It would be unfair to give a full review on just a small segment of Madden without taking into account how the “real” game is all about playing football with friends, online, or against the AI. The Longshot story should be considered a nice change of pace from the real meat and potatoes of Madden. While it is technically is considered a “game” mode, it is really much closer to an interactive movie. Longshot tells the story of Devin Wade as he tries to make a comeback from being a 5 Star High School recruit, to the starting quarterback for the Longhorns, to a failed disgrace who quit during his freshman season. If you are a Madden fan was is just looking to jump right into some classic Madden gameplay then this is NOT the mode for you. There is only a handful of Madden-like sections while the rest is decision making or quick time events. This is sure to turn off some fans, but for those who can appreciate the story for what it is, Longshot is a great addition to Madden and will hopefully be making a return in various forms in future interactions.
Maybe next time the story mode can get a behind the scenes look of life off of the field for an established veteran or even a rookie. There is so many possibilities here. Maybe the story can cover a first round stud and go from when he is drafted through training camp and his first season. Each loss could affect how the story plays out. Going on a win streak right out of the gate could lead to sponsorships while losing would force the player to sit through harsh media sessions where they are calling him a bust.
One thing that really stood out was the ability to retry certain parts if you failed to complete them. This is a completely normal and necessary part of most story driven games, but for some reason it just felt like it didn’t belong in this mode. If Devin missed a pass, it should affect his story. If this means that Devin gets a terrible draft grade then that should be how it is. A real NFL hopeful wouldn’t get to have do-overs and it really just felt out of place. The point can be made that the retry option is only available at a couple of key moments and it can certainly be forgiven when looking at the full experience. It is really just a minor gripe in what is otherwise a freshening change of pace to the overall Madden package. Overall, Longshot was fun distraction for fans who enjoy football movies almost as much as football itself.