The Best Madden Game Ever

Sports gaming has come a long way over the last three decades. Many have become hyper realistic in presentation with a lot of thanks going to EA for the way they have evolved their series of sports simulators games. John Madden Football was first released in 1988 for the Apple II following the success of Earl Weaver Baseball the previous year. With detailed player statistics and the ability create your own plays, it was unlike anything football fans had seen before. Some 35 years and 43 titles later, it is one of the biggest franchises in the world of gaming, releasing yearly alongside the beginning of the new NFL season.

Consistently topping popularity charts upon release, it is played by millions around the globe and even increases excitement for the game in real life and for the Super Bowl. Odds to win super bowl currently have the San Francisco 49ers as favorites for the big game this season and you can make that journey yourself through the game.

With over 40 releases, there are bound to be some misses but there are plenty more hits in the Madden franchise. As the most popular American football simulator of all time, let’s take a look at the top five of all time.

Madden 99

Although perhaps not as flashy as later entries with it arriving just before the PlayStation 2, Madden NFL 99 introduced what would go on to become one of the most popular game modes in history. It was the first time we could play Franchise Mode, allowing players to take control of a team on the field and lead them through the season on their path to the Super Bowl. You were able to sign and draft players with realistic fixture schedules. You were able to control your team for 15 seasons and this was the birth of what would carry the Madden franchise into the 21st century.

Madden 06

This was the first title to be released on next gen consoles the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. We saw the most incredible graphics we had ever seen in sports simulators. It was also the first time we were introduced to Superstar Mode which allowed players to control their own singular player from their rookie season and lead them to a hall of fame career. This was beginning of the next decade of EA sports gaming and the new game mode is still fondly remembered when compared to the current face of the franchise mode.

Madden 07

The next edition of Madden took everything they did well in 06 and improved upon it. We had the hit stick from Madden 05 which vastly improved defending as well as introducing the highlight stick which made the agility of players even more realistic, allowing us to move on the turn of a dime. It was the best the game had ever felt and with complete online play now available you could play against people from all around the world. You had lead blocker control and could perform spins and jukes to avoid players, which made it the most immersive title to date.

Madden 08

From strength-to-strength-to-strength, EA were at the top of their game in the late noughties. Madden 08 was released on essentially every console available at the time, available on 11 different platforms. The new animation system meant the movement of players and impacts of tackles were more realistic and also had an incredibly deep Superstar Mode. With sixty frames per second, it was the crispest the game had ever looked and had once again improved on the previous release. There were big expectations for this title with the release of the Nintendo Wii and PlayStation 3 coming just prior and EA managed to live up to every one of them.

Madden 04

You can’t beat the classics. Now 20 years old, Madden 04 is still remembered fondly as the greatest Madden release to date. To begin with, Michael Vick’s character model in this game has gone down as almost mythical with how powerful and fun he was to play with. However, what made this release so popular was the introduction of Owner Mode. With this you could take control of a franchise from the ground up, taking part in the day-to-day running, coaching your coaches, running the stadium and more. It was so minutely detailed that you even had control of the hot dog prices on gameday. It set an incredibly high bar for Madden, a bar that to date is yet to be reached.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button