|System: PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3|
|Dev: EA Sports|
|Pub: EA Sports|
|Release: August 23, 2016|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Not yet assigned a final ESRB rating.|
EA Sports made an early splash at E3 this year with the official unveiling of Madden 17. Traditionally, the Madden franchise has seen fan-friendly updates on what seems like a biennial basis. In other words, gamers recognize that some years it gets a big update while other years the developers pump out a few small tweaks, improve the graphics, add in a roster update, and call it day. Fortunately for NFL fans, Madden 17 includes some rather enticing updates that are, so far, shaping up to be worth your dime come launch day.
“Play the Moment” provides players with the ability to jump right into those intense moments that make football such an electrifying game. EA Sports has essentially taken the post-game highlight reel and put it directly into the hands of the players, with lots of options including the ability to play strictly offense or defense. Not only will this option give gamers a fresh alternative to full game simulations, but it essentially provides them with a means to actually make it through an entire 20 year Franchise. Let’s be honest, how many folks actually make it past year 4 or 5 of their Franchise before getting bored and rebooting to an entirely new team? My guess is nearly all of you do that, including myself.
Perhaps the most exciting feature in Madden 17 is the addition of the practice squad. It’s been on gamers' wish lists for the past decade, but it’s finally here and my fellow Franchise nuts can all nerd out together. Yes, you can finally hide those future Arian Foster-like gems on the practice squad and develop them over the course of the season without having to sacrifice a 52-man spot in the process. Beware, though, the CPU can and will sign guys off your squad if you let them sit too long. Not only does this small addition add an additional layer of freedom to dictate your Franchise the way you want it, but it also shows gamers that EA Sports is moving in the right direction by opening their ear a little more to community suggestions.
Madden 17’s “Big Decisions” falls right in line with that mindset of making critical decisions that can have direct ramifications on the outcome of an entire season. Rather than plugging your star wide receiver back into the lineup after getting destroyed and nothing coming of it, EA Sports has adopted a new system where crucial decisions come into play and will certainly affect the outcome of the game. Tired of seeing your big money QB turn the ball over in the rezone? No problem, make the “decision” and let your young-gun rookie loose early - it could alter the course of your franchise for the coming years. Your decisions will ripple throughout the course of the season, even if it means bringing your star players off the IR early in hopes of making a playoff run. Regardless of the situation, Madden 17 gives you the option and the power to choose, even if those choice are very Browns-esque.
Madden 17 is definitely shaping up to be an exciting offering that should provide gamers with more than a glorified roster update this year. Gamers should enjoy the added features of having a greater impact on the game while also indulging in some much needed practice squad action. If EA’s showcase at E3 is any indication of what Madden 17 can be, football fans certainly have something to be excited about.