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Do Franchise Modes Have a Future? (Chat)

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Do Franchise Modes Have a Future? (Chat)

Chris Sanner: Okay everyone. Welcome to our first chat on the new OS frontpage design! We haven’t done one of these in awhile since I’ve been too busy actually helping get all of this together and chasing tornadoes — so you know…priorities and stuff. With it being early June, now is always a good time to step back before we get full-on into the hype machine of each game’s PR cycle at E3 and EA Play. So today let’s talk about the perception out there that single-player modes are being taken over by card and eSport driven modes.

Is that perception real, or is it one of those things where perception doesn’t match reality? Thoughts?

Kevin Scott: I think it’s hard to argue that card-driven modes aren’t all the rage right now, but at the same time, single player career modes also seem to draw a lot of attention, so there does seem to kind of be a need for players to strike some sort of balance in what they’re devoting their time to.

Robert Kollars: Obviously it’s subjective, but in my mind I would absolutely say yes, the perception and reality are equal. I understand why as company’s search for alternative income opportunities, but it feels like the core of what made these titles and franchises so popular are a secondary concern at this stage.

Kevin Groves: These card/eSports modes are proving to be where the vast majority of modern gamers spend their time. For companies to ignore their user base and the revenue they generate would be foolish. There’s still a market for the crowd that enjoys playing offline at their own pace vs the AI (I mostly fall into this category) but a blend of both worlds (NCAA’s online dynasty) would be ideal.

Mike Lowe: I do believe it is real, but it’s hard to know precisely how real as we aren’t privy to a lot of that information. I have been fully supportive of Millennium’s #franchisenation in an attempt to draw more attention to these single player season modes that many of us love simply to give us franchise folks more of a voice on social media. It’s a great strategy, and one that I hope developers are able to hear.

Today’s generation seems to lend itself more to these card modes (Pokemon?), and more of the “quick fix” style of play that provide shorter bursts of, for example, baseball with Battle Royale. We’ve seen instances of this coming into franchise modes with Play The Moments (Madden) And MLB The Show’s Critical Situations. The challenge now seems to be to connect a generation of social media enthusiasts to game modes that are essentially isolated. So how do we do this? In my opinion, it’s by utilizing a franchise mode 2.0. We can talk for days about what that might look like, but that would bring this mode into the 21st century of gaming and spotlight it for folks. However, it also must be done in ways FAR better than what we have now (only Madden would suffice in my opinion).

Chris Sanner: It’d be interesting to see stats on usage of something like CFM vs. MUT as one instance in terms of play time and number of total players…

In that sense, I wonder…are most of us in this chat just a dying breed? Are franchise lovers (or people who want to manage a team in a hyper realistic front office/GM/coach/player hybrid role) simply going extinct?

Chris Sanner: (Editor’s note to Mike: You are taking this way too seriously with such a long answer.)

Robert Kollars: Well I’ve been told some first-hand knowledge straight from a developer of what is made on these card games, and it’s actually quite mind blowing.

Mike Lowe:  Haha yeah I forgot there is more than one question…Edit as you wish!

Chris Sanner: We don’t edit chats! Unless Robert says something nice about Notre Dame. Then it gets edited out.

Robert Kollars: This comment has been removed by the editor.

Mike Lowe: I’ll be shorter!

Kevin Groves: I recall a number around $400 million generated from FIFA Ultimate Team one year which is mind blowing Bob, even if there are issues surrounding the third-party coin sales.

Kevin Scott: As someone who used to pretty much exclusively play franchise modes alone, I’m starting to gravitate more towards multiplayer online franchises. The trouble is finding a reliable one. Also, it doesn’t seem like developers are spending much time improving this mode. Looking at you, MLB The Show.

Chris Sanner: The online franchises seem like such a missed opportunity. I wonder if they’d be a fit as a subscription service? IDK just thinking out loud don’t shoot the messenger.

Also on the revenue part of the equation — I’d also like to raise another question and possibility: Is it possible card modes actually are funding the ability for people who like single-player franchise modes to still enjoy them?

