New information has been released by EA Sports on their upcoming Madden NFL 19 Franchise mode. There's been quite a bit of information since the cover was announed just a couple of weeks ago and EA Play's lackluster event. Franchise mode has been extremely light for the last so many years and has not been made a priority by Tiburon over that time.
ESPN NFL 2K5 still holds the title when it comes to Franchise mode and did it better than anyone in the business at the time. Madden's Franchise Mode continues to live in the shadows of that spectacular game in most fronts, but especially in the Franchise arena. Madden has never been able to capture the immersion that 2K has brought to us with newer experiences like the NBA 2K series.
Due to the NFL License being "locked up" by EA, the football space has suffered over the last decade with a Madden game that just never seems to improve and feels like a bag of cheap gimmicks every year. This year feels the same to me, but at least they seem to be focusing somewhat on Franchise mode from the latest news. And it sounds like they might be on a better track than in year's past.
The details of Franchise mode were shared shortly after EA Play and more information has surfaced on how player will progress throughout each season. The emphasis is more on Player Archetypes than having to mess with each Player Rating individually, which seems like a better experience when it comes to managing your team's roster and improving week over week. Franchise mode needs a MAJOR overhaul to satisfy many SimHeads out there, but let's read more to see how they plan on improving the mode in Madden 19.
Player Archetype Progression
Madden NFL 19 introduces a new way to progress and classify your players in Franchise with the Archetype Progression system. Each position is now broken up into two-to-four styles used to grade the player. For example, the quarterback position now has four styles: Field General, Scrambler, Strong Arm, and West Coast. Matt Ryan may be an 88 OVR West Coast, but only a 78 OVR Scrambler. On the other hand, Deshaun Watson may be an 82 OVR Scrambler but only a 79 OVR West Coast. These archetype OVRs make it easy to evaluate a player’s strengths and weaknesses.
Earn Skill Points by acquiring enough XP for a player to level up. XP is earned during gameplay, training, awards, and more. Once you’ve earned a Skill Point, spend it on one of the Player Archetypes to upgrade the OVR for that Archetype by a full point.
At the end of each game, you are presented with all the players that have skill points and are ready to upgrade. Let’s say you want to upgrade Matt Ryan’s West Coast OVR. It’s currently an 88 OVR, so spending one Skill Point will increase his individual player ratings, which will elevate his West Coast to an 89. This time, the West Coast upgrade awarded +1 to Play Action and Deep Accuracy and +2 to Short Accuracy. If he got a second skill point, he could receive +1 to Play Action, Short Accuracy, and Throw Power. The number of rating points earned from each upgrade varies, but they will always move you up one OVR point in the selected archetype.
The decisions you make with this progression system are powerful. Instead of just going up one rating at a time, your players progress a full OVR each upgrade. It’s a dynamic system that ensures players progress in unique ways, while still giving you control over the players’ total progression paths.
Archetypes per position:
QB: Strong Arm, Scrambler, West Coast, Field General
HB: Power Back, Elusive Back, Receiving Back
FB: Blocking, Utility
WR: Deep Threat, Possession, Red Zone Threat, Slot Receiver
TE: Vertical Threat, Possession, Blocking
OL: Agile, Power, Pass Protector
DL: Run Stopper, Speed Rusher, Power Rusher
MLB: Field General, Pass Coverage, Run Stopper
OLB: Pass Coverage, Run Stopper, Speed Rusher, Power Rusher
CB: Man-to-Man, Zone Coverage, Slot Corner
S: Zone Coverage, Run Support, Hybrid
K/P: Accurate, Power
Coach Scheme Fits
Your coach’s scheme matters more this year, thanks to the Scheme Fits feature. Build your team with players that match your scheme and they will develop faster, giving you more success on the field.
Start by choosing an offensive and defensive scheme. To make your decision easier, scroll through the available schemes to see how many players on your roster are a Scheme Fit. Each scheme looks for a specific Player Archetype for each position. For example, the West Coast Zone Run scheme looks for Agile offensive linemen. All offensive linemen that are Agile will have a puzzle piece Scheme Fit icon denoting they’re a match. This helps you find the players that best fit your team. The scheme fit icon is visible in Free Agent Bidding, Trading, Scouting, Drafting, and more.
