Press Row Hangout: EA Decides Against Releasing a Demo for Madden NFL 15

Posted August 12th, 2014 at 12:15 pm


EA Sports made it official yesterday that there would be no demo for Madden NFL 15. Poor timing, that coincided with the EA Access subscription service moving out of beta and becoming available to all on Xbox One, compounded the frustration which was expressed by many through social media, news sites, and forums.

I was joined by Rich Grisham and T.J. Lauerman to discuss the development on a special edition of the Press Row Hangout. What the lack of a demo means for Madden 15, for the future of traditional demos, and the relation to the EA Access program.

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  • agent916

    Here’s the truth about no demo. It’s the opportunity for EA to completely remove future worries of no demos IF…..IF the game this year is solid. They must feel they have a good product set to release to choose this year NOT to implement the demo for a game in which everyone has come to accept as the norm for the Madden series. It will probably cause some (like myself) to hold out until the reviews start trickling in, but again if the game is solid I’m going to purchase the game this year and my guess is most other hardcore guys will as well.

    • Tazdevil20

      Your theory is very valid, but the problem with reviews for madden is that it gets these crazy inflated scores EVERY year. It gets these scores because of all of the personal relationships the madden devs have made with all of the press sites. It’s all a sham. I remember games like Madden 11 getting an 8.5. Seriously? One of the worst football games ever made, even addmitted to be horrible by its own creative director years later. So the bottom line is, I don’t think EA gives a shit about any of that when it comes to making a demo. Making the demo is extra work and is often viewed by the consumer as a great way to try the game. I think EA has known for a long time that Madden is the joke of the sports gaming genre. Putting the demo out there has actually HURT their chances of selling copies, because people realize how much of a piece of shit it is 2 weeks ahead of time. I realize they are trying to improve the game, but after seeing the MyLeague from 2k and the advances by NHL, FIFA and the Show, Madden is still the kid who keeps getting left back in the 3rd grade while all of these other products have advanced to college. The decision to NOT do a demo is based on the idea that they sell LESS games with a demo than without. They figure, if we can’t sell a game to someone, we will at least get them to buy the EA Access which will get SOME money out of them, even if they don’t buy the game.

      • Keith.

        This man gets it. Great post.

  • little britches

    I don’t think its a big deal, I have played Madden since at least Madden 93 on Nintendo. I can remember having to rely on magazine articles just to see pics or read up on new features. Of course it was all sprites instead of polygons and the game was pretty cheap, certainly not as much to invest. Now we are all spoiled, we get to see long videos and deep discussions about the new stuff plus usually get demos to play. It will feel more nostalgic like Christmas morning now when Madden is released on the 26th. I can pop the disc in open minded and excited to see what is new.

    • Iown You

      Boy I tell ya, the bullshit people tell themselves in order to cope with EA/Tiburon’s horseshit, smh.

  • The Great Leon

    They don’t need to release a demo when they are the only NFL game out. Demos are to sway people between two products. Sadly we don’t have another NFL game, I have not bought or played a Madden since the Hillis one. But people get their football itch and Madden is the only game out.

    • The argument would be that there are competing products. Just because there isn’t football, doesn’t mean a potential consumer won’t be deciding between Madden and something else with their $60.

      • The Great Leon

        That is true but Madden has such a big name that people know what it is. But they can be choosing between Fifa and Madden so I see what you mean.

      • Keith.

        That’s a nonsense argument that EA’s lawyers cooked up in the Madden Monopoly lawsuit, before they settled for $27 million.

        • bltzkrieg666

          Simple question for you Keith. Will you be buying Madden this year?

  • MCJedi1

    I remember when the Dreamcast & NFL2k was introduced, and all we had was magazine articles and pix. I pre paid for the console and game months before release with no demo, and if I didn’t like it I could return it within 30 days. My problem is, I’m buying M15 digital (through the playstation network) hopefully for the PS3, the only videos I’ve seen is for the PS4. So, with no demo, I am truly buying blind!

    • Iown You

      Dreamcast had demo discs though.

  • bltzkrieg666

    I look at it this way. The sports video game fan base is a finite number that doesn’t fluctuate much. Most people know if they are going to buy a sports game or not and they know which one they will buy. An interesting factor that you guys should talk about is how these complex franchise modes are affecting multiple sports game purchases. Back in the days of just simple season mode, you can play a full season in two days or less and that wouldn’t interfere with the buying of other sports games. Now with all these complex connected franchise modes and online franchises along with Ultimate Team like game modes, I feel like people are more inclined to settle for just one sports game due to time constraints. Not many people can afford the time to dedicate to these game modes on multiple sports games. With Madden, FIFA, LIVE, NBA2K, and NHL all releasing with in close proximity of one another, I think gamers are making choices of which game they want to buy and negating the others.

  • bltzkrieg666

    Just a thought about Madden. The only thing that will be the demise of Madden will be the lack of new blood to the game. Madden has 25 years of complexity that a great deal of people who are new to gaming will find quite daunting. I know plenty of people who don’t play Madden or any other sports game due to the shear complexity of the game. You can see that EA, particularly with Madden, recognize this and go to great lengths in “teaching the game” to its fan base. In several youtube videos put out by EA they stress this “teaching of the game”. I think its great that they go this extra mile to try to bring in new blood.

  • Ron

    ***duh…no demo ….there is a reason for that! Dont want you to see just how much the game is like last years..sprinkle on a few features…! they know if u see the same gm in the demo…you wont buy!! Question is do you know you shouldnt

  • LeftCoastd00d

    Part of me says whatever. This is the (purportedly) last of the 360/PS:3 based Madden’s. We know what’s going to be in the box on release day because the game has only incrementally been changed for nearly a decade from one release to the next.

    But the most of me says, man, who’s making these decision over at Electronic Arts? The billion dollar game company with the only licensed NFL game couldn’t budget time & treasure to make even a simple 1 quarter, 2 team demo? Are they hiding something?

  • Noel Lyanga

    No complaints. It’s whats best for business.