Scouting In Madden 13 – Your Guide To Scouting Every Player Effectively

Madden 13 has the new scouting system that essentially allows you to ‘buy’ information on each prospect.  There are a few ways you can go about scouting, but we are going to give you the most efficient way to use your points and find potential talent in the draft.

Aren’t you glad they changed some of the costs of the scouting categories?…. 3000 for scheme?!

The first thing you have to do is determine your teams needs.  This will help the allocation go a bit more smoothly when it comes to scouting points.  Once you determine your team needs and your coach’s schemes (offense and defense) you can start looking at the players.  I am of the opinion that OVR is the most overrated and un-sim rating in gaming.  We will give you a quick way to look for the best OVR players and then a quick way to find the best players in general (depending on your play-style) and we will assume that your coach gets 2000 points as a motivator for scouting.

FOR BEST OVR RATINGS

Scout These Categories ($cost)

  1. Awareness ($100)– If they have a ‘B’ it means they will have a closer OVR to 80 or maybe even mid-80s if they fit your scheme (you should be able to scout at least 20 players’ AWR each week with this.
  2. Scheme ($25)– This is a key for a higher OVR for a player once they are on your team.  If you go after a player that isn’t going to fit your scheme, expect his rating to drop once he is on your team.
  3. Position Specific Ratings ($50-100)– These are pretty obvious things to scout for some player – we will give you a full run-down later.

FINDING THE BEST PLAYERS

I’m not much for finding the highest OVRs in the draft.  I like to find players that come in with raw talent that needs to be built in some way.  With that said, if you are more of a realistic team-builder or just want to possibly find that hidden gem in the draft that has the best OVR anyway – use these tips:

  1. Position Specific  Ratings ($50-100)– For some reason there are a ton of CBs and WRs that are amazing and are projected to be 3rd-7th Rd picks.  Look up the CTH and RLS Ratings for WRs and if you can find someone with a 90+ RLS, snag him as late as you can.  With a CB, a lot will depend on your preferred defense, but look up their MCV and ZCV first to find out if they are decent at covering anyone first.  If the coverage ratings are low, you should stay away from them as they will be useless on the field.
  2. Speed ($100)- This is unfortunately still the most important rating in many ways.  The only position this should rarely (almost never) be used on is OLinemen.  Otherwise, you should look this up for your WRs and HBs every time.  If they have a B or lower, you should think twice about drafting them high or at all.  (This might change if you need a possession WR or a power HB though)
  3. Strength ($100)- Check this out as it does tend to matter a little bit more in this Madden.  Find a stronger lineman later in the draft and you might have a decent player to build in the future.

The best part about knowing what to look for first is that once you see a rating that is low in an important category, you don’t have to waste anymore time or points on that prospect.  This is what will allow you to scout almost every player out there and have a great draft board from your first pick to your last pick!

My Favorite Ratings To Scout For Each Position

QBs – Throw Power, Throw Accuracy, Throw On Run, Injury, Toughness

HBs – Speed, Elusiveness, Trucking, Spin, Juke, Injury, Toughness

WRs – Catching, Release, Catch In Traffic, Speed, Injury, Toughness

OLs – Run Block, Pass Block, Strength, Impact Block, Awareness

DEs – Tackle, Hit Power, Speed

DTs – Tackle, Hit Power, Power Moves

LBs – Tackle, Hit Power, Speed, Play Recognition, Awareness, Zone Coverage, Injury, Toughness

CBs – Speed, Man Coverage, Zone Coverage, Awareness

FSs – Speed, Tackle, Hit Power, Zone Coverage, Man Coverage

SSs – Speed, Tackle, Hit Power, Zone Coverage, Man Coverage

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College Football’s Negative Impact On EA’s NCAA Football Franchise

Over the past few years I have been a staunch supporter of NCAA Football over Madden NFL.  EA Sports has truly dropped the ball on both games in multiple ways over this entire generation of consoles (PS3 and 360).  Many can blame the glitches and problems on the apparent dependency that developers have on releasing software updates and patches through online interactions.  While these kind of ‘hot fixes’ are vital to software (including games) it seems to have left the door open to sloppy development over the course of a year.  This isn’t even the biggest problem facing EA’s NCAA Football at this point – it is the college football landscape itself.

Bye Bye BCS… Hello new broken game development.