Change your scheme at any point for full control over how you build your team. Draft a stud Strong Arm QB in the first round and want to maximize his development? Simply switch to a Vertical Power Run or Vertical Zone Run offense and start building your team around him. Your QB will now get bonus XP in training because he is a scheme fit. Shape players to fit your scheme by upgrading the archetype your scheme prefers until they flip to a new player type. Players that have balanced Archetype OVRs are much easier to flip than ones that are far away.
Here’s a full list of the offensive and defensive schemes this year:
- West Coast Zone Run
- West Coast Power Run
- Vertical Zone Run
- Vertical Power Run
- Multiple Zone Run
- Multiple Power Run
- Run and Shoot
- Base 4-3
- Multiple 4-3
- Base 3-4
- Multiple 3-4
- Tampa 2
- 46 Defense
The #1 requested feature by the community is here. Get ready to create and share Draft Classes using Madden Share. When Scouting starts in Week 3 of the regular season, you will be prompted to either use an auto-generated class, download a class, or import a locally-saved class. Download and import any time Scouting is available, even if it’s later in the season.
Creating and sharing a draft class is easy. Start with an auto-generated class and edit as much or as little as you want. While on the main Scouting menu, press the “Edit Players” button to kick off the process. Choose to edit the current class or import/download another one. If you edit the current class, then you will be taken to a spreadsheet that reveals everything about the 450 players in the current draft class. Easily move players up and down the draft projection using the “swap” and “insert above” tools. Select each player and edit his Player Info, Appearance, Equipment, Ratings, and Player Traits.
When you access the Draft Class Creator menu, a Transaction Log item is sent so other people in your league know that you saw the full draft class. The Transaction Log is also notified each time a player is edited so that others can keep track of who you are changing. For multi-user leagues, only the Commissioner can adjust the draft class.
Find all the draft classes the community has created in Madden Share. Sort by most downloaded and top liked to find the class you are looking for. Download a draft class, make edits, and then upload a new one. Everything is at your fingertips when you’re using the Draft Class Creator.
Depth Chart Positions
Your team now has a Specialist section with seven depth chart positions. These positions ensure the right players are on the field in the right situations.
Nickel and Dime defenses now use Rush Left End (RLE), Rush Defensive Tackle (RDT), Rush Right End (RRE), Sub Linebacker (SUBLB), and Slot Cornerback (SLCB) positions. These players are best for downs when the offense is likely to be throwing the ball. For RDT, RLE, and RRE, this means that the run stoppers are leaving the field and the pass rushers are stepping in. The CPU won’t put in a player that has low pass rush moves in this position. For Sub Linebacker, the best pass coverage linebacker will fill this spot. Your Slot Corner will be the best players on your team using the Slot Corner OVR, but will not fill with CB1, CB2, FS1, or SS1 unless their archetype is Slot Corner.
The Slot Wide Receiver (SLWR) depth chart position will be the best players on your team using the Slot Receiver OVR. It will not be WR1, WR2, TE1, or HB1 unless their archetype is Slot Receiver. This will ensure that players like Miami Dolphins' Danny Amendola are used in the slot, but guys that are better outside will stay outside.
Power Halfback (PWHB) is used in goal line formations and other heavy sets as your running back. He will be the best player on your team to tote the rock between the tackles using the new Power Back OVR. If you have an elusive back as your best halfback and want to keep him in on goal line formations, just swap him into the PWHB starting position. You have the control!
3rd Down Running Back (3DRB) now uses the new Receiving Back OVR. Your 3DRB will come in on 3rd Down for many formations. Some playbooks even have your 3DRB come in on shotgun formations for other downs, too.
Kick Returners (KR) and Punt Returners (PR) got some love as well. The CPU will never have a starting HB, WR, CB, or S as a Kick Returner. The CPU will use starters to return punts if their Kick Return rating is high enough, though. This means that guys like Antonio Brown will be back there during punts, but won’t see the field during kickoffs.
