Madden Feature Comparison – M07 – M13

I’ve been a Madden gamer since M98 on PC. I have faithfully purchased the game every year except M11 (due to the introduction of Game Flow, which I thought was bogus to spend time on and boycotted). We all know the gripe with EA over Madden is that, because of the exclusive NFL license, the game doesn’t have competition and therefore doesn’t advance as much as it should be. I’ve said for years that it goes even further. The game doesn’t progress each year, it regresses because the designers constantly force ideas/modes/changes that no one wants and instead, add stuff we don’t want. Even worse is that they usually rip that stuff out the following year and replace it with other stuff people don’t want. I’m not completely dogging Madden or saying it’s not a good game. What I’m saying is, any product that is released over time like Madden – especially on a yearly basis, should EVOLVE every year – not devolve or attempt to re-invent the wheel. Figure out what you do best and make that better. Build on it. Don’t keep creating stuff you don’t know will work. Do that once the product is perfect and there’s nothing left to build on. After you’ve perfected the product, ask the community – what can we do better? What can we add? Add those things, then start pulling stuff out of thin air like Game Flow and the Strat Pad. Think about all the time they’ve wasted over the years developing features and modes that simply aren’t there anymore. I’m not Darwinian evolutionist but, if you take that chart of the primate evolving into a human and imagine every two steps it steps back down again, that’s what’s happening here. If Madden would focus on evolving the product more instead of trying to revolutionize the game every year, I think we’d see an awesome product within a year or two. What do you guys think?