Madden 2010 Demo out, Any Good?

Its a Friday, so I will write a non-basketball, non Ramon Sessions, non Bucks article.

I am what my wife calls a vidiot.  I still play video games, well really only Madden at this point, but she razzes me for it.  I love how women can spend 4 hours on a Lifetime network movie and that is not considered a waste of time.  While a guy like me works nearly 50 hours a week, but if I play 1 game of Madden while she is home, I’m a loser.  Women.

 I have bought every Madden since the Sega Genesis days, and so I pre-ordered 2010 a couple of weeks ago.  Since I pre-ordered  I was given a code to download the Madden 2010 demo last night a week earlier than it will be released to the general public, and thought I would give my initial impressions of the game.

I am a fairly serious Madden player, I play online and in the past was in a couple of online leagues.  I win a lot more than I lose, my level last year was around 26, while my average opponent was around a 10.  I am not the best and far from the worst, and I have played enough of the game to express some opinions.

Last years game was exposed for several issues that made the game almost unplayable around January. 

Note:  This will probably happen every year at the same time.  There are too many smart kids/guys out there willing to spend an insane amount of time finding glitches or ways to abuse the AI.  It will happen again this year.

The biggest issues from last year were:

  • Rocket Catch, fades outs and curls could be RCed by anybody, this took all strategy out of the game once found out.
  • FB dive.  How many FB dives do you see in a game above the HS level, 1 or 2?  Last year in Madden in an online game you saw it at least 20 times almost every game.

There were a lot of complaints about last years game, but most were addressed quickly with patches, these two were the biggest issues. 

In my brief experience with 2010 on 360, I have found the RC to be much less successful.  The DBs will react much  better, so a player cannot count on this always working.  That was the problem last year, even if it was covered on certain routes, it was impossible to tip or intercept, so there was no risk associated with it whatsoever.  The QB this year has a much slower delivery and the ball does not get there like it did last year, this helps the D get into position to defend the RC.  The Curl RC are much less effective also due to the throwing motion and defensive reaction.

The FB has been changed also.  It can still be effective, but it is no longer an auto 5 yards.  Last year you had to stack up so much for the FB dive, that it left everything else on the field open.  This year it is slowed down, so the FB isn’t hitting the hole just as the ball is snapped.

So, in my mind, the two biggest issues at least have been addressed, and that is all I can ask.

Other issues:

  • I still see no way you can play man without serious heat.  It is too easy to get a guy free.
  • The game may actually be less fun for the non-serious Madden player.  Since they slowed a lot of things down for realism, it loses a lot of the arcade feel.  Maybe there are sliders to adjust this for play against the CPU.  This was needed for online though, helps prevent some glitches.

From a strictly football standpoint I think the game will be a lot better.  A player will need to incorporate more football strategy to do well.  At least until the glitches are found.


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