|Madden 2004 |
|EAs 's Madden 2004 Review PS2|
Madden that I have never seen before. You have a lot to gain but you also have a lot to loose if you read the oppositions play incorrectly.
Also new to Madden 2004 is the Deep Owner Mode. This is almost like a business simulation, you will be responsible for everything involved in running a football team you will take control of the price of the tickets, parking, and even the food. So you have to keep the fans happy while making enough money to support the stadium and the team. You are also responsible for the teams performance, so if your team misses the playoffs every year and generally not giving good performances the fans support will falter, which will in turn have you changing the prices of tickets, food etc just to keep your fans happy and keep coming back. If your career does come to this it is all down to you, because you are presented with plenty of information and advice. You will get advice from advisors who will give you basic information on how to improve you fan base but while doing this you must keep an eye on all the financial graphs and the balance sheets to make sure the club can support itself. You will have loads of freedom in the Owner Mode as you will even be able to build a new stadium or move to a completely different city.
If all of this sounds a little too much or you are just not business minded you can switch off the owner mode and settle for the franchise mode. The franchise mode itself has also change a little, now the training camp has been integrated into the franchise mode. This has changed things a little when it comes to the big game because the results of the training camp will directly have an effect of players. If you want to practice running plays with your half back you will have to choose one from the roster. Then if that half back does particularly well during the training sessions you will receive a number of upgrade points to add to the chosen halfbacks attributes. This enables you to make good players out of all of your team, even if they are not so great to start with.
The commentary has also been improved upon as Al Michaels has lots of stuff to say about virtually every single play. John Madden is a bit of a let down because he does repeat himself a bit too much as his comments are quite generic. The interaction between the two commentators does make for some decent commentary that does not sound like random lines have been stuck together.
The PS2 version of Madden 2004 is the only version of the game that supports online play. You can jump straight into a game or you can have a look in the various lobbies or alternatively you may create your own lobby. Madden 2004 supports the USB headset that was supplied with SOCOM which is a great addition. With the online setup you can choose to play in or create a tournament with up to 32 players. These games have a time limit and if they are not completed within the deadline both teams will be automatically eliminated from the competition. As you would expect, you can alter many variables of the tournaments such as difficulty, time of each quarter, number of teams and many other things. The main thing though, the game play online does not appear to suffer from lag, obviously if you don't have a great line you may suffer some problems.
Madden 2004 is a remarkable American football game, all the new features and have been integrated seamlessly, and after playing Madden 2004 you will probably wonder how you made do with out the playmaker controls. All in all Madden 2004 is a brilliantly rounded game that is a must for anyone, even if you do own one of the previous versions. If you have a PS2 the online play provides plenty of icing on the cake. What more could you want.