Madden NFL 07

Madden NFL 07 Review for Wii

On: WiiXbox 360PS3PCDSPS2XboxPSPGBACube

The next installment in the long running series.

Review Verdict Read Review
8Out of 10
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Madden on the Wii is a breath of fresh air
Madden on the Wii is a breath of fresh air

Madden on the Wii is a breath of fresh air

Criticizing EA for releasing what is seemingly the same Madden year-over-year with minimal adjustments has become a sort of favourite past-time of mine. However, this year's entry into the Madden franchise was different, and oddly enough, an enormous improvement over previous years. And while the 360, PS3 and current-gen versions ended up being great titles in their own right, it's the Wii version, designed specifically from the ground up, that's the real winner here.

Madden for Wii comes jam-packed with all the bells and whistles we've come to expect, and plenty more, but the biggest selling point is its unmatched control. Madden for Wii makes full use of both the Wii-mote and nunchuk attachment, allowing even the most inexperienced of footballers to make Devin Hester-like kick-return touchdowns, or 60-yard TD passes like Peyton Manning. With a simple flick of the wrist, you can execute highlight-reel-worthy jukes and spins, and it's all done exceptionally well on the Wii. Passing, for example, is pulled off by swinging the remote as if you were throwing the ball.

Juking and stiff arming on the other hand are assigned to the nunchuk and Wii-mote respectively; moving your arm left or right results in your player mirroring that gesture in the same direction. You'll even find yourself lifting the controllers into the air to make the catch. Better yet, there are a few additional features that are bound to ignite an ear-to-ear smile on your face, like when you have to raise your hands in the air and wave your arm to call for the fair catch, or when you take control of the ball carrier's legs and thrust the remote forward and back in tandem to initiate a speed burst. Yes, chances are you'll get mocked for doing this in front of your friends, but put the Wii-mote in their hands and good luck getting it back.

Thankfully, Madden provides first-time players with 'Learn Madden' - an interactive and welcomed tutorial, outlining every aspect of the game's control - so when you do jump into the game (trust me, you'll want to take this tutorial before you do), you won't be missing out on all the motion sensing goodness.

'... you have to raise your hands in the air and wave your arm to call for the fair catch...'

As invigorating as it can be to send bullet passes by swinging the remote, or getting the crowd to cheer by moving the controller up and down, not every play made a smooth transition to the Wii. I'll put it simply: kicking is a bitch. I've spent countless hours trying to master what is arguably one of the most important aspects of the game. It's not that I need to be able to pull off Matt Bryant field goals blindfolded - though that would be awesome - but missing game winners close to the goal can be costly, and frustrating.

Despite losing sleep trying to nail down the mechanics, kicks will still veer off to the left and right, and are rarely, if ever, directly on target. Likewise, on the defensive side of things, stripping the ball from a player - performed by lunging the remote forward and then back - rarely results in a successful turnover. The Big Hit move, where you shove both attachments forward in an attempt to send the quarterback or ball carrier to the hospital, is equally hit and miss.

That being said, three misses out of a dozen hits isn't a shabby record at all, and Wii's motion sensing capabilities make Madden an absolute blast to play, especially when you get a group of friends together who are willing to ignore how ridiculous they look and play a few games. Better still are the Wii-exclusive multiplayer mini-games, including an excellent 2 on 2 mode.

What the Wii version does lose points on is its lack of online functionality - a huge selling point of any sports game these days - and under par visuals when compared to its big brothers. As great as Madden looks on the Wii, comparable to the GCN version, and although it boasts widescreen and progressive scan support, it's hard to go from the sexy 720p shine the 360 version sports to a title that, visually, appeared on consoles years ago.

Kicking is a slight problem, but not game breaking.

Kicking is a slight problem, but not game breaking.

Then again, there's the age old debate of gameplay over graphics, and much like Twilight Princess, Madden is a prime example of when that proves to be true. You'd be hard-pressed to find a more entertaining football experience, and this is coming from a guy who swore never to play virtual football again when 2K got kicked into touch by EA.