Kevin Scott: Not a bad idea. I dream of being in an online franchise that offers daily or at least weekly highlights of all the games.

Mike Lowe: I don’t play much Diamond Dynasty, but I like to work on the card collections. I have no idea why!

Kevin Groves: That’s always the thought Chris, “throw some of that UT money to other aspects of the game,” and they probably do, but like Mike said, we’ll never know without the proper information.

Robert Kollars: I would absolutely pay for a solid, working online franchise @Chris Sanner – Part of my love for sports gaming is the interaction and camaraderie that takes place in a well working online franchise

Chris Sanner: I’d think the idea of a subscription service to online franchises with super enhanced things like highlights, full replays, better commish tools, etc. would probably appeal to that crowd — even if it was relatively niche. On the bonus side, there’d be a duplicity of function there of sorts for eSports too.

Mike Lowe: The challenge with online leagues, and I’m a huge supporter of them, is the timing issue. It’s tough to find time to play folks even in a Madden league as you both have to be available at the same time. To try that in a full-fledged baseball league? It would only work if it was their full-time job. A baseball league would work if the participants simulated the regular season, and only played the playoff series, perhaps? Or maybe just play the weekend series’?

Kevin Scott: Perhaps one of the problems is that you’re left to fend for yourself trying to find a good online franchise. And it’s a real jungle out there.

Mike Lowe: Do we ever think we’ll see a marriage of FM and FIFA? Or OOTP and MLB The Show or even Microsoft?

Chris Sanner: MIKE IS TAKING OVER AS THE NARRATOR NOW.

Mike Lowe: Yeah Kevin, definitely a quantity over quality thing.

Chris Sanner: HE JUST HIT SANNER OVER THE HEAD WITH A STEEL CHAIR.

Kevin Scott: If only I had a nickel for every online franchise I’ve been in that suddenly folded overnight.

Robert Kollars: I think that’s where the statistical data comes into play, and of course the latest trends. The infrastructure to create something isn’t cheap, and the numbers of usage would have to align with the cost.

Mike Lowe: Yes, unfortunately Operation Sports and its members don’t build the games or decide what goes in them! It’s always a business first, and understandably so.

Kevin Groves: That’s the beauty of OS though (waits for a check in the mail from Steve), you can find a good core here. It’s how I met Bob and you see how much better my life has become.

Chris Sanner: Okay but seriously let’s get back on topic. Mike seriously did raise where I’d like to take the conversation next to kinda close us out. Is the future of single-player franchise modes one where makers need to go more of a Football Manager/OOTP route with depth, or is it one where the modes are made more accessible and even multi-user friendly? Is there a way for single player franchise modes to survive in an era where people are basically moving towards shared gaming experiences?

Kevin Scott: Can’t we have both of those things, increased depth while allowing for multiple users?

Kevin Groves: It has to be multi-user friendly. For as good as Football Manager is, not everyone wants to spend that kind of time in a game. Spoken from experience as someone who stayed up until the wee hours of the night simming.

Kevin Scott: I want it all!

Chris Sanner: YOU CAN’T HAVE IT ALL

…Or can you?

Mike Lowe: I believe we’re already starting to creep too far into the arcade realm. We gravitate towards sports gaming because we want to be a part of something that might emulate the real-life sports we love. If studios lose that crowd, I do feel there will be issues with any sort of longevity in their titles.

Robert Kollars: I think it has to be towards multi-user friendly, but with the ability to mix user and AI controlled components. It’s just not realistic to think that people can find 30 friends to play online franchise in The Show or Madden, or 40 friends to race NASCAR Heat online…

Mike Lowe: To me, the best thing happening in sports gaming is EASHL. Tie that somehow into an actual season (not the weird psuedo-seasons we have now) where not just the best players in the world can be a part of it, and you’re looking at the start of online leagues 2.0.

Kevin Scott: That’s why it would be great if games actually had matchmaking capabilities to help people find online franchises.

Robert Kollars: I have to agree with Mike here, give me the ability to play a league or franchise in Madden over multiple years, with friends on the same team — I’m golden.

