The most recognizable franchise in video game sports returns for a 20th season of gridiron action.
The constant tweaking of the series continues as well, with the “09” entry unveiling an assortment of new features and updated graphics and animation. Chief among the new offline features is the Adaptive Difficulty Engine, which determines players’ “Madden IQ” by judging their ability to run, pass, and defend. The game then offers players the chance to compete in the four standard difficulty levels, or the new custom “My Skill” difficulty level specifically tailored to their play style. The My Skill difficulty level adjusts after every game, and players can enter the Tron-esque Virtual Trainer to increase their proficiency in any particular area. The new Backtrack feature lets players analyze the last play (complete with telestrator) and learn where they may have gone wrong, and gamers can then use the Rewind feature to try the same play again. The graphics have been tweaked to improve player physiques and create more realistic weather and lighting effects., while new animations include missed field goal returns, bobbled catches, and user-controlled touchdown celebrations.