The lights are on
Nobody likes tutorials, but they can help you get better at the game. Madden 15 developer EA Tiburon knows this, and is trying to make its Skills Trainer mode more attractive as well as informative. The solution? Boss battles.
The Skills Trainer mode features 48 new drills, but beyond teaching you the controls of the game, they go deeper to teach you core football concepts like recognizing defenses. "When we playtested," says designer Danny Doeberling, "we found out that people call cover 2 defense, people call a smash route. They have no idea what that actually is. So, we're actually taking them through how to recognize a cover 2 defense. And once you actually see it on the field, we'll have you attack that. When you're calling different pass plays, what actually makes up a pass play? What's a cross? Outs? We basically teach you the foundation of the coverages, and we also [teach you] the most common pass concepts. We basically teach you football." Accordingly, there are also drills in the mode where you call red zone plays, for instance.
Skills Trainer minigames will also appear in your weekly game prep in career mode where you can assign players to drills to earn XP.
Apart from the standalone Skills Trainer mode, you can take everything you've learned into The Gauntlet. This is a march of 40 game-type situations of progressive difficulty that you have to complete with five lives. Every five drills is a boss battle. EA isn't going into a lot of detail on the battles, but the first one tasks you with nailing a 110-yard field goal in a 220 mph hurricane-force wind. "We try to capture of the fun aspects in the past we've had in minigames, " says Doeberling. "It is an ode to the old-school, hardcore video game challenge. I've only known one person who's made it through the 40 levels."
Doeberling says that in the future, EA Tiburon wants to expand Skills Trainer to possibly include online leaderboards for The Gauntlet and have the skills be more of a presence in weekly practices. He said the team has even kicked around the idea of allowing players to access Skills Trainer from the pause menu during a game.
Your personal Madden training camp begins on August 26 on Xbox One and PlayStation 4. The game also comes out for PS3 and Xbox 360. For more learnin', check out this video on the new defensive linemen moves.
Email the author Matthew Kato, or follow on Twitter, and Game Informer.
How do you say garbage in French? Ill look it up, but this is just skills trainer re skinned with voice over work. Thanks for adding meaningful features to Franchise mode Tiburon. I am proud to be a loyal customer to your constant lack of innovation and redundancies. I'm especially glad that your creative director is "So proud" of this product that he puffs his chest out and challenges 2K sports to "buy up the licence" when they clearly cant because of the exclusive licence with the NFL. You guys at Tiburon at talent-less hacks
Reading coverage while on offense is key to Madden and being successful. I've watched football my entire life and know it in and out but I think this is a really cool add on. The question is have they worked on the AI to make it competitive. I'll play 5 games straight, 4 games I'll win 47-0 and then 14-13 it's just not consistent. I'll be buying this one though.
Biggest problem I have with this game is that it seems to run at 30fps. Sports games that run at this crappy refresh rate have stiff and unresponsive controls. See madden 06-10 for Xbox 360/ps3. Canned animations and crappy refresh rate really kills the playability of sports games.
Madden.... I don't even feel like talking about it.