Madden 21 Superstar KO: New game mode MUST return in next instalment
EA’s new game mode sprang to life last August, but will it make the cut when the new game drops?
It can be tricky for annual sports titles to add new features, nevermind new game modes, but somehow Madden 20 managed it.
Superstar KO is a quick game mode that focuses on a slimmed-down playbook, an overtime shootout for the victory, and a cast of celebrities and legends taking to the field.
So has Superstar KO been a success? And should it return for Madden 21?
Engaging a younger audience
The Madden ecosystem needs fresh blood to thrive. Every gaming company in the world is trying to capture the next generation of fans, with EA and Madden being no exception.
They seem to have done that with Superstar KO.
The inclusion of celebrities like DJ Khalid and Snoop Dogg brings familiar names to players who may only know a handful of NFL faces and be totally unaware of the likes of Troy Polamalu or Brian Urlacher.
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The incredibly quick nature of the games keeps the tension and pressure high and means there is little room for boredom to take hold during clock-draining drives.
You can also squad up and play with friends, making it ideal for teenagers and the younger crowd who want to play with people they know.
Next gen consoles solve a problem
Madden 20 suffers from the same thing that plagues a lot of games as we come to the end of this generation of consoles… Loading times.
The massive demands of amazing graphics, improved AI, and physics engines are starting to take a toll on the Xbox One and PS4, and Superstar KO is certainly impacted by that.
As the games are shorter, a bigger percentage of your time is spent waiting for the next game to load up.
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With amazing specs there should be less time spent waiting around for the Superstar KO scenario to load in, which means more gaming for everyone.
This plays even more into the short attention span of the younger audience and will keep them online longer.
Gateway to Ultimate Team
As the rewards for hitting weekly goals like scoring 10 touchdowns or rushing for 1,000 yards come in the form of unique MUT cards, it is quite clear what EA’s aim here is – draw a new audience to Madden Ultimate Team.
It is well-known that older Ultimate Team players are reluctant to pay up for points and packs, but the younger the player the more easily swayed by the temptation of spending £1.19 on a pack to get a magical pull.
By creating a funnel for teenagers and even younger players into MUT, EA are hoping to boost their profits from Madden.
It was last year where profits from microtransactions in FIFA Ultimate Team were more valuable to EA than actual sales of FIFA 19.
Despite recent legal challenges around Europe to Ultimate Team’s packs system, there is no slowing the train of MUT at the moment, and if it has proven a good path for new MUT players to follow then there is no way EA will get rid of it for Madden 21.