Madden NFL 23

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Madden NFL 23 (Xbox Series X) – Review

It’s a new year and a new Madden game, but this one feels more special than previous titles as it’s heavily following the man behind the name – None other than John Madden. Like previous titles, this one is brought to us by EA. If there are any die-hard fans of the series, you hopefully noticed the “All Madden Edition” of the game – The cover art is the same as the first title back in 1988.

For anyone new to the series or returning, Madden NFL 23 is based around the NFL (National Football League) where you might hear some of the bigger names in news like Tom Brady, Guy Whimper, and many more. Like the titles before it, anyone that is a sports game fanatic would be straight into this game with being able to pick your plays, both offensive & defensive, which decide the end factor of the game.

The gameplay, much like years before, is the same idea where you need to select the play you want and then make it happen. Obviously it’s not as simple as that, because you have the defensive side trying their hardest to stop you from moving, and sometimes, the plays don’t work out how you want.

Madden NFL 23 brings in a new system called FieldSense, which gives you more control of what is happening on the field and also brings in that ultra-realistic feel that we all love to the game. It feels like it overhauls the controls a little but still keeps the basic idea behind them. FieldSense was something I loved as a new feature because it felt like I had more control of the game and made it more of my own.

Madden NFL 23 also has brought back the “Franchise” section of the game, but they’ve added more features to it to make it feel like real life and give you real headaches, giving you full control from the office, listening to players wanting more money, or putting new players on to build you a franchise. “Face of the Franchise” is a mode that starts you in your fifth season in the NFL and you want a fresh start.

Creating your own player, you put the feelers out and sign a one-year deal with a new club. I chose the Steelers seeing as they offered the most money. You can then select the position you want to play on the field and create the legacy you want so badly. Another familiar face will be the Ultimate Team, where you can try your luck on building your ultimate dream team, and who knows, you might even be lucky enough to get the G.O.A.T, Tom Brady.

The controls are much the same as in previous years where you can decide how technical you want to be with kicking, passing, and other movements in the game. The button layout is also much the same as in previous years, so if you are a returning player, you will slide straight into the games with no hiccups. New players don’t need to worry either. If you select the easiest control mode, all you need to focus on is pressing the main buttons which are all shown on the HUD, so you know where the ball is going to end up. For the purpose of the review, I did the most difficult setting, and needless to say, I failed miserably. There were so many factors that the ball ended up all over the place.

The graphics have come a long way since the first title back in 1988 when it was originally called John Madden Football. Madden NFL 23 made it feel like I was watching the game on TV. It also sounded like it, which I will cover soon. Everything from the character models to the environment, to how the fans reacted & acted felt beyond real, and it didn’t feel like I was playing a game in the slightest.

Madden NFL 23’s audio was also hyping me up like I was watching the game on TV while having a few quiet beers. The commentary feels real and fluid when they’re talking about the game and the character interactions, but they actually talk about Madden games, and how many copies have been sold worldwide, which was mind-blowing. When you scored a touchdown, you had that little snippet of music playing just so you knew that you had made the moves. I’ve played lots of sports games but this one’s commentary team was next level and it made the atmosphere of the game amazing.

If you love NFL, or just love sports in general, and you have a passion for sporting games, Madden NFL 23 is for you. The environment that has been created with Madden NFL 23 is next level. I don’t normally expect much from the latest EA yearly titles, but they have outdone themselves with this one.

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The Good

  • Realistic graphics
  • Fan reactions
  • Commentary feels like a genuine reaction

Written by: Hayden Nelson


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