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Madden 2001 Interview


We recently had a chance to interview Scott Bandy, the producer of Madden 2001 for the PC. [Editor's Note: This is the same interview posted on our network site, Madden Mania.]

1) What is your role with Madden 2001?

    SB: My name is Scott Bandy, and I am the Producer for the PC version of Madden 2001.

2) Has the absence of NFL Fever for the PC this year affected EA Sports' Madden 2001 PC strategy in terms of focus on a certain area of the game?

    The short answer is no. Electronic Arts is continually trying to improve all it's titles, and the decisions regarding the areas we would focus on for Madden 2001 were reached months ago. We were already well into developing our features prior to any annoucment regarding NFL Fever.

3) Will there be any major difference between the PC and the Playstation 2 format besides the online play?

    The Playstation 2 is an incredibally powerful gaming platform. With the cutting edge technology available to PSX2 developers, combined with the fact that they can devote all of the resources on the platform to game performance, users will see a level of realism and graphic detail that were previously only dreamed of. Having said that, we are very pleased with the way that the PC version of 2001 is shaping up from a graphical perspective as well. We are incorporating the same base player model as that used in the PSX2 version, and I believe that PC users will be very happy with the quality of the graphics. Add to that the most complete On-line football gaming experience ever offered, a completely redesigned, mouse friendly interface, and re-vamped player and CPU AI, and I feel that Madden PC 2001 will also offer a great football gaming experience.

4) Can you explain more about the new defensive hot routes feature?

    The feature I believe you are referring to is known as "Read-N-React" Defense. This will allow the user to adjust his defensive assignments on the fly. This way, if the user has called a defensive play that is designed to stop the run, and realizes at the line of scrimmage that the offensive team has called a passing play, he can adjust his defensive player's assignment logic prior to the ball being snapped.

5) What improvements to the offensive hot routes engine have been worked on?

    In Madden 2001 PC, we have expanded this feature to include over 25 routes the user can choose from to assign to a hot-route. This will allow the user much greater flexibilty in the options he has for adjusting his receiver's routes.

6) In Madden 2000, the defensive can get away with shifting linemen to the sides leaving the middle open. However, even with the middle open, sometimes the offense can only gain 3 or so yards, on the All Madden level. Shouldn't the defensive be punished more than 3 or 4 yard gains? Has this been worked on for Madden 2001?

    Many aspects of the offensive and defensive AI have been re-vamped for the 2001 version. In the specific example you give, it is difficult to give you an accurate answer without knowing the play you're running, and the defense that has been called. However, long-time Madden players will note a significant improvement in the Defensive AI.

7) During certain online games, I was in an audible war. The defensive player would keep on moving his DL between a DE and a DT, while I keep on changing plays offensively to force my opponent to keep on moving his DL back. Will Madden 2001 have any sort of audible limit?

    This is something that we adressed in 2001. If the offensive player continues to call audibles at the line of scrimmage, he will discover that there are now consequences to this strategy. I won't reveal the exact nature of the penalty, but I am confident it will all but eliminate this style of play.
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