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The Madden 24 gameplay is a hot topic of conversation among fans seeking to play out their NFL dreams in the game. After a successful title in Madden 23, EA is bringing some new features to Madden 24 that will elevate it to the next level.
Last year’s ‘Hit Everything’ system has been given a revamp, and new systems for passing, catching, and AI awareness will all be prevalent. With EA Sports releasing its Madden 24 Gameplay Deep Dive today, loads of new details are now available for fans to dig into, and we’re here to shed light over the most important bits and pieces that were revealed so far.
Madden 24 gameplay
Expect the best gameplay yet. A revised awareness system will make playing against AI much more challenging, with players more likely to find space and play true to life. If you leave a gap, you best believe the likes of Pat Mahomes and Lamar Jackson will find it!
“Our players told us the gameplay was good last year, it’s even better in Madden NFL 24 with innovations in three key areas.,” explained Connor Dougan, Senior Game Design Director, at the Madden 24 Preview Event at EA Redwood Shores.
“One, our FieldSENSE gameplay system, adding more realism and building on the foundation that we set last year. Two, foundational football. I think in any year in the last ten years, the sheer volume of investment in foundational football is more than anything I can remember. Then, the introduction of new SAPIEN Technology, which is our new player skeleton.”
All three areas combine to create the most true to life gaming experience for Madden fans. The game will look and feel more realistic than ever before, and the new sapien technology will ensure that players do not take any demonic forms on the field.
FieldSENSE Hit Everything 2.0
After the introduction of FieldSENSE Hit Everything in Madden 23, EA is introducing its Hit Everything 2.0 system into Madden 24 gameplay. And a big change that is coming with it, is that it will transform previously passive and confused blockers into effective players on offense. Bubble screens may actually work in Madden 24 after a season on the sidelines.
“We’ve taken the branching technology from our hit everything system and added it to our blockers which will allow for them to branch in and out of double teams quickly, as well as flow from block to block right very fluidly,” explained former Dallas Cowboys and Seattle Seahawks DE Kenneth Boatright, Game Designer.
“What’s important about this is with the AI changes that we’ve made, elite blockers are going to stick out a lot more and they’re going to dominate even more when you’re going up against smaller defenders.”
In Madden 23, blockers were updating too frequently, leading them to never lock on to a single target and affect the play. This will change in Madden 24 with a new frostbite navigation grid as players will more effectively recognise threats and react accordingly. Moreover, Madden 24 has extended the stand-up tackles system from Madden NFL 23 to the offense, which now unlocks a blockers’ ability to join in on a gang tackle and push a pile forward.
Tackle System & Types
Alongside the new blocking systems, EA has revamped its contested catch/tackle system, and introduced three new tackle types. As part of Madden 24 gameplay, you will see your defense applying contested swats in an attempt to prevent pass completion. Players will also have more control to defend curls routes, slants, and streaks with a variety of realistic outcomes and new animations.
The same players will also look to utilise a hit on catch technique if a swat is unavailable, and not just in jump-catch situations. This should lead to more tackles dislodging the football from the receiver, once again rendering the pass incomplete. In addition, smaller defenders will now take out the legs of bigger ball carriers, while on the other hand, bigger defenders will be able to perform ‘Big Man Wrap’ tackles that drive the ball carrier back.
The three new tackle types in Madden 24 are scoop, wrap, and mismatch. These tackles will be applied in specific scenarios, with individual players on the field aware of the tackle type they need to apply. This is not to mention that Madden 24 added and adjusted over 1,700 tackle animations as well, making their tackling feature one of the most revamped areas of their gameplay.
Skill Based Passing 2.0
EA’s focus has not just been on defense and the trenches though. New enhancements to passing and catching will feature in Madden 24 gameplay, including momentum catching, dive catches, and improved catch selection.
“One of the feedbacks we got with the skill base pass mechanic, some of the psychic DB activity kind of took away from the pleasure of the mechanic,” explained Boatright. This time around, players won’t be reacting to the ball if they are facing the wrong way on the field.
Adding to more realistic offensive plays, receivers will have a better catch selection with three main catch zones. The three catch regions will be jump, normal, and dive, which will decide which catch style your receiver opts for. Furthermore, players will be able to hit a receiver in stride and maintain speed, which is a key momentum catch upgrade from Madden 23.
There will also be new and improved passing visuals and animations, which include new jump and dive passes. Madden 24 also added more no-look pass animations and altered the pass placement on missed throws so that they are more within reach to catch upon diving or completing tough grabs.
So if you love being the quarterback, Madden 24 should feel incredible. Kansas City Chiefs QB Mahomes has a unique dive pass animation in Madden 24 too, so expect to see that shown off by EA!
This year in Madden 24, EA is introducing a gameplay design feature known as SAPIEN Technology. The idea behind featuring the SAPIEN skeleton is to make sure that the movement of the players on the field look and feel as real as possible. The way that Madden 24 will achieve this reality is through their new SAPIEN skeleton, which ensures all the player models and NFL athlete data now perform fluidly once mapped.
So not only is this new technology going to provide a big lift for the fluidity of the gameplay, but it will enhance the gameplay visually as well. Fans will be able to see this firsthand from the ‘heavy-type’ players, but also from non players such as coaches, officials, female characters, and fans. This SAPIEN skeleton appears to be Madden’s new gameplay tool of the future, and one that will elevate the overall smoothness the game has to offer in a major way.
EA is introducing a new wave of foundational football changes to bring out the most authentic Madden experience ever, including new logic for live ball moments, defensive AI reads, quarterback AI, and ball carrier AI. Although Madden 24 covers a slew of new upgrades it has for each, we touch upon the most important down below.
Fumble Recoveries & Onside Kicks
The first change is that players will behave more realistically when scrambling to recover the football, and can recover the ball while on the ground rather than attempting to get back to their feet first. Hundreds of new fumble recovery animations will be featured in Madden 24 accompanied by more realistic reaction times and improved tip ball physics.
Just like in passing situations, player logic now dictates slower reaction times from those unaware of the scenario. If a player is not looking, they will react slower to the fumble or loose ball rather than instantly knowing where to be.
Players will also have spatial awareness when recovering the ball. In a “city fumble” situation, players will know to dive on the ball as they are in a crowded zone. In “country fumble” scenarios, players will attempt to scoop up the ball and run to gain ground or even score.
Quarterback AI Logic
The second major change is to the quarterback AI logic. Madden 24’s new Al quarterback logic has been completely revamped to make the opposing quarterbacks play like their real-life counterparts. And to make things more challenging on defense, all quarterbacks will use Skill Based Passing, catering a much more competitive defensive experience.
Moreover, every quarterback will be able to use the new pathfinding technology for evading pressure and in the open field. What this means, is that mobile quarterbacks like Lamar Jackson and Justin Fields are more true to their real life tendencies than ever before.
Playbooks & Post-Play Emotion
Madden 24 will be home to 70+ new offensive formations which will contain 500+ new plays across all 32 NFL teams playbooks. The aim with doing so was predicated on providing a greater level of authenticity with each NFL team’s scheme while also adding a special flare of uniqueness with each’s playbook.
Lastly, Madden 24 will be setting the bar of player emotion in the game to a whole new level. By overhauling their post-play engine and introducing thousands of new animations, fans will get to see every player on the field reacting to a play in a true-to-life manner. Whether they’re tossing the ball back to the referee, talking some trash, or organically joining in on a touchdown celebration, EA put in a lot of work to maximize the feel, energy and emotion in every moment within Madden 24.
Image Credit: EA Sports Madden 24