Madden 18 Release Date & Time, Review, New Graphics & Features

We have the latest Madden 18 release date info, how you can save big on upgrading to Madden 18 and tons of new footage showing off Frostbite in Madden 18 that paves the way for the Longshot Story Mode. Plus, we have details on which edition to pre-order and the best Madden 18 player ratings and the top new Madden 18 features and gameplay.

EA released Madden 18 early on the Xbox One for EA Access members, who can play right now. There is also a special Madden 18 G.O.A.T. Edition this year that lets you play three days early, starting at midnight tonight. Here’s our Madden 18 review in progress to help you decide if Madden 18 is worth buying.

We’re hearing from some Amazon buyers who will not get Madden 18 G.O.A.T. delivered on the release date. Amazon told several customers it is not a release date eligible item. At least one user reports that they are able to get a credit for the game due to the blunder. If you’re just waiting for Amazon to deliver Madden 18 G.O.A.T. today, you better double check your orders. Amazon is doing all it can to convince gamers to buy Madden 18 digitally without a Prime discount or to buy it elsewhere this year.

Madden 18 switches to Frostbite this year, which delivers better graphics across the game and delivers an experience that includes college play, off the field experiences and a massive story mode called Longshot. EA also packs in MUT Squads a 3 vs 3 online Madden mode that allows you to combine Madden Ultimate Teams and go up against other players with your friends.

Once again there is no NCAA 18 to deliver college football, which leaves us with the NFL as the main option. On the upside, you will be able to play the NFL Combine and even play some college football thanks to schools licensing the logos.

  • Madden 18 Release Date – August 25th
  • Madden 18 Cover – Tom Brady
  • Madden 18 Gameplay Videos – See Madden 18 in action.
  • Madden 18 Frostbite & Graphics – Looking Sharp
  • Madden 18 Impressions – What Gamers think of Madden 18
  • New Madden 18 Features – What Sets it Apart form Madden 17

Here’s a breakdown of the Madden 18 release details that you need to know.

Madden 18 Release Date

The Madden 18 release date is August 25th. EA confirmed this when announcing Madden 18 and Tom Brady as the cover athlete. For the last 10 years, the new Madden game arrived in August, and that’s not changing.

The Madden 18 release date is August 25th. The Madden 18 release date is August 25th.
The Madden 18 release date is August 25th.

One major change to the Madden 18 release date is that it is on a Friday this year. Traditionally the new Madden game arrives on a Tuesday, but if you buy the Madden 18 G.O.A.T Edition you can play early on the 22nd.

If you buy the standard edition, you will need to wait until Friday after the initial release. EA notes that there is a G.O.A.T. edition upgrade available on the Xbox Store and on the PlayStation Store, but they are not listed yet. With EA Access, you can play Madden 18 on August 17th, five days before the G.O.A.T. edition is playable.

Madden 18 is coming to Xbox One and PS4. This includes the Xbox One, Xbox One S and the Xbox One X as well as PS4, PS4 Slim and PS4 Pro. There is no mention of Madden 18 for the Nintendo Switch or for older consoles.

Midnight Madden 18 Release Date Events

We’ve yet to find midnight Madden 18 release date events at GameStop or Best Buy. This may be due to the split release date between the standard and G.O.A.T. editions.

You can likely walk into Walmart or Target to get Madden 18 at either store at midnight, but you may want to double check with the retailer before you head out late at night. It’s also worth considering that this may mean no early midnight Madden 18 release date at 9 PM Pacific the day before the release date.

Madden 18 Cover

There is no Madden 18 cover vote this year and there is no mystery. Tom Brady is on the cover of Madden 18, including the special edition of the game.

Brady is not worried about the Madden curse, and in the video, above he proceeds to break a mirror and walk under a ladder to show he isn’t worried about luck.

Madden 18 Video, Gameplay & Screenshots

We’re seeing way more videos of Madden 18 gameplay including this rain game footage of the Dolphins vs. Bills.

