Madden 18: Madden Ultimate Team’s New Features and Game Changers

Madden 18

The Madden 18 team updated fans with new info on the revisions coming to Madden Ultimate Team (MUT).

Citing community feedback that the developers claim to be extremely important to them, EA Sports is hoping these changes to MUT reflect that. And while the base may seem familiar, there are significant changes coming.

Player Overall

A major complaint in Madden 17 was that gaining another point in OVR didn’t feel like it made a difference. Players felt more or less the same, despite the statistical change. With that in mind, the Madden 18 team revamped the OVR formula. While they couldn’t go into the most specific details, the broad strokes are enough. A player’s OVR comes from their point value in 14 different stats. The 14 stats are:

  • Strength
  • Speed
  • Acceleration
  • Agility
  • Jumping
  • Catching
  • Spec Catch
  • Route Running
  • Catch in Traffic
  • Release
  • Spin Move
  • Stiff Arm
  • Juke Move
  • Run Block

Thus, an increase in any of these stats won’t simply affect how well they perform that task. The accumulation of small changes will lead to the much more noticeable change in the OVR. A player’s OVR goes up after there is a significant change in those 14 stats.

In addition, a player’s position will automatically prioritize stats that are more important over others.

They also added that simply having one great player won’t have a massive impact on the team’s OVR. This puts an emphasis on making a well-rounded team.

Packs

Again, due to community feedback, there has been a big change to packs. Coaches, uniforms, stadiums, and playbooks will no longer be in packs. Now, “most” packs are exclusively filled with players. They did not state what the exception was.

The new MUT method involves choosing a starter pack. That pack will contain the coach, uniforms, stadium, and playbook. When you want to expand and get more of any of those, you’ll need a new form of currency: Team Tokens.

How do you get Team Tokens? In a way to try and make every player you get in a pack valuable, you can exchange the ones you don’t want for Team Tokens. Team Tokens will be linked specifically to the team that player is on. A Green Bay Packers’ player will yield a Green Bay Packers Team Token. And you’ll need tokens for that team to unlock more for it.

Upgrades

Each team will have a minimum of four players you can upgrade. After launch, they may add more players that are upgradable. The exact details are still in flux, but here is the example they provided:

Mike Evans, one of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ players eligible for upgrades, has three sets at launch:
  • Tier 1
    • Requires
      • 70 OVR Mike Evans (earned from the Bucs starter pack)
      • Bucs Team Token(s)
    • Receive
      • 75 OVR Mike Evans (NAT)
  • Tier 2:
    • Requires
      • 75 OVR NAT Mike Evans (earned from the previous set reward)
      • Bucs Team Token(s)
    • Receive
      • 81 OVR Mike Evans (NAT)
  • Tier 3:
    • Requires
      • 81 OVR NAT Mike Evans (earned from the previous set reward)
      • 89 OVR Core Elite Mike Evans (his “base” item in packs)
      • Bucs Team Token(s)
    • Receive
      • 91 OVR Mike Evans (NAT)

This adds further value to Team Tokens, since players require them to upgrade.

Players aren’t the only upgradable features. Stadiums, coaches, as well as dark and light uniforms are also upgradable. Upgrading multiple items will give that team a chemistry boost. Having all your players from the same team will also give you a chemistry boost.

If you fully upgrade a team’s coach, stadium, both uniforms, and all of the players are from the same team, the whole team will receive the following bonus:

+1 Stiff Arm
+1 Spin Move
+1 Ball Carrier Vision
+1 Juke Move
+1 Elusiveness
+1 Carry
+1 Truck
+1 Release
+1 Route Running
+1 Catching
+1 Catch in Traffic
+1 Spec Catch
+1 Pass Block
+1 Run Block
+1 Impact Block
+1 Finesse Move
+1 Power Move
+1 Pursuit
+1 Tackle
+1 Block Shed
+1 Press
+1 Zone Coverage
+1 Man Coverage
+1 Hit Power

Adjustments to Tiers

After reworking the overall formula, the Madden 18 team tweaked the MUT tier system. This should better reflect the new system. All players are now broken into three tiers: silver, gold, and elite. The player’s overall determines which tier a player falls into.

Silver: 60-69
Gold: 70-79
Elite: 80-99

This means that more players will have elite status. And if Team Tokens are as important as they appear, having more elite players is a good thing, even if you just cash them in for Team Tokens.

Team of the Week

Team of the Week players will make a return. This time, each one will have a green boarder, regardless of their tier.

Adjustment to Trade Block

The Madden 18 team said, “Over 90% of the trades are lopsided in value and are overwhelmingly used for nefarious reasons.”

With that in mind, they needed to make some massive changes. They considered completely removing trade block, but are tabling that idea for now.

Instead, the new method works like this. If you trade an item, the receiver cannot auction it. But if the item is traded back to the original owner, the owner can auction it. This allows players to trade items and players without fear of those people cashing them in.

With more updates coming out all the time, we’ll keep you up-to-date on the latest info drops for Madden 18.

Madden 18 will be available on August 17, 2017, on EA Early Access, August 22 for those who pre ordered, and August 25th for those who picked it up on its official release date. It will be available on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. And if you’re not sure which version you should buy, we’ve got you covered.

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Jesse Galena
As a fan of spectacle in all forms, Jesse Galena particularly enjoys MMA, eSports, as well as professional and indie wrestling. Jesse’s always excited to try any sports game that leans toward the bizarre or unconventional, though nothing can replace a well-executed classic. Outside of video games, Jesse enjoys playing ridiculous table top RPGs, watching standup comedy, and losing at board games. He also writes fantasy/sci-fi novels and RPG material. You can follow him on Twitter @RexiconJesse.