Should Head Coach remain exclusive to Madden CE?

Posted March 29th, 2008 at 4:11 am


Tucked away near the end of the press release announcing the 20th Anniversary Collector’s Edition of Madden 09 was a statement proclaiming that NFL Head Coach 09 would be exclusive to the CE. The news was followed by confirmation from Madden marketing director Chris Erb in an interview with 1UP.

For the most part the reaction to the Collectors Edition has been very positive. The main detraction seems to be regarding the Head Coach decision. Packing it in with Madden for what amounts to $30 was a pleasant surprise however forcing consumers potentially interested in just Head Coach to buy it along with Madden is a questionable decision.

The thinking is likely that the CE presents a special value and that they’ll be able to introduce a lot of gamers to Head Coach that maybe wouldn’t have tried it otherwise. However there are those consumers who want to only purchase Head Coach. While the outrage can be partially be attributed to forum exaggeration as a way of hating on Madden there certainly would be some of those people out there.

To me though the bigger issue comes from people who already have Madden but later would like to pick up Head Coach. Think of how many copies of Madden will be given away as gifts for example. Then if they are interested in Head Coach they aren’t going out and buy the Madden CE when they already have Madden.

I just don’t understand why EA would leave money on the table like that. Sell the game separately for $40, $50, or even the standard $60. I don’t believe that sales of the Madden CE would take much of a hit because of that. It would still sell to people who want both games as the value would still be the same. Unless they expect those people who would’ve only purchased Head Coach to now buy the Madden CE (not likely) it isn’t going to hurt them. There should just be the option out there. Consumers don’t like feeling that they are being forced into something.

Of course Ebay will probably see a bunch of Head Coach copies so it would still be possible to get it on its own. Again though why EA would want to have their consumers going a more frustrating and time consuming route to play their game I don’t know.

I am still of the belief that there is a good chance EA changes their thinking on this and releases Head Coach separately. Hopefully the pressure and interest from consumers will lead them to doing so.