Fan select Peyton Hillis for Madden 12 cover, game features and updates revealed

A few weeks ago, Electronic Arts launched a contest in which fans were asked to vote on which NFL player would be featured on the cover of this summer’s Madden NFL 12 release. It’s a mixed blessing to be chosen for the honor of course because of the fabled (yet always proven) Madden Curse. Regardless, it’s still a big deal, and the fans have now spoken: this year’s Madden 12 cover athlete will be… Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis.

Hillis beat fellow finalist Michael Vick by a margin of 66 percent to 34 percent spread out across the more than 12.7 million votes cast, a press release reveals. “This has been a humbling experience and I want to thank all the fans in Cleveland and throughout the country that got behind me and voted each and every week,” Hillis, the fourth running back to appear on the cover of the Madden NFL franchise, said in a statement.

“I’ve been playing Madden NFL for ten years, and it’s a dream to know that I’ll be on the cover of this great game. I’m looking forward to another big season with the Browns to show fans how much we appreciate them.”

The press release also goes into detail on some of the new features to be included in the game, which arrives a little later than usual this year on August 30. There’s a considerable amount of content, though the highlights seem to be the addition of custom playbooks (“the #1 most requested feature by fans”) and updates to the game’s Franchise and Superstar modes. Read the full list below, pulled straight from the press release.

Playbooks & Gameplay

All-New Collision System: Now maintain full control of players up to the point of impact — from tackling to blocking — providing the most authentic collisions in franchise history. This new system uses a player’s momentum and over 100 new tackle animations, including 40 gang tackles, to provide more impactful hits, stolen tackles, and consecutive hit tackling.
Advanced Defensive AI: Over 100 defensive A.I. enhancements resulting in the smartest Madden defense ever. Players in zone and man coverage will properly recognize and react to plays, including the ability to break out of assignments when appropriate, resulting in a defensive team that truly works together.
Custom Playbooks: The #1 most requested feature by fans in recent years, allows you to build the ultimate game plan by modifying an existing playbook or creating your own by selecting up to 400 offensive or defensive plays from 75 different playbooks. Integrate your custom playbook into a game plan for use with the improved GameFlow system, which executes an authentic, situational game plan for you.


Broadcast Redefined: Experience NFL Sundays like never before with completely overhauled presentation, including 32 team-specific run outs featuring mascots and cheerleaders, over 500 dynamic broadcast cameras authentic to every NFL stadium, innovative “real” on-field cameras shot by expert NFL Films cameramen, and a network inspired new broadcast graphics package.
Unprecedented On-Field Authenticity: Hundreds of visual improvements across all areas of the game including: new player equipment, helmet stickers, pylon and ball physics, a player degradation system that affects uniforms and helmets based on weather and field surface, 3D grass, and new player specific animations that showcase the personalities of each NFL player.

Franchise and Superstar Modes

Franchise mode includes more than 100 new features and enhancements, including expanded rosters, an all-new rookie scouting system, a free-agent bidding system, and more.

In Superstar mode, fans can now control the growth of their superstar with an all-new progression system that allows you to earn skill points by participating in practice and games. More details on Franchise and Superstar modes will be released on May 16.

Dynamic Player Performance

Dynamic Player Performance is an all-new feature that creates unprecedented realism as a player’s skills and confidence will rise and fall based on his performance throughout a game or in Franchise mode, just like the real NFL. No two players will play the same in Madden NFL 12, and more details will be revealed at the E3 Expo on June 6.

Madden NFL Ultimate Team

The perfect combination of Madden NFL Football, fantasy football, and trading cards comes to life in Madden NFL Ultimate Team. More information on how to earn, buy, auction, and trade players will be released on June 20.

Online Communities

Online Communities will provide an all-new way for Madden NFL gamers to meet and play. More details will be released on July 25.

Get our Top Stories delivered to your inbox: