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Author Topic: NFL for Xbox: Maddedn vs. ESPN  (Read 6338 times)
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Driver
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« on: May 22, 2004, 01:45:24 PM »

I just finished playing some ESPN NFL and I have to wonder what the draw of Madden is.  ESPN could use some animation updates, which are already done apparently, but it's such a great game of football.  What's the deal with Maddedn? Is it being on Live going to get a lot of Sega fans to switch?
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Graham
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« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2004, 03:21:56 PM »

I think that the problem isn't with ESPN fans going to Madden.  I think that Madden fans trying out ESPN is the bigger problem.   Madden does have the bigger following, and they have a bit more micromanagement.  If you want to control the price of hot dogs at the stadium, then Madden has that and ESPN doesn't.  I think that both games will be close this year, as both games look incredibly amazing.  From what I saw at E3, pics don't do ESPN justice.  I think this year ESPN could put a chink into Madden's armor, but Madden will still be tops.
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« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2004, 07:24:25 PM »

I think Sega sports games, having securing the ESPN license, will become more popular.  When people not "in the know" go to buy a pigskin game they know the Madden brand.  They had probably been burned by some shoddy off-brand games in the past, so why try again?  ESPN raises the profile on the Sega titles immensely.  That's how I see it anyway.

That said, with Madden on Live this year it might be even harder for Sega.  At least they don't have to compete with the MS title, which might have siphoned sales from the anti-Madden crowd.

People on GG soured on the ESPN NHL game, which I purchased soley because of Live play, instead going with MS's Rivals.  That didn't help my impression of the ESPN franchise, unfortunately.

Personally I am looking forward to NCAA 2005 on the Xbox with Live this year.  If Sega had an ESPN NCAA football game I would be thrilled to death.  This year I don't think I have to worry about picking between ESPN or Madden.
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« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2004, 11:22:04 PM »

What sucks about ESPN, especially for football, they always advertise Madden, because Madden is on ABC, and ABC owns ESPN.  It's pretty hard to promote both games.  

ESPN's presentation is simply the best out of the two, but some AI issues are holding it down.  

Now that EA has Live, it's going to be even harder compete.    I think if EA didn't have live, ESPN would only get stronger and probably take over the xbox market for the sports world.  But that's not going to happen now.

From the video's this year, both games look amazing.  I'll probably still buy both.  I usually buy Madden for the PC and then ESPN for Xbox obviously.  But playing online with madden on the PC wasn't that great.    Maybe it's better on the console.  I think I'm going to have to rent both games to see which I like best.  That's probably the safest bet
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« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2004, 04:30:56 AM »

There is a new ESPN 2K5 preview here:

http://previews.teamxbox.com/xbox/736/ESPN-NFL-2005/p1

For those interested.

As I said before, I more time it at E3 than anything else.  6 or so whole games played.  

I cannot wait for the game to be released! smile

Oh, and to address the topic, it owns Madden completely.  It has since the dreamcast days.
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« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2004, 04:38:18 AM »

OH, that was me as Guest, I thought I Was logged in...

Here some neat info from that preview:

Quote
ESPN NFL 2005
By: Dale Nardozzi "Legba"
May 19, 2004  
 

The online functionality of ESPN NFL 2005 has been stepped up and now runs in an always online, Live Aware state. This makes things like online stats, friend’s lists, and game invites real time, all the time, which is definitely forward thinking. A really cool feature that ties into the online multiplayer mode is the V.I.P system (or Virtual Identity Profile System) which is basically a way to learn the tendencies of any opponent.


 

ESPN NFL 2005’s game engine can record a mind-blowing amount of stats on any human opponent you encounter online (or offline), making it easy to scout them for a follow-up game or to just learn their ways of success. The V.I.P system can tell you arcane details about a player’s game that no one would have the ability to or want to keep tabs on themselves. Need to know a gamer’s blitz to zone ratio? No problem. The amount of times they ran up the gut? Covered. There really isn’t any tendency that can’t be reviewed with this powerful database. All the details are displayed in easy to read pie-charts, graphs and good old statistics. You can even see how often an opponent calls audibles! This should tighten the gap between the good online players and the really good online players since a blowout one way could turn into a defeat after some careful study of the V.I.P stats.

