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Madden NFL 12 Creative Director Mike Young Interview


Alan: What are the new features we can expect in Madden NFL 12?

Mike: Madden NFL 12 has tons of new features this year. For playbooks and gameplay, an all-new collision system, advanced defensive A.I. enhancements and the #1 most requested feature, Custom Playbooks, lets Madden NFL 12 comes together to provide a more authentic gameplay experience. Improvements to presentation gives gamers the chance to experience NFL Sundays like never before with team-specific run-outs featuring mascots and cheerleaders, authentic broadcast cameras, lifelike 3D grass, and dynamic time-of-day. Franchise mode includes more than 100 new features and enhancements, including expanded rosters, an all-new rookie scouting system, a free-agent bidding system, and much more. In Superstar mode, fans can now control the growth of their superstar with an all-new progression system that allows you to earn skill points by participating in practice and games. An all-new feature to Madden NFL 12 is Dynamic Player Performance, which creates unprecedented realism as a player’s skills and confidence will rise and fall based on his performance throughout a game or in Franchise mode, just like the real NFL. No two players will play the same in Madden NFL 12. And our latest feature reveal, Madden Ultimate Team, provides the perfect combination of Madden NFL Football, fantasy football, and trading cards comes to life with Madden Ultimate Team. Earn, buy, auction, and now trade players as you build your ultimate team of NFL stars and legends.

Alan: What are the main differences between the versions (i.e Wii, Xbox 360, PS3)?

Mike: Madden NFL 12 on the Wii offers a unique Franchise mode that lets players build their team by earning money, making fans, and winning games to try and become the greatest NFL legacy of all time. The players' virtual campus will change depending on the success and failure of the team; as well, players will encounter scenarios that will require them to think on their feet. We have also added a new Fantasy Draft, Coach Hiring/Firing, Player Sigining Bidding Game, Contract Negotiations, and a Player Editor which gives players more control over their Franchise team. One of the things that make Madden Wii unique is the Wii Remote. We have specific features that take advantage of the controller, from the way the player passes the ball to our new feature “On Demand Stats": at any time pre-play, the player can hover over a player and get an instant player or team breakdown. To give players new ways to play the game, we are adding full support for Classic Controller and Classic Controller Pro for Madden NFL 12. Another big change is the addition of over 90 achievement awards that players can earn by completing feats in gameplay, Franchise Mode, or one of our fun Social Modes like Road to the Super Bowl or Madden Showdown. Earning awards can unlock alternate uniforms or footballs with special game changing abilities.

Alan: Will there be Kinect features? If so, which ones?

Mike: There will be no Kinect support this year but we will have Madden NFL 13 Kinect features.

Alan: What about Playstation Move?

Mike: There are currently no plans for Playstation Move support in Madden NFL.

Alan: Will the console versions have online game modes? If so, which ones?

Mike: We will make our announcement regarding the online elements in Madden NFL 12 on July 25.

Alan: Will there be a Nintendo 3DS Madden NFL 12 version? If so, what differences between it and previously released Madden NFL?

Mike: There will not be a Madden NFL 12 version for the 3DS.

Alan: EA has opened up some real connection with their fans. Can you discuss what the motivation is for this? Will the voting for front covers continue in the future?

Mike: The Madden NFL 12 cover vote marks the second-consecutive year that EA SPORTS has asked fans to help shape the face of the Madden NFL franchise through a cover athlete voting campaign. This year, EA SPORTS gave football fans across the country the opportunity to select the cover athlete for Madden NFL 12 through a 5 week voting campaign on ESPN.com’s SportsNation. More than 1 million votes alone were cast for the finals between Peyton Hillis (RB, Cleveland Browns) and Michael Vick (QB, Philadelphia Eagles), in which Peyton Hillis came out on top. Hillis is joining an exclusive fraternity that includes: Drew Brees, Larry Fitzgerald, Troy Polamalu, Brett Favre, Vince Young, Shaun Alexander, Donovan McNabb, Ray Lewis, Michael Vick, Marshall Faulk, Daunte Culpepper, Eddie George. The Madden NFL cover is always a highly debated topic and we’re giving fans the ultimate voice in deciding which NFL player will appear on the cover of Madden NFL 12. The Madden NFL 12 Cover Vote is the most successful fan engagement campaign in EA history with over 12 million votes in total.

Alan: What is your favorite team?

Mike: The Chicago Bears.

Alan: EA Sports continues to top themselves every year. What new features or upgraded features are you most proud of?

Mike: We are most proud of the new collision system that provides more impactful hits, stolen tackles, and consecutive hit tackling, all of which makes the game feel more responsive and dynamic.
    In addition to that the game looks completely different. We have totally overhauled the presentation to match what you would see on TV, complete with hundreds of new authentic TV camera angles, 32 team specific run outs with pyro, cheerleaders, mascots, and team specific rituals.
    Besides the game playing and looking better we have delivered the deepest franchise and superstar modes to date. We have over 100 new features and enhancements to the mode including expanded rosters and cut days, and Dynamic Player Performance, which mimics the ups and downs of a players performance throughout a game or season.

Alan: How long have you been reading the Family Friendly Gaming magazine and/or visiting to the website?

Mike: I’ve been visiting FFG for years, and we couldn’t be happier to be FFG’s pick this year for Best Sports Game at E3 2011.

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