Madden 18 Catch-All: Goat Boy Edition

Madden finally moves up to Frostbite, making those of us football fans that invested in 4K TVs and PR4 Pros or the upcoming Xbox One X feel more comfortable in the money we just dumped.

In addition they added a cinematic story mode for those poor souls that are into that sort of thing. At least they didn't waste money hiring a Spike Lee to tell a dumbed down cliche of a sports story on a terrible medium for such a thing.

The other big addition is for MUT, and that is online team play.


So let’s talk a little bit about what was found by a few internet sleuths – “2-6 Online Competitive Multiplayer.”

No, that wasn’t a misprint. I’m so thrilled to officially announce what many of you have already assumed was true - the return of online team play in Madden with our new feature called “MUT Squads”. MUT Squads brings what you loved about online team from the past and blends it with the team building power and limitless lineup combinations that are offered in Madden Ultimate Team.

Let’s get into some specifics. Every MUT Squads games will start 3 vs 3. You do this by clicking on the MUT Squads tile inside of Madden Ultimate Team and entering the MUT Squads lobby. Here, you can invite your friends to go into game together or by entering matchmaking on your own where we will pair you up with two other players. To be perfectly clear, no matter if it’s just you or one other friend in the MUT Squads lobby, we will find the additional players it takes to enter a MUT Squads game.

There’s also another very important decision to be made while in the MUT Squads lobby, and this is where we really start to differentiate ourselves from previous iterations of online team play, you must choose one of three roles. The three available roles are Offense Captain, Defense Captain, and Head Coach. Each role is uniquely crafted so let’s dive in a little deeper on each one of those.

Offense Captain:

-Brings in all players from Offense and Special Teams for that user’s MUT Lineup
-Brings in the offensive playbook and calls every play on Offense
-When on Offense, you control the QB at the start of every play
-However they are not player-locked to the QB post-snap. If you call a run play and neither of the other two human-controlled players are on the HB, the player controlling the QB will immediately switch and become the ball carrier
-Controls all audibles and adjustments on Offense
-When on Defense, the user can control any of the 11 players on the field not controlled by another user
--There is no locking into only linebackers, defensive line, or secondary
Defense Captain:

-Brings in all players from Defense for that user’s MUT Lineup
-Brings in the defensive playbook and calls every play on Defense
-When on Defense, the user can control any of the 11 players on the field not controlled by another user
-There is no locking into only linebackers, defensive line, or secondary
-Controls all audibles and adjustments on Defense
-When on Offense, the user can control anyone besides the QB at the start of any given play
Head Coach

-Brings in the Head Coach, Stadium, and Uniforms for that user’s MUT Lineup
-Calls timeouts and determines the results of penalties for the Squad
-When on Offense, the user can control anyone besides the QB at the start of any given play
-When on Defense, the user can control any of the 11 players on the field not controlled by another user
--There is no locking into only linebackers, defensive line, or secondary

As you can tell, the Head Coach role has a little less responsibility in your MUT Squad on the field. We have found this role is perfect for your friends that may be newer to Madden Ultimate Team or aren’t ready for the challenge of calling plays, but still want to experience cooperative Madden. For your more experienced squads, you can pass around Head Coach responsibilities. While the Head Coach may not be bringing in the players, it will still be important to make sure all three players on a MUT Squad are on the same page and working together to come away with the victory.

Now that you understand the roles, you’re ready to jump into game. As I mentioned earlier, each game will start off 3 vs 3. In the event that a player must leave early before the session is completed, the game will continue on and the role of the player who left will be transferred to someone else still left in the game. For example, if your Offensive Captain leaves early, the play call and QB responsibilities will move to the Head Coach and everything else stays exactly the same and the game is still able to be played to completion.

There are quite a few new gameplay mechanics that have been designed with MUT Squads in mind but those details will have to wait for another blog. Just know that it’s never been more fun to play the skill positions like it will be in Madden NFL 18!

I'm not sure I can stare at Tom Brady on my Xbox One so I'll have to skip.. Shame there arent alternate cover versions for each team.

You sure you don't want the Tom Brady Memorial cover for when the curse strikes?

Got your cover Guru.


