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Madden NFL 21 Free-To-Play From September 10 Through September 13

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Madden NFL 21

Madden NFL 21 Free-To-Play From September 10 Through September 13

Just in time for the NFL season to kickoff on Thursday, Madden NFL 21 will be free-to-play from September 10 through September 13, as mentioned in the latest Gridiron Notes. The Madden NFL 21 free trial will be available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC via Steam.

EA did the same thing last year with Madden NFL 20, prior to the start of the NFL season.

EA SPORTS is also presenting the Madden NFL 21 Tailgate on the NFL YouTube channel at 5:30pm ET on September 10. Headlined by a Madden NFL 21 matchup between Snoop Dogg vs. Dr. Disrespect and appearances by Hannibal Buress, Marshawn Lynch, Michael Vick, Nigel Sylvester and more, the tailgate will feature celebrities playing Madden NFL 21, sharing their favorite football stories, and other tailgating staples.

This weekend, the millions of Madden NFL 21 players can also celebrate the addition of a breadth of new content just two weeks after launch with Madden NFL 21 | SZN1: HI-DEF. Madden Seasons deliver live service content and in-game updates all year long, giving players a reason to keep coming back to play, including weekly gear drops and limited edition designs by partners that were also inspired by NFL superstar athletes, new locations to play in The Yard, fresh Madden Ultimate Team™ (MUT) programs, new experiences  and a lot more. SZ1: HI-DEF starts September 10 highlighted by the Nike 99 Club and Brotherhood gear collections and the addition of Bo Field at Nike HQ in the Yard, as well as the start of the MUT Ultimate Kickoff program.

The Madden NFL football festivities continue after week 1 of the NFL, and each week during the season, starting on Tuesday, September 15 with the premiere of two new Madden NFL 21 Championship Series (MCS21) programs – King of the Hill and Derwin James vs. The World – Presented by Oakley on Madden NFL Twitch and YouTube. Across the two programs, Falcons AJ Terrell and Raiders Henry Ruggs will go head-to-head on King of The Hill and Chargers Derwin James will take on rapper Lil Baby on Derwin James vs. The World.

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  1. Care to share some details about this?
    I could only find one article stating this and they only referenced today's PR release which doesn't mention anything about the game being free for the weekend or how to do it.
    ChicagoChris
    Good. I can really determine whether its as bad as they say. Very curious

    I appreciate you being willing to try it before piling on. As disappointed as i am with EA and how they've handled a lot of stuff this year and in the past, Madden 21 is a lot of fun.
    Excellent! I didn't renew my EA Play, so this is a welcome surprise and a great opportunity to check out the game first hand. Additionally, the 1st franchise update is suppose to occur on the 10th too, so a little added bonus. I hope it's midnight on the 9th into the 10th and not something like 8 or 9 am. lol
    Grey_Osprey
    Excellent! I didn't renew my EA Play, so this is a welcome surprise and a great opportunity to check out the game first hand. Additionally, the 1st franchise update is suppose to occur on the 10th too, so a little added bonus. I hope it's midnight on the 9th into the 10th and not something like 8 or 9 am. lol
    The franchise update is next month, you're thinking of the next patch but that's not franchise related.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    PhillyPhanatic14
    I appreciate you being willing to try it before piling on. As disappointed as i am with EA and how they've handled a lot of stuff this year and in the past, Madden 21 is a lot of fun.

    I have been playing Madden since 91 but the current gen games are bad! I still play because I am a football guy. Madden 21 gameplay is ok with some good and some bad. The biggest problems are the glitches and quirkiness! I have made AllTime Rosters for the past 10 years but the Salary Cap glitch is back and was not fixed in this patch so go figure! This along with poor football logic on both sides of the ball is why people hate it so much. When you are the only NFL AAA TITLE THERE IS NO EXCUSE!
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    PhillyPhanatic14
    PR move after PR move after PR move... they are doing anything they can to change the narrative on this game.

    At this rate it'll be on EA Access by October.
    TarHeelPhenom
    At this rate it'll be on EA Access by October.

