Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Info on 2nd Madden Patch

Thanks to Nutweasel reader Jeff Pinard for this tidbit:

Before I post the news, which you may have already seen by now seeing that it's a few days old, I STILL think something is in the water at EA Sports.

This is still, in my opinion, a SERIOUS case of Invasion of the Game Studio Catchers.

The post release attention Madden has received -- and seemingly will continue to receive is just flat ABSURD. Read the notes below and tell me that doesn't sound like a developer that...well, cares about its game. Can you *ever* remember an EA Sports game getting this much attention post release? I can't. This is the sorta stuff fans used to LOVE Team.366 for when High Heat ruled the roost.


Madden NFL 10 - 2nd title update preliminary details
Posted On: Oct. 16, 2009 6:19 PM EST By: EA_IanCummings 0 Comments

Hey Madden fans - wanted to introduce a designer that is beginning to take over some of the community efforts (especially on the gameplay front) - Larry Richart. Larry has been with EA for many years, and also is one of the most accomplished athletes that is also a game designer - playing quarterback at the University of Florida and winning a National Championship while he was there. I'll hand it over to Larry for the details on the latest additions to the 2nd title update. We don't have an exact timeline on when the 2nd title update it will be released, only that it won't be in October. :)

KEEP IN MIND - THIS LIST IS NOT FINAL!

Over to you Larry...

In this second title update we focused on some of the more debated topics from our loyal and passionate fan base.

We appreciate all the feedback so please keep it coming! In this update you will be happy to hear that we have tuned our Flat Zone assignments to cover the flats more effectively. Defenders will not chuck a WR if another receiver is running a route towards their zone. This will help the defender be in better position to react to a quickly throw flat route and allow him to make a play.

The flat zone defenders will also play the ball better if a pass is thrown behind the line of scrimmage as well as taking better pursuit angles after the catch to prevent the ball carrier from being able to get around the corner. This has been one of the top complaints that we have heard about and realized it was definitely something that we needed to address.

Along with tuning the pursuit angles for flat zone defenders, we have also improved the pursuit all defenders take - especially during a catch animation. This will help them get in better position to make a tackle on the receiver after the catch has been made.

Another feature we have gotten a ton of feedback on is "Throwing out of Sacks". We scaled back the height of which the ball is released when throwing out of a sack. By randomizing the trajectory of the ball to be lower, it helps cut down the number of interceptions thrown when trying to throw out of a sack.

We have also added better arm tracking to determine if it should be an inaccurate or uncontrolled throw. For example, the further you are in your passing animation when you get hit, the more likely you will get an inaccurate pass versus an uncontrolled pass.

Inaccurate passes are just like they sound and will more than likely be passes the go lower and right into the ground towards the receiver you are passing towards. However, uncontrolled passes are more likely to go higher in the air and have a better chance of being intercepted. The final part of our Throw out of Sack tuning focuses on the CPU QB. We have heard several people mention how difficult it is to sack the CPU QB, so we increased the chance of the CPU QB to hold the ball longer and actually take a sack instead of being able to get a throw out of sack pass off before he is brought to the ground.

We have also addressed some issues involving receivers in the passing game. The first one involved fixing some instances where a receiver would be ruled inbounds even if he only got one foot down on a catch. Another issue we resolved is a rare problem where under certain circumstances the ball would actually pass through a player when he dropped the pass.

In this update we have also fixed some annoying exploit issues. The first one we made is adding an initial move to the RB on the HB direct snap plays so he can’t immediately take off after receiving the snap. We also forced a QB drop initial move to force him to set up for a pass on Shotgun play action plays when you canceled the play action by hot routing the running back.

This will keep the QB from being able to take off running right after getting the snap. Another change is not allowing the user to be able to move any front line players forward on kickoffs to keep them from being able to actually block the kickoff. We also resolved the exploit of being able to motion a receiver after flipping the play which caused the defender to go the other way. This allowed the receiver to be wide open against man coverage. You will now have to wait until the receiver is set before you can motion him. And finally, we fixed the bug where the QB could drift through the center when you repeatedly hot routed with certain quarterbacks.

This update will also have a fix for the clock running at incorrect times after an incomplete pass went out of bounds. The clock will not stop correctly as it does on any other incomplete pass.

We’ve also focused on some other important, non-gameplay related fixes as well including Uniforms, Franchise Stat tuning, Presentation, Online, Replays, and Scriptable Cut Scenes. I'll fill in the rest of the details in these areas as soon as they are finalized.

Thanks again for all of your feedback and we look forward to hearing from you soon!

- Larry

**

In years' past this fix list WOULD BE THE NEXT GAME.

3 comments:

wco81 said...

Didn't they have two patches last year?

This increased attention may have to do with reports of lower sales.

FIFA 10 is suppose to have only one patch. But they've had record sales.

Coincidence?

bill abner said...

Madden on the Xbox 360, anyway, has has interesting sales trends.

Madden 06: 670K sales -- most went to the PS2 edition

Madden 07: 1.9 million

Madden 08: 2.41 million

Madden 09: 2.34 milli8on

Madden 10: 1.17 million after 2 months in release, which is pretty darn good.

If you look at the sales trends, Madden 10 on the 360 can expect to sale about the same as 09. Roughly, if the trends hold true.

Madden always picks up sales at around the 15-18 week mark. I assume this is due to NFL playoffs. Madden 09 saw a HUGE spike in sales between weeks 15 and 21 after release. One can assume Madden 10 will see similar numbers.

Madden 09's sales figs at the same time last year ARE better than Madden 10's.

But just barely. And again this is JUST Xbox 360.

1.21 mil for M09 to 1.17 mil for M10. Really a negligible difference.

As to this affecting a patch? I don't follow the logic. If sales are down why waste resources on a game that is failing? If EA thought Madden sales were poor I highly doubt they would think that a series of patches would fix the sales figs.

Madden's roots go way, way deeper than that. Madden will stop selling when the public is simply tired of Madden. But I don't see that happening, at least based on the numbers.

Jeffrey said...

I don't think this has to do with sales at all. I think it has everything to do with a new mindset. I just hope they give us the option to leave play-by-play on and shut Chris Collinsworth up. One of the bllet points leads me to believe this might be a possability.