Madden 11 Positional Tendencies

Posted April 24th, 2010 at 3:49 pm

(Update) Well apparently this has been behind the scenes for a while now and has not been enhanced past being a simple description of a player’s skills from their ratings make-up. However it goes to show how this is an area that should be addressed going forward and could really benefit the game so it remains a good read in terms of concept for the future iterations.

In the revealing of QB ratings from earlier today I also discovered what appears to be a new addition for Madden 11. There is now a tendency listed for the players along with their ratings. The only two QBs that had this area visible in the images were Peyton Manning and Vince Young. Manning was listed as “Pocket” and Young as “Scrambling”.

Presumably Manning will operate more effectively in the pocket and stay there while Young would be more likely to take off and run or roll out in the passing game. Now, I don’t want to jump the gun too much on this as the possibility remains that this is a QB specific feature. Even if that was the case it would still have significant impact. Going up against the CPU has led to the complaint over the years that the AI generally plays the same way regardless of team or player  with the result a stale experience providing limited variety and challenge.

Tendencies would be extremely valuable at other positions though as well. Is a RB more likely to cut a run to the outside or run straight downhill? Is a safety more likely to go for the INT or the big hit? Differentiating the players, beyond just their ratings, could be achieved through tendencies.

This brings me to a random thought on just one way tendencies could improve the game. I’ve always taken issue with the frequency of dropped INTs. Defensive players will far too often drop balls that hit them right in the hands, and it is frustrating to be a victim of lost opportunity. This has primarily been done to avoid the inevitable double-digit INTs games from happening. If there was a tendency like the one above for defensive backs there could be players lining up hits instead, or that find themselves simply out of position from being in the spot to make those picks based on a combination of their tendency, skill set, and awareness.