Game scores another touchdown
THIS jewel in the EA Sports crown isn’t nearly as popular on our shores as it is in the US because, let’s face it, our code of football is superior.
That doesn’t stop an annual update of Madden NFL arriving each September to signal the start of the real-life NFL season.
Having built up a winning game formula over the past decade, it’s not surprising to find Madden NFL 12 isn’t a huge departure from last year’s instalment. However, the handful of tweaks are typically just enough to keep fans content.
A constant gripe about past games has been the unrealistic collision system. This has been greatly improved plus there are more than 100 new tackle animations that keep things looking fresh.
While each update enjoys these revamped game mechanics, the visual presentation has lacked the same attention. This year, EA Sports has finally afforded some extra love to the graphics, with the inclusion of individual animated pre-game team entrances and post-game celebrations for all 32 NFL teams.
The players themselves look more accurately proportioned and there’s also the return of the player degradation feature, where they become gradually dirtier as the game progresses.
Additional off-field gameplay comes in the shape of a revamped single player franchise mode with some interesting new features such as rookie scouting and player bidding systems.
Online modes remain largely unchanged from last year, with the exception of a new communities feature, where players can create or join online communities of up to 2000 real players, with their own leaderboards and game settings.
This year’s Madden provides a fun and solid, albeit predictable, update to the series and enhancements are just enough to warrant fans trading in last year’s copy for it.