Madden NFL 13 Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PS Vita
Madden NFL 13 Box Art
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.

Madden NFL 13 Screenshot

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.

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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.

Fingers crossed.

Josh Engen
Contributing Writer
Date: September 5, 2012

The graphics look wonderful at first, but try not to look closely.
Practically perfect, but with several shoehorned Vita exclusives.
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
If you enjoy endlessly repeated lines, you'll love the voiceovers.
Play Value
Insane replay value, but corners have definitely been cut.
Overall Rating - Fair
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • The Vita's touchscreen and rear touch panel provide an unprecedented amount of control and feature depth, from drawing hot routes to swatting passes and stripping the ball. Use the motion sensor function to control direction when kicking field goals.
  • Every game has the feel of a nationally televised broadcast with CBS Sports commentators Jim Nantz and Phil Simms calling the action from the booth.
  • Build the next great dynasty with the most robust Franchise Mode ever created on a handheld device, including expanded rosters, pre-season cut days, an updated rookie scouting system, a free-agent bidding system, player roles, in-season hot and cold streaks, and much more.
  • Become a Superstar - Create an NFL Superstar and guide his career from pre-draft workout all the way to the Hall of Fame. Control the growth of your superstar with an updated progression system that allows you to earn skill points during practice and in games. Brand new position-specific coordinator audio coaches your growth on-field as an NFL player.
  • Take Your Game Online - Battle opponents head-to-head over Wi-Fi, working your way up the leaderboards with every victory.

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