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Old 05-30-2011, 12:47 PM   #1
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Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

this question: Why didn't next gen have a better franchise mode all along. I"ve seen it asked 1000+ times and never really heard an answer from them.

Was it because it's actually difficult to put in all those features that made it to last gen?

Is it because they thought no one cared about them?

Was it more profitable not to put them in?

Did actually think the game was better without them?

Not enough development time to get it done?

Was there a disc space or development problem with getting them on last gen?

I'm glad that franchise will be much improved this year but it still doesn't have as much as last gen had by 07. I think the expanded rosters is the only thing that last gen didn't have...maybe scouting too.
I've enjoyed M11 those most since 07-08 maddens on last gen and look forward to the new game. I'm just wondering if Ian or Phil or anyone ever explained this.
I don't think they did, and it makes it feel like their embarassed to address it, like their reasoning will anger the fans or something.
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Old 05-31-2011, 01:25 AM   #2
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Re: Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

MJH,

I can tell you what I've observed about NG's development since Madden '06 with the understanding that this is simply my opinion based on what I've learned from watching, reading, and conversations I've had with people close to developers.

For the first three years of NG Madden, devs had to deal with system architecture that was completely different than the PS2. Imagine going from a car to a fighter jet.

The first NG Madden ('06), was a launch title for the 360. It didn't look like Madden, feel like Madden, nor have the depth of Madden. It was very vanilla, bare bones, and stripped. 1v1 was HORRIBLE, so I can only assume every other mode was yuck as well.

In Madden '07 for NG (PS3 and 360) the game was still vanilla. It had some sprinkles that it didn't have the year before, but it was still found lacking in the eyes of Madden fans. In Madden '08 for NG, the game started to fulfill the promise of the series. 1v1 was OK because it finally had defensive playmaker, but it still had the same core problem that '06 and '07 had... The Devs were focused on CRAP (sorry Devs) that didn't matter. 1v1 was still unappealing.

Take the field on NG '08 for example. There were so many resources dedicated to field degradation (dev and processor) that animations for making a tackle on a leaping receiver went missing. While some may have been wowed at the what happened to the field, it wasn't nearly as important as the game itself.

Weapons was another useless gimmick that disappeared quickly. The icons at players feet were ugly and useless. If you could have color-by-numbers on the football field, Weapons would be the equivalent. The result - Ortiz out, PS2 dev team in.

Madden '09 was the first NG game that had the Madden feel. It had much of the depth of Madden. But devs spent most of their time scrapping the work of the previous 3 years in order to bring the Madden feel back. They ripped out the resource hog that was the field and replaced it with a texture map that looked 100 times better and took up far less system resources.

Madden '10 - Now we're talking!!! Good game. The devs worked on putting things into the game that were both meaningful and core to football.

Madden '11 - Better than '10, but still lacking the development on the add-on modes because the core mode still needed work.

Now that Madden 12 is on the horizon, we are finally getting to a point where the PS2 version's features and functions will be available. As such, the devs can spend time working on the Add-on modes...

Remember... Franchise is NOT a core game mode (no matter what the appeal). It is and has always been an ADD ON. Until now, it was enough to have the devs create 30 years worth of players and slap them into a Franchise mode that wasn't getting much work otherwise.

I'm glad that the game has evolved to a point that Franchise mode was again a priority... But they had to get the base right first.

Just my $0.02.

Later
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Old 05-31-2011, 02:46 AM   #3
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Re: Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

Sure, except it shouldn't take 4+ years to get to this point. While I will absolutely buy your argument for the first year or two I don't after that point. For whatever reason, and I don't really care why, EA put out shoddy games. It seems they hit their stride with 10 and 11 (and hopefully 12) but that's just embarrassing, both for us buying the game and the developers.
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Old 05-31-2011, 04:09 AM   #4
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Re: Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

To be a bit more detailed-

Josh Looman was in charge of Franchise Mode during it's peak years (Madden 04-07 PS2). After that, he left to work on Head Coach 09, which is arguably the best "franchise mode" in video game history. He returned to the team in Madden 10, with the hub that we've all been accustomed to that in his words would "provide a foundation for the future". Madden 11 didn't see too many changes, but I personally believe they were already looking to where we are now back during Madden 10's cycle. Instead of putting in 50% of the features we're getting now in Madden 11, they fixed some sim stat bugs, added new classes and called it a day in order to maximize the impact (and amount) of Madden 12's improvements.

