|System: PS Vita*, PS3, Xbox 360|
|Dev: Electronic Arts|
|Pub: Electronic Arts|
|Release: August 28, 2012|
|Players: 1 (2+ Online)|
|Screen Resolution: 544p||ESRB|
And, the problem is, we know that this is possible. in March, Sony released MLB 12: The Show, and we got the first look at the Vita's cross platform play. The Show allowed baseball fans to start a ballgame on their PS3, and finish it while fleeing the cops in a high-speed chase. And this is what genuine Madden fans were hoping for but won't be getting. Unfortunately, there is no connection between the PS3 version and the Vita version, which means that players who own both systems are going to have to manage two separate franchises. I really wish that EA had spent more time on cross-platform integration and less on quirky controls. Though, according to EA, it was never a possibility for this generation.
However, aside from the gyroscope kicking element, the quirky controls are entirely optional. Players can use the right control stick to perform their dodging maneuvers, just like they could in the previous versions, and you obviously don't have to call an audible if you don't want to. But there are several little glitches that are completely unavoidable.
The between-play camera, for instance, has some major difficulties staying on task. It would cut between shots so quickly that I was unable to decipher exactly what was on my screen. And then there's the audio commentary. My ears have met their lifetime quota for the phrase "Off to the races," but I'm almost guaranteed to hear it again the next time I run the ball. I've also heard reports of collision glitches and bugs that'll cause the game to crash entirely, but I didn't experience any of this myself.
However, for all of its problems, I can't seem to put Madden Vita down. I constantly find myself firing up the Vita to shuffle a few players around in franchise mode or check in on my superstar's illustrious career. It has just as much replay value as any of the console editions, and it's one of the deepest portable titles that I've ever gotten my hands on. In fact, once you take a vacation from the touch controls, the game begins to feel like the Madden that we've all grown to love. And after I had given up on the rear touch pad and the touchscreen, I was able to sprinkle them in from time to time without any distraction.
At the end of the day Madden NFL 13 Vita might just be one of the best games on the little console. It's definitely not the game that players were hoping for, and very few of players will probably feel the need to purchase a copy for their PS3 and a separate one for the Vita, but if you're looking for a way to kill a few hours at work, Madden NFL 13 is probably as good a choice as any.
Plus, maybe if we support this year's edition, EA will try a little harder next year.
Date: September 5, 2012