It’s been over a decade since the Madden NFL series graced the PC platform, but 2018 is due to break the streak. The long-awaited return of the football franchise has been a known element since E3 2018, but Madden NFL 19 producer Ben Haumiller has now elaborated on why 2018 was the right time for the franchise to make its return on PC.
As one might expect, it wasn’t just a single factor decision. Thankfully, Ben puts it into pretty simple terms: EA Tiburon wants to get the game in front of more people, and it was all a matter of comparing how things were when they pulled out of the market, and how the same scene was in 2018 when they decided to test the waters once again.
Beyond that, there’s the simple matter of hardware. Console shelf life means the bulk of console hardware remains stagnant for years between updates, while PC hardware evolves at a much faster rate. As a result, Ben believes Madden NFL 19 really reaches new heights on a high-end PC rig with a super-wide monitor. Beyond that, it was a move made with content streaming in mind – it opens the franchise to a huge market of PC streamers, and that ties back in with Haumiller’s expression of getting the game in front to more people.
As for why Madden NFL was pulled from PC in the first place? Ben says it was a combined issue of lackluster sales and piracy being in an absolute heyday. While he recognizes that the issue of piracy is still there, the positive factors of attempting a return evidently outweighed the negatives.
It wasn’t one linchpin thing that was like “Oh, okay, that happened, so bam we’re back on PC.” It was an evolution of time and different things that were going on, so we were like “Now is the right time to jump back into this market, so that’s where we are.”
It’ll be interesting to see how the PC marketplace reacts to the return of the Madden NFL franchise. It’s no small task to return to a platform after a decade of absence, and whether Madden NFL 20 gets the same treatment will largely depend on this year’s iteration of the franchise making a big touchdown in the sales department.
While PC fans will be happy to join the party, Nintendo fans will need to scratch their gridiron itch on another console: last year’s iteration of Madden skipped Nintendo’s portable console entirely, and this year finds the Switch listed as a repeat absence.
Madden NFL 19 will release for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on August 10, 2018.
You can find John on Twitter at @Makelevi, where he has also returned to PC. He had a nice lunch while he was away.