Gamers will also have the ability to load up a human player’s V.I.P profile in order to play against the virtual opponent rather than play the default computer AI. Profiles can also be uploaded and downloaded via Xbox Live which brings things to an even higher level. Being that ESPN NFL 2005 will support online tournaments and leagues, similar to the now defunct XSN Sports Network, you’ll be able to project upcoming opponents and download their V.I.P profiles for some real practice time. Speaking of tournaments, ESPN NFL 2005 will feature “living rosters” that will be consistent across a leagues or tournaments. This means if your big wide receiver is injured in game one, looks like you’ll need to make a trade. Trades will need approved by the league commissioner and all rosters will be kept server side. What haven’t they thought of?!
 
 biggrin  smile  :o
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Driver
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« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2004, 12:48:21 PM »

Following Ken's advice, I watched some movies of both online and there really isn't a comparison in terms of presentation.  ESPN looks awesome.  I did like some of Madden's tackles but if ESPN had no updates from last year it would still be a great game.
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« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2004, 11:58:15 AM »

"Gamers will also have the ability to load up a human player’s V.I.P profile in order to play against the virtual opponent rather than play the default computer AI. Profiles can also be uploaded and downloaded via Xbox Live which brings things to an even higher level."

Is this for real?

Are you kidding me with this?  This is phenomenal.

Go SEGA!  Go Visual Concepts!  

I continue to be amazed at what they are doing!

LD
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« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2004, 11:59:48 AM »

That was me.

Thought I was logged in.

Duh.


LD
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LD

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« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2004, 07:31:23 PM »

Quote from: "Lockdown"
"Gamers will also have the ability to load up a human player’s V.I.P profile in order to play against the virtual opponent rather than play the default computer AI. Profiles can also be uploaded and downloaded via Xbox Live which brings things to an even higher level."

Remember - Sega has been doing this for some time now (just not in this game). Remember Virtua Fighter 4 (the non Evo version)? You can teach an AI to play like you do. Heck - lots of your opponents in VF4: Evo are based upon real players over in Japan thanks to that AI thing.
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« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2004, 12:03:32 PM »

I had heard about this, but didn't know too much about it (re:VF)

For some reason, given the complexity of an entire football game and the strategies involved, this just really impresses me.

Assuming, of course, that it actually works.

LD
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« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2004, 03:23:21 PM »

I'm actually thinking about selling in my PS2 to get ESPN for the XBox. That way I can compete in a GoneGold/ConsoleGold league with all you guys?

Who's up for it?
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AgtFox
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« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2004, 04:46:28 PM »

Quote from: "Captain Caveman"
I'm actually thinking about selling in my PS2 to get ESPN for the XBox. That way I can compete in a GoneGold/ConsoleGold league with all you guys?

Who's up for it?


I think last year things just fell apart with the league.  Don't know how many will be up for it this year.

If I only had $50 and had to choose between the two I would probably go with Madden.  I know...I'm the rebel.  I love both games, but if I had to choose it would most likely be Madden.

Then again, maybe ESPN will finally topple Madden this year in my mind...we'll see.
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« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2004, 07:35:19 PM »

Quote
think last year things just fell apart with the league. Don't know how many will be up for it this year.


As to be expected, people lost interest and didn't play.

I say this year we do a bracket setup and play down to a champion like we did for Top Spin.

There would be a lot less commitment and, because they'd be sorter, we can do a bunch of them if the interest held.

I'd be in again (Eagles)!
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AgtFox
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« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2004, 07:52:07 PM »

Well, I'm thinking (and this is just me thinking) that if we decide to have all 32 teams again that we should split them into at least 2 and cut down on the number of games played.  Playoffs can be top 4 in each section and then the champs from each section face off for the overall championship.

Once again, just an idea off the top of my head.  Should cut down on the number of games and we don't just follow the regular NFL schedule.

The bracket idea is also good and would probably contain even fewer games than my idea conceivably.
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« Reply #15 on: May 26, 2004, 08:03:02 PM »

Nice, AF!

The reason I propose the bracket idea is that the one and done theory for the loser will allow you do exit quickly or may be MORE incentive to get back in the next one and do better. Once you are 'out of the money' in a league, you might not be that motivated to get trounced again. Also, the winner has a chance to play 'better' teams quickly. A 4-0 team will never play an 0-4 team so blowouts could be less likely as well.

