It’s time to squeeze into a load of padded armour and put that helmet on. It’s time for this year’s American Football game ‘Madden NFL 15’, bought to us by EA Sports. This year we see a pretty decent upgrade with this being the first madden game that has been developed with the newest generation of consoles in mind. Now I am not a seasoned NFL fan of any sort. I am not going to lie and try and tell you all the players’ names and team statistics. I like to watch the game on the telly when I can and I really do enjoy the video games, but that’s as far as I get. With American football it can be very complicated with so many different strategic moves and technical terms. So for this review you are going to get some honest opinions from a fan that just likes to play the game for fun.
Once you start-up the game you will notice a whole load of menu options. You have a training area where you can learn the game and controls from the basics right up to some pretty technical moves for both offence and defence. You also have the usual quick play, seasoned play and also a pretty interesting mode called ‘Ultimate Team’. Here you can actually build and collect all of your favourite current NFL players and some of the greatest legends and build your perfect team. This mode is highly successful and I am sure will bring back some childhood memories of buying packs of sports cards and comparing them with your friends. Well this is a mode that you actually get to put them to test in your very own team. However like most people I found this mode quite intimidating as you really need to know your players names and stats to make good use of this mode. This is where my knowledge of such things let me down. However it is a great mode to have and adds a lot of excitement for the player. I chose to just play with my favourite team the Denver Broncos to get going and really enjoyed what I found.
The graphics are the very first thing you will notice as they are highly improved over previous madden games. The crowds look like a real crowd of people. The character animations have been vastly improved and they actually do a really good job of looking like their real counterparts. As you quickly jump into a game, you really feel immersed like you are in a real game of NFL.
The sound effects are great and the whole game feels really solid. You have commentators telling you what is happening like when you watch it on TV. As you make touchdowns or manage to gain that extra 20 yards, you get some great TV style visuals that make it feel like you are in a real life game. The sound effects as you try and bash your way through the huge defence line to make that all important touchdown, are great. This mixed with the beautiful visuals are fantastic. Unlike previous Madden instalments by EA; this time you are getting a complete overhaul of the franchise. It’s a game you can’t help but enjoy playing.
The controls are all solid and pretty easy to use. I will say though that at first you may feel a bit overwhelmed at them as there are a ton of play formations and decisions to make on both defence and offence. However after a few practice sessions in the training area you will soon pick it up. I am pretty sure if you have played madden games in the past then you will quickly feel at home. If not then it may take a bit longer but once you master them, that’s when you really start to enjoy this game. You will find some pretty clever controls like the longer you hold the pass button down, decides the difference between a bullet pass and a lob pass. Using this wisely can make all the difference towards ending your way to the make that touchdown. There are simply far too many modes and controls to explain in this review; this would bore you quite quickly. You will need to take my word, that after a few hours of play, you will soon come to love Madden NFL 15.
So the last question you are probably asking yourself is, do you rush out and buy this game or not? EA do have a habit of churning out new annual games that only ever seem to have a few updates really along with the newest team rosters. Well I do feel that in this case it is worth buying.
I am not saying the update is amazing (apart from the great looking graphics and feel), but you can defiantly see that a lot of work has gone into Madden NFL 15 for the newest generation of consoles. The only thing that marks it down a few points, is the learning curve for a new player and the fact that I feel that there is maybe a bit too much to learn and the controls can feel a bit complicated. This may put the average player off.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Microsoft Xbox One code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Gameplay - /10
Graphics - /10
Sound - /10
Replay Value - /10