With Madden 20 coming out on August 2, we here at SGO will go over some of the gameplay additions that will be coming to this year’s installment.

Here are the biggest gameplay additions that are coming to Madden 20:

Passing Trajectories

The passing speeds and trajectories have been “standardized” so that a little bit more air will be under the ball for all throw types, which should be a welcome addition. Now, players will be able to fit the ball in between zones at a higher frequency. In order to make this change the developers decreased the overall throwing speed from 62 MPH in Madden 19 to 55 MPH.

The new trajectories will be tuned after launch based on player feedback, but we can expect players with known strong arms like Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes to lead the pack when it comes to throwing power.

With the new throwing animations and trajectory, it will allow you to fit the ball into passing windows more effectively. In addition, Madden will be punishing players more for throwing to covered players, especially double and triple coverage.

Player Movement

In addition to the throw-trajectory tuning mentioned previously, there have also been changes made to jumping interceptions over the middle on passing plays. So now only defensive backs will be able to execute athletic, jumping interceptions in Madden 20, while linebackers and defensive linemen will not be able to make acrobatic catches over the middle unless he’s one of the select linebackers who have the best “ball-in-air” Superstar ability that would allow them to get up in the air.

So now you’re thinking, okay, fine, people will just place safeties at linebacker. The development team is limiting the number of formations where you can sub a DB into a LB spot, and if you do put a defensive back in the front seven, these players will most likely become a big liability when trying to defend running plays.

Also, there has been a significant amount of work in towards improving the transitions into and out of interactions, with a focus on making them more seamless, while also making the mechanics more responsive and user-friendly. With those change, the blocking, catching, and tackling animations will look much more natural.

Ratings Changes

Madden 20 will feature a huge overhaul to their player ratings system marking the first time in years they are tinkering with the established system, In the past, we’ve always seen something like superstars being rated in the 90s, solid starters being rated in the 80s, and backups in the 70s and 60s. That system is now finished.

In Madden 20, you may see starters with overall ratings as low as 60. That means that there will be a much bigger spread and we could see some 3rd stringers as low as 40 OVR. The ratings difference between a 90 OVR player and an 89 OVR player is now larger. Also, players will see a bigger range of throwing power from the elite to the average QBs. This gameplay change will have a larger effect on the quarterbacks in Franchise Mode, but this will be seen throughout the game.

One of the big positives for this change is that it gives a longer road for progression. Everyone knows that quarterbacks don’t reach their peak in only a season or two, so the new ratings change will better reflect that reality.

The progression process in Madden 20 has also been tweaked to allow more players the opportunity to earn XP but details on that are still somewhat limited.

Superstar X-Factors

Each of the 50 players will have a loadout of powerful abilities, including one Zone ability that can be unlocked during gameplay by completing an in-game objective tailored to that player. When the objective is achieved, they will enter the “zone” and have access to use their special ability until their opponent knocks them out of the zone with an objective of their own. These players also have several Superstar abilities equipped which will be active at all times during gameplay to truly emphasize their unique skill sets and make them powerful and hard to stop, just like their real-life counterparts.

There’s also a group of additional players that are called Superstars. These players will be equipped with Superstar abilities just like the X-Factors, but they will not have a special Zone ability to unlock.

Superstar players will have their own set of “special moves,” particularly ball-carrier moves for running backs. And a few players will have their own running styles like Cam Newton, Julian Edelman, Alvin Kamara, and Richard Sherman, and this will be expanded to more players in the future.

Franchise and Ultimate Team will benefit from the addition of Superstar abilities, creating another layer of strategy in these modes. They’ve been designed in a way that allows them to be used in unique ways for player progression and team-building.

RPOs & Trick Plays (“Philly Special”)

Madden 20 will be the first game in franchise history to feature run pass option plays (RPOs).

For those of you unfamiliar with the term, RPOs give the quarterback the option to hand the ball off to his running back or throw a quick pass to a receiver. He makes the decision based on the movement of a single defender, usually a safety or linebacker lurking on the second level of the defense, directly after the snap.

RPOs have played a much bigger role in NFL offenses over the last few seasons with it being an integral part of the Philadelphia Eagles’ 2018 Super Bowl run. It was too big to be included in Madden 19, but EA Sports has had the time now to implement it in Madden 20. In Madden 20, we will also see brand new Jet Sweep touch passes.

Playbooks will be receiving their first big overhaul in recent memory and will now feature more team specific plays. It is too soon to know exactly how different each playbook will be but we do know that team playbooks will be updated during the NFL season.

EA proved they could update the playbooks last year by adding in a formation into the game and changing the alignment of kickoff returns. Now it looks like they will be deploying that on a bigger scale in Madden 20.

Along with RPOs, Madden 20 will include the “Philly Special” so Eagles fans will be able to re-live the greatest moment in their franchise history

In an interview with the “Eagle Eye in the Sky” podcast, EA Sports’ Anthony White said about the addition of the “Philly Special,” “It’s under the pistol formation, but the set is called Philly and when you look at the play it says, ‘Philly Special’ and then ‘Fake Philly Special,’”. He added, “A couple of copycats popped up in the league last year, I know Week 17 the Dolphins ran it, I think the Falcons ran it. So I was like, ‘Hey, well, what do we call it? Do we call it Miami special? I know the Browns ran it, do we call it the Cleveland special in their playbook?’ So we’re actually just going to leave it ‘Philly,’ even if we put it in another team’s playbook.”

Those are just some of the details that we know right now. More will be revealed in the coming weeks, and set your calendar for EA Play, and more specifically Saturday, June 8. The event will feature a first look at Madden 20 gameplay along with a special guest to talk about the game.


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