In case you haven’t paid any attention to college sports over the last few years, there have been teams moving from conference to conference more than Bobby Petrino switches teams (and women).  On top of conference changes and re-alignments, the NCAA has recently approved the move to a new playoff system (finally).  This is welcome news to the people that still pay attention to the NFL’s minor league affiliate, but for gaming fans it is a dreaded issue that is too far into the future to allow them any sort of desire to want to invest in more broken games without any sort of tournament or playoff system for college football gaming.  Why waste time and money on a game that changes faces so often?

College football is a joke in many ways but when it comes to the hypocritical billion dollar deals for the services of ‘amateur’ athletes with coaches that make millions of dollars a year over networks like ESPN – why is it that the gaming end of things is so strangely broken as well?  College football is a farce and NCAA Football is a digital farce that continues the NCAA’s views that making money off of college football is paramount.  The broken BCS system is just as broken in the video game as it is in real life but now there are gamers clamoring for something worse than fixing issues that plague a game… they want options.

Gamers want to edit players, names, conferences, polls, ranking calculations, awards, coaches, CPU intelligence and many other facets of their game.  This is all simply because that whenever EA Sports slaps together their annual sports titles they are constantly closing off customization more than opening it to users for a better experience.  Maybe they should take a look at how much games like Counter-Strike can become huge in the PC market – all because of modders and an active user base.

NCAA Football 13 went from $60 to $45 rather quickly this year.  It was as if it was a hyped up movie that hit theaters for a week before going to DVD and your local Big Lots bargain bin.  EA Sports has proven over this generation of consoles that there is no level too low for them to stoop in terms of laziness and development to keep your money coming in with their effort consistently falling.  This isn’t to say that Madden NFL doesn’t have issues mind you (we will hit that later) – but with the NCAA season coming to a close and many college football fans looking to next year we must wonder – what is EA going to do in NCAA 14 that will keep gamers from thinking “I’ll just wait until next year – if at all.”?

Let the 2K College Football rumors begin.

If You Ain’t First, You’re Last – Why People Avoid Playing Sports Games Online

If You Find A Great League – Cherish It

Do not let my jaded perspective ruin your desire to find a great league.  I am always looking for a great group of gamers that want to have a genuinely great time playing the game for the sake of fun and community.  There are a few of these almost mythological leagues and dynasties out there.  The hard part is finding one that will accept a new member or finding one that is even looking for new members.

If you are looking for an online league for any sports game you would be wise to check out the forums over at OperationSports.com and TraditionSportsOnline.com.

I would be remissed and it would be unfair to tell you that every league and online experience is terrible.  However, this article is meant to educate you of the downfalls because if you find something great there will be no reason for you to read the rest of this article.  However, if you are looking for honesty with objective, personal experiences and opinions – NoobTubeTV.com is always the best place to find it.

Online Connected Careers could be Madden’s saving grace.
 Why People Avoid Playing Sports Games Online

There is a fine line between friendly competition and taking a game a bit too seriously.  In my early gaming years it was hard for me to take a loss… even to the CPU.  Somehow the ‘Reset’ button would always get hit or I would have something come up that I had to do that would make me turn the game off.  What I started to learn after awhile was that it gave my season quite a bit more enjoyment to lose a game that I either didn’t play well or was simply outclassed by better opposition.

Something happens when you start playing other people in sports games though.  It is as if the stress level increases exponentially and your enjoyment of the game gives way to one thing – winning at all costs.  The issue is starting to climb more and more as online competition becomes more ubiquitous with gaming in general.  There are two primary reasons why online sports gaming is avoided like the plague by a large percentage of sports gamers.

Online Lobbies Are A Cesspool

If you have played a game of Madden NFL online, the chances are good that you have come across someone that either becomes verbally abusive if you start winning or they do something that is almost more annoying.  Cheating or Cheesing (using shortcomings of the game’s AI or a certain play that is almost unstoppable every time) has given gamers a reason to avoid online sports gaming altogether.  In these cases, it really just ruins the game for people that either aren’t experienced or prefer to play a more ‘simulation’ style of game (look for our upcoming article on ‘Simple Ways To Be A ‘Sim’ Gamer’).

