardian Don't get ratty, I have been writing those six words on every single gameradar article since 2005, go have a look. It's a comfort thing.
  • codzprc - February 7, 2011 9:27 a.m.

    @aguilanthony, you're kind of person I'm talking about in my above post.
  • codzprc - February 7, 2011 9:24 a.m.

    The only thing I want from Madden 12... another developer to make it. EA Sports: It's in the Game* *Disclaimer: Unless we forget to put it in the game, or spend way too much time and money listening to idiot Madden fans that only care about appearances, leaving us room to forget about gameplay enhancements - dude, we would have included better tackles last time, if we weren't so busy animating unskippable chain-gangs. Oh, that tighter defense you wanted? Yeah we scrapped that for thousands of dollars worth of cameos and dialogue for the in-game halftime reports no one watched. We fixed all that in Madden 11, sort of, the gameplay is still deplorable and if you set your audibles well enough yo can beat anyone - but hey, at least you can skip the garbage we included last time, right? That should make you happy. Oh by the way, we're gearing up the run game (again), because you all whine so much about getting 5yds. It's a run. You'd be lucky to get back to the line of scrimmage, fatty, put down the snacks. We'll also screw up the controls, just to keep you on your toes - we're EA, we do that. Want to know what else we do? Cater to idiots and whiners. Did we mention that already? Yes, but we added whiners to the list - addressing those who want correct stadiums, announcers, music, faces, personalities & commentators, coach models, fireworks, signage, ref calls, celebrations, and the other wastes of time you come up with on a daily boo-hoo basis. Take a look, Madden 2004 got a 9.1 from gamespot, it had solid gameplay on the original xbox - a 9.2 on PS2. P.S.2! Yet, Madden 11 got a 8 and was called " the best Madden yet" (GR gave it a 7). You still bought it, do you even read reviews? Whatever, you asked for it - you got it. -EA Sports: You bought the game. And it's the same one you bought last year <&:^P ^I don't work for EA Sports presently, nor in the past, and I wouldn't pitch them (or any EA development team) my games. This is simply how I think EA Sport's disclaimer should read, I picture it fading in with the Jackass theme music, then continuing on with a Star Wars scroll type thing (and the rest of the Jackass theme). Don't get me wrong, EA publishes plenty of great games, but they only develop a handful decent games per year - EA Sports has been lack luster in almost all releases since... well, since the current generation of consoles. But it's not all their fault. EA Sports tends to listen to the gamers, sometimes that's good - but in the case of sports, it's horrible. For the NFL, I've seen thread after thread full of presentation garbage: chain gangs, ref calls (I listed this before). The NHL series 'fans' seem to be the worst, in '08 there were so many gameplay glitches including physic defying goalie saves, impossible goals, player freezes, and no customizable controls. All of the real issues were asked to be fixed, but the populous won out. Pretty presentation over functionality. You're saying a player freezing up durning a one-timer is less important than a goal horn? *Sorry to switch gears, but it's relevant* NHL 09 rolls out. Main improvement: defensive AI is 'smarter'... but not really. Still suffers from players freezing up during one-timers (and for seconds more), goalie know juggles puck on his shoulders = save, still can't customize controls (classic players only have limited move set). NHL 10 was unplayable, 11 isn't worth the plastic used for it's production. And why? You. If you're able to look past the technical defects in a game, only to cry foul when a ref doesn't come out mid-field to announce your offense jumped offside, or hats aren't thrown into the rink whenever you manage a hat-trick, it's your fault that character animations aren't true to life for catching that crucial touchdown or a skater freezes when he's passed the puck. If a game is broken, don't pretty it up, fix the issues. If you didn't get your victory celebration after a big play, suck it up - real players are payed too much for those antics anyway. "I got a first down, better point toward the goal!" That's a flag in HS, the pros should be no different. The point to all this? Stop whining about presentation. Let the developers spend money on the mechanics, physics, and controls. By the way, Fuck You EA Sports for saying you have 'custom controls' in the NHL series. If I can't define what 'x' does, that's not custom. Oh, 989 made a better football game back in the day, just want to remind you of that.
  • avantguardian - February 7, 2011 4:08 a.m.

    @jameshalsey/default/dabenguin/whoever else it's weird that people choose to read (or at least click on) articles about subjects or games that they have no interest in - just to troll the forums... it's actually more sad than weird...it makes you "that guy"...the guy who talks shit just for the sake of talking shit... i'm sorry for ranting but this shit is getting really tiresome...i just don't understand why forums always have to be so goddamn obnoxious... as for the article, i agree with most of these... there's some shit talking about ncaa, but ncaa will always be more fun than madden due to college football being the more "arcadey" of the two in real life...doing well in ncaa is constantly rewarded (better teams get better recruits, success in madden just means getting screwed by the salary cap and free agency, etc.), and the game just plays faster with more diversity in the playbooks, and an abundance of dual-threat QBs...i recommend it to anybody who thinks madden has grown a little stale over the years...
  • D0CCON - February 7, 2011 3:53 a.m.

    Something I'd like to see in Madden? A Super Bowl simulation that shows the Packers winning (you know, like reality). Way to go Pack!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • jameshalsey - February 6, 2011 11:29 p.m.

    Oh look it's this game again.
  • celticsfan645 - February 6, 2011 11:12 p.m.

    I think i came up with a comprimise. Only do legendary players like Joe Montanna and Dan Marino in old teams and Just come up with Generic names for people nobody knows. Sort of like what they did with the bench players in old teams in NBA 2k11.
  • aguilanthony - February 6, 2011 10:15 p.m.

    I want a more realistic fan experience, Madden '11 improved it but it needs more. As a frequent attender of Cardinal games, the experience in the stadium is unxplainable, it's just so awesome. I want specific music playing for every touchdown, field goal, long run, interception, and sack. For example when Tim Hightower breaks off a long run, I want to hear Running With The Devil From Van Halen. I want to hear Hey from Gary Glitter playing in the background when the home team score a touchdown. Also I want a more dynamic crowd, I want to hear the boos of the home crowd when a team comes onto the field. I want to here boos when the refs make bullshit calls. Get really realistic, if a team wins the game that secures a wild card spot, I want fans running onto the field jumping on the goal post. If the home team loses a playoff game I want rabid fans to be throwing shit onto the field. AND I WANT FUCKING CHEERLEADERS!
  • DEFAULT - February 6, 2011 10:09 p.m.

    Gamesradar...don't you think most of us come to this site today to AVOID football? This is irony, right?
  • fatguy19 - February 6, 2011 9:50 p.m.

    American football is just rugby for unfit people who need a break every thirty seconds

Showing 1-20 of 28 comments

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