Im not sure how many football fans im gonna get here, let alone people that have actual played the Madden franchise for x amount of years, but does anyone else feel dissappointed with the new game? I like how they are trying to keep things fresh and I really feel that the game is as realistic as ever, but I really felt it unneccasary to change the control scheme around. I still find myself jamming down on the 'A' button hoping to sprint while instead I end up throwing out a half-assed stiff arm.
The juke moves have all been mapped out to the four major buttons, which is pretty much the same except the stiff arm aforementioned. There are a series of cut moves using the previously known 'hit stick' but they seem really akward to time. The kicking system has been rerouted again, this time retreating back to a simple scrolling bar that IMO seems way to easy to kick a 57 yard field goal with anyone (which I did twice, in a row with Mason Crosby). Also, the pitch and pump fake have been moved from the triggers to the bumpers, which is a pain in the ass for us long-time madden players. Even if you can remember where these buttons are now, it becomes akward to jam your fingers on these buttons and still play smoothly.
The franchise mode is as same as always, picking a team and taking them through training camp, then preseason and then the seasons and so on and so forth until you do it all over again. It is nice to see some things stay the same all though it does become redundant.
The NFL superstar mode is really lacking IMO, having gave up any source of individuality. I didnt play 10 but I remember 09 having a nice system where I could train and change styles and do other things then just play the game. And even if you were happy doing that, the thing that sets superstar mode apart from the other modes is the different perspective. While you still can control the whole team, I prefer to only control the player I created (which I always create a WR). Veing able to run routes and get open allows the game to be played at a different perspective. Having said that, the AI just doesnt seem to like you. They always seem to throw to the other players and when the ball does finally come your way its through haphazardly towards the defense.
A new feature which I like is the Ultimate Team mode. You start off with a 'deck' of cards representing players, coaches, stadiums, uniforms and a few other goodies. YOu start off with a basic deck containing mostly god-awful people and you either buy coins (that allow you to buy more cards) or earn them by playing other teams. The idea is to play enough games and build up your deck/team so that they play better. Having more members of a team will make their chemistry higher and they perform better. Certain cards like contracts will extend the time that player remains in your deck. Other cards like the 'injury heal' will make your player receive a speedy recovery.
The 'Madden Moments' are as good as ever taking the best of the best from last years season. Eveything from Brett Favre's last second score against the niners to the bengals pulling one over on the packers.
The online play is fun, but for me it was only enjoyable with friends you know. If you play against someone else, the game loses its fun. I found myself playing someone who lagged the game, I missed a field goal from the 4 yard line as he lagged the bar so it glitched and didnt respond to my button press. Another person I faced seemed to have hacked into the game and change the outcome of what happened. I can remeber on two seperate occasions having completed a thrid down pass and having it skip to fouth down. And yet another time of getting an incomplete on 3rd down and turning the ball over to the other team. Alot of the time it wll frustrate me into quitting early and getting a higher DNF percentage (Did Not Finish) which is frowned upon in the community. I like a good challenge but glitching and hacking is just ridiculous. The online team play isnt bad though, you and a group of other user can team up against one another taking control of different players on the team. The hacking and glitching seems infrequent on that mode most likely because of the random players that get assigned as apposed to one vs one who would know sort of thing.
All in all the game is still fun once you get the hang of it, and while I still find myself getting angry alot, it is still a fun experience. I just hope that maybe there will be an optional update to revert back to the old control scheme and that the hacking and glitching gets weeded out.
BTW sorry about the random game review, but its late and this was on my mind so I figured I would write and do something productive. So please tell me what you think and if anyone else has Madden 11 and an XBOX 360 hit me up with your user name. WheeledJustice here.