In the Madden 18 Longshot story mode, you're challenged with getting hopeful quarterback Devin Wade, and his friend/receiver partner Colt Cruise to the NFL Draft, and subsequently drafted onto an NFL roster. In this Madden 18 Longshot guide, we'll be detailing how to go about coming out on top of every challenge that Devin Wade faces, throughout the three hours that Longshot roughly runs for. Follow our Madden Longshot guide and you'll be well on the road to success.
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Madden 18 Longshot Story Guide
The trick to being a success in the Madden 18 Longshot mode is, for the large part, simply being humble. No, this doesn't exactly fit in with the average player in the NFL, but staying largely humble and not descending into arguments and boasting in Longshot is key to helping maintain your image come Draft Day.
Madden 18's Longshot mode is broken up into three chapters, the first of which is effectively the Regional Combine, the second of which is largely covering the titular Longshot TV show, and the third of which is the redemption arc for both Devin and Colt. We'll be walking you through the best decisions to make in each Longshot act throughout the guide below, with the end goal of getting both Devin and Colt drafted to an NFL team.
Madden 18 Longshot Mode Act 1 Guide
When Madden 18's Longshot story first begins, you're introduced to the young versions of Devin and Cole. Opt to 'change the play' in the conversation choice, and then complete the two QTE button presses afterwards, guiding the ball with the left analogue stick into the outstretched hands of Colt Cruise.
Fast forward a few minutes to the next conversation choice when you're on the road with Colt, and choose the 'have mercy' option to build your friendship with Colt, and then opt to sing along with Colt a few minutes afterwards in the car. When you arrive at the hotel, opt to 'reject' Colt's wish to take a photo by the banner, and you'll get into the hotel itself on time. This is a surprisingly crucial decision, as choosing to take the photo with Colt and missing the hotel opening hours can negatively affect both Devin and Colt.
When your next conversation choice occurs in the Regional Combine, choose the 'hush Colt' option, sticking with the path of being humble and respecting your mentors. Now, a series of QTE events will take place, where you have to press left trigger as quickly as possible, when Devin is prompted to throw the ball to a receiver. As soon as you've pressed left trigger, guide the marker up the field towards the receiver using the left analog stick, and press the corresponding button when the marker is over the green zone. Press the analog stick towards the receiver while you're pressing left trigger for the prompt, to get a head start on this section.
Next, when Colt is feeling discouraged, choose the 'encourage Colt' option, and you'll be presented with the choice of whether to move positions for the sake of Colt. Your Grade will drop if you choose to move positions and support Colt, but you can boost both Colt’s standing and your own if you choose to go with him, and then make the throw to him. Should you fail to make the throw after switching positions for Colt however, you'll have embarassed both him and Devin in front of the coach.
Mario Gonzales will insult you in the next scene after the combine, but choose to 'ignore him' and walk away to maintain your integrity. In the next series of conversation choices, the best option is to 'question' the TV bosses at every turn, but bear in mind that there's no backing out of the Longshot TV Show that they present to Devin, so you might as well accept their offer when presented with the choice.
In the challenge during the flashback event, you're tasked with completing the comeback, leading your team back from a 21-0 deficit to beat your opponents. This seems intimidating, but it's actually relatively easy. All you need to do is look to any of your receivers running routes that involve quick cuts, and hit them as soon as they make a cut, no matter the direction. You have plenty of opportunities to succeed in the comeback, so take your time in the pocket, and look for your receivers that can cut away from their cornerbacks.
Madden 18 Longshot Mode Act 2 Guide
In the second act of Madden 18's Longshot Mode, the Longshot TV Show becomes the main focus of the story, as Devin Wade is unwittingly forced into some arguably bad situations without his knowledge. Keep a level, cool head in this chapter, especially when dealing with other players, and you can easily come out on top of act 2.
First up, 'doubt' instead of 'brag' about the Longshot TV Show, and then invite Colt to the TV Show itself, before he reveals that he's been invited to the Super Regional Combine. In the next scene, choose to 'be polite' in front of the cameras when you get out of the car, and then select the 'hold back' option when you're with both the TV bosses.
Next up, you'll be presented with a throwing drill for the Longshot TV Show, where you have to hit targets totalling at least 11, which is Josh Butterly's score, to beat him and advance in the show. To aim at the targets, have the actual button prompt above the marker on the ground placed just before the target you want to hit, and you'll also have to time it so that the ball hits the marker at the point at which the target has moved there. Throw the ball roughly 2/3 seconds before the target gets there, and aim for the blue '2' targets, since just six of these will net you a higher score than Butterly.
Madden 18 Longshot Mode Play Calls
In the next challenge that the Longshot TV Show throws at Devin, you'll have to call the commands back to your coach, in the exact order that he said them in. Don't worry about having to remember them, as we've got them all listed for you just below:
- Play 1: Strong I Twins, Flex Dagger, X Dig, Y Shallow, Z Go
- Play 2: Singleback Ace Pair, Y Stick, X Slant, Z Go, U Flat
- Play 3: Gun Bunch Weak, Double Trail, X Go, Y Dig, Z Shallow
Shortly after this challenge has concluded, you'll be invited into a room to analyse some formations on a screen. The first answer is 'safety', the next answer for the hot receiver is 'X', and the final answer for the personnel question is '22'.
