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Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

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Old 12-18-2017, 03:40 PM   #97
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

Quote:
Originally Posted by adembroski
I want to address this one, because I was the #2 designer on Franchise Mode for M12 and M13.

We needed 1 unified franchise mode to be used online and offline, and however incomplete M13's CFM was, we did accomplish that.

Your impression may well be that M12's franchise mode was a better one, but under the hood it was not.

M13 runs on a unified asset manager that can be easily manipulated by the designers. It has a very powerful test bed.
Adem, I have no problem with M13 being combined modes. I hated, and still do, the unrealistic direction M13 went in. M12 may have been "bad under the hood", but it's direction was more realistic even if M12 was implemented poorly. If you are looking for realism, M13 just went into a bad direction. Opposite of realistic. That's my main problem with CCM/CFM. Compared to NBA2K, CCM/CFM is fisher price franchise.
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Old 12-18-2017, 05:21 PM   #98
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

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Originally Posted by adembroski
Because nobody new buys Madden for MUT. Nobody who doesn't already play MUT cares about MUT.

They don't market MUT to you until you own the game. They know a loot-box card game doesn't sell on its own, and sports games without franchise modes don't sell at all.

Also, look at Madden. What was the big new feature? Longshot. By your logic, what's the point of that either? The prime development directive right now is more users, more units, expand the audience. That's why we have play styles.

In fact, this reinforces my point. MUT didn't hurt CFM in '18, Longshot did.

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Fair enough - I defer to your experience in the matter.

I'd like to argue, though, that Longshot and similar such modes are consistent with my logic. I think Longshot and modes that are "back of the box" type of things are worth investing in for EA, because the point is to get the game into as many hands as possible (so that they can leverage their installed base for MUT). Anything that is flashy that helps initial excitement, all with the longer-term goal in mind, fits the continuous monetization strategy. They need to have something new they can point to each year to get people to buy the game, but what moves the needle for the general game-buying public is flashy, not under-the-hood.

Fixing the mathematical model of CFM does nothing to excite anyone to buy the game other than the folks who hang around forums like this one. Who I love, BTW, but we aren't exactly moving the needle at EA...
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Old 12-18-2017, 05:37 PM   #99
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

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Originally Posted by pietasterp
Fair enough - I defer to your experience in the matter.

I'd like to argue, though, that Longshot and similar such modes are consistent with my logic. I think Longshot and modes that are "back of the box" type of things are worth investing in for EA, because the point is to get the game into as many hands as possible (so that they can leverage their installed base for MUT). Anything that is flashy that helps initial excitement, all with the longer-term goal in mind, fits the continuous monetization strategy. They need to have something new they can point to each year to get people to buy the game, but what moves the needle for the general game-buying public is flashy, not under-the-hood.

Fixing the mathematical model of CFM does nothing to excite anyone to buy the game other than the folks who hang around forums like this one. Who I love, BTW, but we aren't exactly moving the needle at EA...
I agree with flashy vs non flashy. But I feel like it is more of a long term vs short term thing as well. Lately they've been pushing these flashy, "short term" features that might do something now, but doesn't build any good will down the road. I don't think a basketball game should be outselling a football game in US (although I'm not sure if it is tbf, but I've seen 2K outselling Madden overall the last couple of years).

Whereas less flashy, fundamental improvements build the goodwill and are better for the longterm. People won't get so sick of it and there would be less negativity towards it. Not just on here, but on Reddit and other places the common theme is that Madden is not a quality game, partly because of these longlasting issues. IMO anyway
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Old 12-18-2017, 08:40 PM   #100
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

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Originally Posted by adembroski
It's all for naught if they once again refuse to be mathematically sound. CFM is at it's core a text sim with the option of using Madden gameplay for user games. Until they put probabilities and statistics in the hands of someone who can employ them (and TRUST HIM), it's always going to come up short. Be it progression, stat gen, salary cap usage, draft ratings, something will always be broken.

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This, one hundred times this. Thing is, John White was a computer science major at Georgia Tech, so I'm sure he's got the necessary math skills, or at least the ability to learn it.

Whoever they would get needs a background in building models, as that's all a progression system ends up being. They need to build something akin to FiveThirtyEight's CARMELO projections. Personally, I think a guy like Chase Stuart (of Football Perspective) would be perfect, though I know the game industry doesn't pay very well.

As far as salary cap usage goes, Spotrac has a very good Market Value page for some positions.

There's so much work that is already out there, they just need to bring someone in that has the skills to put it all together.
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Old 12-19-2017, 11:06 AM   #101
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

They do not "directly" advertise MUT, but a $1 million championship is advertising enough.
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Old 12-22-2017, 08:13 AM   #102
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

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Originally Posted by SyncereBlackout
No comment



I don’t see it as greed. It’s gradual progress quarter over quarter. I don’t like it. But unless the expenses you laid out above gave way to at least nominal gains, it just wouldn’t be logical.

