Madden 22 is closing in on launch day, but they've already had the chance to let some fans try out the game via the Community Playtest (Closed Beta).
With the feedback from those who participated now in, we're learning about a handful of changes coming to Madden 22 before the title is released.
Madden 22 gets multiple pre-launch gameplay changes from beta
Madden 22 is poised for a worldwide release date of August 20, 2021, but players will be able to get their hands on the game even sooner via the EA Play Trial or Early Access.
Last month, a select group got an even earlier look by participating in the Madden 22 Community Playtest (Closed Beta) and providing feedback to developers based on their experience.
While certain game modes, particularly Face of the Franchise, were absent during the beta, there was plenty of opportunity to respond to core gameplay, the new Dynamic Gameday mechanic, and upgrades to Franchise Mode.
In a new Gridiron Notes, EA has outlined several different areas where feedback was received and outlined some of the changes made and clarified certain facets of gameplay in Madden 22.
What new changes were made following the Community Playtest?
When players participated in the Community Playtest for Madden 22, which we got to be a part of, they had access to an exclusive feedback forum to give direct comments to developers.
If you want to check out our thoughts on the Madden 22 beta, you can find our full review of the Community Playtest experience here.
All of the feedback was visible to those on the forum, which meant that comments and upvotes heavily pushed certain topics to the forefront and prevented players from flooding them with identical feedback.
Here are the components which got the most feedback and how the Madden 22 development team has responded to each.
As a core piece of the game, there was understandable frustration as some participants insisted players needed to be more aggressive in attacking the ball, that defenders weren't going for the interception when in position, and that catch mechanics overall weren't as responsive as they should be.
Developers explained that major improvements were made to jump height logic which make catch radius more accurate, and that some of these changes didn't make it into the early beta build but would be included in the final game at launch.
On top of that, they emphasized that playing the ball on defense will carry more risk this year, with interception attempts being more likely to miss while the range for swats has increased and made that a more reliable and conservative option.
There were mixed opinions among fans about Player Movement during the beta, with some insisting it was perfect and others complaining it was too slow or didn't fully represent differences in larger or smaller players.
Developers explained that many players are still new to the Next Gen Player Movement system which was introduced last year for PS5 and Xbox Series X|S versions of the game, and that it'll take time to adjust to it.
However, they did note that some tuning was to better differentiate between the game's fastest players and everyone else, and clarified that Change of Direction and Acceleration ratings will also play a huge role, not just Speed.
Franchise Mode Changes
EA noted that they received more suggestions regarding Franchise than anything else, and outlined a handful of adjustments made ahead of launch.
- Fatigue Tuning: Adjustments made to keep players from fatiguing too quickly in practice
- Free Agency: Following comments about top players not receiving enough free agent interest, they increased available cap space in the first two seasons and made changes to team spending and evaluation logic
- Draft Classes: Small logic changes were made to allow CPU teams to draft more appropriately, and they emphasized the September update on Scouting will help this
- Simulation Stats: Tuning made to simulation stats in Franchise so that quarterbacks that scramble will have a more appropriate amount of rushing yards
- Additional Tuning & Fixes
- Refreshed news section with new content
- Cost of talents increased, particularly for Head Coach and Player Personnel trees
- Removed exploit where you could repeatedly hire and fire a staff member for uliminted signing bonus staff points
- You can now promote a coordinator to Head Coach
- Stability fixes and user interface/goals system all tweaked for clarity
All Other Top Reported Bugs/Suggestions
In addition, the following bugs were fixed ahead of launch:
- Receivers are dropping the ball really late after the catch
- Dive Tackles are too powerful
- Dive Tackles sometimes would warp a player off the ground to make the tackle (note: there is ongoing work in the same space for diving catches in upcoming updates)
- Lower-rated QBs play too well on All-Madden
- Momentum Meter fills up too fast
- Competitive Modes Momentum Formula not ready for launch
- Situational Pursuit tuning
- Situational Pursuit tuning
- Too much pass rush pressure when only rushing two or three on Competitive game style
- Gunslinger/QB Releases Changes
- QB Contain not always effective in certain situations
- Drive Summary in-game banner showing bad clock data is fixed
- First Down line missing is fixed
- Offensive Line abilities don’t seem effective
- Improvements for defense vs. TE Delay Fades:
- Logic to improve QB Contain logic vs. delay blockers
- Tuning to improve pass rusher logic to properly disengage away from a delay blocker
- Logic to improve QB Contain logic vs. delay blockers in double teams
- Tuning to man coverage to stick in coverage on the TE in delay longer
- RPO Fixes:
- Tuning to improve the angle of the read defender when playing the QB to avoid faster QBs from being able to run around him
- The QB will no longer be able to turn and run before completing his first step after faking the handoff
- Wind Direction Indicator fixed to show the appropriate direction of the wind
- A variety of updates to all 32 team playbooks has been completed for the launch of Madden NFL 22. Most of these updates were not in the beta, but players will notice new plays and formations for every team.
You can find the full Gridiron Notes here, which includes detailed dev notes on most of the changes or tweaks made ahead of Madden 22's launch.