To sum it up-

The reason Franchise Mode was lacking from M06-M09 is because Josh Looman wasn't on the team. The reason it was lacking in M10-M11 was because they were preparing the behemoth that was Madden 12's Franchise Mode (and the fact that he was put on MUT duty).

Notes-

A few things that weren't in PS2 FM besides expanded rosters-

- Dynamic Player Performance (arguably the most important change)
- Future Draft Picks
- Real Rookie Portraits
- Cut Days (well, that ties into expanded rosters but is still different)

That's just off the top of my head. Will M12's FM be perfect? No. The thing is though, it is far and away going to be the best we have had on this version of consoles...I'm sure of it.
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Old 05-31-2011, 05:29 AM   #5
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I essentially think it boils down to franchise mode having a two year development cycle.

I think what happened is as they were making madden 10's franchise mode, they realised just how screwy the code base was. They decided to essentially forget about madden 11's franchise mode because they knew it would take more than a one year dev cycle to rebuild (remember a two year dev cycle is actually a lot more than twice the length of a one year dev cycle in terms of how much raw coding work time is available). The result of this extended dev cycle is what we are seeing with madden 12'a franchise mode, which I think looks awesome.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:58 AM   #6
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Re: Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by WTFitsDaveyJ
To be a bit more detailed-

Josh Looman was in charge of Franchise Mode during it's peak years (Madden 04-07 PS2). After that, he left to work on Head Coach 09, which is arguably the best "franchise mode" in video game history. He returned to the team in Madden 10, with the hub that we've all been accustomed to that in his words would "provide a foundation for the future". Madden 11 didn't see too many changes, but I personally believe they were already looking to where we are now back during Madden 10's cycle. Instead of putting in 50% of the features we're getting now in Madden 11, they fixed some sim stat bugs, added new classes and called it a day in order to maximize the impact (and amount) of Madden 12's improvements.

To sum it up-

The reason Franchise Mode was lacking from M06-M09 is because Josh Looman wasn't on the team. The reason it was lacking in M10-M11 was because they were preparing the behemoth that was Madden 12's Franchise Mode (and the fact that he was put on MUT duty).

Notes-

A few things that weren't in PS2 FM besides expanded rosters-

- Dynamic Player Performance (arguably the most important change)
- Future Draft Picks
- Real Rookie Portraits
- Cut Days (well, that ties into expanded rosters but is still different)

That's just off the top of my head. Will M12's FM be perfect? No. The thing is though, it is far and away going to be the best we have had on this version of consoles...I'm sure of it.


Couldn't agree more with the last sentence, especially. This is really the first time since 05 I have been even a little hyped about Madden's release. It actually SOUNDS promising....we'll see how well it all works out. But, the point is, NOW it really is headed in a direction that I have some interest in.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:27 AM   #7
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Re: Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by WTFitsDaveyJ
To be a bit more detailed-

Josh Looman was in charge of Franchise Mode during it's peak years (Madden 04-07 PS2). After that, he left to work on Head Coach 09, which is arguably the best "franchise mode" in video game history. He returned to the team in Madden 10, with the hub that we've all been accustomed to that in his words would "provide a foundation for the future". Madden 11 didn't see too many changes, but I personally believe they were already looking to where we are now back during Madden 10's cycle. Instead of putting in 50% of the features we're getting now in Madden 11, they fixed some sim stat bugs, added new classes and called it a day in order to maximize the impact (and amount) of Madden 12's improvements.

To sum it up-

The reason Franchise Mode was lacking from M06-M09 is because Josh Looman wasn't on the team. The reason it was lacking in M10-M11 was because they were preparing the behemoth that was Madden 12's Franchise Mode (and the fact that he was put on MUT duty).

Notes-

A few things that weren't in PS2 FM besides expanded rosters-

- Dynamic Player Performance (arguably the most important change)
- Future Draft Picks
- Real Rookie Portraits
- Cut Days (well, that ties into expanded rosters but is still different)

That's just off the top of my head. Will M12's FM be perfect? No. The thing is though, it is far and away going to be the best we have had on this version of consoles...I'm sure of it.

So essentially you are saying that the Franchise mode was down because they first ignored it (because Looman wasn't on this)_ and then the delayed it to get it right (which tells me that it's not so easy to just "drop it in the game"...that there are programming issues etc.)....Did I get it?
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:53 AM   #8
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Re: Was there ever a definitive answer to.......

The BIGGER question is... since the next generation of consoles is on the way, will the (next) next gen maddens be the same as this gen in terms of minimal features until the end of those consoles cycles. Let's hope that isn't the case but this generation of madden set a bad precedent for advancement and improvements mving from generation to generation.
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