New trailer. I'm getting excited. I don't think it is going to be significantly improved, but man, I think it's going the new frostbite engine is going to look incredible in 4K and HDR.

I'll definitely be picking this up day 1; mostly because I'm addicted to Ultimate Team in a borderline scary way, but also because I'll be participating in a Connected Franchise with a group of guys in town, which I'm pretty excited about.

I'm guessing by the relatively quiet thread there won't be many goodjers picking this up, but if anyone would be interested in doing a Connected Franchise, it would be fun to get a group of us together. If you've ever watched a Madden broadcasted tournaments, it should give you an idea of what the general community is like, which I'd like to stay away from.

We've had some good football leagues here in the past, but not for awhile.

Like you, I play MUT about 90% of the time. I might do a CFM with friends this year, but it all depends. One of the things I like about MUT is the freedom to just play at any pace I want to play, whenever I feel like playing, while still getting a great sense of progression in the team I'm building and playing with. CFMs I have been in have either tended to move too fast or too slow to keep me interested.

But yeah, i will have it on day one, and will be playing the EA Access version 8/17, hoping it gets an early launch on the night of 8/16.

We haven't fully developed the plan for our CFM, but I would like to start it in conjunction with the real life season, advancing once a week (preferably Tuesday). We're trying to have a decent amount of people participating, and that makes it harder to coordinate schedules, not to mention we're all working adults who work entirely different schedules.

As always a day one purchase for me as well.

Today is Gameplay Video Day. Here's some that have popped up on Youtube so far:

This is a pretty great overview of the new pass targeting. Really well worth a look, as the guy does a nice job of breaking it down.

Here is some Draft Champions. this big addition is that it is now 20 rounds, which I think it is a bit much. I'm assuming it is due to the new OL AWR feature. They take the AWR of the top four OL, and divide by five. If one of those OL is the C, his AWR gets doubled. They use that number to judge how well the OL picks up blitzes and recognizes the Mike. But overall, it looks like ratings are down from where they are in DC right now in M17. That';s normal because they seem gradually increase the ratings of the guys you draft over the court of the season, and especially after the season.

Madden has three modes this year, Competitive (think MUT), Simulation, and Arcade. Here is some Sim mode gameplay from a snow game in Lambeau. Looks great, but it is quite turnover heavy.

Another snow gambit night, which I think does look pretty cool, but this time in Arcade mode.

Some CPU vs CPU using the Broadcast cam, if you are into that sort of thing.

Super Bowl rematch in Sim mode.

But what really matters, what does the game look like before you start playing.

That passing mode looks pretty tough but a much needed change. I had so many complaints revolving around ball placement.

I'll have to do some research on what the difference between the three game modes are. Sim looks much more fluid than in recent years, which I assume is due to the move to Frostbite.

I think targeting mode is going to be something you use in specific situations, like running a fade into the end zone. Actually, I see it as a great feature for trying to throw anywhere into the end zone. But really, we will have to get out hands on it and see how it works for us individually.

I try not to read to much into the smoothness and such when watching Youtube videos. I think the game looks like it will play and feel similar to last year, with some improvements.

Been enjoying early access. The game is a damn nice upgrade.

Anyone feel like breakfast? The Browns are serving pancakes.

As in real life, my friend. As in real life.

Game is good. Used the Raiders to destroy the Chiefs in a couple of games, so all was well. Graphics are slightly better, but I didn't see much gameplay improvement. ID the Mike is ok, but nothing great. Not sure what's really new other than Longshot and team MUT.

Playing the Devin Wade story mode, where Madden decided it would be classy to have Devin's friend taking a leak on the side of the road, and Devin is getting it on video...

I mean, seriously?!?!

It's like a really dumb version of Telltales doing Friday Night Lights. For some reason it's getting rave reviews. It's mostly the worlds most drawn out tutorial.

How are you liking it otherwise? I've been mostly grinding in MUT, as I'm waiting for the season to start before messing with Franchise play. I'm really looking forward to the new Play Now LIVE when the season starts, too.

For me, it feels like the gameplay is significantly improved over last season. Running the ball is a lot more fun and passing is more dangerous.

