Whatever the time of 12 months (and the standard of Madden itself), OS people are all the time looking forward to some extent. Whether or not that’s a Lucy pulling the soccer scenario or simply the everlasting optimist shining by way of in some people is up for debate, however there’s some chatter on the boards a couple of lack of stories and rumors about Madden 24. It’s honest to say it’s a bit too quiet to some extent (simply by way of the dearth of rumors if something), however we’re nonetheless not in the meanwhile in time the place EA begins giving us information in regards to the subsequent Madden.
When June hits, that’s when the Madden information begins. However returning to the purpose in regards to the lack of rumors, there’s not a ton to level to as of now. Earlier than information began to hit final 12 months, there have been loads of rumors about franchise mode, crossplay, how EA would honor John Madden, Madden coming to the Nintendo Swap, and Madden possibly replicating some tech that got here to FIFA (HyperSense). We did find yourself getting franchise updates (albeit not as large as possibly hoped), John Madden was on the duvet of the sport he pioneered, and FieldSense was a stand in for HyperMotion. In different phrases, it was a reasonably normal 12 months for being about 50 p.c on the most important rumors coming to fruition.
Nevertheless, FIFA doesn’t have any main gameplay factor that could possibly be adopted by Madden this 12 months (no less than nothing that was launched in FIFA 23), and we haven’t heard something in regards to the improvement of Madden 24 past EA’s announcement of the closed beta and the way these impacted by the cloud franchise concern in Madden 23 are getting an invitation to that beta and half off Madden 24 (in the event that they select to buy it). Once more, to some extent that is enterprise as traditional. The beta hits in June — quickly after EA reveals off Madden for the primary time — and the media blitz goes on from there.
Nonetheless, it’s been a bit unusual throughout this “offseason” for Madden as a result of MUT actually hit a wall and angered much more folks than traditional these final couple months. And whereas we nonetheless ended up getting NFL Draft content material inside MUT, there was not the identical hoopla or pleasure round it both. Within the grand scheme of issues, that’s a small matter, however EA is unquestionably in one other transition interval. New tech isn’t on the horizon however EA Sports activities Faculty Soccer is a 12 months out at this level. It did get delayed a full 12 months however the practice is on the tracks and the way EA as an organization goes to get again to dealing with two soccer video games a 12 months goes to be fascinating. The final time they have been coping with that was additionally at a time when the studio was going by way of loads of modifications and enlargement with the transition from PS3/Xbox 360 to PS4/Xbox One. Issues ended up taking part in out the best way they did and NCAA Soccer was quickly cancelled however it’s been a very long time since EA might level to any of its soccer video games as being the “flagship” sports activities sport for the corporate.
Madden has been battered in evaluations the final 3-4 years, and it’s fortunate if it even makes it to a 70 p.c on any of the main overview aggregation websites lately. As a lot as gross sales clearly matter greater than evaluations, that’s nonetheless an issue. It’s not only a Madden downside both as sports activities video games total have been taken to the woodshed by reviewers the final couple years. I’m unsure if that’s folks truly being fed up with the video games or it’s publications lastly simply getting reviewers who’re sports activities followers to overview these video games. It’s probably not my job to determine that side out, I simply assume it’s fascinating to notice that it’s now shocking when a significant sports activities sport breaks 80 p.c on these aggregation websites whereas for a few years it was virtually beautiful when one thing like NBA 2K didn’t have no less than an 80+ on those self same websites.
Maybe that’s why one of many solely rumors we’ve seen populate varied websites is about it supposedly being a giant 12 months for Madden by way of crucial reception. In case you’re judging this franchise purely by its gross sales, it’s doing simply tremendous. It was third on the 2022 NPD checklist behind solely Elden Ring and Fashionable Warfare 2, and whereas possibly it didn’t attain fairly the degrees at launch because it did simply the 12 months prior, there aren’t any main purple flags which have been relayed to the general public on the gross sales entrance. Once more, MUT followers appear particularly indignant this 12 months so it’s potential microtransactions are down there, however by way of folks simply shopping for the sport, that’s not an issue.
However Madden can be within the lead relating to public apologies. Now, you would say “good on them for apologizing when another corporations won’t” and that’s true to an extent. Nonetheless, you solely need to apologize if you happen to mess up actual dangerous, and EA retains messing up actual dangerous. There’s a brand new MUT apology like each different week, we’ve had a number of years of apologies about franchise mode, and this 12 months was much more awkward for EA when the media blitz was partially about how “polished” this Madden could be after which it was something however that.
That is all to say whereas competitors from the skin will not be on the horizon, EA has to assist two soccer video games going ahead. If one or each are dangerous, it’s going to ask loads from shoppers to assist each 12 months after 12 months. The faculty soccer sport can have that grace interval the place folks purchase it just because they’re simply excited to have it again of their lives, however that’s fleeting. Years in the past, there was completely a break up that began to occur the place some simply merely stopped shopping for each and went with one or the opposite — and on OS I believe it did lean extra in the direction of the school sport profitable out.
However no matter which facet you ended up on, when you have two soccer video games which might be panned by critics 12 months after 12 months hitting in the summertime, it’s not going to be sustainable for EA. So whereas the dearth of Madden 24 rumors is curious on some stage, high quality does appear to be it’s going to matter extra right here as a result of time is working out for Madden in some methods, even when these methods are simply inside pressures. The underside line is take the dearth of rumors nonetheless you need, however it does appear to be this shall be a giant 12 months for the franchise as will probably be the final 12 months it’s the one main soccer sport on the town.