Generally when I’ve received a budget increase it’s directly tied to a base, target and minimal return im expected to achieve. The minimal is likely “mathematically feasible” so I’m going to be married to whatever assumptions led to that return. At least to start.

It would be illogical for me to do anything that will not directly contribute to me hitting that return. This is where I get sad about our community. If vertical growth was feasible (from franchise/CFM), we may not be here. (Baseless assumption ahead) I believe that EAs prior attempts at MTX in Franchise mode and ncaa play a role in their reluctance to reintroduce them in current games. (At least based on my experience at similarly situated companies) it’s not uncommon to avoid a prior regimes pitfalls (broadly because I’ve never seen anyone try to go back and understand previous failures with any level of detail).

That said, the inability to get more out of annual CFM purchasers may be the reason we saw terrible ideas to expand the number of madden purchasers (I’m looking at you “skip this release” gamers). Terrible ideas like the “all you have to do is press one button to play madden” mode. Also, the year skill players had X-men/nfl blitz like super powers some affectionately call “roles”. Currently, we have the “don’t think let the cpu do the tough stuff for you” game options. I call these terrible ideas because they are forms of training wheels for an artistically accurate game.




The game would get worse because they would be expected to sell at least 4x more copies. Or generate 4x the revenue they did with the smaller budget. If not through MUT, then somehow that would compromise the game I think we all want.


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You are assuming once again another level of control. I am, in my example, assuming that the people at the VERY TOP decide they want a truly great football game and are willing to sacrifice some of their profit to get it.

Everyone wants to compete in the market. But some people are motivated by more than that. There are games where more effort and resources are put in that is justified by the expected financial returns (and sometimes that results in much greater returns than anticipated- example: Chivalry: Medieval Warfare. They made that game because they loved what they were creating, and they NEVER expected it to sell as many copies as it did, yet they poured their lives into it). That is undeniable. What if Madden were one of those games?
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Old 12-22-2017, 08:18 AM   #103
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

Quote:
Originally Posted by adembroski
I want to address this one, because I was the #2 designer on Franchise Mode for M12 and M13.

MUT did not make this happen. It happened because there was no way to bring the existing franchise mode online, and we were never going to have the resources to do it as two separate modes. We needed 1 unified franchise mode to be used online and offline, and however incomplete M13's CFM was, we did accomplish that.

Yes, MUT had decent size team and maybe some of those heads could have been helpful, but honestly, I'm not sure they would have made a dent. 9 women can't make a baby in 1 month. I'm pretty sure our team was bigger than theirs, and we definitely had more designers/producers.

We knew there was going to be a catchup period. Your impression may well be that M12's franchise mode was a better one, but under the hood it was not. It was a mess of legacy code going back to at least 1999. It was hacked to hell to the point that you couldn't remove anything for fear of destroying some basic system that kept the whole thing up and running.

M13 runs on a unified asset manager that can be easily manipulated by the designers. It has a very powerful test bed. Now, I'm gone now, so I can't say one way or another why it hasn't been used to its potential, but the potential is there. With a reasonable number of resources (most of which were devoted to Longshot this year from what I can tell), a lot could be accomplished.

There's a guy that was in the building when I was there, I wont name him. He was on NCAA, and he did all the rosters, progression, and stats for NCAA. One dude. They need him on Franchise Mode. He is a mathematician, i.e. his degree is in math. I don't know if he'd come at Madden with the same passion because he was a massive CFB fan, but that's the kind of guy that could shore up all the mathematics processes in Madden because of his analytical expertise.
/thread.



There you have it, folks. Whether or not it was MUT, the true cause for flaws in MAdden is a LACK OF RESOURCES. Despite what CM Hooe is claiming, a guy who worked on a Madden just told everyone that a LACK OF RESOURCES is why they could not have made th best game possible. And of course resources cost money. And who controls the money? That is your problem right there.
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Old 12-22-2017, 08:31 AM   #104
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Re: Is Ultimate Team Ruining Madden (And other Sports Titles)

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Originally Posted by ForUntoOblivionSoar∞
/thread.



There you have it, folks. Whether or not it was MUT, the true cause for flaws in MAdden is a LACK OF RESOURCES. Despite what CM Hooe is claiming, a guy who worked on a Madden just told everyone that a LACK OF RESOURCES is why they could not have made th best game possible. And of course resources cost money. And who controls the money? That is your problem right there.
Note: I am not denying that spending money to make a product better than is necessary in ways that won't increase market share is bad business. That is not the point. They own the license exclusively. That gives them a MORAL imperative to spend the freaking money, take the SLIGHT decrease in profit margin and make a better game. Is hiring 20 more people financial sound when the game is already close to saturated among the market who plays CFM? Probably not (although sometimes taking that kind of risk pays off big time). That isn't the point. They sniffed out the competition and as a result are morally responsible with improving the quality of the game at their own expense.

Another note: this position is not a criticism of Tiburon, who work miracles with what they are given. It is asking what would happen if they suddenly had their resources doubled or tripled.

Last edited by ForUntoOblivionSoar∞; 12-22-2017 at 08:33 AM.
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