Seems pretty good. Doesn't strike me as terribly different. I'm working through getting my playbook and schemes down. Haven't even fired up MUT yet.

Jayhawker wrote:

It's like a really dumb version of Telltales doing Friday Night Lights. For some reason it's getting rave reviews. It's mostly the worlds most drawn out tutorial.

How are you liking it otherwise?

I haven't had much time to play (kids, attended wedding over weekend). With Fantasy football drafts and family, probably won't touch this again until Thursday.

With that said, ran thru some tutorials and only made it to HS comeback game on story mode. Not a big fan of story mode so far, I might not return to it when I get back into the game.

I completed Story mode last night. I'll never get that time back in my life...

That story has been very polarizing; everything I've read or heard has been either "it's awesome" or "it's terrible." I'm very interested to see it for myself.

MountaineerWR27 wrote:

That story has been very polarizing; everything I've read or heard has been either "it's awesome" or "it's terrible." I'm very interested to see it for myself.

I would say 50% of story mode is watching a movie, 30% is making decisions, and about 20% is actual gameplay. If you swapped watch movie % with gameplay %, I would have loved it. If you hang in until the end, most of the gameplay happens then. It was a good concept, just bad execution.

First patch just dropped A lot of decent gameplay improvements.

Also, for those of your with 4K HDR TVs, HDR has officially been enabled. And I just verified, on my console and TV, that this included the XB1 S, too. Still only in 4K on the PS4, but the XB1X will get 4K in November.

And yeah, HDR is stunning. Arrowhead in the evening, as the sun is setting. Wow...

My friend at EA surprised me with the GOAT edition on PS4. I've never played Ultimate Team before but now that I've been given a bunch of packs I want to give it a go.

I've opened all of my packs and used the optimal lineup option before getting some things done this morning.

It looks like I'm going to do some Solo Challenge stuff next. Should I be paying attention to anything else? There seems to be a whole lot here to mess with.

Not really an NFL fan, just curious for the release of FIFA 18 this week they are offering three versions. There is the standard version, which releases this Friday and then there are 2 special versions which released on the Tuesday. Both of these special versions come with varying degrees of whatever for ultimate team (packs, loans and kits), but the main point of them seems to be that you get the game three days early (I mean the packs, sure, but people just buy them whenever they want really). The cost of these isn't exactly cheap either, from what I remember it was about £20-25 more expensive (roughly $30, I believe). I was just wondering, did EA sports do this with Madden this year?

Yes, EA did the same with Madden 18.

With NBA Live 18, they actually did the opposite. If you preordered the game, you got for $36 instead of $60, and three days early. But Live has a lot more to prove before anyone is going spend extra on it.

I have Madden 2012 maybe, for PS3. It's fine but I wonder what it would be like to play something on the PS4. I'm considering Madden 2018 but not for $60. Should I maybe just pick up Madden 2017 used?

Note that I basically just play pick-up games, sometimes as revenge games for when the Steelers lose. Yes I might be thinking about playing Jacksonville soon shut up. I might be interested in online play, but I don't think I'm going to dig into crafting a team or going a whole season of talent management or whatever. The deepest I'd get is to try to understand football a bit better, be able to read the field, and get into the slightly deeper in-game mechanics (e.g., learn to guide the blocker while moving the back through the hole, changing a receiver's route on-the-fly, etc.). I've kind of tried that stuff in past games and am just not good.

Madden 2017 is like $35-40 on the Playstation Store but I'm sure it can be had for, like, $20 from GameStop. Is there enough game in there if I'm not going to play Sims: Football?

Madden 17 is great. They added some new stuff to the new game, but it seems like 17 will do everything you want.

The one thing that could make the new game worth it is their new Play Now LIVE feature. Each week they upload new commentary and accurate rosters and depth charts. So when you play that pick-up game, you get fresh commentary based o the current season and even accurate stats. You are also given the option to play out the season as a franchise from any point in the season.

But 17 has plenty to do. You might even find some rosters to download.

Danke. I read through the thread after commenting and MUT sounds pretty cool.

I nice capper to a morning of watching a couple videos of the worst passes and worst plays in NFL history.

I mean getting my work done.