Madden 18 Demo & Early Play

You shouldn’t count on a Madden 18 demo that you can play on your own PS4 or Xbox One.

When you buy the Madden 18 G.O.A.T. edition you can play three days early on Xbox One or PS4. With EA Access gamers will also get to play early, and you can do that right now.

Madden 18 Graphics

An example of Madden 18 graphics on Xbox One X.
Example of Madden 18 graphics on Xbox One X.

We are in for a major upgrade to the Madden 18 graphics and gameplay thanks to the switch to Frostbite. This engine is in use on FIFA 18 and FIFA 17 and it delivers more room to include off the field moments as well as to deliver better gameplay on the field. We are still waiting for actual Madden 18 gameplay to see what the Madden 18 graphics look like while you play, but the cinematic footage looks good.

EA states, “Our Madden NFL franchise will transition to the Frostbite engine with Madden NFL 18, unlocking major visual advancements and new gameplay experiences that will excite dedicated Madden players, football fans, and sports fans overall.”

The video above shows off the new graphics capabilities with player intros, stadiums and weather effects in Madden 18.

EA is already hiring for Madden testers who will check the game for NFL accuracy and the EA Sports Studio responsible for Madden 18 is currently seeking someone proficient in Frostbite who will work on Madden audio, which could signal that we will see new presentation options and off the field moments to go with the upgraded graphics.

This new engine can render on the field footage as well as off-field footage using the same engine. In interviews at EA Play, we learned that there will be a lot of off-field moments in Longshot.

We also get to see how Madden 18 vs Madden 17 compare graphics wise in the video above.

Madden 18 Impressions

At EA Play gamers were able to play Madden 18 for the first time. From regular players to professionals and YouTube creators, we learn about how the new Madden 18 plays.

Overall the general opinion is that the switch to Frostbite is positive and the new Madden 18 features are implemented well.

Madden 18 Ratings

Typically we see ratings teased out over a month, but we now know the best Madden 18 players thanks to loads of ratings released from EA. This is the official look at the best Madden 18 players that you can count on playing as with your favorite teams. It’s a huge deal for players who want to see how their team is doing. This came right after Madden 18 rookie player ratings arrived to stunned and sometimes frustrated rookies.

You can see all the Madden 18 player ratings on MaddenSchool with sortable lists that let you check and compare a wide range of attributes. This list will shwo you the best Madden 18 players at each position.

Madden 18 Features

There are several new Madden 18 features that we know about so far, and we expect to learn about in the next month. Here’s what’s new in Madden 18, that we know of so far about the new features and how they work.

  • Play New NFL Matchups
  • New Play Styles
  • Target Passing
  • Coach Adjustments
  • Coverage Assignments
  • Madden 18 Story Mode – Longshot
  • MUT Squads 3 Vs 3 Online

The Madden 18 trailer shows off a player outside of Lucas Oil Stadium. We also know that you can manage your Madden 18 franchise with a smartphone app this year. Click through below for more information on each of the new Madden 18 features.

Madden 18 vs Madden 17: 11 Exciting New Madden 18 Features

Madden 18 Graphics Upgrades

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Madden 18 Graphics Upgrades

You can count on Madden 18 graphics upgrades thanks to the switch to the Frostbite engine. EA switched FIFA to Frostbite last year and this year it's time to upgrade Madden. 

We get to see game engine footage in the Madden 18 teaser trailer below, but we don't see any head to head gameplay that reveal the changes you will see when you play. 

The Madden 18 graphics upgrades we know about include better-looking stadiums inside and out. With Frostbite we will see city skylines and stadium exteriors. EA promises that you can, "watch the spectacle of NFL game day come to life in our most photorealistic game to date." Frostbite can deliver better-looking player faces as well. This is one of the places where FIFA upgrades were most noticeable. 

EA promises more to come, but specifically, calls out the fireworks that you see in the video above, player runouts and "stunning" weather elements. Frostbite delivers impressive weather in Battlefield 1, and we hope that this means we will see more realistic weather elements in Madden 18. 

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52 Comments

  1. Alan E Barnes

    02/09/2017 at 8:00 am

    I love Madden!!! I play franchise mode offline. I would really like for them to add a feature where I could structure and restructure contracts more realistically. I would like to be able to front load or back-load the contracts, as well as spread bonus money out , as well as having roster bonuses excetera excetera… I would pay up to $50 more for a game that could do this thank you.

    Reply

    • Drew

      02/24/2017 at 10:28 am

      This used to be possible in older Maddens. I actually still play Madden 13 because of its superior franchise features. I only play 17 really for the graphics and online multiplayer

      Reply

  2. matthew zimmerman

    02/11/2017 at 7:08 am

    will new madden 18 for psx 3 or not

    Reply

  3. Greg

    02/11/2017 at 5:52 pm

    Madden will be nothing more than a GRAPHIC UPGRADE as usual.
    The game is pathetic offline and I’m sure the exploits have not changed much online.

    When EA DROPS… DROPS… the Graphic Upgrade for a year and FOCUS… FOCUS… FOCUS…. on GAMEPLAY… MAYBE… it will be a good game.

    For over 25 yrs of development you would think many of the glitches in the game would not persist year in and year out.

    The best upgrade of Madden 17 was the ( A ) button on XBOXONE.
    This allows you to skip. And that is sad. Seriously.

    My list of upgrades would fill the entire article, so I won’t get into them.

    Reply

    • BC

      04/11/2017 at 12:23 pm

      Do you think that the upgraded gameplay engine will remove legacy issues like morphing/clipping, players running out of bounds, suction blocking/tackling, running animation looks weird, blocking AI (AI blocker not blocking anyone etc), mirror/shadowing where several players are using the exact same animation at the same time (does anyone know what to call this?) ??

      Reply

  4. ATL4life

    02/12/2017 at 5:55 pm

    I hope MVP Matt Ryan is on the cover but I hope he doesn’t get the Madden curse.

    Reply

  5. Wilder

    02/21/2017 at 11:21 am

    Been a Madden fan for years. Love to see being able to draft the rookies coming out in connected franchise. Plus have offense and defense coordinators that you can hire as a coach. And actually have faces for up and coming rookies in the draft.

    Reply

  6. Shane

    02/22/2017 at 5:58 pm

    Been a madden money player ssince 2013. If you remove customs it’ll kill the fun of Madden. It’ll be like draft champs. 2-3 plays all gm. Boring.

    Reply

  7. Stephen

    02/25/2017 at 6:08 pm

    They need to make it more realistic to how you watch it on tv from gameplay to the graphics to halftime at superbowls!

    Reply

  8. Michael

    02/26/2017 at 1:16 pm

    I play CFM with about 20 users. So roughly 12 teams are CPU. Make CFM simulation of Defense, Offense, Special Teams not an option in CFM. If you like cheating and not making your own mistakes do it in FM not in CFM. If you play the game why sim it! People sim defense b/c they cant play defense. The point of the Madden game is to play the game not sit by a watch. Sim defense plays better then the user hence why people do it. There fore get the ball back quicker and save play clock. Then they get more time on offense and throw hail merry’s. All-Madden/ sliders are a joke if you have that option to sim. Make the option to simulate in CFM a toggle on the gameplay, or league setting. Earn the win all the way, or dont play the game. Love the game.