Eleven fresh ratings have been added to help differentiate players and bring to life the Archetype system. For example, the new Run Block Finesse and Pass Block Finesse ratings will be featured on Agile linemen. Meanwhile, Power linemen will rely on the new Run Block Power and Pass Block Power ratings.
- Break Tackle: Determines broken tackle success for ball carriers vs standard tackles (not Hit Sticks or Cut Sticks).
- Break Sack: Determines whether the QB will escape a sack inside the pocket.
- Throw Under Pressure: Determines passing accuracy when throwing under pressure.
- Run Block Power: Determines success chance for Drive, Down, and Power Double Team blocks on plays like Toss and Power O.
- Run Block Finesse: Determines success chance for Zone, Reach, and Zone-Double Team blocks on plays like Outside Zone and Stretch.
- Lead Block: Determines success chance for blockers leading from the backfield or pulling from the line.
- Pass Block Power: Used versus defensive power moves.
- Pass Block Finesse: Used versus defensive finesse moves.
- Short Route Running: Used when running short routes (Slant, Drag, etc.).
- Medium Route Running: used when running medium routes (Curl, Dig, etc.).
- Deep Route Running: Used when running deep routes (Corner, Streak, etc.).
We’re unleashing the power of Frostbite in Franchise with the addition of immersive environments. While playing as a coach or owner, you’ll be exploring your coach’s office. If your coach has won a Super Bowl, you’ll see a Lombardi trophy on the shelf. Head to a locker room environment to interact with your players.
If you’re playing as a player, you will see your player in a locker room as he prepares for his next game.
In addition, you’ll experience the NFL draft in Madden in a brand-new way. The draft stage presents which team is on the clock and who the previous pick was on giant video boards in front of a crowd. When it’s time to make your pick, your draftee will be sporting his new uniform while his ratings and development trait are revealed.
These amazing environments deliver an immersive experience in Franchise while you build your ultimate dynasty.
We want you to live in your Franchise and want to help you tell the stories of each game. We’re doing this by displaying some of the top moments from each game as Snapshots. You can take snapshots from instant replay and in the highlight screen, and then the snapshots will be automatically recorded for you from key moments in the game. These Snapshots are integrated throughout Franchise as part of your immersive environments in the hub and in news stories. View full screen Snapshots from your games or from other users in your league by visiting the Snapshot Gallery. The Snapshot Gallery holds the last 100 snapshots from the league. As you load into game, see your very own snapshots in the background. Your snapshots are everywhere! Even the main menu of Madden shows your most recent snapshots.
To address another top community request, team captains can now be added and removed from the roster. You can add up to six captains per team. The captains patch will appear in game on the players uniform. Each star denotes how long they’ve been a captain. Not all teams allow for the stars to be shown on the uniform, but all captains will have a star icon visible on the field. This feature will let you quickly identify the top players on the opposing team.
At the end of each season, players regress based on their age and development trait. This year the regression is much more dynamic, meaning that each rating will have a unique chance of going down. High Development Trait players regress slower than other players, and the age at which players at different positions start regression has been adjusted as well. This means that high-caliber players have a better chance of extending their careers and climbing their way up the legacy leaderboard.
Dynamic Dev Trait
A player’s development trait determines how much XP they earn from training and games. We’ve updated them this year to be Normal, Quick, Star, and Superstar. It’s now much harder to be a Superstar than in years past. There are only a few Superstars per position, which makes them difficult to get, but the traits change more frequently. At the end of the season, each player is evaluated on how well they did compared to the rest of the league. Their performance will result in their development trait going up, down, or staying the same. Superstars need to perform at a consistently high level and be statistical leaders in order to hold on to the precious Superstar trait. Further, we have made rookie superstars extremely rare as part of our generated classes – they’re the ultimate reward of the scouting and draft process.
Step further into your Franchise in Madden 19 and build your dynasty. Play this and more in Madden NFL 19, available August 10.