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Madden 21 Gridiron Notes: Face of the Franchise Analysis

face of the franchise improvements

Madden NFL 21

Madden 21 Gridiron Notes: Face of the Franchise Analysis

Plenty has been said about the lack of updates to “classic” franchise — and more will continue to be said about it — but we wanted to split off and at least give a little more attention to Face of the Franchise here and give a few more thoughts on the Face of the Franchise 2.0 improvements discussed in yesterday’s Gridiron Notes.

Warning: This article may contain some spoilers to Face of the Franchise mode — and, yes, it is weird EA is spoiling their own mode and tagging it as such before the game is even out.

Face of the Franchise 2.0 Improvements

madden-21-f12

From High School Superstar To National Champion

Last year, EA implemented Face of the Franchise, which tried to give users a unique single-player experience within the context of being QB1. It’s back in Madden 21 and has received various updates.

The most notable improvement to this year’s Face of the Franchise mode is that your story now begins in high school. Players will have the opportunity to create their team with the ultimate goal of winning the state championship. From there, users will have the chance to choose their school and play at least two seasons in college. The most significant change, however, is now having the opportunity to play quarterback, running back or wide receiver.

“Once you set foot on campus the stakes get even higher as you not only have to deftly navigate a Quarterback controversy right out of the gate, but also have to figure out how to appease your domineering, old school approach, newly minted Head Coach Red O’Brien – all while attempting to build your draft stock through two challenging seasons of college football AND win an College Football Playoff Championship (or two) along the way. As if that weren’t enough, you’re thrown out of your comfort zone and into disarray when Coach O’Brien delivers you an ultimatum – either switch positions to Running Back or Wide Receiver or pack your bags and take your chances in the NFL Draft!”

NFL Combine And Draft

face of the franchise improvements

This year, EA has also introduced (or re-introduced would be the proper way to put it) the NFL Combine.

“Now it’s your turn as you tread those very same grounds and put your abilities to the test amongst your fellow elite up and coming talent. But your skills on the field won’t be the only thing scouts will be watching as you’re forced to step up to the mic at a pivotal press conference and either let fate decide where you go in the draft or help influence which team selects you. This life changing experience continues when you encounter a chance meeting with legendary NFL commentator Rich Eisen as he helps prepare you for the most crucial event of the combine, the event that can make or break your career – the illustrious 40-yard dash!”

How these mini-games play out will probably feel relatively familiar, but the press conferences and meetings have the best chance of being something more interesting for this portion of the mode.

NFL Storylines And Characters

Another new addition to Face of the Franchise is the introduction of eight unique storylines that will impact your NFL career. These range from franchise savior and understudy to bitter rivals and turf war. It seems they’re trying to really add more variety here, and I hope it plays similar to the first part of last year’s QB1.

It’s a little unclear how the storylines will play out since some seem like late-stage storylines while others are more for early in your career. So how well each comes off in-game could be vastly different storyline to storyline. I tend to believe the early-career storylines will land better than the “into the sunset” storyline for this reason as well since your college and high school career seems like it will have more depth than your NFL career — thus you will probably be more invested early on rather than late in your career.

With a new story also comes new characters. And this year’s game has new characters that will be introduced throughout your journey to stardom:

  • Tommy Mathews: career-long rival and friend – played by Tye Sheridan
  • Reggie Brown: interviewer and friend – played by Michael Beach and Moses Jones
  • Coach Fetu Vaitai: high school legend and football coach – played by Cooper Andrews
  • Coach Red O’Brien: defensive mastermind college coach – played by Robert Patrick
  • Snoop Dogg – played by himself
  • Rich Eisen – played by himself

Voice acting can be hit or miss, but Madden has generally had pretty good success on this front in recent years.

Bottom Line

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The improvements to Face of the Franchise are much needed, especially if EA wants to continue to expand its career mode. In recent years, 2K and SDS have done a much better job with MyCareer and Road to the Show in comparison to Madden’s career mode, so it will be interesting to see if this closes the gap at all. I have my doubts since it seems like this mode is still just going to slink into classic franchise mode like last year, so there’s a good chance it will fall flat once more.

Do the changes to Face of the Franchise make this mode more appealing? Let us know in the comments section below!