Mike Lowe: Or use strict time slots…if you want to play in the “7pm ET league” you must be there. If you miss too many games (3 strikes), you’re removed. Or something like that. I mean, we all can handle softball leagues in real life, right? Similar approach.

Kevin Scott: Love the EASHL model, but I suppose it only really works for certain sports. No one’s signing up to be a left guard in Madden or play left field in The Show.

Mike Lowe: Give us options to select: 1v1, 3v3 (OF, IF, P), or even 9v9. You play as your own pinch hitter.

Chris Sanner: So let’s wrap this up. Over the next 3 years, are you optimistic or pessimistic on the future of single-player franchise modes?

Mike Lowe: So different leagues could do different things.

Kevin Scott: I suppose pessimistic. I worry that they will receive less and less attention until they’re just a forgotten mode relegated to the third page on the menu screen.

Mike Lowe: It’s trending down for me. It’s not that the experience is bad, but it’s not growing anywhere near the rate other modes are. This is what has me playing more text-sim sports titles than console for a franchise experience. HOWEVER, once one studio does it right, and I mean REALLY right, we’ll see a Renaissance.

Robert Kollars: Unless changes are made and efforts are refocused, I’m extremely pessimistic about the future. I’m not sure developers are willing to give extra cash flow to appease a fan base that is perhaps shrinking.

Chris Sanner: Okay well guys…thanks for the rosy outlook for franchise mode lovers.

So what do you think? Are single-player franchise modes endangered? Do you think there is a future for franchise modes period? Sound off with your own thoughts in the comments!

