Monday, August 17, 2009

Filling The Football Void: Madden 10 Is In Full Force...

Last Friday was a day that many people have been waiting months for, the release date of the latest installment of the greatest sports video game franchise ever, Madden '10. Naturally, I had pre-reserved my copy long ahead of time, and I was very excited to get my first taste of HD gaming on my XBOX that I bought a few months ago. Although the cost of the game can be prohibitive, I can see a vast amount of gameplay out of it.

They have added a few new things, some of which were piss poor after looking great on paper. One of them was a new halftime feature like sportscenter which is presented courtesy of the NFL network. The first time I saw it, I was very impressed, but after about the 5th game, you just get tired of having to button through it. The gang tackles are also a new feature, but again, it seems like every freaking tackle is shared by 18 people. The new PRO-TAK system is pretty nice, and the cut scenes at the end of the play make the game feel realistic, but I kind of wish for my games of old while playing this one.

Another new thing, the cut scenes for the measurements and TD calls could be the most annoying feature I have ever played through. Each time anything is even remotely close, the measurement team comes out and you have to watch them do their thing. You cant button out of it, and most of the time, you already know the outcome before they start. Im still looking for a way to turn this off, so far I have not had any success.

Other than the new features, most people usually buy the game for the new rosters, as well as new ratings of people who had breakout seasons in 2008. The new rosters are obviously in place, but as has been stated before, the rating system greatly displays a huge difference between the good players and the bad ones. QBs are especially affected by this, though some of the ratings seem like they were done by sports equivalents of Joe Collectors. For instance, the Steelers are so good, that it is as impossible to get to 3rd down when they are on offense, as it is to stop them. Roethlisberger was on the ground on two separate occasions, and still made the throws to tight ends that had broken my zone. Same thing goes for the Patriots, Giants, and other fan friendly teams. Another example, last year, the Minnesota rush defense was a brick wall at the line, coming close to the NFL record for yards allowed per game and per attempt. Do they get a three star rating on the game? No. But every other of those fan faves have it. Peterson is pretty authentic in the game, but I was literally destroyed by Willie Parker and Brandon Jacobs who seemed to be the fastest people on the game I have seen so far.

Im sorry, the Steelers deserve to be the best, but they do not deserve to be almost unbeatable. Its too bad that the game designers catered the ratings to those people who cheer for the big market teams instead of going for authenticity.

Lastly, I had fun with the Wildcat, especially with Percy Harvin, who was very useful in just about every situation I needed him in. I had similar experiences with Moreno and Maclin, who seemed very authentically represented. They werent "oh my god" good, but filled their roles like they would on a normal team. In my first season, Harvin won ROY, obviously, so that isnt interesting, but Donald Brown was second, which was pretty fun for me. Any user controlled player is going to be the best, but to see Brown as the guy behind, dealing with Addai playing too, seemed improbable. Could this be a sign to come?

Overall, Madden will be a blast for the season, great for venting out a lot of my frustration as the real life Vikings get destroyed by a slew of teams. I would definitely go out and buy it if you don’t already have some form of Madden, but rent it first if you do. The way it plays is much different, and I could see it being a Mac versus PC type of thing. Though, I will say this, nothing beats the thrill of hit sticking Eli Manning into next week. I hit him so hard a few times, that I think he may have needed kidney surgery. Yeah, its that painful to watch.


  1. Fantastic game. I played it most of the weekend (still haven't figured out how to do the hit stick thing...maybe I should actually read the manual).

    When I jumped online, everyone played as the Steelers and they were simply unbeatable. Looking forward to setting up an online league, though. That seems like the way to go.

  2. I'm not sure if I just like the oldschool engine, but I hate Madden so far.

    NCAA has great gameplay and features the old engine.

    I just got it last night, so I sure as hell hope there are some features to drastically speed up the game, because it's just dreadfully slow developing. Running is really weird as well, you can tell that Harvin's faster than a linebacker, but he still feels like he's running really damn slow.

    I also can't stand these damn cut scenes, which I hope to hell I'll be able to turn off.

    It's nice that the refs are concerned that the ball may or may not be in the endzone, but I don't care.

    NCAA does have some massive faults, but it's a lot more enjoyable to play -- at least 1 day into Madden.

  3. Thanks for the reminder, I can frucking believe I forgot the measurements and TD calls. UGH!

  4. Player ratings are for guys that can't play ;)
    Gellman I will play you and be the Lions and you be the Steelers I bet 20paypal I beat you by 10 lol. Start labbing and get better on the stick and quit complaing about the Steelers. :) If you have 360 look me up smoothassilk10


  5. Wheeler, Im sure you could beat me with last year's lions. I havent reached a level in madden where I can beat good players. Dont think I have the time, either.

    Maybe we should play, though.

  6. Gellman, let's do an online franchise mode with bloggers.

    I bought the game for the first time in 5 years (I'm a FIFA guy), and would love to go online with it. I'm actually pretty bad and don't really know all the buttons and stuff yet.

    Add me on Live at enjoiyrpanda

  7. like i said, the best part about Madden 10 is that on friday I got Madden 8 for $5.

    Yeah, I'm that guy....

  8. I need my player ratings, or else defensive backs and linebackers start doing ridiculous crap. Especially with the player switching this year in both Madden and NCAA.

    NCAA's painful, and Madden's slightly better but the amount of TD's that I've allowed is painful because of counter-intuitive player selection.

    Xbox live has become too expensive for my tastes though, mainly due to the stupidity of downloading limits instituted by the cable company.

  9. come on adam I am married with 2 young girls 2 and 7 and have time. How could you possiblybe so busy :)