Madden NFL 18 Review - First Impressions And I Check Out The Mobile Madden App
I jumped in to Madden again this year to fire up my football season and my first impressions are strong. The new Frostbite graphics engine is impressive and while you can still get some Breaking Madden style glitches the majority of the animation is slick. My main gripe last year was that the passing game lacked some polish and that is still a concern as elite wide receivers still struggle to hang on to catches if an opponent is near them so even if they are open when you deliver the ball they have a high chance of dropping it if they can't run for a little bit before being touched which isn't a thing we see often in the NFL. My other concerns though have been addressed or at least haven't reared their ugly head yet.
First, Madden Ultimate Team is more satisfying for single player users who don't want to spend tons of extra money buying packs. It is also a little less confusing on how you can upgrade your team and how to unlock particular things. I felt like last year you ran into a paywall very early and I may have already played more than I was able last year before my team of half scrubs wasn't able to compete and the game clearly wanted my money. Now even your opening team is littered with big name players but just low stat versions which deceives you into enjoying your team more. They also have up-gradable players which is a nice feature and more fantasy draft elements where you have players to pick from instead of everything being random chance. Speaking of fantasy drafts the Draft Champion mode (now called MUT Drafts) that was my favorite last year doesn't force you to play online to get worthwhile rewards and you get 20 rounds to draft so your team is not quite as Studs and Duds as before.
I have yet to get my hands dirty playing the season mode or the new story-line driven Longshot mode, but I think the upgrades were pronounced this year. I will provide a more full review once I test all the features.
While the Madden 18 game has been good so far, I can't recommend the Mobile game. Being a cheapskate I thought maybe playing the mobile game might unlock things in the real game. It doesn't. It has surprisingly decent graphics but the phone is a terrible controller and while you can run like Bo Jackson in Tecmo Bowl, passing and defense is awful. The game plays more to your hometown love as you are more likely to get people from your favorite team but it doesn't offer a whole lot more than that. But if you are a big sports guy and can't find a time waster I guess you can do worse.
Chris says: I have not really played a Madden game since the 90's. In college, I was always a NFL 2K guy. Once that series was eliminated, I didn't really pay any attention to Madden. I will say Madden has come a long way since 1994, and I am having a blast playing it. I really like the Madden Ultimate Team and the challenges that accompany it. Earning virtual rewards is oddly satisfying, especially if it means that my team can potentially be better than Dean's. Oh, and in my first Madden game in a long time, Dean still beat me but it was closer than either of us expected. The only thing I was really surprised about was the number of interceptions that occurred, especially when playing with elite players on both sides. I don't entirely think it was realistic, and took me out of a simulation and reminded us that we were still playing a video game. Overall, Madden NFL 18 is a nice break from my normal genre of video game, and I look forward to practicing more and hopefully become victorious over my buddy Dean to become the resident Gaming With Swag Football Expert™.