Madden NFL 15 Connected Franchise Detailed

By Chewie,
Apparently there are a whole host of changes being brought to EA Sports' latest in their long-running American Football series, Madden NFL 15. To prove this, Senior Designer Josh Looman has brought out details of the changes coming to the game's Connected Franchise mode.

Game Prep and Confidence

Replacing Madden NFL 25's Practice and Hot/Cold Streaks, these two new systems focus on making sure a team is as prepared as possible for upcoming games. Players have a confidence rating between 1 and 99 that shifts dynamically week-to-week depending on how the last game went. Things like losses and trades can affect confidence and, depending on if the player is a starter or backup and how bad the loss is, the amount of confidence lost can change. Confidence has an effect on a player's key ratings, giving a boost if it's high or drop if it's low. This new system is designed to try and replicate the unexpected times when a player performs much better or worse than their stats sheet would suggest.

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Game Prep allows players to prepare their teams using a set amount of time between games. Each activity chosen represents a different block of time and are split between confidence raising and XP raising activities. Coach traits and development traits determine how effective these activities are and some activities, such as drills, can be played to improve the XP or confidence boosts. If players aren't bothered with this level of control, the CPU can be left to automatically decide which prep activities to use.

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Free Agency Redesign

Now players will look at other elements of your team, including coaching ability, to decide if they want to sign with you, not just the money you're offering.

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Random Draft Classes

A change asked for by fans consistently, this brings randomly generated elements to draft classes, including names, ratings, traits and faces, meaning no two seasons or classes are alike.

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Random Branching Storylines

Rookie storylines now also have randomly generated events, leading to more player changes and branching stories.

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In-Game Overall Ratings

Overall (OVR) ratings will now align to the depth charts.

Completely Redesigned Relocation Uniforms

Relocation uniforms have been fully redesigned to meet a much higher quality level than previous outputs. Uniform styles will vary from team to team for increased variety and flexibility.

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Redesigned Buy Packages Screen

Purchasing packages as a player, coach or owner is now more streamlined, allowing for multiple packages to be bought at once, rather than one at a time.

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Owner Mode Financial Model Changes

Owner Mode has seen some big changes, including sweet spots for all sellable items to try and maximize profits and increased financial challenges when deciding whether to build new stadiums or relocate altogether.

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Sim To

Players can now simulate to different points in the future, allowing progression across multiple seasons for up to ten years.

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Removed FOURTH Down Watching

Players will no longer be kept on the field if they are a holder on extra points or blocker on a field goal during the fourth down.

Progression/Regression Recap

A new screen will now make it easier to track why players have progressed or regressed, especially in the offseason.

Redesigned Weekly Goals

Weekly goals now refresh and react to elements such as player status and team ratings so they are more consistently attainable.

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Multiple Commissioners

The new Commissioner Tool allows online commissioners to assign alternate commissioners to keep the league advancing.

Autopilot Control

Autopilot can now be set to run for specific time periods to accommodate time away from direct control.

Relocation Tuning and League Setting

The CPU will now rarely relocate teams too early in CFM mode. They will be more likely to rebuild their home stadium than move. In fact, a new setting allows players to turn off the ability for the CPU to move at all.

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Injured Reserve (IR) Changes

Once per season, a player can now be pulled out of Injury Reserve if they heal quickly.

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Hire/Fire Staff During the Season

Staff members such as head coaches, trainers and scouts can now be hired and fired mid-season.

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Pro Bowl Update

To make it more life-like Pro Bowl has been adjusted so two legends serve as captains, rather than a reliance on conference affiliations.

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CPU Uses Alternate Uniforms

CPU teams will occasionally wear alternate uniforms.

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The below trailer focuses on a couple of these changes in action:

Does that long list of changes give Madden fans confidence that the latest iteration is heading in the right direction? In addition to these updates, new sets of ratings have been released comparing teams across the conferences and divisions.

Madden NFL 15 is due to be released on August 26th, 2014 in North America and August 29th in Europe.
Written by Chewie
Chewie is a Wookiee from Kashyyyk. Since helping the Rebel Alliance defeat the Emperor, he has taken up Achievement-Hunting and Newshoundery on TA. Also, ice-skating.
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