    Reply

    • Chris

      04/14/2017 at 1:02 pm

      Can i get in the league when u start it? I never sim D by the way. CPU D is awful! I’m on ps4, i__2__3

      Reply

  9. maddenfaithfulman

    02/26/2017 at 8:58 pm

    Madden 18 developers plz put back season mode where u can control as many teams as you want …..I love controlling multiple teams not just one ..in game camera options should be increased ..also stadium authenticity and uniform generator to create a few alternate uniforms in Hi-Def .plz don’t waste time putting in lame features we have seen in other games ..getfresh or get left on shelf…a college to NFL story mode is interesting or play career over of an NFL hall of fame player lets have play along NFL season mode where we can see live standings vs gamer standings and control of all teams and gameplay

    Reply

    • Matthew

      03/22/2017 at 9:31 am

      You can control multiple teams in offline franchise mode

      Reply

  10. maddenfaithfulman

    02/26/2017 at 9:14 pm

    Dear Madden team the sim process is old and needs fresh concept ….gameplay must move fwd from any predictability to fluid NFL behavior custom playbook need expanding …we have been playing sports games forever the old concepts imported to New versions of games is lame can we help u achieve out of the box results New ideas …I want to help consult…

    Reply

  11. maddenfaithfulman

    02/26/2017 at 9:18 pm

    Also madden17 is beautiful …inedible especially the outdoor stadiums and sunlight the indoor look needs work almost like artwork and not as Hi-Def as outdoor games ….Needs improvement …I’m sorry

    Reply

  12. maddenfaithfulman

    02/26/2017 at 9:28 pm

    Madden with college mode would be off the hook….or porting it over to scorpio is probably unrealistic…..I would like to see a mode where u can play along NFL season as many teams as u want and change reality if u want with the ability to compare reality to gamer results

    Reply

  13. Frank

    03/01/2017 at 9:09 pm

    Please make a Career mode where you start off in high school and play a few games and dominate everyone and then get drafted in college play like 10 or 15 games, go to the championship and get drafted to the NFL. Madden 18 would literally be the game of the century and i am not the only one that thinks so please don’t make 2k17 my favorite because i love madden. A LOT!

    Reply

  14. Jack

    03/03/2017 at 5:26 pm

    Madden 18 should be release on PS4

    Reply

  15. Tom

    03/10/2017 at 11:46 pm

    No, no, no. Madden needs to go back further to older versions such as 99′ to be great.

    I’m talking about custom play creator for offense and, defense within realistic parameters. Also, weather changes from moderate to extreme in the weather setting.

    In Madden 17 I’ve only played one rain game and, one snow game. Pathetic and, lazy. Also, a lot of detail was lost from Madden 16 to 17 such as zooming in to uniform items! I can’t even zoom in to see the differences in changes face masks! Customize, customize, customize! Not lazy, lazy, lazy!

    You can’t even sub players for your custom playbooks which in 17 is a glitch that still has not been addressed. Devs are this lazy with their cash cows obviously. How about being creative?

    Reply

  16. Madden18

    03/11/2017 at 2:42 am

    NIce infromation.

    Reply

  17. Mike

    03/13/2017 at 12:46 pm

    They need to make it so you can create a team without having to do the whole franchise mode… people want to fully build a team to fit how they play and I’m talking about a few of my friends. I took a survey to twitter and Facebook around 4,000 people voiced their opinion and people want that ability do fully create. Come on EA give the people what they want! Also the BS bug fixes are a must. We’re all calling you out EA sports. Deliver an above and beyond game.

    Reply

  18. JB

    03/18/2017 at 11:37 pm

    Madden really needs to bring a few things back and it would be perfect.

    -Being able to play the Pro Bowl
    -Offensive & Defensive Coordinators
    -Retired Players being allowed to return to coach
    -Giving a player a new deal before the final year of his contract
    -When signing Free Agents (during season), you can choose the years and amount of money you want for them to sign

    Outside of all that theres just some dumb glitches that can be fixed.

    -Being able to challenge any play that is challengable
    -Ive been called for Roughing the passer because I dove and my guys fingertips touched the QBs feet while he still had the ball
    -Some turnovers and Penalties are inaccurate on the game

    Reply

  19. James

    03/21/2017 at 12:28 pm

    ALL THESE COMMENTS SUCK! WHERE THE FK IS TEAM PLAY FFS

    Reply

    • Chris

      04/14/2017 at 1:04 pm

      Hell yeah! TEAM PLAY!

