Review: Madden 13 Is Connected Brilliance

A sports gem you can't afford to miss out on

For a long time, EA Sports has been criticized for releasing yearly additions of Madden to its audience. Problems that have existed in the franchise have plague the franchise until now. Madden 13 releases on the brink of a new console generation and Tiburon Studios pulled out all the fireworks to go out in style. Madden 13 thoughtout everything that was dragging the series down, resulting in one of the most complete sports games in this console generation.   

Similar to EA’s NCAA Football franchise, receiver icons flash if the player is looking for the ball. But in Madden 13 it’s more developed and enhanced compared to its college counterpart. Team defense has been upgraded, making it a struggle to move up the field. I am always debating should I air it out deep or play it safe and hand it off to my running back to run time of the clock. It’s these decisions that keep Madden fresh.

Speaking of the passing game, there are 25 new pass trajectories, allowing for easier control. Lobbing the ball over a middle linebacker is now easier and rewarding to those who learn the control scheme. With improvements in the passing game, the other side of the ball has also seen improvements. Defensive backs have to see the ball before they make a play on it, getting rid of psychic cornerbacks. This is a long over due addition, but it's implication enhances the gameplay greatly.

Running game

Madden 13’s tagline this year is all about presenting physics you can feel if you were on the gridiron. Powered by the Infinity Engine, every tackle is more intense; the battles between offense and defense linemen are more realistic. Player Interactions is more organic, as one play will never be the same.  This year boosts wealth of new addition to the franchise due to the engine.

In previous installments, there were only a few tackle animations making the game repetitive. This year it’s a different story; Defense must perform two hand tackles in order to bring down the offense; if the cornerbacks are lazy, then wide receivers have a real chance to break free from tackles. It’s things little moments that make the product standout. This is the first time Madden has featured the Infinite Engine, so of course there minor issues. Broken tackles and handoff animations, CPU running backs frequently run into offensive lineman, but for the most part Madden 13 is a smooth experience.

Madden 13 switches things up in the announcer’s booth. Jim Nantz and Phil Simms have replaced Chris Collinsworth and Gus Johnson, providing a better TV experience. The pairing experience commentating NFL games on shines through as they work good together. Primetime games on Sunday are played to the new Madden theme, but it can get repetitive at times. You still here the same lines of dialogue and sometimes they can be factually incorrect. One time I was leading in the forth quarter and Phil Simms said I just got my first down of the game. It’s little things that hold back the presentation from being more than it is. With improvements in presentation, Madden 13 offline and online modes have received dramatic changes.