I’ve already written on this blog what Madden 11 needed to have to be successful. They did some things but also failed to address other issues.
After a huge marketing blitz which featured some NFL players in commercials, Madden 11 seems have failed to impress. After a week on sale, Gamestop and Amazon have already started having huge discounts. There have also been reports that pre-order sales of the game have been flat.
The question is whether Madden’s first week lackluster sales are attributed to the game industry slow sales or are gamers having Madden fatigue.
I’ve talked to a lot of people about Madden and they decided to pass on this year’s edition because they felt like it was more of the same. I’ve played the game and read reviews and I’ve noticed that some issues in the past have been fixed particularly with the receiver out of bounds and run blocking. But I’ve been disappointed to see that some modes such as Franchise and Be A Superstar have been untouched. Some people don’t even bother with the franchise mode and go straight to multiplayer.
I was not fond of this year’s Madden marketing strategy which highlighted that the game was simpler and quicker. Even though it’s agreed that Madden games can take a while to finish, I don’t think that it was something that needed to be addressed and highlighted.
I think EA needs to take a look at Madden and make some bigger changes. I decided to skip this year’s edition because I didn’t see any huge changes that would motivate me to reach for my wallet. Adding one or two features every year to the game doesn’t really make it that innovative. Maybe EA needs to scrap the annual release of the game although and just focus on the multiplayer game because that seems to be what people are drawn to.
Or perphaps, it’s just the game industry as a whole. But it’s kind of hard to argue when Mass Effect and Red Dead Redemption are getting perfect scores and getting huge sales. Or maybe there’s a problem with sports games. I guess when FIFA and NBA games come out, we’ll see if sports games need to be more innovative or whether Madden has a problem.