Tuesday, February 28, 2012

How to beat the shake blitz

Shake blitzing occurs when a 155 defense is moving all of their linebackers from side to side before the snap.  This tends to confuse the offensive line after the ball is snapped.

Here are some Madden online tips to follow to help counter these shake blitzes: 

In passing situations, use slants, drags, curls and, in/out routes.  Shake bliting defenses will tend to force you to pass the ball quickly so use quick routes.

Also, most shake blitzing defenses will likely send all of their linebackers.  So, the middle area of the field will be vulnerable to the defense.  Attack this area with your passes.

Try to avoid using a play from under center.  Pass from a Gun formation.  The extra ground will allow for extra time to get a pass off. 

When running the ball use a power set so you have plenty of blockers against the blitz.  Pinching the line should also help.  If you are running to the outside, snap the ball when the linebackers start "shaking" to the opposite side. 

Final Thoughts
Let the play clock run down until there's about 1-3 seconds left.  This will help force your (button mashing) opponent to work a little bit harder at what they are trying to achieve.

Madden NFL 12

Monday, February 13, 2012

Beating Cover 3

Cover 3 

Cover 3 defenses can usually get beaten by Strong Flood plays or plays where there's a curl on one of the wide outs and also someone running a flat route to the same area of the field.  While occupying the flat zone, you can attack the area that is open between the flat zone and the deep blue zone.  The RB or TE will run flat routes and an outside WR will run a streak while an inside WR will run an out route.  The flats defender is taken by the receiver running the flat route while the streak occupies the deep blue zone which leaves a hole in the defense for the out route.

Using 3 Receivers on one side of the field
Also, use formations with 3 receiving targets on one side of the field and do the following:

1.  One receiver runs a streak.   
2.  Use a route that attacks the buzz (purple) zone area such as outside slants.
3.  Use a route that attacks the flats.

Against Press Defense
If the defense is using a press coverage you can hot route one of your better wide receivers to a streak. You can hit him right after he breaks free from the press defender and before he gets to the safety in the deep blue zone.

Cover 3 is also known for being a bit weak on streaks up the hash marks.  Use a snugs or bunch formation and streak the inside receiver.

How to read Cover 3
After all of the players on the defensive side have lined up in the chosen formation, keep an eye on the two safeties.  If it's Cover 3 the two safeties slightly rotate together towards deep middle of the field.  In a Cover 2 defense there is no movement by either the safeties.

Madden NFL 12

Thursday, February 9, 2012

7 Madden tips for beating bumps and nanos

1.  Use at least one wide reciever who is good at beating the press.  Study a player's REL (release) attribute.  In Madden NFL 12, Dwayne Bowe and Hakeem Nicks have one of the best REL ratings.

2.  Spread the defense by using spread formations.  This will make it more difficult for the defense to bump.  If you have a reciever that does not have anyone lined up, hot route him into a slant in route.

3.  Use unbumpable routes such as C routes or routes where the reciever double fakes a slant-in like what is seen with the square receiver below:

4.  Send your recievers in motion followed by an immediate snap.  This will help turn some routes into unbumpable ones.

5.  Set up extra blockers to gain some extra time by hot routing your half Back or Tight End to block.

6.  Use a Gun formation with two players in the backfield.  These players will not get bumped thus will be more difficult to cover.

7.  Using a hurry up offense can help prevent your opponent from having enough time to setup his blitz.

Madden NFL 12

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Substitution Tactics in Madden Ultimate Team

The overall enjoyment of online head to head play seems to fade away as your team's OVR rating rises above 90.  I think one of the main reasons for this may be that some of the more advanced players that have become successful in Madden Ultimate Team are able to build an elite team.  An advanced player can probably be listed under two categories.  There the skilled players and then there are players that may not be as skillfull but still have a knowledge of certain Madden programming defects that help aide their successes.

I try to keep my team between 80-85 OVR rating.  This helps level the playing field to some degree.  Lately, I've noticed some teams pausing the game to auto reset their depth-chart.  In the online head to head match-up screen before a game, some teams will appear to have the same OVR as your team.  But, some teams may also have some superstars on their roster that are not listed in the starting lineup.  These players won't be included in a team's OVR rating but that doesn't mean they won't be participating in the game.

The online match-up screen does have a way to allow you to preview your opponents depth chart before the game but this feature hasn't been very stable, on PS3 at least.  If the depth chart preview is used too much or is pulled up at an inopportune time, Madden has been known to freeze up.  Lately, it seems to be working better but EA hasn't confirmed whether or not it has been fixed. 

The depth chart preview feature isn't always reliable and sooner or later you'll have to face an opponent who will either pause the game to reorder the depth chart or they will do something that is less conspicuous and sub in their superstars between plays.  Until EA is able to find a way to address these hidden roster tactics, my new philosophy will be "if you can't beat them, join them".

To be more successful in Madden Ultimate Team, I would recommend keeping some superstars at a few positions on your roster.  If your opponent pauses at the beginning of the game use this opportunity to auto-reorder the roster.  You can't stop your opponent from doing the same thing so might as well do it yourself.  I would also recommend familiarizing yourself with the Madden substitution user interface and start subbing in superstars between plays.  Everybody else does it so you might as well start doing the same. 

On offense, I have a pretty strong offensive line except at the Center and Right Guard positions.  Before a play, I'll choose a formation and sub in my superstar C and RG.  On defense, I use an all silver defensive line in my starting lineup and a couple medium value outside linebackers.  In between plays, I'll choose a formation and then sub in my top-notch defensive ends and linebackers.  On the next play, the same substitutions will remain if I'm using the same formation.

When playing Madden Ultimate Team always remember to first watch out for your own interests, because others will be watching out for theirs.