Easier to get people in and out - We could even run a few at the same time and split up the divisions into their own brackets, or something like first round losers in the first tourney could immediately start another tourney with people who didn't get in on the first one, etc.

Just more rambling... :wink:
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Eco-Logic
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« Reply #16 on: May 27, 2004, 01:25:48 AM »

In of course!


I would like the Titans please!
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« Reply #17 on: May 27, 2004, 11:53:13 AM »

Great!

So Devil is going to set up and coordinate the tournaments then?

That's what I got out of his message?  Didn't you?   :lol:

You are the MAN !

- LD


 Tongue
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« Reply #18 on: May 27, 2004, 01:54:31 PM »

Yeah - Sure Poncho....no...wait! Scott and I did it last year and the league fell apart. I think we're bad luck. Time for you to take over!!   biggrin
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Eco-Logic
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« Reply #19 on: June 09, 2004, 04:02:39 AM »

New article on ESPN 2K5 on IGN.  Can't wait!
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« Reply #20 on: June 09, 2004, 09:17:54 PM »

http://ebgames.com/ebx/product/243430.asp
http://ebgames.com/ebx/product/243255.asp
it's also at Gamestop

MADDEN YOU're DEAD
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« Reply #21 on: June 09, 2004, 09:56:28 PM »

Yeah, I can't think of one reason not to go with ESPN again.  That IGN article details some awesome stuff.
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« Reply #22 on: June 09, 2004, 10:01:18 PM »

$19.99 is insane!

I would pay $75 for it.

Hopefully some of the millions of Madden fans that are left will take the plunge and realize what I've been screaming since the dreamcast days.
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« Reply #23 on: June 09, 2004, 10:27:32 PM »

I just called the local EB and Software Etc. to confirm the price, both places still show it at $49.99.

I then called Gamestop.com and asked them, they said the $19.99 is correct and that they have had 100's of calls asking them that.  I asked if it's just for pre-orders or something and the lady wasn't sure, she did say that anyone who orders it now locks in that price.

So, get to pre-ordering guys. smile
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« Reply #24 on: June 09, 2004, 10:29:36 PM »

Oh, and this pic is a little troubling, from Operationsports message board and I probably wouldn't have noticed if they hadn't gone on about it for 2 or 3 pages.

Eco's as straight as an arrow.
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« Reply #25 on: June 09, 2004, 11:17:26 PM »

What is it about the pic?  Can't read the forums, don't feel like registering just to find out.  Please enlighten us!
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« Reply #26 on: June 10, 2004, 01:00:48 AM »

It just looks freaking awesome...
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« Reply #27 on: June 10, 2004, 01:55:00 AM »

It should be Freddie Mitchell catching that ball... biggrin
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« Reply #28 on: June 10, 2004, 02:58:37 AM »

Eco bats for the other team.  Now with tht knowledge do you see what he's looking at?   biggrin
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« Reply #29 on: June 10, 2004, 03:19:34 AM »

Wow...guess I won't have to decide with just $50, now I can decide with $70 and get both (not to say I wouldn't buy both or get provided review copies mind you).

Obviously if this turns out true I would expect EA to do something.  Either that or they'll roll the dice with the 2 week buffer (currently) and hope for the best.
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« Reply #30 on: June 10, 2004, 03:19:48 AM »

Quote from: "naednek"
Eco bats for the other team.  Now with tht knowledge do you see what he's looking at?   biggrin


Like I told you, I wouldn't have noticed it if it wasn't for the thread at OS. :x
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« Reply #31 on: June 10, 2004, 03:24:16 AM »

Thanks guys.  I thought there was some horrible error or glitch on disply there.  Nothing wrong with beating up on the Bay.  I remember fondly watching Michael Vick lead the Falcons up there to beat them in the playoffs. :lol:
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« Reply #32 on: June 10, 2004, 03:44:25 AM »

Quote from: "Eco-Logic"
Quote from: "naednek"
Eco bats for the other team.  Now with tht knowledge do you see what he's looking at?   biggrin


Like I told you, I wouldn't have noticed it if it wasn't for the thread at OS. :x


sorry if i offended you Eco, i just joking around.  You didn't have to edit it out.

