Madden NFL 21 fans upset, Crusader Kings III reviews out, more!


Daily Gaming Update


Madden NFL 21 players upset over repeated features and tech issues

Annualized sports titles are infamous for being repetitive year-over-year, in essentially all aspects of the game. As you might expect, this is due to the one-year development cycle that doesn’t allow the creators to flesh out their games in any depth, and often leaves them riddled with technical issues.

The most recent target for social media uproar: Madden NFL 21. A number of outlets have reported that it has now received the lowest Metacritic user score of all time (Metacritic shouldn’t be used as a legitimate source, but it’s interesting that of all the uproars in history, this is the title to receive the worst of it), with a 0.4/10.

This type of story is fairly routine, and the issues that people have with the game are not unique from other situations. Sometimes these issues affect the bottom-line enough that publishers do something about it (see WWE 2K taking a break this year), but ultimately the bottom-line is what it always boils down to. EA renewed their contract with the NFL this year until 2026, and no amount of #NFLdropEA trending on Twitter is going to stop that train from rolling.

Crusader Kings III out now, reviews very positive

Crusader Kings III is officially releasing today, and the reviews are now out. The game has been universally praised by critics, with almost all of them giving it a 9/10 or higher.

For those of you who are established grand strategy fans, or perhaps are players of CKII, you’ll be happy to know that most of these reviewers are as well. They generally commend CKIII as a significant evolution of the series, and is full of content that matches the depth of CKII. All this to say, if you loved II, then you’ll love III.

The more interesting question: how does the game treat new players? A number of people have been interesting in something like Crusader Kings, but were too intimated or confused by the hundreds of buttons to be clicked and choices to be made. While I couldn’t find a critic who was new to the series, I am happy to report that approachability has been a major improvement. The UI has been more cleanly organized, and instead of needing to Google how every mechanic works, you can hover your cursor over anything to get a pop-up with an explanation.

If you dislike the genre, I don’t imagine this game will change your mind. But if the interest was there, and CKII failed you, there’s a better chance of success this time around.

Paradox games are notoriously iffy on launch, so be sure to hold off a few days before purchasing it. It will also be available on the Xbox Game Pass PC on Day 1, which is a pleasant surprise.

Playstation 5 backwards compatibility hinted at

The Playstation 5 is heading our way this holiday, and we may have just got more details about how backwards compatibility is going to work.

A now updated Ubisoft FAQ page stated the following:

“Backwards compatibility will be available for supported PlayStation 4 titles, but will not be possible for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, or PlayStation games”

Sony has previously announced that the PS5 would support backwards compatibility with the “overwhelming majority” of PS4 titles, but up to this point they have had rocky communication about the rest of the games in their history.

I wouldn’t treat this as official confirmation, but Ubisoft has clearly been given some kind of information that is worth considering, if it’s an important topic for you.

EA Play now available on Steam

EA’s game subscription service, EA Play (previously known as EA Access/Origin Access), is now available for all Steam users. Subscribers can pay $5 USD per month, or $30 per year, and gain access to most of EA’s back-catalogue directly through Steam.

However, it is worth noting that there are differences between the Steam and Origin versions, including the games that are available. Also, the “Pro” version of EA Play is still only purchasable through Origin which is $10 more. This would allow you to play their brand new games on Day 1, as opposed to waiting for it to hit the standard version after an indefinite time.

That being said, if you want to play games like The Sims 4, Battlefront II, Mass Effect, or Dragon Age without paying for them individually, then this is a great option for you