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  1. People... this isn't the thread to raise hell about "classic franchise". I think we already have 3 or 4 threads going about that. Do not turn this thread into saying how useless/dumb/etc this mode is.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    I dont get this one at all. Whats the end game? It isnt like 2k where u take that player and play online with friends. Also the story dont sound realistic. Say i win a championship passing for 400 yards in the championship game then the coach gone ask me to be the receiver or rb? 😂
    TheShizNo1
    People... this isn't the thread to raise hell about "classic franchise". I think we already have 3 or 4 threads going about that. Do not turn this thread into saying how useless/dumb/etc this mode is.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

    Can we say how useless we think FOF is? That seems to be on topic.
    If others enjoy it, great. It's just not for me. So it's useless to me. I don't want some predetermined, linear RPG.
    I do recognize that others may enjoy it.
    I do find it funny how they pretty much spoiled the way your career could go. Like they could’ve kept the titles for those directions, but they gave a good chunk of descriptions for each lol
    Sparkles
    I do find it funny how they pretty much spoiled the way your career could go. Like they could’ve kept the titles for those directions, but they gave a good chunk of descriptions for each lol

    To be fair they did say spoilers....fwiw. I don't play the mode so. I scrolled right past it to the bottom.
    It's all about post-launch support for me. I gave FoF a fair shake in M20 and was pretty pumped about it going into the game, but the bugs were horrendous. They still are right now, 11+ months after release. If that happens again then this investment into this mode is a waste.
    Outside of the bugs, we need to have more challenging progression in the NFL. I don't want to be a 99 rated X Factor with 5 abilities by week 10 of my rookie year. That's so dumb. There's no point after that. Progression should be slow. I should have to earn my spot as the starter... AND if I don't by week 1 then my career shouldn't just randomly end like in M20. Even Ryan Leaf lasted longer than that in the NFL.
    If it's done well and they actually test it this year to get the bugs out then it has a lot of potential. Superstar on PS2 was a blast and parts of last years game were a lot of fun, but they need to actually do it right - get the bugs out, continue bug support after launch, and make it a challenge this time.
    bucky60
    Can we say how useless we think FOF is? That seems to be on topic.
    If others enjoy it, great. It's just not for me. So it's useless to me. I don't want some predetermined, linear RPG.
    I do recognize that others may enjoy it.
    I'm sure anyone who regularly posts here could've predicted you feeling that way .
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    I've seen actors playing several characters in games before...
    Other than that, I wonder how this would play out. I would think it would be awesome to recreate Aaron Rodgers' career: drafted to replace a legend, become a legend, then have someone drafted to replace you.
    I didnt think FOTF was too bad til i realised i would have to answer a certain way to get on the Giants.
    I guess it's a difficult one when you think how you are going into the draft at the same time as say Joe Burrows. Say you ended up going no.1 to the Bengals but when you go to the roster they also have Joe Burrows. You obviously want authentic rosters but what team would draft like that?
    I think 2K decided one year to let the draft happen but wherever you place changes the rest of the draft. I kinda like that idea but I accept that it would mean a bunch of rookies are playing elsewhere.
    I agree with the post above saying how becoming a 99 overall in your rookie year is just bogus. No rookie QB has ever led the team to the superbowl either.
    It may increase the grind a bit but once you hit 99 and win all the season accolades there's very little reason to keep going unless you personally want to win more superbowls than say, Brady.
    ShogunNamedDerek
    That they call the 40 the most crucial combine event shows how out of touch EA is.*
    It's probably the most exciting. I barely pay attention to other drills except maybe a bench press.
    So they obviously took the flashiest combine event and put it in the game. Not surprising at all given their modus operandi.
    On the other hand, were I to ever play that mode (I won't), it would not bother me one bit.
    Executor
    It's probably the most exciting. I barely pay attention to other drills except maybe a bench press.
    So they obviously took the flashiest combine event and put it in the game. Not surprising at all given their modus operandi.
    On the other hand, were I to ever play that mode (I won't), it would not bother me one bit.

    Really? I tend to pay a lot more of attention to the QBs throwing and the WRs running routes and catching.
    ForUntoOblivionSoar∞
    Really? I tend to pay a lot more of attention to the QBs throwing and the WRs running routes and catching.
    Tbh, I live in a country where I have zero possibility to get see the combine live so all I have every year are stats (and "analysis") from NFL.com.
    I had a chance to follow the combine live (on TV) only once, and that was on my trip to San Francisco six years ago.
    ForUntoOblivionSoar∞
    Really? I tend to pay a lot more of attention to the QBs throwing and the WRs running routes and catching.
    I also agree (if that's what you're suggesting) that a throwing session could have generally been much more fun in FoF that the 40-yard dash.
    For me, though, not so much. When I tried Longshot in M18, they had something akin to throwing session in there and I was so awful at it that my QB would have probably been rated below 45 OVR coming into the draft if I had put that same type of a horror show at the combine in this year's FoF, lol.
    TheShizNo1
    I'm sure anyone who regularly posts here could've predicted you feeling that way .
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

    And? We can say the same about a lot of posters, including mods.
    I still understand and respect that others may enjoy it.

I like video games and the miami dolphins.

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