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Valdarez's Blog
Make Madden 10 More Challenging 
Posted on November 11, 2009 at 05:25 PM.
Madden 10 is a step in the right direction for the series, but problems with passing, coverage, physics, momentum, and footwork continue to plague the game wreaking havoc on the outcome of plays. For this reason many people do not find Madden Challenging are unable to reproduce realistic statistics in their offline Franchise games.

The best way to make the game challenging is to use a set of sliders. If you enjoy Slow or Very Slow Speed, then I suggest using the NFL Simulation Sliders which are tuned for 15 minute games using a 25 second runoff, or if they are not your cup of tea to try out other sliders that gamers have worked on available in the Madden 10 Sliders Forum with a nice list to all available sliders being maintained in the Madden 10 Sliders Guide which is organized by Game Speed making it easy to determine which slider you'll be interested in trying.

Once you find a slider that plays the way you think the game should play, either by representing the game better (proper blocking, running, turn overs, number of plays in a game) you will more than likely need to make the game more challenging, especially the longer you play the game as you become more proficient with your stick skills and your play calling.

In order to make the game more challenging, I have put together a set of ways to play the game that make it more, and more challenging. Try out the Challenges below and tailor the game until you find a point that provides a challenge for you when you play.


The Power Player Rules are can be applied to any of the Challenges below. Think of the Challenges as 'modes' to play the game in and the Power Player Rules as configurations for the modes. Use none, some, or all of the Power Player Rules to make the game more challenging. Remember, the goal is to make the game fun/challenging for you, not frustrating, but fun and challenging.

When playing the game, try the following:

Limit Punt/Kick Return TDs
It's too easy to run back kick returns and punt returns for TDs or really big yardage plays. In order to limit the effectiveness of returns, try the following:
  • Do Not Use the Turbo Button (makes it nigh impossible to run one back)
  • Allow the CPU to run it back for you (should only get about 1 or 2 kick returns per season, which is about average)
Remove Money Plays
Lets face it, there are problems with the AI that we simply can't fix with sliders. When you find a play that the AI can't cover, then take it out of the playbook. Do not call the play. Money plays ruin any semblance of realism. You can't have realistic games using plays that AI can't defend.

Running plays that you may find overpowering on offense include:
  • Toss Play
  • Power O Play
  • Sweeps
Passing plays that you may find overpowering on offense include:
  • Floods
  • Throws to the Flats
  • Screens
Limit Offensive Adjustments
  • No Hot Routes
  • No Line Adjustments
  • No Movement
  • No Audibles
  • No Throws to Flats
  • No Screens
Limit Defensive Adjustments
  • No Hot Man Assignments
  • No Hot Blitz Assignments
  • No Hot Zone Assignments
  • No Audibles
  • No Defensive Line Adjustments
  • No LB Adjustments
  • No CB/Safeties Adjustments
Please sound off if there are any other items I have left off that could be applied to make the game more challenging.


The Rookie Challenge is fairly straight forward. The Rookie Challenge implies that you are doing the following:
  • Using a Challenging Slider Set
  • Calling your Own Plays



The Madden Challenge makes things a little more complicated by using the 'Ask Madden' feature of the game. The Madden Challenge implies that you are doing the following:
  • Using 'Ask Madden' for all offensive and defensive plays
  • Picking any play provided by the 'Ask Madden' feature



The All Madden Challenge makes things even more complicated by using the 'Ask Madden' feature of the game and limiting players to only one button choice (X, A, or Y). The All Madden Challenge implies that you are doing the following:
  • Using 'Ask Madden' for all offensive defensive plays
  • Selecting a button choice at the start of the game (X, A, or Y) and only use that button choice to select from the first set of plays offered by the 'Ask Madden' feature.



The Legendary Challenge is the hardest way to play the game. How is this accomplished? By changing the Play Call Style available in Settings > Game Options > Play Call Style to 'Beginner'.

One would think that Beginner would be the easiest way to play the game right? Wrong. Beginner only gives players one play to play from at the play call screen. In addition, once you are to the line it's impossible to make any audibles, hot rots, or changes in coverage. Pretty much all you can do is select a player and control this player. The Legendary Challenge implies that you are doing the following:
  • Using the 'Beginner' setting in the Settings > Game Options > Play Call Style menu.

Summary

Remember the goal is to make the game game more challenging in order for gamers to have more fun while playing it. The Challenge you need to use and the Power Player Rules options are completely up to you. Play the game how you want to in order to enjoy it!


Credits

Many of the ideas provided in this guide were obtained from reading a multitude of threads on the forums. Unfortunately I gained this knowledge over time and did not track who or where I obtained the information provided. Please recognize this writing as an accumulation of the OS community knowledge.
Comments
# 1 rspencer86 @ Nov 11
Interesting ideas, should be helpful to all those Madden gods out there. I'm still hoping one day we'll see a sports game where house rules aren't necessary... seems like a long way off though.
 
# 2 Valdarez @ Nov 11
Agreed. Madden really needs to address the physics, momentum, footwork of players first, and then the play calling AI, followed by the QB AI. Until these are fixed, we're going to have to either play a game that's highly unrealistic or use rules such as these to make the game challenging. My preference is to keep the game realistic and use the rules.
 
# 3 Valdarez @ Nov 11
Agreed. No amount of sliders can truly fix the game. Try the NFL Simulation Sliders I put together. It gives you about 2 to 4 seconds in the pocket and you'll get realistic passing completions and running stats as well.
 
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