And now for something completely different. Not content with launching one of the best versions of Madden in years (and I say this with all the authority of a guy who never even heard of the "Tennessee Titans" until like two minutes ago), EA Sports announced yesterday the addition of Madden Ultimate Team, a new mode for Madden NFL 10 for the PS3 and Xbox 360, coming in January.
What is this new mode about, you ask? I'm glad you did, because it sounds kinda neato. When something is described as "perfect for card collectors and fantasy football gurus," you know they are speaking to the rabid obsessive-compulsive geek that lives in the heart of every gamer, whether they're into football or not.
In Madden Ultimate Team, you are challenged to create the perfect NFL team by collecting virtual cards that represent NFL players, coaches, stadiums and more. There are nine types of virtual cards, which will be available to players in platinum, gold, silver, and bronze packs from the in-game store. You'll also be able to earn coins for new packs through your team's on-field performance, and can trade cards with other players via an auction block. There's some nice "gamey" perks thrown into the card collection mix, like getting an on-field "chemistry boost" when you collect cards of players from the same college and pro teams. Once your team is assembled, you can pick the starting offense, defense and special teams, or have the game do it for you, and then pit the team against the A.I. or other humans like you, and monitor your status on online leaderboards.
The new game mode is coming to both Xbox Live and the Playstation Network in January, and will be free with a starter pack of players and other virtual cards. The rest will depend on how obsessive you are and how much you want to risk getting in trouble with your loved ones.
--Jeff "Is this the sport with all the tall dudes and the baskets?" Green