If you’re one of the millions of Madden players hooked up to either the Playstation Network or Xbox LIVE, you’ve probably had to sit through an hour long pounding at the hands of a prepubescent boy whose mouth-breathing keeps his mic active through the entire game.
Now, with Madden 11’s debut of an online coop mode, you can bring your friends in on the fun.
In the past, Madden has had various cooperative capabilities that the Tiburon marketing team has been hesitant to actually talk about. Previously, the only way to play on the same team as your friends you had to play locally (offline) and it basically functioned the same way as a single player game, but with two player circles floating around the team’s various feet.
This results in a number of instances in which the players are attempting to select the same player at the same time and one results with his control shot to a player who is nowhere near the play. In a worst case scenario, this control is handed to a safety down the field and results in him being pulled away from the angle he previously had. No doubt countless touchdowns have been granted to the game’s artificial intelligence because of this over the years.
Other EA sports titles, such as NHL, have a ‘position lock’ feature which keeps the player controls locked to a single player for the entirety of the game, which works well for games like hockey that involve small teams in which nearly any player may be used in a given play. Games like football, however, have too many players on the field for a simple position lock to be effective without hindering the fun, so the good folks at EA Tiburon have instituted a squad-based system for their online coop play.
With this setup, a single player would control all players who play at a certain position. The squads have been broken into the following categories: QB, WR, RB, DL, LB, DB. This way, a single player controls all of the wide receivers while another can control all of the running backs.
So while we’re all accustomed to arguing over who gets to play the QB, we only have to have that conversation once before each game instead of every down. The best part, I think, is that if you lose that argument you get to give your friend a hard time about how he keeps missing the open man who you’re controlling.
You still might find yourself getting taken to school by a gameplan formulated by a soprano mouth-breather awaiting his biological ascent to manhood, but at least you can spice up the game by trash-talking with your friends.