If you have followed my coverage of Madden 13, you know I am really enjoying it. I scored the game a nine on a 10-point scale.
But it's always good to see what other sports video game experts are saying about the game as well.
As I scan the Internet for reviews, it seems most experts that have taken the time to explore the game in its entirety have come away pleased.
Let's start with the lowest grade I found. Tom Mc Shea of Gamespot gave the game a 7.5 out of 10.
Mc Shea writes:
This is the best version of the long-running franchise yet. But it's still Madden. Unlike the real sport, it hasn't evolved in meaningful ways.
The tactics that worked a decade ago are still effective here. And unlike in the NFL, where every team has to use its specific skill set to succeed, there is little diversity.
I can't say that I agree with the concept of this assessment.
First, this is football. Most of what it takes to succeed in the real game hasn't changed. Slant routes are still hard to cover, dominant offensive lines are still huge assets and big receivers still create matchup problems.
People looking for drastic changes to things like camera view and power-ups are more video game fans than football fans. The thing about Madden is that it is designed to be a product that falls right in the middle of the two groups.
It is supposed to appeal to the hardcore football fan, and that group loves the sport and understands that there is only so much you can change without damaging the authenticity.
Sure, it's played on a video game console, but it should be as close to a representation of the real sport as possible.
In Mc Shea's bio, he says that he loves platformers. I think that kind of explains his point of view. Many people that aren't diehard football gamers are looking for impractical changes to the series.
What would you grade Madden 13?
I'm not sure I, or other hardcore football fans, would welcome those changes.
Secondly, I completely disagree with the statement about "little diversity." The playbooks are incredibly diverse per team.
I've never played a Madden where each team played so different from the others.
Honestly speaking, this review sounds very high level. But I still love you Tom.
Here are two other reviews from around the net, and I find more common ground with these opinions.
Dustin Chadwell of Worthplaying.com scored the game an 8.5 out of 10.
It's nice when the annual iteration of Madden feels less like a retread and more like a refined, fresh experience. While the core game might not seem unchanged to non-players, I think that the fan base will appreciate some of the changes in Madden NFL 13.
First and foremost is the inclusion of EA's Infinity Engine. It's the most talked-about feature in this iteration of Madden, and for good reason.
With the Infinity Engine, characters have actual weight to them, so you'll rarely see the same collision or tackle play out the same way twice.
I couldn't agree more.
The Infinity Engine is the biggest selling point for me. It makes me buy into the game because it is a complete nod to improving gameplay.
It isn't perfected yet, but the inclusion gives Madden 13 the most solid gameplay engine in the genre.
I miss some elements from other modes, but the gameplay is too good to pass up.
Finally, Greg Miller of IGN gave the game a nine. He wrote:
Sure, there are still wonky tackles and handoff animations, but the good outweighs the bad by a long shot -- especially if EA continues to refine the formula and deliver animations that aren't canned.
That accurately describes my outlook and view of Madden 13. The animations take the game to a whole new level, and like any gaming innovation, there is room for improvement.
But what I'm looking for are some spectacular, realistic, true-to-life football sequences, and Madden 13 delivers that.
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