And Even More Madden

I hate being an EA Sports defender, but enough is enough. I am just as picky as the next hardcore fan when it comes to realism in sports games. I just dont really apply that standard to Madden. Compared to what Madden started out as, it is much, much improved over the years. People seem to forget that at one point there was no adequate running game or defensive back coverage in Madden. So on the field, I like the improvements. I am a passing cone fan both conceptually and because it allows me (the defender) to see where the QB is looking. Since my 42 year-old eyesight cant exactly pinpoint the little QB eyeballs on my LCD panel, I like seeing the cone move around the field.

But forget about the franchise and Superstar modes.

I should state up front that I am not a big fan of football simulations. The seasons are too short and unless you include a full blown collegiate model, theres just not that much going on compared to other sports like baseball, soccer, and even hockey. So I never purchase a football game with the idea that I am going to play through seasons, unless its a text game. And I find all current text-based football games just as boring as arcade products as far as franchise modes go.

Madden shines on the field. This year punt returns are a problem, but compared to the problems in other versions, I can live with this. Madden also shines as an IP to IP game. I enjoy football games against other human beings much in the same way that text-games are much more fun against live opponents.

Both of these are worth $39 in my book. Will I spend countless hours with Madden NFL 06? Nope, I certainly wont. Will I fire it up to play other gamers that I know? Yes, I certainly will.

Besides there are too many other good PC games out right now (World Of Warcraft, Out of the Park Baseball, and rFactor to name a few), so I dont need another major distraction. But if anybody wants to come down to Reliant Stadium and get a good old fashioned Bayou City beating, Ill be ready.

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