What, no love Agt_Fox, I think I deserve my name in the front page for this news bit biggrin
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« Reply #33 on: June 10, 2004, 04:07:29 AM »

Quote from: "naednek"
What, no love AgtFox, I think I deserve my name in the front page for this news bit biggrin

You're now there with a link directly to your post.
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« Reply #34 on: June 10, 2004, 05:57:14 AM »

I doubt the new price is going to prompt EA to drop the price on Madden.  Fact is, even with a $30 difference, there's a lot of people that are still going to buy Madden.  Heck, Madden 05 could feature Japanese schoolboys dressed in tutus throwing around a poodle on a field covered in posies, and it'd still sell several million copies.

I've tried to convince a lot of people to switch over to the 2k series.  A good chunk of the time, the reaction is that they only play EA games, and no, they'll never even try anything else.  Even if you can get them to try it, a lot will only give it a few plays, and drop it, claiming that Madden's just better.

The close-mindedness of the general public constantly amazes me.
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« Reply #35 on: June 10, 2004, 02:37:54 PM »

From OS:

Quote
We discussed the $19.99 price that ESPN NFL 2005 is currently being offered for online at both EBGames.com and GameStop.com, and the confusion and speculation it has caused in the gaming community.

Mr. Atwood's formal response is as follows:
"Retailers have erroneously posted a price - but stay tuned - we have a lot of big announcements coming!"



Time will tell I suppose.
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« Reply #36 on: June 10, 2004, 02:49:11 PM »

Yep, that's what Matt's saying everywhere.  I would expect an announcement soon at least about the price.
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« Reply #37 on: June 10, 2004, 10:55:08 PM »

Regarding Chaz's post:

I think he is pretty much right on with his assessment.  I remember going to Gamestop months ago (at LEAST 3), and seeing signs everywhere to pre-order Madden.  I was simply amazed.  The guy told me they had an enormous amount of pre-orders, and this was 3 months ago!!!!   Were previews even OUT yet three months ago?  I am pretty sure they weren't.

This tells me, it really doesn't matter what EA does or does not do.  Visual Concepts is just flat screwed.  Devil was correct when he said this will be the best Sega/VC game to ever get its ass kicked by Madden.  That about sums it up.

Help me think of any other franchise in our hobby that absolutely dominates no matter what, like Madden Football.  Is there any?  Does Final Fantasy dominate RPG's this bad?  I don't play them, so I wouldn't know.  But honestly, it is amazing the hold Madden has on Football Videogames.  It's almost bizarre.

Anyway, the age-old "Sega or EA" question is really only worth discussing to the person that really has an open mind.

Here is the funny thing though, and I have said this before.  There are quite a few people on the GG/CG forums whose opinions I generally respect a great deal with regards to video games.  Some of them think EA games are better, period.  I, for the life of me, can not even remotely fathom how they think this.  I can't.  ESPN Football is so far ahead of Madden in so many, many, many ways, I just can't fathom it.  

Is it the couple A.I. glitches that get people?  It must be.  I mean, what else could it be?  

See, this is why I stay out of these threads usually.  I just get so dumbfounded the more I think about it, it just makes me mad.  

EA or Sega ....  honestly, the question itself is a giant slap in the face to Sega.  That's how superior their game is to Madden.

No offense to the orginal poster.  This isn't directed at you.  It is directed at the fact that I am completely awestruck that ANYONE can even contemplate these two games being in the same league.

I have heard and read many of the arguments.  I don't agree with any of them.  None.  It just boggles my mind.  That is why I have decided I must be a fanboy.  Because (in my mind) the scales are tipped so far on the side of ESPN, it's not even worth discussing.

/takes off ranting shoes
/steps off soapbox


I should NOT read these type of threads.  Really, I shouldn't.

As always, I should state these opinions are mine (and maybe Eco's) alone.  I just can't hold back sometimes.

LD


edit to add:

Most of you that know me already know this... but I sooooo love video football games, that every year,  EVERY YEAR, I rent Madden for a short period of time and play the crap out it.  Every single year.  By the time my 3 to 5 days are expired on my rental, I can't get it back to Blockbuster fast enough.  To me, it is THAT atrocious.  So, for those of you that think I don't play Madden at all, you are wrong.  To those of you that think I may not give it enough time... you are most likely right.   :wink:
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« Reply #38 on: June 11, 2004, 12:20:21 AM »

I would say EA dominates in each sport that it faces off with Sega in sales.  I don't have the numbers in front of me (and not sure how long it would take to find them), but I am positive that the EA game outsells the other game.  I believe the closest one would be NBA Live vs. ESPN NBA Basketball, but I have a feeling that might have been a blowout last year even with the franchise problems on Live.  I doubt any game dominates like Madden though...Madden is the crown jewel for EA Sports.  If Sega had a college game, NCAA would dominate it much like Madden (probably why VC doesn't make a college game anymore, they want to put all their resources into the NFL game).

