Madden NFL 23, the latest in a long-running American football franchise, is getting back to basics. While we’ve focused on flashy updates in recent years, such as the new scouting system for Franchise mode and the introduction of home-field advantage in the form of team-wide buffs and debuffs, Madden 23 has mostly focused on the specifics. This is most evident in the Fieldsense system.
An ambitious agenda for change and improvement, Fieldsense appears to be the system and philosophy of equals, designed to take Madden a giant step forward in a true 11-on-11 football journey, with key components centered on passing, running and On defense. When I visited EA Orlando, I had the opportunity to experience these new mechanics firsthand.
NFL quarterbacks don’t have the luxury of hitting their wide receivers every game. Defensive backs are too fast and have too small windows to shoot in. This is where skill-based passing comes into play. Pressing a button to aim your pitch will bring up a blue circle representing an outside perimeter where the ball might be caught. A reticle controlled by the left stick allows you to select a target within the area, and the meter fills in, determining the speed and trajectory of the ball.
That sounds like a lot, but in practice it’s actually pretty smooth and intuitive. I was able to start hitting the ball in no time at all, passing the ball where my wide receiver had little chance of catching the ball, and even hitting the back of the shoulder toss — deliberately passing from behind the wide receiver broke the ground rules so that Confusing defenders, a staple of the NFL, wasn’t possible in Madden before. Veteran players are already familiar with leading targets, and the duration of button presses has long made the difference between a lob and a bullet pass, but a new throwing power meter gives me greater control over the exact trajectory of my throws. , I found myself throwing more feeling than just throwing the fastball every time.
hit the spot
Defense also has a key new weapon, the Hit Anywhere. In previous iterations, steals consisted mostly of fixed animations that lost control once contact was made. The overhauled batting system now accounts for additional defenders coming in to increase the bat, or trying to bat the ball from the carrier to force a turnover. The action I saw looked closer to a live NFL game, where swarming was key, especially when larger defenders arrived and knocked down a group of smaller players. It also means that jumping wide receivers are now fair game to hit the ball in the air. As a Seahawks fan, I’m reminded of the bone-crushing Bomber Legion when I blow up receivers exposed during the quarterback’s careless high-flying passes.
Running back is another pillar of Fieldsense. In motion, the new 360 Cut mechanics allow them to put their feet in the dirt and turn hard by pressing the left trigger when changing direction. As someone who often likes zone runs, I don’t know which hole I’m going to run to until I see something open on the offensive line, the fast changing and walking nature takes a few tries to get used to. But when I have this When I feel that way, my running back always goes over the line.
The cuts also resulted in a series of one-on-ones, with the carrier standing tackle with the tackler. When this happens, you and your opponent need to press buttons quickly to gain an advantage, resulting in one player being knocked back or completely freed. This is not strictly a fast time event, as player properties and the exact location and angle of the collision are important. What’s more, Stand Up tackles can be interrupted by additional defenders, invoking the Hit Anywhere system to blow up unguarded defenders.
I’m personally a big Connected Franchise player, and the mod is improving significantly, the biggest one involving player personality. Players now have traits that affect their status as teammates. An example given is the Bobby Wagner and Mentor tags. As a player willing to share the lessons he’s learned during his storied career, he’ll provide additional training experience to the players around him.
Player motivation is another new feature that affects how teams are formed. Whereas free agents used to be completely at the mercy of the highest bidder, players now have specific criteria that can make them more or less interested in a club. Some players want to stay close to home and play for the teams they grew up cheering for. Others are interested in chasing a Super Bowl ring, or will find a team that needs their position to guarantee their minutes. These are real considerations made by real players, and their inclusion has the potential to add a human element to Madden that has long been lacking.
A year is not a long time in the game development world, but EA Orlando has implemented a series of tweaks and adaptations on top of these new features. Scouting is being adjusted to allow for more scouting and more targeted player evaluations. Excess cap space will now roll over year-over-year, and the variety of generated draft class players has been improved. New body prototypes, improved “strand-based” hair elements – movement, islets – and an enhanced hood make players look more realistic than ever. Madden Ultimate Team’s progression is being streamlined, and the script is being honed to better reflect the real-world team they’re based on.
It remains to be seen whether these fixes will address some of our key criticisms Madden NFL 22 Review. Bugs are a common annoyance, and shallow mode takes away from an otherwise solid gaming experience. But the team behind Orlando EA’s Madden NFL 23 isn’t shy about its ambition to create the most believable 11-on-11 football game to date. With Fieldsense at its core, and hundreds of fixes, tweaks, and improvements, Madden 23 may still be the step the series needs. Long live the Legion.
Madden NFL 23 launches on Xbox One worldwide on August 19, Xbox Series X/S, PS4, PS5 and computer.