Madden NFL 12

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Football Playbook Designer

Madden Ultimate Team

Have you ever found a Madden NFL Football write-up on the internet and gotten a bit overwhelmed by all of the changes needed in order for the play to be run effectively?  Some users go into practice mode and "lab" these write-ups for several hours until they get everything down.  I imagine most users, like myself, either don't have the time to lab or might lose interest in labbing after a while. 

To help speed up my learning process I have attempted to mark hot routes from the write-up to a playbook image and then I would refer to it during the Online game.  This works pretty well but it takes a lot of time to edit each playbook image.  Instead of drawing up plays I came up with a Greasemonkey script which allows you to drag and drop hot routes onto a playbook image. 

This script will currently run on the http://www.primamadden.com/free-preview website. (This site hosts all of the team playbooks for Madden NFL 12). 

How to use:
1.  Go to an offensive playbook page and then scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page. 
2.  Here you will find buttons for each hot route that is available on Madden NFL Football.  Also, included are some "player motion" graphs and slide protect images.
3.  Click on a button and then the hot route image will appear on the page. 
4.  Drag the hot route over the old route in the playbook formation image.

Now you can have a visual representation of your write-ups.

Download Madden NFL 12 Playbook Designer.

Madden Ultimate Team

Madden NFL 12

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Madden Ultimate Team Tips

Buy Gold Packs
Buying gold packs (not premium gold packs) seems to give you best bang for your coins.  Buy a gold pack (6,ooo coins), look through the pack and determine which cards you want to keep for your team and collect the cards you need for your collections.  Post the rest of the cards to the auction block for 10,000 bid and 10,000 buy now.  For best results, set your auctions to expire after 1 or 2 hours during peak times.

By default, the buy now value is 30,000 coins for gold cards.  When a buyer sees 10,000 BIN (buy now) they will be more apt to buy your card.  You can also discard cards that are not part of a collection and get back 750 coins.  So essentially, you can get back at least 2/3 the amount of coins you used to purchase a gold pack through discards and selling popular cards on the auction block.

Also, do some research on cards that you are posting to the auction. Do an auction search for your card. If the search comes up with more than 100 you will have a more difficult time selling the card then say a card that comes back with less than 30 in the list.

Legend Pack Strategy
Another way to earn coins is to buy a legend pack.  If you are lucky enough to get a Gale Sayers, Barry Sanders, or Jerry Rice in a pack you can put it up on the auction block for about 100,000 coins.  You can probably build your entire team off of the sale of a Dan Marino, for example.

Free Coins
In the Madden NFL 12 menu, sign up for fantasy football with NFL.com and then log your team into Madden NFL 12 and you will get 3,000 coins.

Madden NFL 12

Monday, October 24, 2011

Madden Ultimate Team Coach Boost Tips

In this year's Madden Ultimate Team, a majority of the coaches have positive and negative boosts which seem to make quite a difference on how your team performs.  I might be wrong about this but a coach's overall rating does not seem to make that much of an impact like it did in previous years.  Right now I'm using Raheem Morris because of his +3 zone coverage.  His negative boost is -3 Pass Block Footwork.  I have seen my pass blocking take a bit of a hit but I could always build my offensive line to compensate.

Two other coaches that caught my eye were Marvin Lewis (+3 press, -3 Play Action) and Lovie Smith (+3 Pursuit, -3 Throw on the run).  I would think one could easily build an offensive scheme without the use of the Play Action pass and it's not too difficult to pass the ball while staying in the pocket.

Power Running
If you like to run the ball I would recommend Mike Smith (+3 Run Block Strength, -3 Power Moves).  You'll get good gains with your running back but the drawback to this coach is that you won't get very much pressure on the quarterback while on defense.  Mike Munchak of the Titans has the same boosts (+3 Run Block Strength, -3 Power Moves).  Bill Belicheck (+3 Run Block Strength, -3 block shedding) is another coach that will help your running game.  Jason Garrett (+3 trucking, -3 zone coverage) will also give you a boost in trucking.

Deep Throwing
Coaches with deep throw accuracy seem to help quite a bit as well.  Some coaches with deep throw accuracy are Sean Payton (+3 deep throw accuracy, -3 tackling), Mike McCarthy (+3 deep throw accuracy, -3 power moves), and Norv Turner (+3 deep throw accuracy, -3 play recognition).  Tackling and play recognition seem to be pretty important so if you like to throw the ball far go with Mike McCarthy.

Defensive Pressure
If you are looking for more defensive pressure these coaches provide power move boosts: Rex Ryan (+3 power moves, -3 elusiveness), Tom Coughlin (+3 power moves, -3 elusiveness), Jim Schwartz (+3 power moves, -3 run block strength).

Medium and Short Throw Accuracy
Steve Spagnuolo (+3 medium throw accuracy, -3 catching) and Pete Carroll (+3 medium throw accuracy, -3 man coverage) will help boost medium throw accuracy.  Though, I don't understand how having Steve Spagnuolo as a coach would be a good idea because if your QB is throwing the ball accurate it won't make much difference if your receivers have trouble catching the ball.

Good short throw accuracy coaches are Pat Shurmur (+3 short throw accuracy, -3 play recognition) and Chan Gailey (+3 short throw accuracy, -3 tackle).

Coaches without boosts
For some reason these coaches don't have any boosts on the back of their card: Jim Harbaugh, Tony Sparano, Gary Kubiak, and Jack Del Rio.

Reward Coaches
Perhaps the most popular reward coach is Texans Core reward, Gary Kubiak.  This card comes with a +5 speed boost.  Completing the Patriots Core collection rewards you with a Bill Belicheck (or N.E. Coach) +5 morale card.

Madden NFL 12