Madden ’12 Review: Pros, Cons and The Verdict


Senior Writer Josh Hill reviews the new EA Sports Madden 12 in an in-depth 5 part review. All major gaming modes will be explored and reviewed to the fullest extent so you know what you’re buying in Madden 12. EA Sports is in no way affiliated with Pewter Plank or Fansided. In Part 4 of 5, it’s time for PROS, CONS and THE FINAL WORD on Madden 12.


Some of the things Madden 12 got right and we know you’ll appreciate:

  • Revamped Game play style that beefs up graphics and cuts down on annoying controls.
    • All new game intros that feature player introductions
    • Coaching and opponent A.I is enhanced for a richer game play experience.
    • Franchise Mode is the deepest and best it has ever been.
      • Player Roles matter and add an RPG element to the game
      • Player’s performances matter and effect rating from game-to-game
      • All new Free Agent bidding revamps the offseason process and adds excitement
      • Cut Days makes the preseason matter and gives you full control over EVERYTHING!
      • Online play offers rich and plentiful experiences that amp up competition
      • Ultimate Team is a lot better than last year and not so…for lack of a better term, lame.
      • Create your own highlight reel
        • Every play of the game you play can be viewed again and you can create your own SportCenter-esque highlight reel


For everything Madden 12 does outstanding on, it’s not without some annoying flaws that keep it from being perfect. Some of these more annoying and pestering flaws are:

  • Superstar Mode sucks like it did last year
    • You start no matter what, there’s no competition or reason to try hard
    • It’s an offensive heavy game
      • If you’re a defense guy be prepared to be frustrated sometimes by big (and insane) plays
      • Announcing takes a giant leap backwards
        • These guys are ace in real life, but EA butchers the commentary
        • Ultimate team is still…for lack of a better term, lame-ish
          • Not as bad as last year and still fun, but not what it could be.


Madden 12 does a lot of things right in this latest installment. Believe the hype that this is the best edition of Madden to come out in arguably a decade. It has its flaws; there is no way around that. Not even NBA2K11 (which many of you are probably sick

of hearing about by now) was a perfect game and that is tops all-time on my best sports game lists. Madden 12 ranks top 3 without a doubt, and is really only a few flaws away from being a top all-time sports game. The new franchise mode and its sheer depth alone launches it to elite status. The game play is something to adapt to visually, but it’s a double whammy in terms of being a killer standalone and with being combined with Franchise Mode as well as online play. Where Madden drops the ball is again in Superstar Mode where it is a laughable add-on that was put there to use up space. At least I’d hope the reason it sucks so extraordinarily is because all the disk space was used to improve graphics and enhance Franchise Mode.

It can be argued that Superstar Mode is the only massive flaw in Madden 12. Some of the game play gets repetitive and at times is annoying to deal with. The difficulty getting raised is great, but it can be too hard at times. The announcing is terrible in the 2012 edition, and should be removed from game play if you own this edition. But overall, Madden 12 packs enough punch to consider this a grand slam. If you love realistic and authentic game play, or if you’re a franchise mode addict who misses the days when Madden did it right, or both, pick up an edition of Madden 12 and game on man (or woman), game on.

The Official Pewter Plank rating:  9/10 with a STRONG RECCOMENDATION no matter where you are on the Madden scale.

BONUS: If you have the monetary means, and are a football geek (not unlike myself) go out and purchase the Hall Of Fame Edition. That is the version reviewed here. The game play is the exact same as the regular Madden 12 with Peyton Hillis as cover boy.

The Hall of Fame Edition ($89.99) has Marshall Faulk on the cover to commemorate his Hall of Fame induction and his incredible NFL career. Inside is a copy of Madden 12 but also an autographed jumbo card of Marshall Faulk. There are only 125,000 Hall of Fame editions available so there are also only 125,000 of these cards. The cards are made by Panini and are in four different versions. There is one per box and each card is hand signed by Faulk. It’s a must have for any football geek like me who obsess all tings pigskin.

Full Review Contents:

  1. Game Mode
  2. Superstar Mode
  3. Franchise Mode
  4. Online Play
  5. Pros, Cons and the Verdict