Madden 15 Franchise Making it Easier to Groom Stars
Madden 15 Connected Franchise Mode has seen little news so far in the Madden NFL hype cycle, however a brief feature leak from GameStop has given us insight into one very important change.
If there was one big, core gameplay issue that franchise mode has struggled with in recent years, it’s the difficulty of backup players to gain enough experience to develop. Owners were often put in an extreme situation upon drafting a prospect, where they had to decide whether to start them right away, or watch them wither away on their bench in time.
The problem, it seems, was that experience was gained primarily through playing time and achieving certain statistical expectations in games. Of course, as everyone knows, even the best rookies don’t always have the best ratings, making it tough to play them right away while still achieving franchise success.
According to GameStop’s brief feature leak (see the bottom of the page), Madden 15 CFM will be tweaking the way experience is earned by letting owners develop players individually between games, with Game Prep. I’ve highlighted the primary point of GP in the feature description from GameStop below.
GameStop Leaks Madden NFL 15 CFM Feature
“Interact and build your team with more control in Game Prep all-new to CFM. Want to develop your backup QB? Between matchups, spend extra time on him each week to earn training points without having to force him into the real games before he is ready. Also new in CFM is the Confidence rating system. Build your teams’ confidence through performance and front office transactions. Balance keeping player’s confidence up, to increase abilities and build player XP.”
Lets put aside the interesting choice of the words “training points” for just a moment, and focus in on what we expect to be the core meaning of this feature.
EA’s Madden NFL franchise development team, headed up still (I believe) by Josh Looman, has been making tweaks to how experience points are awarded ever since the backup-vs-starter dilemma has emerged, however it’s clear an overhauled and more individualized approach to developing players was needed. In order to more accurately represent the progression of young stars that simply need extra grooming and attention in practice, something like Game Prep was probably inevitable.
It wasn’t an uncommon scenario in Madden 25 and previous editions to draft the “best available player” at a position, despite the fact that you were fairly strong at the position grouping, and end up wasting your pick just a few short years down the line as the player devolved into something much less than he otherwise could have been. Right when it would have been perfect for a young, developing star to step in and claim a role a few years down the line, previous Madden games made this an almost futile task that practically required you to draft a replacement and repeat the process all over again.
The Depth of ‘Game Prep’ Still Unclear
We already know that Skills Trainer will play a part in Madden 15’s practice mode for franchise, however it’s unclear whether or not the enhanced Skills Trainer is in itself being called Game Prep for franchise, or if there are actual individual drills apart from it that were hand-crafted for use in developing players in franchise.
I’ve also received recent questions about whether or not Gauntlet mode will be available from within franchise mode considering its connection to Skills Trainer, but that too is unclear as of this moment.
With all the Madden 15 ratings info flying around, as well as Madden Ultimate Team details finally emerging, it should only be a matter of time until we hear more about franchise mode. Whether or not we will learn about the Madden 15 demo or Madden 15 franchise first, however, is anyone’s guess at this point, but info surrounding both has been a hot issue in recent weeks.