It seems like every year EA Sports promises new and exciting features that will change the way we play Madden. And it seems like every year, the promised changes are a disappointment.
Fortunately, it looks like this year could be different. EA Sports has finally made some changes that could make Madden 13 the franchise upheaval that fans have been clamoring for. Here are a few of the best and newest features:
Maybe the biggest change to the Madden franchise is the Infinity Engine, the game's new physics engine. One of the problems with Madden has been stale game animations. A ball-carrier would make contact with a defender and immediately shift into a preset tackling animation.
There were variations in the different types of tackles, but the engine still felt out of date. The Infinity Engine should change that.
Victor Lugo, a designer for Infinity Team, posted a description of the engine on easports.com, saying:
“Characters will now move and react to contact organically, creating unlimited visual and functional variety to your gameplay experience.”
Now contact of any type will alter a players' momentum. Ball-carriers can no longer charge blindly into the offensive line or directly over fallen players. Actions like that will result in a swift (and embarrassing) down.
You can see the changes for yourself here. If the engine is anything like what EA is promising, it will be a big improvement in how Madden is played.
The Man Lock feature (as explained by the PlayStation Universe staff) is a change made specifically to please hardcore Madden fans. In previous installments, motioning a wide receiver to another side of the field before the ball was snapped was an easy way to tell if your opponent was playing man or zone defense. The offensive player could almost guarantee an easy completion every play (this video explains it all).
The Man Lock feature is a fix to prevent this problem. Though the change might not be significant to casual players, Madden devotees will have to find entirely different ways to attack defenses in Madden 13.
Total Control Passing
The outdated Madden passing system is also finally getting rebooted. Quarterbacks will now be able to direct passes to certain spots on the field instead of just at players.
Nothing was more frustrating than trying to lead a receiver with a pass, only to watch in horror as he stopped on a dime and waited for the ball in a crowd of three defenders. Total Control Passing is designed to take care of these problems
There's also more emphasis on the types of passes that can be thrown. For example, when setting up for a screen pass in Madden 12, you could only choose to throw a bullet pass to your running back (who's literally five feet away) or a high arcing lob (still five feet away).
Gameplay designer Larry Richart addressed that issue, telling ESPN's Jon Robinson:
“In Madden 12 you would get the moon ball. We're getting rid of that. No more moon ball.”
These are just the biggest of many changes coming in Madden 13. It's time for fans to celebrate. It's been a while, but the new Madden finally looks new.