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  1. Offline, singe player franchise modes - the kind that I've been playing since the early 90s on the NES, are the only thing that matter in sports games to me. What I want is for a game to be an awesome GM simulator, and then have solid graphics and gameplay on the field.
    I do not play online, I don't want to create a player and RPG him through his career, and I have no use for any of the other various mini modes that are around today.
    I've already, depressingly, chosen not to purchase MLB The Show for the first time since 2008 because they made no improvements to their franchise mode. I'm hoping that I don't have to do the same with Madden. Gaming is my only hobby, and it would crush me to lose a big part of what I love.
    One thing that I believe would help franchise modes immensely would be the incorporation of a full functioning companion app. I welcome increased depth with franchise modes, but I often only have an hour or so to sit in front of the console. However if I could allocate xp points, scout, and manage my roster from my smartphone during downtime over the course of the work day, that would be heaven. I would fully expect to pay for an app like this too
    I love the comments above by mcpats and Unlucky - I agree with both. I am only an offline gamer with no intention of changing. I am not sure there are enough of us for the future of offline gaming to be rosy (heck, with the few sports games that come out these days, sports gaming, to me, has been less than rosy for years).
    I'm with unlucky 13.
    Game must have a franchise mode, or else no buy for me.
    Online is fun, but most of my time playing sports games are spent on franchise mode for me.
    There were some changes made to the Show 17 for franchise mode, but I'm also a bit disappointed in the overall experience. MVP 2005 had me hooked with it's franchise mode. It was deep and fun to play! Still hoping out that we'll see another MVP in my lifetime...
    The neglect shown to offline franchise modes are the reason I play text sims these days more than actual console games.
    OOTPB is the greatest representation of actual baseball that you can purchase. MLB the show was returned to GameStop and I've been playing OOTP non stop since it's release. The level of detail and depth is mind blowing.
    I'm old school, so I'm all about realism and being the general manager of a team. I don't care about cards, online domination modes, play now online, NONE of that whatsoever.
    OOTP and NBA 2K are currently the only games that offer me a deep, franchise experience, so those are the only two games I currently have in my library.
    I spend months fixing/detailing/editing the roster so Franchise play can seem as realistic as possible. This is my joy in the sports titles I play. No online play nor money spent in Ultimate Team Modes for me. $60 for the game itself is enough spent every year.
    I can concur with most of the sentiments said already. I'm a strict offline franchise guy myself. I would gladly play online in a league but A) I don't have a ton of friends that play and B) I don't have the time to schedule games on a regular basis. This is a huge reason why I have gravitated much more towards online sports sim leagues rather than console gaming. 
    I have given MUT a try and while I do enjoy the collecting, trading and auctioning of the cards, I don't particularly care for playing against other users. Again, time is a premium and I don't have the ability to grind out challenges to better my MUT binder. That time would be much better spent playing a solo, offline franchise mode.
    The games that I have spent the most time in franchise mode are College Hoops 2k8, NCAA 14, MVP 05 and Madden 06 and in that order. They all did it pretty damn well and would have no problem playing those same games still to this day.
    I do believe every sports game NEEDS to have an online franchise component that's parallel to the offline one. There's no excuse not too.
    Only Madden has that. The Show is an extremely watered down and broken version of offline. 2k, NFL And fifa don't have one.
    Everyone in the interview seems to be looking at online franchise as having full leagues. 30 users.
    What about the 3-4 guys that want to play together? I feel that is more popular. Me and my buddies get 10+ seasons done in Madden. When MLB comes out we play 1 gm a series and are currently in year 6! Even with how horrible the mode is, there is nothing better then fighting for the division, free agents. Who can find the gem draft prospect. It's awesome. But nowhere near where it needs to be.
    Lastly, for the guy who said who would want to play LF? Um me? Many would. Another thing I would love Is a combined RTTS where me and a friend could be the SS/2B for the franchise. Or PG/SF for 2k. QB/WR in Madden. Or even SS/FS.
    How awesome would that be? Honestly. It's not all about full fledged 30 team leagues. Its about the 2-4 group of friends playing together in a shared franchise.
    The only place to get a realistic management experience these days is a text sim.  It's really as simple as that.  Keep up the good fight, offline guys, but you're just not where the money is.  I actually do still buy FIFA and The Show (not 17 yet though - wasn't going to buy a game where the servers didn't work again).  I don't even touch franchises in these titles because they can't come close to FM and OOTP for really feeling like you're managing something.  I buy console titles for pick up games and the card modes because they're fun.  I'm not going to concern myself with trying to produce realistic results in their severely lacking franchise modes.  Right when you figure out sliders to get what you're looking for, a patch comes out and changes the balance.  It's a chore.
    Unlucky 13 - 
    I agree with you. Franchise Mode is the main important thing to me.
    I'll try out some other modes like "myplayer" and possibly the "card modes" since I wait a bit to start my real Franchise mode for updated Rosters and stuff. But if those things weren't in the game I wouldn't care.
    I don't buy every year on sports games, because I like to get a long ways into them before starting over. And Madden hasn't impressed me lately (it's Franchise mode feels so shallow compared to NBA 2K). Hoping it's improved this year and I might buy, if not I will wait another year.
    I'm in the sentiment of i'm pretty much a franchise mode only guy. I'll dabble in the UT modes but nothing serious.. Hell my stream is dedicated to playing franchise modes because there is nothing out there for us who enjoy franchise modes and watching someone play games. I wish there were more franchise mode streams. I love seeing people play franchise.
    For me, offline franchise modes are all that matter... these are the only modes that I play. I'm a busy guy: work full time, school full time, and I have a wife and kid. I need to be able to play my franchise at my leisure. It might take me two months to complete a season, and I rather do that knowing I am hold holding up everyone else. 
    For stuff like Madden MUT, sorry... I just don't get it. I think in 2013 I fired it up once and just did not see the appeal. If Madden and other titles decide that stuff like MUT and "you get the pretend to be a fictional character" mode is priority, so be it... I guess my video game days would be over.
    As someone who only plays in an online madden league( runs it) , i do feel sports games needs franchise modes.Plain and simple, both online and offline account for alot of people buying these games only for those reasons. They wouldn't buy it otherwise ,and thus would never even come close to trying out the card game modes , these companies want us all playing. They are the core of what got these games this far along and has helped sustain them over the years. 
    One of the nice things about only leagues is, you can find one to fit what would work best for you. There are over 1000 leagues on Daddy Leagues to look thru. Some advance daily, every 48 hours, some 3 times a week some twice a week, etc. It just really boils down to finding one that works with your schedule. One of the things i always ask new people who come to ours looking for an opening is their availability and letting them know majority of league owners availabilities. Clear communication between and by all owners is the only thing that can keep a league moving so people are not getting bored and frustrated.  But trying to make online franchises pay more than 60$ to get all  the features for that year, is a bad idea. It will turn alot of people away for that reason alone.
    Great discussion continues in the replies. Nice job, everyone! I'd love to hear from more folks who do NOT play franchise mode--how come? What would bring you into or back to that sort of game mode?
    Mike Lowe
    Great discussion continues in the replies. Nice job, everyone! I'd love to hear from more folks who do NOT play franchise mode--how come? What would bring you into or back to that sort of game mode?