    Get ready for a press release next week sometime about how many players they had and how many records they smashed and how great the game is blah blah blah lol.
    It's crazy the lengths they're going to cover up the crap job they did this year when they could be investing that time, energy, and money into ya know... making the game better lol.
    "Creating a new menu in CFM? Yeah that'll take 3 months. But here's a washed up QB and a free weekend to play and a nonsense celebration that has nothing to do with the sport!!!!!!!"
    PhillyPhanatic14
    I appreciate you being willing to try it before piling on. As disappointed as i am with EA and how they've handled a lot of stuff this year and in the past, Madden 21 is a lot of fun.

    Other than bugs, the gameplay has improved. That isn’t the problem IMHO. Well it needs more improvements than it got, but it’s definitely better than vanilla Madden 20.
    Also, sidenote: I finally got to see MUT through the Angry Joe show. Four. Four types of currency. I don’t. I don’t even...
    Sparkles
    “To celebrate Kaepernicks return”
    Dude... I can’t with this PR stunt.

    Yeah, it’s fairly exploitive of the current situation in the country. Seems their sales through numbers must be a mirage if they’re now willing to stoop that low.
    Doesn't Madden almost always have a free weekend coinciding with the NFL season starting?
    I mean, sure, any bit of good PR the game can get will help right now given how it was review bombed at launch, but coordinated PR campaigns aren't just pulled out of thin air. It is likely that everything we've seen so far was planned out months ago.
    stinkubus
    No, any and all actions taken with respect to Madden are a direct result of what's being posted about them online. This is axiomatic.

    So when was the last free to play that lasted from Thursday to Sunday?
    EDIT - and htf did I miss it? Is this a console only thing?
    ForUntoOblivionSoar∞
    So when was the last free to play that lasted from Thursday to Sunday?
    EDIT - and htf did I miss it? Is this a console only thing?

    I am sure that I don't know. I am also sure that I don't know this weekend is actually in response to anything particular. It could've easily been decided upon long before release. Since the only people who know will never say speculation only really serves the purpose of promoting the idea that EA takes action based on internet posts.
    CM Hooe
    Doesn't Madden almost always have a free weekend coinciding with the NFL season starting?
    I mean, sure, any bit of good PR the game can get will help right now given how it was review bombed at launch, but coordinated PR campaigns aren't just pulled out of thin air. It is likely that everything we've seen so far was planned out months ago.

    They did with Madden NFL 20. Updated OP link.
    https://www.operationsports.com/madden-nfl-20-introduces-new-mode-superstar-ko-madden-nfl-20-global-free-play-weekend-also-announced/
    stinkubus
    I am sure that I don't know. I am also sure that I don't know this weekend is actually in response to anything particular. It could've easily been decided upon long before release. Since the only people who know will never say speculation only really serves the purpose of promoting the idea that EA takes action based on internet posts.

    Well they clearly do based on the video they released and the subsequent promises and roadmaps.
    EA should do the right thing and drop the price to $19 and anyone who has purchased it already, should receive $30 worth of whatever the micro transactions are...I don’t play that mode.
    Now that would be a way to break in the NFL kickoff.
    The Chef
    The franchise update is next month, you're thinking of the next patch but that's not franchise related.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    It's actually November for the franchise update.
    Sent from my LM-G820 using Tapatalk
    They did this last year on opening weekend.
    I will never forget this because my EA access trial version had 15 min left on it when this free weekend happened. And somehow when the weekend was over my “trial” never expired and I was able to play it all season lol.
    CM Hooe
    Also on a moderation note - the Kaepernick thread was locked, we are not revisiting that specific topic here.

    The post from EA literally says "To celebrate Kaepernick's return..." lol nobody is talking politics in here. But to say we can't talk about EA's announcement and their own words is very strange.
    PhillyPhanatic14
    The post from EA literally says "To celebrate Kaepernick's return..." lol nobody is talking politics in here. But to say we can't talk about EA's announcement and their own words is very strange.

    It just humorously sounds like a COD season or something
    Sparkles
    “To celebrate Kaepernicks return”
    Dude... I can’t with this PR stunt.

    ForUntoOblivionSoar∞
    Yeah, it’s fairly exploitive of the current situation in the country. Seems their sales through numbers must be a mirage if they’re now willing to stoop that low.

