Madden 15 Demo is Not Coming
The Madden 15 demo is MIA, and we’re not talking about taking its talents to south beach. A report today on Polygon confirmed that a demo for the upcoming football video game will be missing in action, at least in a traditional sense.
For the first time since we can’t remember when, EA will not be releasing a demo for its Madden NFL game prior to release. Instead, players will be able to play the game early provided they buy into the company’s new EA Access subscription program, which launched today on Xbox One.
By all accounts, EA Access is a good deal, as it only costs $5/month and in return you’ll be allowed to play upcoming games early in advance, as well as have access to “The Vault,” which will include past titles from EA that can be played. While playing old sports games might not be all too enticing, as a whole it’s an interesting offer that certainly warrants the price tag, especially for those interested in dabbling in EA franchises they haven’t tried before, where having the latest and greatest isn’t as important as seeing what it’s like for the first time.
Madden 15 Demo Still Kind of Exists, Sorta…
While the Madden 15 demo won’t exist in the traditional pre-release sense, it will still exist in that Xbox One owners with EA Access can play the game up to five days in advance of release. It’s possible, however, that this might not be quite as appealing as it sounds, as each game is likely to have its own set of rules on pre-release play.
One example that has been given, is that while Madden NFL 15 will be playable five days early, it will feature some kind of time restriction (say, two hours worth of gameplay) before it locks out. There is no official word yet from EA whether or not Madden NFL will employ such restrictions, however it is an option and one you might want to wait to hear more about if you intended to get EA Access solely to play games early.
In a statement released to Polygon, EA explained their decision to move away from a traditional pre-release demo:
“The difficult decision not to do a demo for Madden was strictly a result of the team’s commitment to deliver the highest-quality game possible. We chose to put 100 percent of our development resources toward the full game.”
While the rational part of me can see how a short development cycle this year could impact something like the release of a demo, the other part of me takes this explanation and can only think of one thing: Riiiiiight.
It will be interesting to see whether or not the lack of a Madden NFL 15 demo in a conventional sense impacts sales, how much it increases subscriptions to EA Access, and whether or not there will be any significant PR backlash from a community that has been groomed for a decade to expect demos for EA’s annual football video game.