(Wii U)

Madden NFL 13 (Wii U)

Game Review

Madden NFL 13 Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Corbie Dillard

Still solid after all these years

It's hard to believe that it's been 25 years since the first Madden Football release, and given that the game has been released on pretty much every gaming platform imaginable over the years, it was pretty much a given we'd see a release on Nintendo's new console. While Madden NFL 13 on the Wii U has lost a bit of detail and the Infinity physics engine, there are at least a few new hardware-specific features to give the game a little added punch.

Madden NFL has come a long way since the early years. Now not only do you have control of the players, you've got just about total control of all football operations from the top down. This means you'll not just be playing on the field, but drafting and trading players, making personnel decisions, and even calling plays as a coach and coordinator. It's actually shocking just how much involvement you can have in Career Mode. Of course if you're just looking for a quick game, Madden NFL 13 offers that up as well.

"Play Now" is the mode for players just looking to jump right into the game itself. Here you'll be able to choose your teams and hit the field without all of the bells and whistles the other modes involve. There's even an online mode where you can take on players across the world using your EA Origin account. But if you want something a little more meaty, the "Play Career" mode has all you need. Not only can you take on your career as either a coach or player, you can also delve into everything from personnel decisions to calling plays on the field as a coach. And that's just the beginning, as there are a huge number of tasks to perform in this mode that will keep even the most die-hard NFL fan busy.

Gameplay remains fairly standard for a modern Madden NFL title so longtime players should feel right at home. You've got the option of using a variety of controllers including the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, the Wii U Game Pad or the Wii U Pro Controller. Of course, using the Game Pad offers up the use of the touchscreen which can make play-calling a lot easier. You will have to learn the mammoth playbook for the various offenses if you hope to get the calls in before a delay of game penalty is called - and that takes a quick touch and fast thought process.

As if all of the game options weren't enough, Madden NFL 13 also added in a host of additional features. These range from "Fantasy Football" to an assortment of videos to watch. There's also the Madden Gridiron Club that produces a stead stream of new content and player rewards all season long. Needless to say, you will never be at a loss for things to do in Madden NFL 13.

Visually, Madden NFL 13 on Wii U isn't quite up to what you'd expect from a next generation console. The loss of the innovative physics engine of the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions means you're going to get only a set number of player animations, but it's not a big loss once you get past it. The player models themselves are solid, albeit it a bit jagged at times. The frame rate is adequate, but there is a bit more stuttering than you'd expect from the Wii U. As much as it sounds like a broken record, you just expect more from a console with the power of the Wii U.

You can't help but appreciate a great audio package and Madden NFL 13 definitely delivers. From the play-by-play announcing of the CBS sports team of Jim Nance and Phil Simms to the realistic football and crowd sounds, everything in the game sounds just like you're watching football on your couch on a Sunday afternoon. It's clear that EA has really pulled out the stops to make the game as authentic an NFL experience as you could get from an audio standpoint, and it pays off big time in the finished product.


Madden NFL 13 for Wii U might have lost a little in the translation, but it's still a great game with an absolute insane amount of things to do. When you toss in the ability to tackle the game from both a player and coaching standpoint, you get a lot of variety and depth to play with. Given the Wii U's processing power, it would have been nice to see a sharper, more detailed visual presentation, but the difference is so minimal, it's hardly worth complaining. Suffice it to say, if you're a Madden NFL fan and you own a Wii U, this is definitely a title you're going to want to at least consider adding to your game library.

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User Comments (14)



Klimbatize said:

I'm a fan of the Madden games, though I haven't bought any in recent years. If I had a Wii U I'd probably get this. That's only because I don't own a PS3 or 360 though. Sad that the graphics and frame rate on this Wii U version don't even match those older consoles.

I would love a legit port to the 3DS though. The bare-bones one they released at launch actually looked and played pretty well, it just didn't have the additions we were so used to: franchise mode, trades, and, oh I dunno...stats.



PinkSpider said:

So why is this less detailed than the Xbox and PS3 versions. I'm not a sport fan but im getting sick of hearing inferior versions, not as polished, frame rate issues
What are developers doing?



element187 said:

@PinkSpider Rushing ports to market.... the less work they do to a port the more money they work (silly way to calculate profit)

Basically they figure the least amount of time they have to pay developers to port it the lower the costs to produce it is. On a new system, there is more value to release during its launch window than after the launch window (Mainly launches don't get very many new titles released in its first 4 months, so if you have a game released in that window, people who own that system have a higher percentage chance of picking up your game out of sheer boredom than anything else). It's a total copout on publishers to squeeze as much money out of a rushed port as possible. My advice is don't reward publishers for crappy ports.

The first year sports sims are almost never worth it on a new console.



Void said:

I'm quite enjoying this, I really like the new career modes, as a person who doesn't buy the madden games every year, (Infact, the only other one I bought was 08 on the Wii, although my dad has some older ones from the 90s on PC.) I do plan on buying 14' if it has the improved physics engine like the X-Box 360 and PS3 versions.
But I must say the difficulty is rather weird, it feels like the Pro level AI cheats way more than the All-Pro AI.



SonyFACE said:

I have the game for the Wii U and I think it was summed up quite nicely in this review. Same score I would have given it too.



SCAR said:

Ya, I'll be waiting for 14. I've never gotten a Madden game, but since it's improved overall since the beginning, I'm starting to think about buying one finally. I want to draw the plays and do other cool stuff with the gamepad. It would be cool if Madden 14 has 2 Gamepad support for 2-6 players playing the other players along with the Gamepad players.



KAHN said:

meh, sports games have never interested me. i prefer to stay stationary in my own realm of fantasy, where i'm safe. good review though, for what it is.



Chrono_Cross said:

lol madden

lol mario

Great review Corbie. I think I'll wait to pick this up. Too much for a sports game.

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