    Even the real NFL hasn't stooped that low... yet.
    Sparkles
    It just humorously sounds like a COD season or something

    Haha it sure does. It's like when Capt Price was added as part of the season pass. A free play weekend to start the season is a very smart move by them. Everyone is gonna be super hyped for the season once the game kicks off tomorrow and it's so smart of them to get people hooked.
    EA also does everything to get as many people as possible into their game. First these constant code giving actions, now a free to play ... everything to push their microtransactions. That they earn much less money by selling the game than by their ingame sales can be seen just by the marketing.
    I'll give it a go over the weekend.
    The trial didn't capture me, but with recent patches, it was good enough for me to give it another look especially with it being free.
    PhillyPhanatic14
    PR move after PR move after PR move... they are doing anything they can to change the narrative on this game.

    It's a smart business move and the narrative hasn't hurt sales. This community and metracritic are not the be all end all of opinions on Madden. In fact I would say that both are turning into echo chambers with the same yearly disgruntled few who believe that their opinion is the only one that matters. Myself and many others are having a great time with Madden 21.
    Eddie1967
    It's a smart business move and the narrative hasn't hurt sales. This community and metracritic are not the be all end all of opinions on Madden. In fact I would say that both are turning into echo chambers with the same yearly disgruntled few who believe that their opinion is the only one that matters. Myself and many others are having a great time with Madden 21.

    Even guys like EricRayweather are turning on this game and he’s a Madden content creator. Hardly a disgruntled few EA haters
    https://youtu.be/mFnvzA7EMkc
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    ForUntoOblivionSoar∞
    Other than bugs, the gameplay has improved. That isn’t the problem IMHO. Well it needs more improvements than it got, but it’s definitely better than vanilla Madden 20.
    Also, sidenote: I finally got to see MUT through the Angry Joe show. Four. Four types of currency. I don’t. I don’t even...

    I keep seeing people here and there saying gameplay has improved. What is improved about it? Pass coverage is still terrible (even with the coaching adjustments blue zones are still too soft and adjustments essentially make you guess if they are throwing short/long rather than defenders reading the play), blocking schemes are as screwed up as they’ve been the past 3-4 years, X-Factors are still an atrocity, CPU runs like they have their eyes closed, I mean are we talking gameplay from a football perspective or a Madden H2H perspective?
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    oneamongthefence
    It's actually November for the franchise update.
    Sent from my LM-G820 using Tapatalk
    Correct, I knew that so no idea why I typed "next month" instead. What can I say, my 18 month old is running me ragged.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    The Chef
    Correct, I knew that so no idea why I typed "next month" instead. What can I say, my 18 month old is running me ragged.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    It's only just started. They're easy now.
    Sent from my LM-G820 using Tapatalk
    xCoachDx
    I keep seeing people here and there saying gameplay has improved. What is improved about it? Pass coverage is still terrible (even with the coaching adjustments blue zones are still too soft and adjustments essentially make you guess if they are throwing short/long rather than defenders reading the play), blocking schemes are as screwed up as they’ve been the past 3-4 years, X-Factors are still an atrocity, CPU runs like they have their eyes closed, I mean are we talking gameplay from a football perspective or a Madden H2H perspective?
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Nothing that you have said is true. Stop it.
    xCoachDx
    I keep seeing people here and there saying gameplay has improved. What is improved about it? Pass coverage is still terrible (even with the coaching adjustments blue zones are still too soft and adjustments essentially make you guess if they are throwing short/long rather than defenders reading the play), blocking schemes are as screwed up as they’ve been the past 3-4 years, X-Factors are still an atrocity, CPU runs like they have their eyes closed, I mean are we talking gameplay from a football perspective or a Madden H2H perspective?
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    I agree with this somewhat. I can’t say it hasn’t improved, but when I hear people say it’s good or it’s great, I definitely scratch my head.
    so this "free to play weekend".... is it gonna be available for people on ps4 who dont have EA access?
    can anyone tell me how or where to access it on ps4?
    Eddie1967
    Nothing that you have said is true. Stop it.

    I still see defenders in blue zones backpedaling 20 or so yards deeper than any receiver in their zone, which can’t be tweaked by zone adjustments.
    Blocking schemes are a mess. Have often seen play side defenders go completely unblocked while linemen chase someone random down.
    A QB mysteriously gaining 20 yards of throwing power or a defender being able to hit stick every tackle is a wonky mess that doesn’t belong in the only sim product on the market. More of an opinion on whether it’s good or bad, but not much to argue when stating it’s unrealistic.
    The CPU often cuts or jukes when it’s not needed. Have seen them get a huge hole and not hit it for unknown reasons.
    I mean feel free to attempt and refute any of those if you want.
    SageInfinite
    Anybody know when this goes live?

