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Madden NFL 11 News Post


Let me state before I delve into the rest of this article that I believe Madden is a good but not great game. I'm by no means what most people would call a "bonafide full time Madden basher" and I don't feel the need to excessively bash EA Sports at every turn when it comes to their premiere football game.

In fact, Ian Cummings is one of the best game designers out there in our community and I kind of feel the need to apologize in advance -- mainly because the Madden team is far from the only group who limit gamers experience.

But yet, they're today's example. A line in today's post from Ian Cummings caught my eye and I must vent and ask some very important questions to anyone working on sports gaming development these days:

Quote:
"There are countless "cheesing" things that the user can do like dropping your player ratings right before the off-season, signing him to the cheapest deal possible, and then setting him back"

To that I must counter with: Who cares if Joe America cheeses in their single player franchise? Isn't that what video games are for? Creating an alternate reality you enjoy?

And furthermore, who cares if Joe America and his friends were to do that with their online franchise? What gives a game designer the right to limit the experience gamers want to have with your creation? Why are rules arbitrarily created to force players to play how you feel they should? You can easily customize the rulesets to allow for this type of tinkering by the commissioner in online franchises.

But really I have to ask again, who cares if someone wants to cheese in their franchise? Why hide anything at all when it comes to ratings? Why not allow users to allow certain ratings to be displayed or not, making franchise mode as easy or as hard as they feel it should be? If someone wants to cheat, LET THEM CHEAT!

The customer is always right, right?

I've said it countless times over the years, and I'll always continue to say it to every game designer who reads this site: if you purposefully limit the experience of the gamer, then you are limiting their enjoyment of your product and lessening the chance they'll return next time.

The Madden team is the only team who does this. Every team and every company is guilty to a certain extent. I think one of the main reasons is that there is a hidden fear that users won't buy the next game if you can customize the current game to perfection.

But that sounds like a reason to make material improvements year over year to me.

I'll continue this song and dance forever. Quit limiting gamers for no reason, give them the keys. You might be shocked what a dedicated community can do for a game.

Game: Madden NFL 11Reader Score: 6/10 - Vote Now
Platform: PS3 / Xbox 360Votes for game: 96 - View All
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Member Comments
# 1 Blitzburgh @ 11/22/10 04:29 PM
I agree but didn't they say the reason they can't give full access is because the game crashes and is not stable? I don't think you need to continue your "song and dance forever" now, since there is your answer.
 
# 2 jenglund @ 11/22/10 04:45 PM
I agree. I remember "cheesing" when I could put past players on my team, like Barry Sanders with the Madden Cards back in 2001 or something. Heck, it was fun. I don't play that way anymore, but I do want options.

A lot of us like to maintain a franchise that resembles the real season. All I really want to do is be able to tweak ratings during the franchise as real players rise and fall, make the appropriate trades, and force injuries on players who get hurt in real life. Then, from week to week, I just play my games and see how it all turns out with those parameters adjusted.

The other option is that we can have a franchise that somehow gets updated as they release roster updates.
 
# 3 MMChrisS @ 11/22/10 04:47 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitzburgh
I agree but didn't they say the reason they can't give full access is because the game crashes and is not stable? I don't think you need to continue your "song and dance forever" now, since there is your answer.
The first reason wasn't listed as making the game unstable -- just it was 'cheesing'. That's not cool.

The other problems are there because the design of the game has determined that there are limits which you cannot cross. It's a design flaw, not a software limitation.
 
# 4 Hova57 @ 11/22/10 04:54 PM
yea Ian did give a reason why, but also there is a sense of non control especially with sliders. you could put NBA 10 in right now. you can control the sensitivity of air collison fouls,cpu frequency stuff. NHL you can anything in that game, how fast the puck goes, how much you want the cpu to assist you . i understand what chris is saying
 
# 5 SHAKYR @ 11/22/10 04:57 PM
MMChrisS, this is why I like Operation Sports!
I agree with this post.
 
# 6 CM Hooe @ 11/22/10 05:02 PM
I fully agree with the premise of this article, and further would like to see the offline customization aspects of Madden expanded beyond editing rosters at any time. Let us create and edit our own playbooks, complete with custom formations and route combinations. Let us edit coaches and coaching staffs. Let us edit AI teams' playbooks and game plans (which should be assigned per-coach anyhow, I'm actually not sure how this works in M11 as I didn't play it much). Let us assign our own stadium sounds rather than having to use whatever EA puts on the soundtrack. Let us edit the incoming draft class during the in-season scouting periods. Heck, let us choose if we want the roof open or closed at Cowboys Stadium in franchise mode if we're playing as the Cowboys.
 