      Reply

  20. Matthew

    03/22/2017 at 9:30 am

    Some things I think madden should bring back or fix
    – the combine mini games
    – being able to say created or drafted players name
    – better computer play calling
    – being able to challenge more plays
    – customized gear such as gloves with logos on them, the alter ego gloves, customized cleats
    – more commentators for different stadiums
    – starting off in high school and working your way in the NFL would be amazing and do able just add the bigger high school / college teams to the game
    – create a play or create a team
    – have the primary/secondary/and alternate color for everything
    – have better computer pass rush because every time I’m on defense my d line never gets the QB
    Love the game and can’t wait till madden 18 comes out

    Reply

  21. bluntero

    03/29/2017 at 3:15 pm

    Make it easier and better to create your own playbook. Would be great to draw my own plays for offense and defense.

    Reply

  22. ihuehpvudbsbbdv

    04/03/2017 at 12:51 pm

    I have been a player of Madden going on 10 years now. I have also pre-ordered the last 6 straight. I love the franchise, but the differences between each installment is minimal at best. Several critical glitch types occur regularly throughout the game (as shown above in the article), as well as random roughing the passer calls (on a successful sack??). These seem like they should be easy fixes, as they are big time breakdowns. I play almost exclusively on offline franchise, and I have a ton of suggestions. First, I’d love to see a huge overhaul of the draft process. I am a huge fan of the draft, and would love to see changes made such as the option to attend the NFL combine (as a player to participate like in past installments, as well as as a GM/Owner/Coach). Second, the overall feel of all the draftee’s is very weak. The names are completely ridiculous 99% of the time, the appearances are ridiculous from gear to actual player faces (should completely overhaul the physical appearances aspect of the game). Etc. Etc. Etc…

    Reply

  23. Sifu Maestro

    04/07/2017 at 5:22 am

    Madden needs an adaptive AI to help prevent the overuse and abuse of running the same plays over and over again on both sides of the ball. Learn from your rivals and what they did with Nba 2k.

    Reply

  24. Hubbub

    04/09/2017 at 7:10 pm

    You should make pro bowl teams

    Reply

  25. Alex McDaniel

    04/11/2017 at 6:22 pm

    Will it be for PS4 and dose it have a story baseline like nba2k16

    Reply

  26. Johnny Cadillac

    04/14/2017 at 4:04 pm

    Are we going to be able to play other games in franchise mode other than our human team especially in playoff

    Reply

  27. Yo mamma

    04/19/2017 at 2:16 pm

    Look at 07 and 08 when there were training camps that were fun and improved your player……and when superstar mode came out, there was awesome development, interveiews ect…. EA has litterally taken away stuff and put it back peice by peice while taking others away. Your consumers are not idiots step it up madden!

    Reply

    • Beyonće

      04/24/2017 at 4:59 pm

      And a better soundtrack!

      Reply

  28. stephen fascia

    04/23/2017 at 7:07 pm

    will there be a madden 18 released for xbox 360 i will be mad if not thats the only game i play on xbox 360

    Reply

  29. Tom Brady

    04/24/2017 at 4:57 pm

    Career mode? C’mon Madden, 2k has been doing it for years! You can start off in high school and work your way to the NFL with cut scenes along the way. Before you could customize your player and maybe add a section about his backstory. Then you go to the Combine and battle against people that are rookies this year. Then you can get your chance to showcase your talent in like 2-4 preseason games. You work your way to the starting role and then lead your team. Also there should be a face scan feature. Custom cleats should be added and other custom stuff should be upgraded. The fans could be better and maybe even have crazy Raider fans in the “Black Hole”. Team relocation should be added along with custom teams, logos, jerseys etc.