Online Leagues Are A Crapshoot

Over the last few years many sports games have started allowing online leagues to form so that groups of gamers could find purpose in what had been up until that point trivial leaderboard competitions at best.  There had been communities of gamers making their own online leagues for years.  It wasn’t until EA Sports gave gamers a chance to run a league with NCAA Football 09 that it became a bit more ‘mainstream’.  In Madden 10, it finally came in the form of the sickeningly bare-bones ‘Online Franchise’ mode.

In order to get Madden you should probably pre-order the game from GameStop.
Personally, I miss his presence in the game that has made his name even more immortal.

Now that all gamers had a chance to join a league in NCAA or Madden Football it was only a matter of time before the friendly leagues with a lot of promise turned into glorified Lobby Matches.  In college football leagues all you need to do is lose a game to effectively end your chances to win a championship and then you start seeing league member quit by the week.

In the pro game, it is a bit more forgiving if you lose a game… or five.  The problem with Madden is that for some reason a lot of the people that play it competitively make it seem like it is a requirement to be rude or make every game into some sort of digital war of  ‘money plays’.  Sure, there are occasions when you will find a decent game but those seem to be as fleeting as the leagues they are a part of.

Who Wants To Wait?

It isn’t a question of whether or not online leagues are a good idea or if there are ‘good’ leagues out there.  For most people, it just isn’t as much fun to play in an online league because they have to wait for other people.

On a personal level, it isn’t uncommon for me to play two or three games at a time during my sports gaming sessions.  If you are in a league with multiple users you usually have to wait on a scheduled advance before you can play another game.  I don’t want to plan my week or my days around other gamers.  If I start a game and in the middle of the first quarter I need to leave for an emergency I don’t want to have to explain myself to anyone, let alone some guy in my league.  If it is a friend, of course they will understand but when you start getting into leagues and ‘official sites’ it can turn into some sort of elitist club of ‘Uncle Ricos’.

 

 

EA Game Changers – The Gaming Equivalent of Congressmen (With Advice On How To Interact In Your Online Communities)

Over the past couple years we have seen tremendous growth from EA Sports’ Madden Franchise.  Some people like to attribute this growing quality to the inclusion of what EA Sports is calling Game Changers from the EA Gaming Community.  A few days ago NoobTubeTV covered some of the biggest issues between non-Game Changers and the Game Changers on an interactive level through forums, Twitter, etc.

The Game Changer program is a fantastic idea that seems to have improved EA Sports games.

After scouring message-boards/forums, news and fan sites (many of which are owned by Game Changers) it is evident that they care deeply about the product they have all but devoted their lives to playing.  It is impressive to see many of these sites talk about the intricacies and details that are either present or missing from some titles.  These dedicated gamers eventually gained such a large audience or member-base that their opinions were held in high regard by EA.

When they first made their trips down to EA to visit the studio and get a first glimpse of the game they were pretty limited in what they got to see.  It was all but a finished game and they got to give some feedback but anything else was off the table until at least the next year.

This year, the Game Changers got a few chances to visit EA Sports and watch as the game made it through Alpha and Beta stages.  They also got to give input and suggestions.  In the process of these visits they aren’t allowed to divulge any information that EA doesn’t give them permission to express to the public.

Power (even a little) can make people change for the worst.

This puts Game Changers into a de-facto position of power.  For many of them, it is something they take with humility.  For others, it seems to be going to their heads and it is starting to leave a sour taste in the minds of many community members.  The issue at hand is that many of these valued members of the community are given a ‘a longer leash’ and sometimes no leash at all (especially on their own personal sites).  You will find that some (a minority really) of the ‘premier’ community leaders (aka Game Changers) choose to take things personally and/or respond to commoners in a rather snarky fashion that would often equate to a warning or ban from forums.  This is a problem that was really bound to happen as it isn’t dissimilar from people voted into political offices of power.  They are given power and then they exploit it with little or no recourse to the people they are supposedly representing.

It is important for all of our readers to remember a few things when it comes to taking an active role in the games and game communities in which you are involved.  Below are some pointers for how to better represent yourself and your views when taking an active role in forums.