# 7 bcruise @ 11/22/10 05:04 PM
Personally I think we have trophies and achievements (and the "rewards" that go with them) to blame for losing a lot of the customization aspect.

Nice read.
 
# 8 Blitzburgh @ 11/22/10 05:30 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MMChrisS
The first reason wasn't listed as making the game unstable -- just it was 'cheesing'. That's not cool.

The other problems are there because the design of the game has determined that there are limits which you cannot cross. It's a design flaw, not a software limitation.
Yeah- I agree. Most of the issues people have with the game are because of the design flaws which is what they keep building of off it seems.
 
# 9 GrandMaster B @ 11/22/10 05:36 PM
That's why I voted for a complete re-design of the game. The way it is made now limits the consumers of options and experiences.
 
# 10 roadman @ 11/22/10 05:41 PM
I'd rather have the developers over here discussing it and taking our considerations and suggestions vs not being here at all and making their own decisions until the game comes out.

I do agree with the article, the more customization the better, no doubt.
 
# 11 bhurst99 @ 11/22/10 05:48 PM
Agree 100 per cent. The more customization you give the user the better. Bcruse makes a good point about trophies and achievements possibily having an effect on customization.
 
# 12 Artman22 @ 11/22/10 05:52 PM
Great read. The main objective of this article is to show EA that sports gamers don't want limitations on their games, and I comepletey agree with this article. Give your consumer more options so we can do as we please with the game.
 
# 13 ryan36 @ 11/22/10 05:59 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Art1bk
Great read. The main objective of this article is to show EA that sports gamers don't want limitations on their games, and I comepletey agree with this article. Give your consumer more options so we can do as we please with the game.
Exactly. Great article Chris.
 
# 14 Palo20 @ 11/22/10 06:06 PM
I agree with the premise of the article but I think you're missing Ian's point. He went on to say that the "cheesy" exploits cause stability issues and that won't fly with Sony and Microsoft.

I didn't see any implication that Ian was against allowing "user cheesiness" as long as it doesn't break the game and look bad to the people who approve the game.
 
# 15 ChaseB @ 11/22/10 06:41 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Palo20
I agree with the premise of the article but I think you're missing Ian's point. He went on to say that the "cheesy" exploits cause stability issues and that won't fly with Sony and Microsoft.

I didn't see any implication that Ian was against allowing "user cheesiness" as long as it doesn't break the game and look bad to the people who approve the game.
I would think this is the most logical conclusion as well even if it wasn't the reason Ian led with. I do get Chris' point though, and I don't disagree with the premise either.
 
# 16 khaliib @ 11/22/10 06:57 PM
Chris, I agree.

On the other hand though, it's only natural to put limitations on things that your part of to protect the work that is put into it. We all do it in some way or form.

Prime example:
Something a Dev noted about their product that caused you to, "need to vent and ask some serious questions", inspired you to write this post, which is great for this community based social site (product). Yet within the same discussion that inspired you to write, limitations on the same "Venting" feedback are placed on the community to protect the work put in by yourself and other Moderators.

To protect the integrity of its product, Madden Dev's put editing limitations on their gamers.
To protect the integrity of your social site, you place limitations on gamers also.

ryan36 @ 11/22/10 05:44 PM
From the TOS...

FROM NOW ON, ANY AND ALL OFFENSES WILL BE MET WITH AN IMMEDIATE AND PERMANENT BAN. THERE ARE NO INFRACTIONS, AND WARNING WILL BE USED AT A MODERATOR'S DISCRETION, IF AT ALL.
(Yes there are lines, but lately any "NEGATIVE" feedback seem to be considered offensive)

***I hope this response is not taken the wrong way or seen as an effort to try and show anyone up. Not my intentions by the least and I respect and enjoy all the work that's needed to provide this avenue for gamers like myself.

I just wanted to note how we all may use limitations to protect what we put hours of hard work into.
Thus, I can see why Madden Dev's do it, eventhough it burns my "Jerry-Curl"!
 
# 17 KingV2k3 @ 11/22/10 07:38 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MMChrisS


if you purposefully limit the experience of the gamer, then you are limiting their enjoyment of your product and lessening the chance they'll return next time.

Quit limiting gamers for no reason, give them the keys. You might be shocked what a dedicated community can do for a game.
The most customizable version of Madden (to date) was the PS2 version from 2005...

It was the last time you could fully "disassemble and reassemble" the Coach Philosophy and Sim engines...

The best example of this is Sm27's "The Manifesto", which remains (IMHO) the pinnacle of what the SIM football community was / is capable of...

