EA Sports College Football is still over a year away from release. Other than recent news which suggests Dynasty Mode is returning and real athletes having their likeness in the game, there's not much more to go on. That being said, there's still plenty to discuss, including the gameplay and features of the game. It will be EA Sports' first college football game since NCAA 14 (which released on the seventh generation of consoles).
Here are 5 features we'd like to see return with the college football video game series.
5. Online Dynasty + Wire
Dynasty Wire was exclusive to NCAA Football 11. It was a web-based story generator that you could visit online to read about all the happenings in your league. You also had control of your league this way. Stuck at a relative's house but remembered you needed to update your roster? You can do so. Bored at work and want to check your league and player stats? Go ahead, there's no stopping you.
Plus, the dynasty wire was accessible to desktop and smartphone users, which felt pretty ahead of its time back then. It also allowed for highlights and game recaps to go online as well. Had a last-second victory over a rival school? Now your friends can see that play and comment on the video. You control your articles and can make some of your own too, like a top 5 reasons why your team is the best.
NCAA Football 11 was already one of the best college football video games, and this feature was definitely a part of the reason why. We'd love to see something similar return with the new series.
4. Improved and Updated Recruiting Mechanics
Since NCAA 14, a lot of the changes occurred involving transfer windows and recruiting regulations. It seems like a no-brainer that EA Sports implements all the new rules and additions that the sport has seen since then.
But in terms of recruiting we should hope to see many improvements. A NIL budget for each school would make sense, and there should be more variables involved when recruiting athletes. Whether this means more kinds of promises you can make to athletes and recruits, or how much they can make in their NIL deal, the options should be expanded upon.
Now that players can make money off their likeness and image, it only makes sense that this concept be merged into the game experience. A 5-star recruit wants to play for you, but perhaps they see an opportunity to make more money elsewhere. This could be one addition alone that impacts someone's decision for where they want to play next.
We also hope to see the return of who else is interested in the player. It'll be good to know which competition is in the market for the recruit. But it would also be cool to turn that option off, and create a bigger mystery behind who gets the athlete.
3. Expanded Coaching Carousel / Opportunities
NCAA 14 allowed players to start their coaching careers as coordinators and move up the ranks. When they become head coach, they can see their own coordinators leave for greener pastures. It's subtle features like this that should definitely return and be expanded upon.
It would be cool to sign different positional coaches, but that idea may be intimidating to some. Therefore, should be a setting that allows the player to decide how much they want to control with their league. If you want to just play and not worry about coaching or coordinator issues, then you should do so. But if you're looking for an immersive experience, then the only College Football video game should allow you to do more.
This includes things like hiring former players to coaching staff. Perhaps you had a player on your bench for 4 years who mainly provided as a depth guy. It would be cool, then, to get a message from the player indicating they'd like to get into coaching. They could start off small, but in a few years find themselves coordinating your team's offense.
NCAA 14 had a pretty good system in place for coaching carousels, so we think it can be even better with College Football.
2. More Settings for League Commissioner
Creating a league, whether it's for yourself or with friends, should have more customization options to it. Most aspects of the league could and should be interchangeable. This could be number of games played in a season, which schools play in which conferences, or how big the College Football Playoffs are. Flexing schedules should also be an option.
Are two top ten teams playing each other at noon? Maybe the league commissioner can move the game to prime time if it looks promising. Realism shouldn't affect aspects in a fictional video game where fun should be key.
But to add more to that, there should also be restrictions that Commissioners can set in place. It seems with every football video game there's aways bound to be a couple of overpowered plays. For those who've played Madden or NCAA, you know how annoying Four Verticals is. To solve this problem, perhaps we can allow league commissioners to ban certain plays.
Want to ban every play except for Fullback Dive in a three-game season? Why not? It's your game. Though admittedly that sounds pretty boring.
1. School/Stadium Creator
A feature that's been gone from licensed football video games for too long is the ability to create your own school. Part of the joy in playing a franchise or dynasty mode is seeing your program be the top in the league. For some, it's even cooler if it's a team they created themselves. That's why we think it would be awesome to have a create-a-school option alongside the typical create-a-player feature.
A school creator mode wouldn't have to be that complex. Even if there were still pre-set logo options and stadium designs, it would be better than what gamers currently have today. Madden NFL games have a team relocation option, but it's very limited and nowhere near how older games in the series did it.
Here's an example from NCAA 06's school creator mode. If they could do this back then, then it'd be crazy to see what they should be able to do now.
For more on EA Sports College Football and other sports video games, check out ClutchPoints Gaming.