    I would like to know this as well. I bet some people would say that they don't enjoy playing against the CPU because it is too predictable and wouldn't want to abide by house rules to make it more difficult for them. Some people really enjoy playing against other users online.
    Regardless, I would love to hear from someone who doesn't play CFM their reasoning.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    I don't understand the basis for the question. Are we simply ignoring the investments Tiburon made to get more players into franchise mode in Madden 17? Did NBA 2K's growing MyGM and MyLeague modes disappear? Didn't EA Sports NHL just rebuild its Franchise mode on Gen-4 consoles?
    Franchise modes aren't going anywhere, this panic is entirely misplaced and baseless. If anything, developers may move to enable more online competitive experiences, but single-player isn't doomed by any stretch of the imagination.
    I think it's an argument of "did franchise modes lose relevance because they lost the audience interest?" vs. "did the audience lose interest because the franchise modes lost it's relevance and/or entertainment value?".
    For me at least, I strongly believe the latter.
    There is just very little immersion in current franchise modes. Leagues don't feel alive. And the less you feel immersed or connected to something, the faster you lose interest.
    The three best or at least most memorable franchise modes in sports video game history are:
    1. College Hoops 2K8
    2. NCAA 14
    3. NFL2K5/Madden 2005
    Probably in that order. Gamers still revere these franchise modes even though they were buggy as all hell (NFL2K5), the gameplay wasn't very good (Madden 2005), or the franchise mode were quickly outdated (NCAA 14 due to the CFB). Why? Because they were immersive, living franchises. The presentation in these games were top-notch. The games, even though the gameplay may have spotty in some of them, meant something and the mechanics of the game let you know it (and not by some menu).
    You could tell real time and effort were put into these modes...these modes were the centerpiece of the game. Not some cheap, quick fixes and things used to placate the audience. The franchise modes in these game were art opposed to afterthoughts with trendy mechanics.
    It's the "Call of Dutyization" of sports games really. Engaging and compelling single player and/or co-op experiences have taken a backseat to addictive microtransaction modes and various head to head experiences. And can you really blame them? In-depth experiences take tons of time, resources, and if you are using top on-air talent, money to pull off while at with the latter modes you get a staggering amount of revenue and now notoriety with E-Sports. If I was running these companies with shareholders, it would be extremely difficult to not do the same.
    And then when you add the fact that these games do not have competition or alternatives, really what is the incentive? There is no NBA Live with a tremendous franchise mode that is the centerpiece to push NBA2K or MLB2K with an innovative and exhilarating experience to push The Show.
    So it's really a number of factors. Madden tried to merge and push online franchise on gamers even though it took away or slowed other features (it took last year before we got something as basic as a ticker). I think NBA2K legitimately tries but it's getting clearer and clearer that the MyCareer which powers Pro-Am/MyPark is the breadwinner and is gonna take up the lion's share of things. The Show has made some improvements but not nearly enough. All three of these games want to make the experience more streamlined and not more immersive or expansive. Again, these modes are becoming more of an add-on designed to get the user to play and play over and over again by easy methods. Not saying that it's bad. Big moments and sim to quarter length should absolutely be options in these games (but that XP and VC crap needs to die in the worst way) but they shouldn't be main or big topic features.
    I'm not optimistic. This clearly seems to be the trend of not just sports gaming but gaming in general. With sports games, there are no Ghost Recon's or GTA's to provide direct competition and alternatives. I'm still going to buy The Show because I love baseball and Madden because I need my NFL fix.
    2K's My League has most of what I would ever want in a franchise mode, and I enjoy it more than anything else in the game. The card collection/micro transaction modes are of no interest to me in the slightest.
    Rocky hit the nail on the head . The streamlining of the Superstar Mode and Franchise Modes have made them so boring. If they had innovation, depth, realism and immersion, they would easily be the most popular modes.
    I kept my old NCAA 14 (PS3), and my old Madden 06 (PS2). So when I get the desire to play a fun football Franchise or be-a-player mode, I can go and dust off my old consoles, stick in my old disks and enjoy.
    I have been playing hours and hours of NCAA 14 lately. I can't put a finger on exactly why it is so much better, but  immersion is one of the main factors. I like having to fight to get a starting spot on the roster. And how it's a bummer sitting on the sidelines when your team is getting spanked by Nebraska.
    Yes it has some buggy bits, but it still outshines many of the contemporary titles.
    Reejer
    Rocky hit the nail on the head . The streamlining of the Superstar Mode and Franchise Modes have made them so boring. If they had innovation, depth, realism and immersion, they would easily be the most popular modes.

    They still are. Rex Dickson was recently quoted saying that Franchise mode is still "by far" the most popular mode in Madden NFL speaking to total player count. Ultimate Team modes simply retain players far better because those modes actually have game design thought put behind them, unlike most franchise modes. Madden 17 did a lot of catching up, to this end, but it's still not as robust as Ultimate Team is, and bringing back presentation bells and whistles or archaic removed window dressing features isn't going to fix that.
    Reejer
    Rocky hit the nail on the head . The streamlining of the Superstar Mode and Franchise Modes have made them so boring. If they had innovation, depth, realism and immersion, they would easily be the most popular modes.
    I kept my old NCAA 14 (PS3), and my old Madden 06 (PS2). So when I get the desire to play a fun football Franchise or be-a-player mode, I can go and dust off my old consoles, stick in my old disks and enjoy.
    I have been playing hours and hours of NCAA 14 lately. I can't put a finger on exactly why it is so much better, but* immersion is one of the main factors. I like having to fight to get a starting spot on the roster. And how it's a bummer sitting on the sidelines when your team is getting spanked by Nebraska.
    Yes it has some buggy bits, but it still outshines many of the contemporary titles.

    Agree. I'm the same way with CH2K8. I jumped back on it during the NCAA tourney and got hooked all again. I even upped the half length from 5 mins (to finish faster) to 10 because I'm having fun. The game engine is outdated. The graphics werent great even back then, but it sucks me in somehow. I think what it's is that CH2k8 and NCAA Football were just more immersive and that goes a long way. That's element is what's missing the most these days, IMO.
    I don't think franchise modes are going down, per se. But I think we're gonna continue to see different takes on it. Maddens online centric version and 2Ks old school take. I just love 2K vision and how the devs on those modes speak more passionately about it and deliver for the most part. Madden seems more like its trying to create some new way to play franchise centered around online. That's not bad considering where gaming is but its just too bland for me.
    I wished I had saw this thread a little sooner, but I wrote an article-ish piece last night. Specifically commenting on this:
    What happened to sports dynasties in video games, specifically offline mode?
    In light of the recent news of Madden 18: The Longshot, I feel the need to say/write that the sports gaming companies have lost it touch and the true meaning of sports franchises. It’s easy to point and say, “How dumb could they be to add such a useless feature and waste so much time and resources. I’ll never play it, or I’ll never buy another game by this sports franchise again?” But let’s say it with some constructive criticism, actual thought and reasoning this time around.
    When I first started playing sports video games the only thing I could ever think was, “How cool would it be to take my created players and team and continue their legacy in next years game”, but no that hasn’t happened. (Except MLB The Show 14? and forward) I think the first thing that all sports game companies should have done was include this feature in the PS3/360 era, but it should be a staple in this day and age. All sports gamers old and young at one point probably created their fictional dream team that they’ve grown attached to, only to be forced to either completely remake them in next years game or start over. The time is now to speak up and demand that this simple yet powerful and immersive feature should be included across all sports games. When we think of sports, we think of dynasty’s and how they were built and how they crumbled right before our eyes decades later. That should be the main focus of all sports games, not focused on just one individual player and their personal story into the league. There are a limitless number of stories of how players made it to their respected leagues, and one story per year that is scripted that EA/2K picks based on who knows what, should not be the focus right now. Now is not the time to be adding new modes when all of the current ones are either broke, not functional, incomplete, or better yet when the core of a sports franchise isn’t there at all.
    What are the reason that they don’t have them currently? Can we please get a valid response from EA and 2K? MLB The Show have had for a few years now. We should be able to continue Myleague from NBA 2K17 to 2K18, it’s the same game engine right? Why is it not there yet? I have years of draft classes way back from NCAA 2k8 and honestly I put less and less effort in recreating them every year with each 2K release. Don’t get me wrong we all love when they add new gameplay tweaks, badges, team branding and relocation, all of that is absolutely great but the core of a sports franchise is still missing. How come we can’t continue our dominance or rebuild from last years game, riding it until the wheel falls off, or until that player that will turn the franchise around lands with us in the draft? How can we really dive into an 80 year Myleague when we have to restart each year? We actually love playing the games, if not all through the season, most. Does EA/2K really expect us to play 80 years worth of basketball in the course of 365 days. Or 30 years of football again within the course of 365 days on top of playing other games, work, family and sleep? I feel like that’s a missed opportunity and a real selling point to Myleague. Being able to carry your league year after year up to 80 years without being rushed, otherwise what’s the point of an 80-year length Myleague?