That bunch was able to make all the teams play as close to their IRL NFL counterparts as possible b/c ALL the Coach Sliders worked...

You could alter HB1 / HB2 percentages, and the O and D AGG sliders made it possible to have that era's Philly D blitz constantly while Tampa's Tampa 2 chose to "read and react", etc...

The gameplay was excellent and the sim stats were the best to date...

The next year, the ONLY slider that actually "worked" was run / pass and as a result things took a HUGE step backward that has NEVER been retraced...

A bunch of the guys that made that "miracle" happen, got frustrated with the fact that it was no longer possible to reach this level of gaming excellence again, and have bailed off to play and customise the last PC version (2008?) year after year...

So to the quotes I pulled from the OP:

1) You would possibly be VERY surprised what a dedicated effort from dedicated games can produce (that could possibly be of positive future influence) and...

2) Limiting these guys enjoyment / ability to customize mos def resulted in loss of future sales as a result...

That being said, I love the fact that the devs interact around here...that was the number one thing on the sim players "Wish List"...to be heard...

Thanks for listening!

Happy gaming to all!

P.S.

Here is a link to Sm27's final thread from that year on "The Manifesto" that includes a word doc of how this was created and what effects on gameplay and the sim engine it had:

http://www.operationsports.com/vBull...-download.html

A shining example of the "best case scenario" re: gaming forums...

Instead of focusing on "It's Broken", the focus was "Let's Fix It"...

And EA affored us the flexiblity to do just that...along with Custom Playbooks in Franchise, Formation Subs, etc. that one by one all fell inexplicably by the wayside on the way to the "New Gen" era...

Oh well...those WERE the days...

Good times, indeed...
 
# 18 MMChrisS @ 11/22/10 08:16 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingV2k3
The most customizable version of Madden (to date) was the PS2 version from 2005...

It was the last time you could fully "disassemble and reassemble" the Coach Philosophy and Sim engines...

The best example of this is Sm27's "The Manifesto", which remains (IMHO) the pinnacle of what the SIM football community was / is capable of...

That bunch was able to make all the teams play as close to their IRL NFL counterparts as possible b/c ALL the Coach Sliders worked...

You could alter HB1 / HB2 percentages, and the O and D AGG sliders made it possible to have that era's Philly D blitz constantly while Tampa's Tampa 2 chose to "read and react", etc...

The gameplay was excellent and the sim stats were the best to date...

The next year, the ONLY slider that actually "worked" was run / pass and as a result things took a HUGE step backward that has NEVER been retraced...

A bunch of the guys that made that "miracle" happen, got frustrated with the fact that it was no longer possible to reach this level of gaming excellence again, and have bailed off to play and customise the last PC version (2008?) year after year...

So to the quotes I pulled from the OP:

1) You would possibly be VERY surprised what a dedicated effort from dedicated games can produce (that could possibly be of positive future influence) and...

2) Limiting these guys enjoyment / ability to customize mos def resulted in loss of future sales as a result...

That being said, I love the fact that the devs interact around here...that was the number one thing on the sim players "Wish List"...to be heard...

Thanks for listening!

Happy gaming to all!

P.S.

Here is a link to Sm27's final thread from that year on "The Manifesto" that includes a word doc of how this was created and what effects on gameplay and the sim engine it had:

http://www.operationsports.com/vBull...-download.html

A shining example of the "best case scenario" re: gaming forums...

Instead of focusing on "It's Broken", the focus was "Let's Fix It"...

And EA affored us the flexiblity to do just that...along with Custom Playbooks in Franchise, Formation Subs, etc. that one by one all fell inexplicably by the wayside on the way to the "New Gen" era...

Oh well...those WERE the days...

Good times, indeed...
Ah man sm27's Madden Manifesto! That made madden 2005 the best playing NFL franchise experience ever! Good memories!
 
# 19 scottyo60 @ 11/22/10 08:45 PM
Someone mentioned NBA 10 as far as customization settings... I'd like to bring up a live season. I know some people wouldn't want to wait from week to week to play their games, but i feel i might be more immersed in this at some point. Maybe as a alternate way of playing a dynasty or a way to start a dynasty.
 
# 20 JaymeeAwesome @ 11/22/10 09:55 PM
If I remember correctly, when purchasing a video game you are buying a license to use the product the manufacturer makes. By that statement alone says they can limit whatever they want if they want you to play the game their way. If the purchaser of the license (game) doesn't agree with the constraints of owning this license then they will need to show the manufacturer how they feel by not buying into the game. It's the gamers fault and not the creators if every year they put out a mediocre title, because all they see is money and if the money is still coming in they will not try as hard to improve.
 

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