The universe is a scant 33 days away from the NFL Draft and to celebrate, EA's Peter Moore posted the first Madden NFL 10 screenshot on his official blog:
Look at it. Look. At. It. Even though it's tough to judge a game by its first screenshot, the crispness, detail and sideline Gatorade coolers make me feel funny in my tummy.
Moore didn't reveal too many details beyond the standard "we're making it better" and "we're really excited" party line, but did impart that the team has been hard at work trying to push the performance envelope for the current generation of consoles.
To quote Moore, "We're hitting the real sweet spot of development for this generation of consoles as the team is really hitting its stride in squeezing every ounce of power and capability from the hardware." He went on to say "From everything I have seen in Madden NFL 10 so far this year, the authenticity of gameplay is showing striking improvement in physics, realism and responsiveness."
According to the Madden NFL 10 developer's blog, one of those major improvements is "Procedural Awareness" a dynamic targeting system that has already been implemented in some other EA Sports titles. Procedural Awareness is a mildly complicated technical concept and if you’d like to read about it in-depth, you can check out the developer’s blog here; However, for the purposes of this exercise I’ll explain it like this: you know how sometimes when you’re trying to run pass plays and you think you have a wide receiver wide open and then seemingly out of nowhere, a defender locks on without any warning and intercepts the ball? Yeah, Procedural Awareness will help alleviate that problem by helping players turn their heads around to face targets. At least now you’ll know when you’re about to make a horrible pass. Yeah, that’s right. I’m lookin’ at you Favre (Brett leads the NFL with the most career interceptions...310! CONGRATS, COVER BOY!)
Annual sports games have become so much more than just roster updates. Now that development teams are intimately familiar with the hardware and its capabilities, I think we’re really going to see a push towards a more essential football experience and a game that not only focuses on technical gameplay, but one that captures the mood and electrically charged atmosphere of any given Sunday.
Moore also noted that we’ll be getting a lot more Madden NFL 10 news soon, including more info on improvements, the game’s release date and who will be cursed...I mean, on the cover. Sadly, no word on when we get Turducken or who gets to ride on Madden’s bus.