    I’ll give Madden a very slight pass this year only because they are switching engines I don’t know how that affects things like this. Can you guys at least let us edit draft classes this year before the draft? Even if we created a 99 overall QB, we would still have to manufacture trades to acquire that guy, or maybe we want an actual challenge and let the CPU fight/tank for that QB, all of the teams will scout that prospect and see the scouting report. But back to the main focus, being able to continue our CFM in next years Madden. Let us carry over CFM year to year with each release. We lose interest in rewriting our history year after year, look at Tom Brady and his real situation with the Patriots. Should they resign the QB in waiting or trade him? That’s a real situation that will have a domino effect in NFL history and can never be truly implemented in Madden. But wait it actually can, if and only if, we do it in Madden 17 and still play 17 even though the new 18 is out (about to be out). That story will only live on in our Madden 17 CFM universe. It feels like “Connected Franchise” isn’t really connected, that was a glaring missed opportunity to market CFM in that way, connect last years franchise to this year. Now that would be Madden like we never seen it before.
    We would be more than willing to buy all sports titles next years game with new features or add-ons, and less negatively impacted on scripted story modes, if we knew that we can carry over our dynasty/franchise. I know the first thought or question might be, “What about the new rookies?” Solution 1: Have build/import draft classes, 2K does an excellent job of this, and import the new rookies whenever we feel necessary. Solution 2: Have all of the new rookies available as free agents in the carried over dynasty/franchise/myleague. Having full control of the all teams and assign to whomever we feel, if we desire to do so. The final solution that is already in current games restart your franchise/dynasty/myleague either fantasy draft or with the current roster. Remember this not an RPG single player video game, or first person shooter, this is a sports video game let us play our game our way, let us enjoy the rise and fall of our dynasties and rivals that we write in our history books. Honestly that can be a selling point alone especially for the first timer who plays Madden, or any sports game no matter how arcady or simulation the gameplay is.
    I’m not knocking these companies, lets face it they’ve all done a solid job at progressing and adding more depth, details, gameplay enhancements, features over the years and will continue to do so. I’m not saying add this and we’ll all be happy forever, but what I am saying is we feel like we are getting pushed out the door if we are not apart of Ultimate Team or micro transaction game buying cards and stuff. Don’t get me wrong we know you guys are making a lot money with that, but don’t forget, before you could even imagine of micro transactions, we were already at the door day one of release diving into our franchises. Without our loyalty in the beginning you could make the argument that that market would never exist today. We love playing sports video games but it feels like we’re being pushed to hang it up or conform if we’re not apart of the new generation of gamers, you should never alienate your consumers that way. All video games should bring everyone together, but it feels like the sports gaming community in particular is being divided by this perception that we all want to either play, lets face it, a glorified version of a true fantasy sports on our consoles. Or equipment guys not happy with shoes/cleats, team colors and logos being off in the arena, and everything we see in the forums. To each his own absolutely but, the origin of fantasy sports derives from our urge to play our dynasty/franchise year after year and breaking the Celtics 17 title record, Tom Brady’s 5 Super Bowl rings, knock off Barry Bonds home run king status, and create our own NHL dynasty, right? It could’ve been implemented in sports gaming generations ago, but still to this day is forgotten, dismissed and glossed over. Am I the only who feels this way, the only one cares this much? Or maybe I’m out of touch with reality, and the last of a dying breed? Can we unite as one with this issue for the greater good of sports video games? These are not only video games but our free time that we put years of countless hours into, to totally disregard our effort, time, loyalty and money just seriously lacks empathy to the pioneer consumers in the sports gaming market. Will this or can this be a focus on next year and future titles across all sports, if they are not implemented this year? I don’t mean to rain on the E3 parade but maybe it’s the perfect time to talk about it? What happened to sports dynasties in video games? Is there anyone out who agrees?
    JJones07, thank you for that long, detailed post. To one specific point that you made, I wanted to add: In what other industry would the companies seemingly look at the coveted 35-45 year old demographic (which Im right in the middle), and say that they can shove off? But I keep hearing that gaming companies don't care about the "old guys" anymore, and all the focus is on the kids.
    Now, I understand that almost all previous generations stopped gaming long before they reached this point, but my group is really the first one to have home console gaming nearly their whole lives. I'm not planning to quit gaming any time soon. But the people in charge of which features go into the games increasingly seem to think that I should.
    kennylc629
    I am going to add this as well: it is the lack of a franchise that doomed APF 2k8.

