The release date of Madden 21 has been marred with problems, as EA faces widespread complaints towards its less-than-acceptable Franchise Mode.
Players who booted up the latest iteration of Franchise Mode were immediately disappointed to find that very little had changed between Madden 20 and Madden 21, a lack-of-effort which led many to believe that EA had simply reused the Franchise Mode code from the game’s predecessor.
Disappointment in the title was so severe that a hashtag dedicated to highlighting the game’s issues, #FixMaddenFranchise, began trending.
A Twitter user with the handle Steve Nash Productions provided a comparison of the cutscene played after a player wins the Super Bowl across the last four entries, which proved that the cutscene has changed little, if at all, over the last 5 years:
— Steve Nash Productions (@SteveNashPyt) August 23, 2020
Another user pointed out that the Super Bowl held at the end of the first year of franchise mode is Super Bowl 54, which happened back in February 2019:
YouTuber and sports gamer Deuce Douglas opted to rally the community together in protest of these changes and presented a comprehensive plan on how EA could overhaul the game mode and make it something that simulation football fans can enjoy:
Douglas further detailed his plan, complete with illustrations and an explanation that many of his proposed features had previously appeared in various Madden titles, in an extensive Medium post, .
The hashtag #FixMaddenFranchise originally began in July, as players took to Twitter to similarly voice their concerns that EA appeared to be delivering a lackluster Franchise Mode.
Madden Executive Producer Seann Graddy responded to the earlier backlash in a July 3rd video, in which Graddy told players that the development team had taken note of the “#FixMaddenFranchise tweets” and assured them that “our team is actively working on bolstering plans to support franchise in Madden 21 and beyond.”:
An update from Executive Producer Seann Graddy pic.twitter.com/RFpco0KNH1
— Madden NFL 21 (@EAMaddenNFL) July 2, 2020
Sadly, this message did not age well.
It remains to be seen if EA is as committed to the franchise and simulation football community as they say, but with a copied over franchise mode, a myriad glitches in both online and offline play, and terrible menu lag, the company has a lot of fixes to make to ensure that enthusiasm for Madden 21 survives past its August 28th launch date.