The Madden NFL series is an annual release that is often hindered by the fact that they release a new one every year. This means that the development cycle is pretty short which means the addition of new features tend to feel more iterative and less ground-breaking. In Madden 20, EA Tiburon is looking to add a bevy of new features and changes for fans of the NFL game franchise.
With this likely to be the last entry solely on current console hardware, how impressive can these changes be? Let's look at the 10 best changes coming to this year's Madden NFL 20, ranked.
10 Franchise Mode Scenario Engine
The community for Madden NFL has been vocal over the years about how lackluster and bare bones the franchise mode has felt. EA Tiburon has heard the feedback loud and clear and is looking to add longevity and intrigued to the mode through a scenario engine.
Its primary function is to create random interesting story-lines that make your franchise mode feel unique and allows the player to be engaged over the course of numerous seasons. How unique or repetitive will the scenarios it creates be? We'll have to wait and see how it all shakes out.
9 Unique Playbooks
Many times, the playbooks in Madden NFL end up feeling system-based as opposed to team-based. This leads to teams with similar playstyles having almost identical playbooks with little to no team uniqueness. This was an area of focus for the EA Tiburon team and with Madden 20 they hope to deliver a set of playbooks for each team that feel unique to them.
Now, due to the nature of the sport, there will still be significant crossover, but the hope is that the playbooks over a good number of team-specific plays and formations.
8 New Pump Fake
The pump fake has been an on-again-off-again part of the Madden NFL series. It's always been a part of the game put some years it's a more viable mechanic than others. Sometimes players are better off not even attempting a pump fake as the pass rush would never allow that type of setup.
In Madden 20, players will have the ability to pump fake to specific receivers and can actually back out of bad throws by double-tapping the button. This will give the players with great reaction speed the ability to correct bad decision-making on the fly.
7 An On-Field Trainer
It's one thing to know the game of football, including all of its rules and intricacies. When it comes to playing Madden NFL that type of knowledge helps, but understanding how to play the game is of utmost importance. In Madden 20 players will have an On-Field Trainer to assist in helping them get better at Madden in a variety of ways. It's a modernized teaching system that will explain new in-game mechanics and offer guidance as you continue to experience authentic NFL football action in Madden 20.
6 NFL Pro Bowl Returns
If you were to tell someone that the NFL's only video game series hadn't let people play the Pro Bowl game they'd likely shake their head in confusion. The Pro Bowl, though mocked more often than not, is the gathering of the NFL's best of the current season.
Attending or watching the real game may be disappointing due to a lack of competition, but the video game doesn't have that problem. Luckily in Madden 20 players can finally play the Pro Bowl in franchise mode and get control of the best players throughout the league, on the cusp of the Super Bowl.
5 New Celebrations
Fans have celebrated alongside NFL players ever since the ban on touchdown celebrations was lifted. Ever since the Madden NFL series has seen numerous celebrations, stunts, and popular dances make their way into the game.
With Madden 20, players can expect over 20 new celebration animations as well as authentic player animations for some of the league's top quarterbacks. Here's hoping these celebrations are in addition to those of years passed so the roster of possible animations continues to grow and grow into the next generation
4 RPO Plays
The run/pass option plays have taken the NFL world by storm thanks in large part to the Super Bowl victory by the Philadelphia Eagles over the New England Patriots. Both the Kansas City Chiefs and Chicago Bears saw success with these types of plays during the 2018 NFL season, and fans have wanted them to come to Madden 20 in an authentic capacity.
EA Tiburon has stated that RPO plays will not only be featured in Madden 20, but they tried to add the nuance and feel of the plays that make them so hard to defend in real life.
3 Madden Ultimate Team Missions
Madden Ultimate Team brings in a majority of the revenue for the series, so it should come as no surprise that Madden 20 will feature another new addition to the card collecting mode. Players will now be provided with missions that upon completion provide additional challenges and opportunities for new players to upgrade their team.
This mission-based addition seems heavily inspired by something similar in the MLB The Show series and could provide great rewards for those willing to go the extra mile in completing these missions.
2 QB1 Mode
For years fans of football have been yearning for the return of Electronic Art's NCAA Football game series to return. With player likeness and the subject of student-athletes being paid for the revenue they bring their universities, the series has been on hiatus.
With QB1 mode in Madden 20, players will get the chance to play with college teams as they try to make their way into the NFL as a top quarterback prospect. Plenty of the country's top teams are available to play for, in the mode replacing the previous two entries' Longshot experience.
1 Superstar X-Factor
A criticism often leveraged at Madden NFL is that the gameplay doesn't let superstars feel like superstars. The idea is that certain plays or game mechanics can be manipulated and the overall or resume of a player doesn't matter. In Madden 20 they're adding Superstar X-Factor abilities that grant passive and active abilities for the best players in the NFL.
At launch, the game will have 50 players with such abilities that offer passive bonuses for them being on the field, as well as activated power-ups that can give you a real advantage if you accomplish their specified goals first.