  • Be Polite and Professional – many sites have TOS (Terms of Service) that spell out how you should act and which types of interaction and comments are allowed.
  • When In Doubt, DON’T PRESS SEND – If you value your membership in a forum/community and you get angry or annoyed with a fellow member or even the game in general you need to think before you submit some sort of choice words.
  • Choose Your Words Carefully – It is vital that a member doesn’t call anyone out or put them on blast by pointing fingers.  This is often how digital fights of words begin and you better bet on community leaders getting the benefit of the doubt over a common user such as yourself.
  • Don’t Be A Troll – If your mission is to go and instigate other members of the community, you might as well refrain from registering from the site to begin with… but who are we kidding?… You are probably getting ready to submit a rude comment here on NoobTubeTV.  The real problem you will find is that by doing that (on here, at least) your comment will be approved and then it will be responded to in a polite and professional manner – therefore making you look foolish.  Again… don’t be a troll.

Should Sports Games Be A Biennial Release?

If you consider our past reviews and comments on NCAA and Madden Football you will often notice a bit of a jaded view on their development, creativity and AI (Artificial Intelligence) for the CPU controlled players.  This brings something to mind that has been suggested by multitudes of unhappy sports gamers – a biennial release/development cycle.

Most people can agree that sports titles coming out every single year are often no more than roster updates and beta-tests for possible future implementations (see ProTAK in Madden or Mascot Games …smh… in NCAA Football).  It isn’t really unheard of to have biennial development.  Call of Duty still manages to have a new title every year, but they are actually on a two year cycle with Treyarch and Infinity Ward getting a shot every other year.  You can say what you want about how good or bad those titles are, but fact of the matter is that they bring something new to the table strictly because each developer has their one small twist on how the game should play.

Madden and NCAA could use a break every other year.  The fact that EA has the sole license to develop these titles doesn’t really allow for this argument to go any further than a pipe-dream.  However, take a moment to imagine how much better some of these sports games would be in a two-year cycle rather than ten-month cycle.

2K Sports is a prime example of doing well with one game and AWFUL with another.  Their basketball titles are among the best ever made.  Unfortunately, their baseball titles are some of the most glitchy and straight up bad looking sports games out there.  If they were able to jump back into the football fray it would really force EA to step up their game.

This is where the biennial release of an NFL game for each company might pay off.  The downfall is that some people hate how 2K Football games play and feel.  It isn’t like being able to pick up Black Ops after Modern Warfare.  It is more like playing baseball and swinging the bat right-handed all season and then being told that you have to be left-handed next year.

The only other option that will allow the proper amount of improvement is to allow developers to have equal access to make officially licensed sports titles and then let the consumer decide.  EA bought the rights because they knew that they couldn’t compete with some of the things that 2K was doing.  It was a smart business decision, but it was a cowardly way to punk out of having any sort of competition to drive the quality of their games.

How do you feel about this?  Vote in the poll or comment below and be heard!

NCAA Football 13 – The Reviews Aren’t Promising

Football is the most popular sport in the United States.  The people that love the game know it and the hardcore fans of football video games know it too.  So, why does it seem like EA Sports doesn’t really give a damn?

New cover athlete, same game.

If you consider the fact that the only option you have for a legitimate football title (pro or college) is limited to EA Sports, that should tell you enough.  Then you get to live the annual nightmare of playing the same game with different glitches and problems.

The saddest part about NCAA Football is that for a few years it actually stepped up its game enough to be preferred over Madden.  Now we are seeing it fall back into the grand old EA trap of “If it works, let’s break it!” and “If it is broken, let’s put something in slow-motion or ignore it altogether.”

NCAA Football 13 relies heavily on Dynasty Mode for the bulk of its players.  One thing that had been part of NCAA Football for over a decade was being able to export your draft classes to Madden after each year of college football.  While this transition often translated to poorly rated NFL Draft Counter-Parts and other problems (every black player having dreadlocks back in Madden 08, for example) – it was still one heck of a cool feature to have.

Now it is gone.

You have a ‘new’ scouting system and some new ways to sell recruits, but what it all really boils down to is – nothing has really changed.  It has either been tweaked or taken away.

You will (supposedly) notice players have to ‘see’ the ball to make a play on it, but that won’t last long as EA has never had anything like this in a football title and likely will find a way to screw this up like they did with ‘Rocket Catching’ and Linebackers that compensate for bad AI with the ability to leap tall buildings in a single bound.

You might look at this as a harsh criticism, but what it really boils down to is the fact that EA Sports’ football titles are like settling for White Castle’s Sliders.  You may like it at first, but you will pay the price later.

Check out Metacritic to get more reviews.