    Yeah, that's why I didn't purchase it. I will not buy a sports game without a franchise mode. It's basically all I play.
    Unlucky 13
    JJones07, thank you for that long, detailed post. To one specific point that you made, I wanted to add: In what other industry would the companies seemingly look at the coveted 35-45 year old demographic (which Im right in the middle), and say that they can shove off? But I keep hearing that gaming companies don't care about the "old guys" anymore, and all the focus is on the kids.
    Now, I understand that almost all previous generations stopped gaming long before they reached this point, but my group is really the first one to have home console gaming nearly their whole lives. I'm not planning to quit gaming any time soon. But the people in charge of which features go into the games increasingly seem to think that I should.

    Exactly they should never shove off any demographic, no corporation for that matter. Maybe they don't realize that its a cycle, one day these kids will get old and their focus might shift to exactly what we want. What they should've done first was to give us the deepest franchise mode, everything they had PS2/PS3 should be at least an option today. Next superstar/single player focus, to now a story cinematic and MUT focus, plus whatever comes next. Now that I think about it, wasn't PS2 Madden more focused on franchise, PS2/PS3 superstar/single player, and now PS4 MUT, and everything online/connected, or am I wrong?
    Across the board I would be willing to bet any demographic would have minimum to complain about to the point now if madden or any sports game kept everything from the beginning to now, or at least have an on/off option. Franchise mode should've been polished and shouldn't need to be touch by now. And if graphics took a hit at the time, or now so be it. Graphics alone aren't going to sell sports video games, replay ability and functional ability will. How many of us really own a 4K TV? Can we stop promoting the super hd zoomed in still images, I don't pause any game just to look and admire it, sigh, let me stop my rant.
    Anyways It feels like EA changes its focus with each console instead of adding with each console.

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