I think you guys know me pretty well with my reviews of sports games.  I try to give every football game (and sports game) a shot (even the mostly disliked Fever and Gameday series).  I've been a Madden player since the Genesis days and I've been a VC NFL player since its debut on the Dreamcast.  I love both games and I can go through the years of which game got the most play out of me:

(No game) vs. NFL 2K - NFL 2K
Madden 2001 vs. NFL 2K1 - NFL 2K1
Madden 2002 vs. NFL 2K2 - NFL 2K2
Madden 2003 vs. NFL 2K3 - Madden 2003
Madden 2004 vs. ESPN NFL Football - Madden 2004

I think from my writing you guys find out that I'm very much into the franchise aspects of my sports games...especially football.  In the past two years Madden has blown away VC's game in this regard (even though last year saw the NCAA draft roster screw-up).  I expect this year for Madden to blow away ESPN again in the franchise section.

I tend to find Madden a game that is easier to control, but VC's has always been the better technical game.  It's really a trade-off between the two.  Hardcore players will want ESPN, your average player who just wants to play football will go with Madden.  For easier playcalling you'll go with Madden, for more robust and "coach-like" playcalling you'll go with ESPN, etc.  There are staunch Maddenites and staunch ESPNites...all I would love to see is for people to cross over and try the other one.  There's a great game in both cases with their strengths and weaknesses that the other game usually overcomes.

I will try both and I will probably review both.  I am hopeful that VC will make the franchise section on par with Madden.  The "X-Factor" that you can include with Madden is its connection to NCAA Football, a game many people love (including myself, I play it more than the NFL games) and the sales reflect that there are a lot of people buying both and many of them for the drafting abilities.

Anyway, I've said enough...I think you guys know I don't hate either one and would give them both a fair shake.  Personally I'll be sitting in front of my TV in mid-July playing NCAA Football and probably not worrying about the upcoming NFL games until the release gets closer.
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« Reply #39 on: June 11, 2004, 02:45:16 AM »

Quote from: "Lockdown"
 

EA or Sega ....  honestly, the question itself is a giant slap in the face to Sega.  That's how superior their game is to Madden.

No offense to the orginal poster.  This isn't directed at you.  It is directed at the fact that I am completely awestruck that ANYONE can even contemplate these two games being in the same league.

I have heard and read many of the arguments.  I don't agree with any of them.  None.  It just boggles my mind.  That is why I have decided I must be a fanboy.  Because (in my mind) the scales are tipped so far on the side of ESPN, it's not even worth discussing.


So very well said Lockdown, I could not agree more on every aspect you mention.  I also try to stay out of discussions about it, especially in person.  I got into with a guy at Software Etc. when I went to pick up Riddick.  They were talking about the anniversary addition, John Madden's last edition and how great it will be etc.  I just couldn't help myself, I said and with all that it still won't be as good as ESPN.  My 5 minute trip to SE turned into a 30 minute debate over something I can't even believe there is a question about.  

I don't just think ESPN Football is the best football game ever made, it's the best sports game ever made.  It's Segas greatest game ever.  It's in my top 5 all-time favorite games.  It has more replay value than any game I own.  Lastly, it turned one of my friends who never even played xbox with my friends and I into a gamer.  He loves football and I talked him into letting me show him how to play one weekend and the next week he bought an Xbox and ESPN Football.  Granted, ESPN was the only game he had or played for almost 3 months or so.  Then I showed him Crimson Skies and he bought that.  

Bottom line to me is that ESPN Football is exactly what Lockdown said (and I have always said as well) in a completely different league than Madden and truthfully, I think VC knows this and as was said above this could prove to be a viable method to convert the hard headed EA-only fans.  

Those of you that were at E3 must have heard the buzz about ESPN.  It was crazy.  In the MS booth, ESPN Football was only on 2 TV's, Madden had a whole carosel of TV's.  I heard more talk about ESPN Football than I did almost any game in the whole booth.

Anyway, I have said enough.
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