Patrick Bellanca is an associate designer for Madden NFL 25 on Xbox One, and a central piece of the team that has made Living Worlds a reality on Gen 4 consoles.
This article also includes insights from Madden NFL 25 development director Sean Graddy.
ON THE “WOW” MOMENTS IN GEN 4
When you see a long TD, breakaway run or pick six in an NFL game, the moment sounds big. As the crowd follows the action and swells with anticipation, you can tell something is about to happen. The best moments in Madden NFL 25 on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 will include this “WOW” factor to make the game seem more real than ever before.
For the first time, fans will stand in anticipation of a big play and thanks to subtle delays between various sections in the crowd, different groups of fans will react to big plays at different times. Seeing the crowd swell as a deep ball inches closer to Calvin Johnson’s outstretched arms? That’s a WOW moment, and Madden NFL 25 is full of them on next-gen consoles.
ON THE CROWDS
“These are by far our best crowds ever in a football title,” said Madden NFL 25 development director Sean Graddy. “They’re true 3D renders instead of the player cards of old.” The next-gen version of Madden NFL 25 features uniquely modeled and dresses crowd characters made up of fans of both teams. The crowds will showcase true emotion, ranging from positive and celebrating to negative and angry. In all, there are more than a hundred contextually accurate emotional and behavioral responses.
ON THE SIDELINES
No sideline is complete without the head coach. In Madden NFL 25 on Gen 4, head coaches are always present on the sidelines, and react to the action by tracking the ball and avoiding ball carriers that roll to the sidelines. Ball carriers will interact with sideline characters differently if they are a part of their team or the opposition. A sideline of teammates encourages ball carriers, while drifting into enemy territory will be a little rougher.
In all, the next-gen version of Madden NFL 25 includes populated player boxes with the Head Coach, players, assistant coaches, trainers and team staff. There are hundreds of characters surrounded the field with heightened awareness and the ability to react and avoid incoming players.
There are also five trainers and nine assistant coaches on sidelines, and these characters have more than 300 animations. Look for sideline characters to move up and down the player box as the line of scrimmage moves down the field.
ON THE MEDIA
Players and coaches aren’t the only folks occupying NFL sidelines on gameday, and they won’t be in Madden 25. Outside the player boxes are 75 media characters surrounding the field at various locations. Broadcast videographers, Steadicam operators, monopod photographers, handheld DSLR photographers, and audio dish operators are all visible on Gen 4 sidelines, just like their real-life counterparts. These characters will also swap formations based on the line of scrimmage, and include more than 100 animations including emotions and avoidance.