We get a TON of questions each year regarding madden NFL and I thought it would be beneficial to our fans to answer some of the most asked ones to the best of my ability. Here at Sports Gamers Online we do our best to bridge the gap between the community and the developers so I am going to bust a few myths and answer your top 10 most asked questions about Madden NFL.
1. How come Bill Belichick and Sean Payton aren’t in the game?
Bill Belichick and Sean Payton are not in the NFL Coaches Association. Just like in Madden 2001, which was the first game to feature real coaches, with the exception of Belichick and Parcells, because neither of them were part of the NFL Coaches Association. Due to this, Madden has no rights to their likeness even though their playbooks are accurately depicted in the game.
2. Why doesn’t Madden have “real” physics?
There actually are physics in the game, but it’s not solely physics driven as that would ignore many of the ratings of the players. For example according to physics a 250lbs fullback with a head of steam would run over a 200 lbs strong safety regardless of his hit power or tackling ratings. I’m sure this would infuriate many players to see their All Pro Hard Hitting Safety get run over by a 60 OVR waiver wire fullback. So Madden has the challenge of find a balance between actual pure physics where momentum speed and weight are involved and some scripted animations that rely on a player’s ratings and also make the game look good. Madden continues to make strides forward in this category since they debuted the physics engine and should continue to improve.
3. Why don’t they have new or updated equipment?
Licensing is one part of it, another is feedback. While there are some VERY vocal fans who demand new and updated gear each year overall there not enough people who really care about it to warrant the resources dedicated to it. Nike is the official equipment provider of the NFL so that limits the amount of other equipment they are allowed to have on the players. Another factor is simply time and money. In game development you have a finite amount of resources in a limited amount of time to dedicate to tasks you must complete before your deadlines. The Madden development team has been focusing more on building a solid gameplay foundation and prioritizing that over polish items like equipment.
4. Why was TeamPlay removed?
EA has a VERY detailed user metrics. The development team monitors all data across each mode, setting, and gameplay used. Team Play just wasn’t very popular despite what the vocal minority might lead you to believe. It had a following, but ultimately did not make the cut as the developers chose to focus on other parts of the game. I do, however, think this feature will be improved and brought back eventually.
5. Why does EA remove features from previous games?
EA does not just remove features, but with each console generation features have to be rebuilt and put back in. The popular features, according to detailed metrics from the game, are included right away as they are played more frequently by a greater number of people. While many of the other features are put on a priority list to be redone and applied back in future iterations of the game or scrapped altogether.
6. Why did EA buy NFL license exclusivity?
EA did not own rights to any NFL product until Madden ’94 where you saw the first actual teams and in Madden ’95 you saw the first real players. In 2005 EA and NFL and the NFL Players association signed an exclusive deal that extended until 2009 and has since been continued to be renewed. Despite the uproar over the lack of competition in the video game football market, it really has been a lucrative deal for both parties. Madden saw its highest ever sales between 2005 and 2009 where it sold upwards of 8-10 million copies each year. While the sales have recently not been as high, Madden 15 still amassed roughly 6 million copies sold. According to the NFL Players Associated top spokesman George Attahllah EA is one of their “best partners” so I really don’t see the licensing exclusivity deal ending anytime soon.
7. Why did they remove the coin toss?
They simply removed the coin toss to streamline the game. From a developer’s point of view, you want your clients in the game and playing it as fast and as smoothly as possible. Taking out an extra 10-15 second feature that can essentially be accomplished exactly the same in the menu was a no brainer. Outside of the playoffs how often do you even watch the coin toss in an NFL game?
8. Does EA only care about MUT?
I don’t believe so. Even though MUT is VERY lucrative for EA because of the additional revenue always brought in from it, they actually are given the same amount of resources as CFM. The total CFM community is larger but the MUT community is more active. Many CFM leagues tend to die down after the end of the NFL season but MUT is usually played up until the next Madden release. Over the past couple Madden’s CFM has taken huge strides forward from just the bare minimum “online franchise” which didn’t have any fair trades or any content past your basic schedule and roster, to your now fully fleshed out CFM experience with owners or coaches, draft stories, dynamic randomly generated draft classes, and so on and so forth.
9. Why doesn’t Madden have this NFL concept in the game? Example: RPO (run-pass option), exotic offensive & defensive formations, etc.
The development team has access to footage of every single snap taken in the NFL. They employ NFL caliber coaches so they are aware of the latest NFL schemes, packages, and plays. It is just a matter of being able to put it in the game and maintain a solid gameplay balance. When adding a new scheme or concept they must be aware of splash damage that can break other systems in the game or may be overpowered compared to other plays. Rest assured over time many new schemes and NFL concepts will introduced as they are able to successfully include them.
10. Why don’t they bring back NCAA Football!!!??
Player likeness and the billion dollar racket which is the NCAA of course! For more detail information on this one check out one of our many articles on the subject:
Hopefully this answered some of your burning questions you’ve had that we see in on social media, youtube and the site all the time. Be sure to Subscribe to our Youtube and follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more Madden NFL.