Madden NFL 12, also known as EA’s biggest cash cow, has been just been released on the iPhone and iPad to coincide with the release of its big brother on the consoles. It’s pretty much the same game, as usual, but with some updates for the new year.
Now I’m not very experienced with sports games, but I did play Madden NFL 11 on the Xperia PLAY a while back, so I do have a frame of reference. From what I can tell, this game is a pretty decent improvement. The graphics looked great on the iPad version and the sound and music was all awesome on the louder speakers of an iPad. The collisions seemed to be improved over the last game along with other physics aspects. I did encounter a few bugs here and there, and sometimes the controls would be unresponsive, but none of it really ruined my games.
EA expanded the playbook to include more options than ever before, along with the yearly roster update. That roster is already out of date, though, with several players not in the right place. You’ve got your standard Exhibition, Season, and Playoff game modes. There are even handy tutorial and help sections if you’re not familiar with the games or general football strategy. The matches I played were all very easy on the rookie difficulty, though, and even though I’m not so good at football, I was able to steamroll my opponents like they were nothing, which tells me that anyone can pick up and play these games, not just football fans.
This is pretty standard as far as the yearly sport game updates go. Not very much has changed, but at this point, there isn’t very much that can. The graphics are up to snuff, and I couldn’t find anything really wrong with the game. I did experience bits of lag and slow down playing on a first gen iPad, though. EA has thrown in its fancy Origin support for achievements, leaderboards, and all that jazz. No Game Center for these games. If you’re a Madden fan, I’m sure you decided a long time ago whether you’d be buying the latest installment, and nothing I say will change that. This game is a whopping ten bucks for the iPad version, and seven for the iPhone version.