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Madden 21

21 Feb 2020

Madden 21: Scouting must improve to keep Franchise Mode engaging

Madden 21: Scouting must improve to keep Franchise Mode

EA's NFL game is not known for its single-player longevity, but building one aspect will change all that.

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Scouting Team

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More In-depth scouting details

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Improved stories

Here at RealSport, we have praised Madden 20 for being a step change for Franchise mode but still, criticize it for being short of other leaders in Sports gaming such as NBA 2k titles.

Madden 21 is coming down the track later this year, with the chance to blaze a trail for sports games on the next-gen consoles; PS5 and Xbox Series X.

This is a chance for EA Sports to step-change Franchise mode in the ways we listed out here.

One of the major elements is scouting. And a Madden tweeter called Deuce Douglas has listed out in a great thread what needs to change along with mocked up screenshots of how it could look.

madden 21 scouting overhaul tweet

TAKING AIM: Will EA listen to complaints about Franchise?

Scouting Team

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DYNAMIC STAFF: Seeing NFL players retire and reanimate as coaches and scouts would be cool

This is something that seems to have been added, then taken out, added again and currently completely stripped back. Having a scouting system where you have better and worse scouts helping you would dramatically improve franchise mode.

The current method is a bit stale and predictable, but if you had scouts giving different reviews of the same player depending on their cost and effectiveness this would add a layer of immersion that is desperately lacking.

Having former players loop back into the game as staff would be a nice touch. There are ways to layer in complexity with positional or regional knowledge - the more EA can do, the better the reception from the fans.

More In-depth scouting details

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THROWBACK: Some of these details have been in previous games, it shouldn't be difficult

This is the core of the scouting system. Firstly, it needs to be more dynamic. As you go through a season, the projection for a round should change depending on changing realities, but also your visibility of these realities.

A simple list of pros and cons pulled together by your scouts would be a great addition, with more added the more focus you give the player.

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COLLEGE: Now a linked NCAA game would be the icing on the cake

As Deuce calls out, the current method has far too many players all starting from a place of zero scouting knowledge. There should be more stats shown, but some pre-revealed and then your scouting network can investigate from there.

College careers are so vital to predicting how players will fare in the NFL. We love the screenshot showing the college stats. Would you take a risk on a one-season wonder like Joe Burrow?

More information on a players health and injury history should also help to give a view of how this might affect their league play.

Improved stories

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SCENARIOS: More needed, simple as that

The stories of all types in Madden 20 are probably the main area that lets it down. There are so few scenarios they are often repetitive and predictable, and sometimes don't even work.

For Madden 21, it would be good to see the number and diversity of them explode. A great game should keep you guessing months into playing. The scenarios in drafting play such a big part in the results it would be great to have a better mechanism for managing them.

Finally, it's worth saying this article is focused on scouting rookies coming into the NFL. It would be a great addition to make scouting your opponent, other team players and future Free Agents or trade targets part of this too.

Let's see where EA Sport take Madden 21.