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The Next Generation of Football

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    Madden NFL 25

    Rating: 4.0 – Great

    The Next Generation of Football

    Visuals/Audio: Madden 25 is the best looking Madden game to date, the stadiums look great and so do the players. Of course, most players and coaches look like strange caricatures of their real world counterparts, but visually they still look good. The stadium crowd in Madden 25 looks better in this year’s Madden as well since they are now full three dimensional beings standing and reacting. The sideline players and coaches appear the same and react similarly to how they did in previous Madden games. Besides the visuals we can start discussing the stadium noises. The game pumps realistic stadium noises and chants at key moments of the game, this realistic use of audio makes you feel immersed within the game. Essentially the game looks and sounds pretty, but you are not just buying this years Madden for just these reasons.

    Gameplay: This year’s Madden adds two new elements to the usual Madden gameplay, smarter offensive linemen blocking and a new free form running engine. The improved offensive linemen blocking is very apparent through your first few plays. The improvement in blocking is very noticeable and truly improves what has been one of the weaker points in the series for a very long time now. Is the system perfect, of course not, but it does take much of the aggravation out of the moronic blocking shown by the computer in the past. As well, blocking this year also incorporates dual blocks where two offensive linemen can help on a blocking assignment to help stop stronger pass rushers. The next overall gameplay improvement focuses on the run game where more freedom is being granted to the runner so they can, “run free.” Essentially your running back now freely maneuvers around offensive linemen in their way and you are given opportunities to recover from weaker tackles or juke out of them. These benefits are quick to learn and make the running back seem slightly overpowered in the game, however at higher difficulties the game seems to balance itself out. I do not mind these improvements and they at least make gameplay at the running back position more interesting.

    Game Modes: Now this year’s Madden has the usual card collecting ultimate team mode, exhibition games, skills trainer, and the updated connected careers mode. Connected careers mode has built onto its overhaul seen last year and offers a new be an owner mode that you can play online or off. The be an owner mode feels new and fresh, allowing you to set ticket prices and even relocate the team. Of course your only goal is to win and make money, which is used to lure in free agents with big signing bonuses. Besides the cost of bringing in free agents there is not many other reasons to have money in the game. The ability to relocate your team is very exciting because it allows you to build a team in numerous other locations around the United States and the world. Overall this game mode is quite fun to play and is the biggest new addition to the many modes in this year’s Madden.

    The Verdict: The Madden franchise has had some trouble lately really pushing the envelope in yearly changes and added features. Madden 25 improves many gameplay elements that have irritated players in the past and has made the overall game feel much more smooth. As for game modes, all the favorites are back this year and be an owner mode gives you all the freedom you can imagine in running a professional football franchise. If you are looking for a fun and polished football game for the next generation of consoles, Madden is an easy choice to buy. Of course if you are looking for a drastically improved game over last year you most likely will not find it in Madden 25 either. Madden 25 gets an eight out of ten for its solid gameplay and depth in game modes, but the game still leaves you wanting more at times.

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