Controls aside, Madden 07 for the Wii is essentially identical to the last-gen versions. Franchise mode makes an appearance, complete with fantasy draft, and almost everything else is present and correct: training sessions, create-a-player, and my personal favourite, Superstar mode, which like Oblivion earlier last year, gave a beating to my social life.

As great as it was to get hold of Twilight Princess after what seemed like years of delays, Wii owners should be celebrating Madden with equally open arms. Having been playing the series since its early heydays in the 90s, I can honestly say I haven't had this much fun with a football game in decades. Add a few friends into the gridiron mix and you're coming away with one of the best Wii experiences yet. If this is any indication of what the future holds for Nintendo and EA, then Wii owners have much more to cheer about than just getting another Mario.

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hotwadd's Avatar

hotwadd

this has allways been the best madden outing on all platforms...this was unfortunatley the last sound playable madded title...this is fantastic on the wii too....just horw they managed to nause-up the last too with numerous bugs and poor design well never know.....and nfl tour????? sweet jesus what a pile of pap!!! iam a huge gridiron fan and pplayed for some years as well as owning every years title since back in 92 on the megadrive...ea should open ud this franchise to competition again then maybe theyll have to inmprove.......ive been playing blitz the league 1 and 2 which are what they say they are....fun...whatcha think guys???
Posted 17:42 on 03 May 2009
Vallentin's Avatar

Vallentin

Well said shagnew, Madden is an excellent addition to anyone's game library and will definitely put an end to your social life.
Posted 02:00 on 22 January 2007
shagnew's Avatar

shagnew

.... I think so! My logic behind getting a Wii was to have such titles as Zelda & Mario back in my life. This experience has not let me down as Zelda is an amazing game with a huge 60 hours playing (in which i am currently 23 hours into) plus I cannot wait for Mario to be released!.....

However, there was many rumours speculating that the new Madden was ground breaking with the Wii remote system? I questioned whether this could or indeed would work on arguably one of the most popular franchises in the gaming world!

First & foremost, I spent my whole student life with Madden & absolutely love it.....esp. the xbox & 360 versions (N.B I may be abit "pro-madden" from the outset). Anyway, I bought the game with no real expectations, no thought of the Wii remote & how it would be able to intergrate into Madden's consistent & reliable system of play..... (some say boring but I say that if it ain't broken don't try & fix it).
.... I did wonder as it loaded whether the Wii had bitten off more than it could chew but happily I can report that without doubt MADDEN NFL 07 is the best game on the Wii (apart from Zelda)

Madden has to be played to be believed on the Wii! The remote system has transformed a dated game & brought this franchise into (in my opinion) the next gen (I was f**king stupid to question Madden, those crafty Americans). As Mr Vallentin states, the kicking system is some what flawed, but the rest of the game is PACKED FULL with features & game modes. This will keep any gamer happy for months. But were I think Madden comes into its own is the multi-player mode. I played one of my mates & we had a couple of hours of Madden madness. My friend who f**king hates the Wii & everything it stands for said that Madden was a breath of fresh air in a boring market place of gaming at the moment for sport games.

I would advise anyone who likes Madden or likes an addictive & fun game to purchase this title!...... however be warned you will lose your job, girlfriend & probably any desire to keep clean (as all three mentioned just are a waste of time when Madden could be played*)

* OK clearly taking the piss but get this game **
Posted 09:45 on 19 January 2007

Game Stats

Madden NFL 07
8
Out of 10
Madden NFL 07
  • Chock-full of features, some specifically for the Wii
  • Mini games
  • Great use of the motion sensing controls
  • Flawed kicking system
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Release Date: 08/12/2006
Platforms: Wii , Xbox 360 , PS3 , PC , DS , PS2 , Xbox , PSP , GBA , Cube
Developer: Electronic Arts
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Genre: Sports
No. Players: 1-4
Rating: PEGI 3+
Site Rank: 2,274 2
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