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What The Critics Are Saying About Madden NFL 22

The "Madden NFL" games have always had a reputation for being similar to one another. As GamesRadar's Mark Delaney said, the games are generally thought about as "the same every year." However, for fans of the football sim series, it looks like "Madden NFL 22" is a bright spot in the franchise. With some pretty massive changes and additions to the game, "Madden" fans have several good reasons to celebrate.


EA, the developer of "Madden NFL 22," has finally turned its attention to further fleshing out the series' Franchise mode, something that Windows Central's Anthony Nash took as an indication that EA is "actually listening to fans and addressing changes where they need to be made." In fact, Nash called it the "best Franchise mode" the series has had in a long time.

This is exciting news for players of the series in general. However, even though some critics raved over Franchise mode, others had a lot of problems with different areas of the game.

Madden NFL 22 is not up to par with next-gen graphics

Critics took a major issue with the graphics in "Madden NFL 22." Because this is the second "Madden NFL" game to release on next-gen consoles, critics, as well as some players, expected to see more of a jump in graphics. After all, there's no reason that the powerful new consoles couldn't deliver a realistic experience.


However, as IGN's Kat Bailey noted, the game "does not appear to be a large step up from the version of 'Madden 21' that ran on the PS4 Pro or Xbox One X." Bailey explained further that the game "tinges much of the graphics in a sickly shade of green" that's not desirable. Forbes' Brian Mazique had similar thoughts on the game's graphics, arguing that there's not a "big enough gap" between the two generations of consoles to "wow" anyone.

That wasn't the only downside to the game, either. Bailey and Nash pointed out that bugs were rampant in the game — although, in Bailey's words, this is almost expected of a "Madden NFL" game.

Overall, Madden NFL 22 is better than expected

One of the best additions to the game is the new home-field advantage mechanic, which, as Mazique pointed out, has never been done correctly in other sports games. The new mechanic adds runs on momentum, also called M-Factors. These M-Factors give the player team small advantages that trigger during home games if players can get the fans excited with major plays. While the older NCAA Football games had a home-field advantage mechanic, it mainly focused on making things harder for the visiting team instead of boosting the home team, as IGN explained back in 2008.


Even if the graphics didn't live up to expectations, "Madden NFL 22" does add cutscenes to its roster of new additions, which both Bailey and Mazique appreciated. Ctitics stated that the cutscenes created a more realistic world compared to previous games that only allowed players to be on the field.

While the game is nowhere near perfect, it's a solid "Madden" title. Nash argued that it's a great entry for people who fell away from the franchise to come back and play. Who can ask for something better when the games have been, as Nash called them, "stale" for years? Since the "Madden" curse was officially broken in 2020 — maybe the games' stagnation curse will be broken with "Madden NFL 22."