One of the best ideas that EA ever had for its mobile games was to stop putting out different versions of its sports titles on an annual basis and just stick with a single title per sport that receives annual updates. Madden NFL Mobile has definitely been better off for it, and has kept this writer playing longer than ever would have been possible under the old system as a result.
While the actual NFL season is still several weeks away, Madden season is upon us now. The first thing you'll notice is that the game has a new cover athlete (though that term doesn't actually make much sense for a mobile game, really). Odell Beckham Jr. is out. Rob Gronkowski is in. Gronk on.
The hard work of building up a top team also starts all over again -- or nearly all over, as we'll discuss -- with teams being reset for all users. This happened in 2015, and EA has been very upfront about it throughout, so there should be a minimum of gnashing of teeth from gamers. Your team from last year remains in your own personal hall of fame, and can be dusted off for certain Legacy Live Events.
Rest assured, though, that Madden NFL Mobile is bringing more to the party that just updated rosters. Here's what you can expect as you get back to football.
New moves, new controls
The mobile Madden has always been a simplified version of the real thing, but it's slowly but surely adding more options while keeping things touchscreen appropriate. On offense, the big new addition is QB scrambles, activated by a button that pops up when you roll out of the pocket. Just tap it and take off.
Pass rushers received new ways to pull off power or finesse moves based on swiping down (for power) or to either side (for finesse). They aren't quite as responsive as you might like, but at least they're intuitive.
Definitely an area that has been crying out for attention, the offensive playbooks have been buffed up with what EA says are more than 50 new plays. You'll notice the difference even early on, but you'll still have to level up numerous times before you start to unlock a decent variety.
New league hub
The league hub has been completely revamped and refreshed. It's easy to see what kind of events are available for you league, scroll down through the league members, and keep in touch with a very prominent message board.
New league achievements give everyone a stake in earning some terrific rewards, which depend on the total amount of yardage and points scored. All told, it appears leagues will be an even bigger focus for the new season.
There's more to explore, including new Live Events and Defensive Gameplans, but we'll leave those for you to explore. Get a head start on real life and jump into what's new in Madden right now.