EA hits hard with new installment
Improved gameplay, physics engage fans
Published: Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 12, 2012 15:09
Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity has reintroduced itself to Electronic Arts, the two have fallen in love and given birth to the greatest football video game of all time.
The digital entertainment powerhouse EA Sports has finally wised up to produce an NFL game that is, once again, worth playing.
In “Madden NFL 13” the top-notch game play that has been lacking in the sports franchise since its release on the XBox 360 and Playstation 3 game consoles makes its return thanks to a new physics engine.
Gang tackling is no longer limited to a set number of players or programmed, uniform gang tackling (a tackle involving two or more defenders) as in previous installments.
If a ball carrier is met by two, three, four or five defenders at once, he will get the graphics knocked out of him.
Fans of the franchise recall the Madden 2010 update that EA Sports sent out online to fix the problems people were having stopping the run. This was the year after Titans running back Chris Johnson ran for 2,006 yards in one season.
Sure Johnson was fast, but running for 200, or sometimes even 400, yards in a game is a bit ridiculous. In Maddens past, a running back might squeeze through tight holes seemingly untouched even when contact occurs. Now, it’s more than likely the runner will stumble after slightly bumping into an opponent or teammate.
On a first down with 10 to go, the computer called a run up the middle. Though my defensive player had been pushed to the ground, and on top of him laid the left guard he battled with, the runner tripped over them, the whistle was blown and he was down.
In Madden 2012 and earlier editions the runner would have been able to glide past both the defender and the blocker to gain yardage.
Yes, this game comes with its share of glitches as all Madden games do. Thankfully these glitches do not affect the overall experience.
After a play some players might be clumsy and fall over downed teammates or opponents and limbs will be bent out of shape giving the appearance of a serious injury. But don’t fret.
There will be no penalties or injuries acquired from the minor mishaps, it’s just the physics engine at work.
Highlighting the notable changes in game play is the defensive passing game. Idiotic defensive backs are a thing of the past, unless you have a defensive back who is an idiot.
In prior games a simple fade route might turn even the most intelligent defender in a complete circle leaving the receiver he’s covering wide open.
But in “Madden 13,” defenders have common sense.
No longer does New York Jets’ cornerback Darrelle Revis, who is arguably the best cornerback in the business, jump out of the way of an oncoming pass forcing game-players to curse at the digital athletes while breaking $60 Playstation controllers as they slam them down onto the floor.
This year, those ill-advised passes fall into the hands of the defender as they should.
Another facet of the game to receive a boost is the presentation. NFL broadcasters Jim Nantz and former Superbowl MVP quarterback Phil Simms, of CBS, handle the play-by-play and the production team varies their phrases nicely.
At times the commentary may be a bit off of what happens, but hey, it’s a video game.
Though it’s not perfect, there hasn’t been a digital football experience in the past to compare to “Madden NFL 13.” It’s a good video game, but a hell of a football simulation overall.