Improving the offensive game, Madden 25 proves to be a spin juke in the right direction.

Right from the first in-game kick you can see the difference the upgraded Infinity Engine makes in Madden NFL 25. Simply put, Madden 25 looks great. More than just looking great, the Infinity 2 engine allows players to deliver big hits with countless animations. Madden 25 is a visceral beast that grows in intensity as you level your opponents and score those touchdowns.

For changes - we see several new features, with the Precision Modifier being a particular highlight. By pressing the precision modifier button (LT) you have much more control over your runner making it possible to perform what I have dubbed "Fancy Moves". Essentially it combines 2 moves together like spin jukes, spin jab, jukes and jab step, and the list goes on. Basically you are combining one of the normal moves with a speed burst, which also applies to the hurdling over defenders. Yes, it’s true, speed burst is back! However, it’s not in exactly the same. Whereas before you would tape down the speed boost for a constant boost, now you hold it down for a short “burst” to evade defenders or just get around that corner.

Combined with the new Run Free feature and we have a game that is trucking. Simply put, if you're using a power back like Lynch, you can just run people over. The power backs of the game will level most players as they lower the pads and get right in there. As for running in general, it does feel more fluid and better, you don't get caught on your linemen like they are impassible objects. Although great, I have some issues like when my recover catches the ball he stops dead in an awkward unrealistic way. Really, a minor issue in what is a solid improvement.


Adding another nice touch of extra control, EA Tiburon also introduces a Stumble Recovery mechanic. This mechanic applies to when your player stumbles, by allowing you to pull down on the right thumb-stick to make a recovery. You can also snatch up a few extra yards with a dive as well. It's a great idea so all tackles are a clear cut hit/miss with a little bit of extra control added in.

All this focus on control has made the runner a force to be reckoned with. Warding off multiple tackles, you can easily break off into 20+ yard runs. However, I am finding that Madden has once again catered to the offense while ignoring the overall defense. There are no noteworthy upgrades to the defensive side at all. They have used new engine to make force impacts, which is using your hit stick. It really hits them, but this isn't enough to compete with the upgrades to the running game. This makes playing defense frustrating especially when a runner avoids 2-5 tackles every couple of runs. The only plus to defense is the shoelace tackles happen far more often now.

Lastly, I want highlight another feature that has been added to Madden 25, the read option. The read option will have a player pause for 1/2 second and you need to choose to hand if off or keep it if you do it properly say hello to a first down, maybe even more.


Now for some more good news; I would like to say congratulations to the Madden community because the Offline Fantasy draft is back! not only is it back, but you and your friend can draft teams, sim to week one and play a game, right on your couch! Amazing, I know. Also, Owner mode is back. Truly, EA Tiburon must have heard the cry for the old game modes because they are bringing them back.

For more changes, the Franchise Mode is now referred to as the “Connected  Franchise”, which allows you to control almost everything on a team from concession stand and ticket prices, staff hiring/firing, moving stadium to 16 other cities (Canada included). It’s definitely the time-sucker, it has always been, if not more. The menus have also been adjusted, although I don't know if I'd call it improved. There is still allot of lag time when moving around panels and pulling up… well pretty much everything.

Additionally, EA Tiburon also adds file sharing where you can share rosters, settings, playbook, and you can import your NCAA Draft class. Unfortunately, there is still no half time show, just a few highlight clips and no cheerleaders. Also, the crowd still needs some work because they still look like a bunch of cutouts popping up and down. From a pure graphics standpoint, the graphics in the game look great, better then Madden 13 but not stellar, so I am expecting the next-gen version to be impressive.

MUT is back again it has returned the old feature of chemistry that allows you to choose your strengths and change your play style to match them. Chemistry available is for offense: Short pass, Long Pass, Ground & Pound, and speed run. For Defense you have Zone defense, Man defense, Pass Rush, Run stuff.  The more you play with your team the better there chemistry will become at the chosen technique and they will perform better.  MUT also added head-to-head online that will put you in a 10 game play anytime season with the best players going to the playoffs competing for rewards.

Now for the bad… may I say, EA Sports has failed horribly in rating players. A lot of initial ratings make no sense at all to anyone who follows the sport. I am convinced that no one at EA Tiburon watches the NFL, my only hope is that through the course of the season they will update roasters and make the teams more in-line with the talent on the field. For example: Demaryius Thomas being ranked 17th, even though he's easily a top 5 receiver. Trent Richardson being 17th with the likes of Fred Jackson, and David Wilson being 44th, several spots behind Peyton Hillis who has been nothing but a plodding horse the last 2 years. I can only guess the initial ratings are based on how the team did rather than the players themselves.

Madden NFL 25 throws one down field in the right direction; and if you haven't played Madden in a while, “25” is a great spot to get back into the game. The return of franchise mode and a general smoothness upgrade will bring back Madden players from '12. There is a lot to love here with the Infinity 2 engine leading the charge.

  • Running game has been improved
  • Better animations and player interactions
  • Franchise mode is back
  • Tons of customizability
  • Poor player Ratings
  • Lack of defense innovation
  • No polish to anything outside of the game
  • New controls could be overwhelming for new players
  • Lackluster commentary
Quote: "Madden NFL 25 throws one down field in the right direction."
Reviewed by Jamie Berner | 08.23.13 | Platform Reviewed: Xbox 360

Similar Games: Madden NFL 13 (8.2)


Madden NFL 25

EA Sports

EA Tiburon


US Release
August '13


X360, PS3

Players 1
Co-op 2-4
Online MP 2-6
5.1 Surround
HD 720-1080p
D/L Content
Kinect Optional