    12:01 am PST according to madden's website.
    it ends at 11:59 pm PST on the 13th.
    the website does not mention how or where to download though.
    bukktown
    They did this last year on opening weekend.
    I will never forget this because my EA access trial version had 15 min left on it when this free weekend happened. And somehow when the weekend was over my “trial” never expired and I was able to play it all season lol.

    I still have time on my trial. Just in case this happens to me, would I have to continue paying for EA access or would I be able to cancel and still keep the game due to that glitch?
    MrGDubbs
    I still have time on my trial. Just in case this happens to me, would I have to continue paying for EA access or would I be able to cancel and still keep the game due to that glitch?

    I don’t know because I had the annual subscription. By the time my subscription ran out it was already in the vault.
    You probably got it, but just in case, on PS4, when I went to Madden21 standard edition and click on it, there were three small rectangle boxes on the left side that were reg price, free trial, EA Play price. I selected free trial.
    finnish_flash
    Only thing that I found on Xbox prompts me to pay for EA Play first. Am I missing something? That’s not what I would call free to play.

    Sent from my SM-S205DL using Operation Sports mobile app
    I have the same options, but it says the free trial is on EA Play and then prompts me to pay the monthly EA Play fee.
    Grey_Osprey
    You probably got it, but just in case, on PS4, when I went to Madden21 standard edition and click on it, there were three small rectangle boxes on the left side that were reg price, free trial, EA Play price. I selected free trial.
    Sent from my SM-S205DL using Operation Sports mobile app
    Could not pay me to play this garbage for free. Not supporting a company's yearly roster update anymore that is trying to distract from their problems by going full on political & while completely ignoring the actual problems of the game. Done with Madden after their recent shenanigans. I will buy 2k next year no matter what they do & ignore EA's Madden from here on out. Whatever 2k does can not be any worse. Can a game go 0.0 on Metacritic ?
    The Chef
    Correct, I knew that so no idea why I typed "next month" instead. What can I say, my 18 month old is running me ragged.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

    Yea, for some reason I was way off my rocker thinking it was this month. The only thing I can come up with is I'm about to turn 50 and the damn dog won't leave me alone for 5 minutes. lol :google::nocomprende:
    TheRandomOne
    Could not pay me to play this garbage for free. Not supporting a company's yearly roster update anymore that is trying to distract from their problems by going full on political & while completely ignoring the actual problems of the game. Done with Madden after their recent shenanigans. I will buy 2k next year no matter what they do & ignore EA's Madden from here on out. Whatever 2k does can not be any worse. Can a game go 0.0 on Metacritic ?

    While I agree with your takes on Madden and EA, if you're able to separate your own enjoyment of a football game from the company that is producing it then this game is definitely worth your time - especially for free. You do your thing for sure man, but the game is fun when I don't think about how jacked up the company is that made it.
    TheRandomOne
    Could not pay me to play this garbage for free. Not supporting a company's yearly roster update anymore that is trying to distract from their problems by going full on political & while completely ignoring the actual problems of the game. Done with Madden after their recent shenanigans. I will buy 2k next year no matter what they do & ignore EA's Madden from here on out. Whatever 2k does can not be any worse. Can a game go 0.0 on Metacritic ?

    Kewl buddy!
    finnish_flash
    I have the same options, but it says the free trial is on EA Play and then prompts me to pay the monthly EA Play fee.

    I'm having this as well. I still have 4 hours on my EA Play trial, when I go into Madden 21 in the store I can either buy the full edition or continue with my remaining 4 hours on the trial, it doesn't give me any other options.
    Rhudey
    I'm having this as well. I still have 4 hours on my EA Play trial, when I go into Madden 21 in the store I can either buy the full edition or continue with my remaining 4 hours on the trial, it doesn't give me any other options.

