Review by BionicBatman
"Quite Possibly the Worst Madden Game Ever"
Let me start by saying this, I am a huge Madden fan! I have played almost every single Madden since '02 ('12 being the exception) and loved most of them! I only say most cause of the awesomely bad football game of Madden 06 on the 360. You know, the one where they stripped the game completely. But this year's version was supposed to be so much more than any other year we had played before. New engine to make tackling smoother, a game mode called "Connected Careers", and better gameplay were just some of the great features we kept hearing about throughout the year. While they all sounded like great ideas, the execution of these ideas are just downright horrible.
Lets start with the Infinity Engine. Now, I will start out by saying while it does make tackling at least LOOK smoother, it's really just sped up so you can't see the clunky mess of what's happening. Most tackles usually consist of the tackler just bumping into the ball carrier and in most cases also having the tackler get knocked back a good 3 feet after tackling. But lets also get into why after every. single. play. there will be at least 3 guys tripping over each other. It even happens during plays! If your running back just brushes against a blocker, he'll fall straight to the ground before you even know what just happened. And it's like this for everyone on the field. Which almost alone makes the game unplayable.
Connected Careers is just a mess. I mean really, they put all their eggs in one basket with this, and it still just came out horribly wrong. First off, they took out ability to do a multi team franchise mode offline. This was just about the only way I played any other Madden. I always loved to do these with my brother. It was what we always did to kinda compete with each other in the game (other than playing). But this mode is really just 2 ways of doing the same thing. You can either choose to be a player and earn XP and get better, or you can be a coach to earn XP for yourself AND your team to get better. In both modes, you only go forward one week at a time, have to practice (which is just a scenario that requires you to play 2 qtrs or more for a lil bit of XP), and you have your game to play that week! You could just skip it, but you know if you were to play it, you would definitely get a lot more XP than the CPU would. So you're practically forced to do all these things every week. But in coach mode, you also have to scout people (which is very tedious as compared to previous years) and use the XP to upgrade your players (you can let the CPU do it, but you really have no clue if they will upgrade to fit your scheme or not). There's also the mess of having to go through about 4 screens to just get to see your roster or anything else. But I've spoken enough about this.
Now, gameplay is just atrocious! Along with the players stumbling like they're a drunk character in GTA IV if you get close to anyone at all, there's also the deal with AI and other aspects that will drive you mad when you're online. First, the AI just flat out knows what you're doing. If I'm in the Shogun formation doing a HB draw, the computer is running a 4-3 and bringing up the SS to blitz even if I passed the ball 10 times before that out of that formation. There's also the closing speed of the defense and the empty mindedness of your team's AI. I'll run a 4 WR streak route w/ the RB going for a small curl, but as soon as I even press to throw to the RB, every defender is leaving their guy to come get me. While all of my WRs are still running their route! It's really just unbelievable! And now, one of my favorite things to do has been nullified due to this new gameplay, and that is chucking the ball downfield! But I'm guessing they don't want people doing this, cause A. they have made WRs almost scared to go up and grab the ball. B. DBs will jump and fight more than your receiver to get to a ball. C. DBs now catch EVERYTHING they get close to. It's ridiculous.
There are other things that are wrong with this game, but I'm gonna have to leave it at that. Not even gonna get into the lack of fantasy draft, soundtrack, offline multi-team franchise, ability to edit anything in CC (player positions is all I wanted), or why they went from psychic defenders in '11 to super psychic everyone now... But there are good features in the game. I'm not sure what they are, but I'm sure there's one... somewhere.
4/10 Save your money, people!
Reviewer's Score: 4/10 | Originally Posted: 09/06/12
Game Release: Madden NFL 13 (US, 08/28/12)
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