It's a weird time for the NFL, to say the least. The league has been in a state of suspension since the Super Bowl in February, engaged in a lockout that seems, at the moment, to be lifted. And, of course, the NFL draft is about to kick off tonight amid the confusion. No better time to check out the latest edition of EA Sports' Madden franchise, which was unveiled today in playable form during an event in New York City's Times Square.
Enter EA Sports, which decided to engage in an unorthodox campaign of its own for this year's Madden 12 by putting the yearly cover athlete up for a bracket-based public vote.
In a shocker, the Cleveland Brown's gritty running back Peyton Hillis beat out the controversial Mike Vick, becoming the first cover athlete on EA's box in recent history who most people can't even recognize.
The cover photo shoot happened as a live event in Times Square, and alongside the session were the first playable versions of Madden 12, tucked away in a press tent. Needless to say, I stuck around to play (I'm a bit of a New York Jets fan, in case you didn't know).
I also spoke with Madden 12's art director, Mike Young, and executive producer, Phil Frazier, about how this year's version will fare amid a season that's still very much in flux. In addition, I asked about my continual pet peeve: Bill Belichick's mysterious absence from the Madden franchise. Check out the video above for the interview. Down below, I'll briefly discuss the game and my initial impressions.… Read more