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How Late NFL Legend John Madden Changed a Key Feature Of Madden ’03 With His Intelligence

Published 01/02/2022, 1:30 PM EST

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via Reuters

The final days of 2021 saw the sad passing of Football legend John Madden on Tuesday, December 28. Madden has become a household name for both football fans and gamers, given his iconic status that has been created through EA’s NFL series.

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John Madden has always played a key role in bringing up the NFL franchise, ever since he agreed to have his likeness be used by EA in 1984. Almost every feature and attribute in the simulation game, loved by players all over the world, has some association with coach Madden.

Have a look at how the legendary coach influence helped shape key features of the game as seen in this clip posted on Reddit.


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John Madden and his crucial role in shaping EA’s NFL games

John Madden was always critical of the changes EA would come to consult him regarding. Trip Hawkins, the founder of Electronic Arts, had initially suggested a 7 on 7 simulation of football instead of the traditional 11-on-11 followed in the real-life NFL. John Madden had immediately resented this idea and said “this isn’t really football.” Hawkins agreed with Madden, and this is one of the major reasons NFL never followed the 7-on-7 format.

In this video posted by user u/JRoq_Football on Reddit, Madden can be seen suggesting some crucial changes to the “Create Play” option in Madden’03.


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Madden had always focussed on realism ever since the start of the new franchise; he instructed the devs at EA on creating defensive players and their tackling attributes. Furthermore, he had also laid out the foundation for linemen stances used during certain formations.

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According to EA’s founder Trip Hawkings, Madden had always taken the development process of these games quite seriously. He said, “Whatever John says is the final word. He had that kind of presence and the ability to be the commander. It didn’t matter that I was running my company, he’s still going to tell me what to do.”


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The football world, including fans and players alike, will definitely miss the iconic presence of Coach Madden in the sport. The good thing is he has been immortalized as a legend by EA, courtesy of the Madden franchise.

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Written by:

Siddid Dey Purkayastha


One take at a time

Siddid Dey Purkayastha is an eSports author for EssentiallySports and is currently pursuing his Bachelor of Arts degree at Christ (Deemed to be University). He has always been into gaming since the ripe age of 9 and has never looked back. Apart from his deep love for narrative-driven or campaign-based games, he enjoys casually playing online games such as Valorant, Fortnite, FIFA Ultimate Team, Warzone, and GTA Online.
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