    Reply

  30. Greg Barker

    04/24/2017 at 7:27 pm

    In the next madden game there should be tattoos that you can pick and put on the players and maybe customize a team and make new uniforms and helmets.

    Reply

  31. Greg Barker

    04/24/2017 at 7:29 pm

    We should be able to have a ceerer mode and create your player and then start with high school all the way to the NFL

    Reply

  32. Jose Ortiz

    04/25/2017 at 7:56 pm

    BRING BACK TEAMPLAY!!!!

    Reply

  33. Joshua

    04/27/2017 at 10:11 am

    It needs a story mode or I won’t buy it !!!

    Reply

  34. John

    04/27/2017 at 6:24 pm

    For the love of God please bring online team play back!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

  35. Zachary Thomas

    04/30/2017 at 3:06 pm

    Let us customize uniforms like what nba does

    Reply

  36. jesse niedzielski

    05/03/2017 at 1:01 pm

    why not for xbox 360 they so not cool because i really like the game

    Reply

  37. jesse niedzielski

    05/03/2017 at 1:02 pm

    make it for xbox 360

    Reply

  38. Keyonte Monroe

    05/04/2017 at 8:22 am

    Is EA going to work on the challenges, because every time I try to challenge something it never gets overturned. Even if the play is supposed to be overturned, the ref still the ruling on the field stands. EA needs to fix that.

    Reply

  39. graham

    05/05/2017 at 9:35 am

    can you put in freaking odel-becham jr

    Reply

  40. Monywayne

    05/06/2017 at 1:55 pm

    I Love Madden. Been playin since Madden”99″;however I’m now Disabled and can’t afford PS4. I have PS3, hopeful that Madden 18 is made for PS3 too !!!!!!

    Reply

  41. Chuck

    05/07/2017 at 10:52 am

    Need to overhaul goal line TDs. The game seems to use the actual endzone as the indicator for a TD, but it’s the goal line. Definitely need to bring back the combine for custom players, and for the draft process overall. I hate having to click through a ton of prospects just to find out who got first in the 40, bench, etc. All off ball player lock controls need adjusting. Dynamic moment controls (similar to snap count on DL) would help make an improvement. Miss custom plays a lot, and would like to make RBC part of my playbook instead of trying (and failing) to create balanced substitutions. Also, would like to be able to assign certain players to positions in a formation. If I have a guy who’s WR1 and 6’5 and runs a 4.5-4.6 forty, and my WR3 runs a 4.4, why would I want to put my WR1 in the slot on a screen play designed for the slot. Makes no sense. As a Giants fan, I love OBJ. But this year, I’d rather put him in the slot with Marshall and Engram outside in certain scenarios, even though Beckham is still WR1.

    Reply

  42. Patrick Turner

    05/07/2017 at 1:57 pm

    It’s wonderful that M18 is switching to frostbite.cause it’s frustrateing that players drop alot of passes in the game even when it’s a good player with good catching ratings. So I’m hopeful that the change to frostbite engine changes things.and a lot of others things in the game.

    Reply

  43. cam

    05/11/2017 at 8:31 am

    IMO Madden died after the 25th SAE. Why take away Communities and Team Play? That is what attracts so many people to FIFA and NBA2K… OH WAIT, EA has the worst development crew and does not know how to invest money in decent servers. Madden could be so great… in other hands. I pray for the day 2K can get the contract.

    Reply

  44. Chad Donahue

    05/12/2017 at 7:15 am

    They should make a copy of the game for the Ps3, some people cant afford a ps4, that love playing madden games.

    Reply

  45. mink lashes

    07/23/2017 at 7:50 pm

    At this time it appears like Expression Engine is the top blogging platform out there right now. (from what I’ve read) Is that what you’re using on your blog?

    Reply

  46. james Justin

    08/27/2017 at 11:55 pm

    Its a very good article with interesting videos. I am very excited for this game and also for that this game is coming with frostbite engine.

    Reply

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