    Im not the customer they want. I dont really play play this game online & no way in hell would I ever spend any EXTRA money for microtransactions for those online modes. Im happy sticking with any other version & downloading fan updated game rosters in the more recent ones. I dont see the point in getting or trying Madden 21. It will just disappoint me in the end Im good
    I have PS Plus so that's not the issue. I tried going on the PS Store on my computer, The free weekend option was there until I logged into my account, then it was gone, then my only option was to buy it. I guess they don't like that I still have time on my EA Play trial? When I play on that the time remaining still goes down.
    Weird that EA would implement something that's clearly glitched.........
    No issues downloading the free to play. I do have a PS Plus membership though.
    Played a bit of the game and my thoughts are what most have already stated.
    M21 is basically M20 with new uniforms, a bit better animations, DL line moves, and the yard.
    It's by no means a bad game. I liked M20. The new animations are nice and the DL moves, IMO, are an excellent addition.
    The issue is is that this is clearly a copy and paste and it's not really worth $60. It's really more of the same which is not a bad thing but to sell it as otherwise is i believe what folks are most mad about. It's good to see EA aggressively patching it and I'll pick it up when it drops in price.
    For me, $60 is not a problem but i can't spend that on good faith. If they drop it to $40 or so, i may buy it.
    It''ll be good to try.  
    But I am not buying this year after they completely ignored the most important mode (Franchise).
     - You don't have to be a gold member do you (don't see it mentioned)? I don't play online so don't pay for Xbox Live.
    This is all I’ve found so far
    “Hey Madden fans, during the free trial weekend that starts today, you may get a message or a popup that says Continue Trial or Upgrade to the Full Version of Madden NFL 21. If you own the game, just click on continue trial and you will be able to play Madden 21 just like you were before. Sorry for any confusion this may have caused you.”
    I'm doing this and it's still using my 10 hours of trial time
    lions2k9
    This is all I’ve found so far
    “Hey Madden fans, during the free trial weekend that starts today, you may get a message or a popup that says Continue Trial or Upgrade to the Full Version of Madden NFL 21. If you own the game, just click on continue trial and you will be able to play Madden 21 just like you were before. Sorry for any confusion this may have caused you.”
    Still says on Xbox that free trial available through EA Play and then prompts to pay for the subscription. So to play a free trial you need to pay for other EA stuff first. There is no mention anywhere that you need EA Play or Xbox Live or anything else, only when you go to download the ”free” trial it says hey you need to pay for this first. What a joke.
    finnish_flash
    Still says on Xbox that free trial available through EA Play and then prompts to pay for the subscription. So to play a free trial you need to pay for other EA stuff first. There is no mention anywhere that you need EA Play or Xbox Live or anything else, only when you go to download the ”free” trial it says hey you need to pay for this first. What a joke.

    You don’t need EA play. You can access the free trial version through the store.
    Playing the trial right now and I actually think this makes me not want the game more than I wanted it before I tried it.
    I just feel sad playing it, especially after playing The Show the last few months. The presentation is catered towards casual players, but then, it’s also not because they don’t even introduce anybody except the QB. As a detailed nfl fan, I don’t even know who some of these guys are that flash across the screen, so I feel bad for people who watch less of it than me.
    Overall this thing is exactly what people have said: a free to play, full priced game...and that’s GAMEPLAY, not even getting into franchise.
    finnish_flash
    Please tell how because I’ve been looking for 2 days.
    I went to Microsoft store and typed in Madden 21 in the search menu. The ultimate edition and regular editions had their price under their icons. Next to them was a Madden 21 icon with no price. It just said "play". I selected that one and downloaded it.
    Sent from my SM-G960U using Operation Sports mobile app
    Thought I would at least give the game a try. Haven’t played since 18, and I’m waiting on my used copy of 20 I bought off eBay to arrive.
    Found the free trial version for ps4. It started by telling me I needed to download the newest patch. Ok got that after a couple hours download. Then it said my user name was invalid and wouldn’t connect to EA servers. Never had that problem with any other game but ok whatever.
    Took 20 hours for the full game to download and it tells me I can’t do the trial at all unless I’m connected to the servers. So I can’t try play now or franchise either. At this point I just said screw it. I’ll be watching real football tommorrow anyways so I probably only would’ve gotten a couple games in tonight and that’s it.
    Seems like the trial roll out was just as bad as the games release.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Since the update I have to jack the sliders to get any sense of competition from the CPU. And I being too cynical to think that they made the game easier for the trial weekend in the new update to suck people in?
    I may have to play on all Madden at this point to get competitive games.
    finnish_flash
    Please tell how because I’ve been looking for 2 days.

    When I started up Madden 20 the Madden 21 FREE Weekend Trial prompt came up and I was able to access the free weekend trial from there.

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