In the challenge on the field, it's the same throwing drills as in the Regional Combine, and your Performance and Grade will go up with each throw you make. You're given increasingly less time to make each throw, so make sure you're pushing on the left analog stick while you're waiting for the left trigger prompt to throw the ball.
It doesn't matter what you say in the series of conversation choices with your coach in the next scene, as he'll question you no matter what you say, and the resulting conversation in which he wants to go with your opponent on the Longshot TV Show is always guaranteed. Don't 'insult' or 'provoke' your rival QB while you're both waiting outside the office, and let the scene play out.
In the scene with your coach after you've become the star of the Longshot TV Show, choose 'confirm', saying you know what offensive and defensive formations are, and then select the 'singleback' option, finally selecting the 'X/Square' option to conclude this scene.
Madden 18 Longshot Play Calls
Next, you'll have to repeat a formation that your coach gives you back to him, which is as follows:
- I Pro, Bench, X Out, Z Post (select 'right side receiver runs a post' option), Y Option
When Colt surprises you during the meeting, choose the 'accept' option to have Colt join you on the show, as he's key to the entire Longshot story mode moving forward. Next, there's a montage training scene, during which you should select 'run the ball', and then the 'throw the ball' option.
In the next challenge to present itself to Devin Wade, you'll be presented with a series of throwing drills, where you have to throw to the correct receiver. Firstly, choose to throw to Colt once he cuts to the inside, and for the second challenge, choose to throw to the receiver that isn't Colt, once he also cuts to the inside.
Next up, Devin will have to handle himself in front of the media, some of which are out for blood. Choose to 'praise team' first of all, and then choose to option to 'be honest' about your mental state when asked. After this, select 'justify' as the next conversation option, before choosing the 'deny' option, and the 'hesitate' option afterwards.
For the final choices in the second act of Longshot, choose the 'defuse' and then 'ignore' options to conclude this section of the Longshot Story Mode.
Madden 18 Longshot Mode Act 3 Guide
In the first, tense confrontation between Colt and Devin, there are no 'right' answers, but we'd recommend going with the 'avoid' and 'justify' choices, rounding out with the 'deny' option.
After this, you'll be tasked with playing your way through a series of flashback games for Devin, in which plenty of QTEs are involved. The first is easy, as you have to press 'A/X', move outside of the reach of the defender, and do a spin move round the next player, before diving into the endzone. For the second flashback, guide the ball to Colt using the left analogue stick, and it doesn't matter if the ball hits the arm of a defender, as Colt will still catch the ball on the rebound.
The third and final flashback game is significantly more difficult, and you can fail it pretty easily. When you're matched up on defense, simply stick to your assignment, be this blitzing or marking a player, but don't allow the player to get behind you if they're running a route, as this can be disastrous if they catch and run with the ball. Produce a stop of the defense, and then take control of the offense and guide your team down the field, taking advantage of all the cut routes that you see your receivers running.
Your next challenge is whether to fire or reassign Ross. The best outcome in this scene is if you choose to reassign Ross, before defending both Julia and Jack to have Ross successfully reassigned, with Julia taking control of the TV Show.
The one and only Dan Marino is then introduced into Longshot, in a scene in which you should act humble to maintain your poise. Next, you'll be presented with a throwing challenge, in which you always have to release the ball within four seconds. To do this, either wait till any of your receivers cut away from their defenders on their routes, or simply check the ball down to chip away at the yardage. On the defensive side of the ball, you can't do anything more than sticking to your given assignment, and you definitely don't want to blow this and leave your assigned player wide open for a big gain.
In the next throwing situation with Marino, you want to knock as many boxes over as possible, before Marino can hit them. Just like you did in act 1, position the button prompt for the throw just before the target, and you're guaranteed to hit it. Just keep up with the score that Marino puts up, and you'll unlock a nice achievement/trophy for your efforts.
Next up, you'll have to play a 7-on-7 game with army personnel, which is actually easier than it sounds. You have four downs to score a touchdown, so your first throw should definitely be aimed to take you into the redzone, rather than score outright on your first attempt. Hit your receivers whenever they cut away from a defender, then stick with your assignment while playing defense to win this battle.
Once you're back from your trip overseas and you're with Julia, choose the 'accept' option with Mario Gonzales to up your Grade, and then choose the 'accept' option when asked about the TV interview with Pat Kirwin.
Throughout the TV interview itself, you need to be open, honest, and generally humble in order to achieve the best possible outcome. Firstly, choose the 'open up' option, and then choose to 'lean on team' when prompted by Kirwin. Select 'praise McCarthy' as the next option, and then choose 'downplay stardom' to remain humble and committed, before opting to 'excuse Scmyzniak', and rounding out the interview by simply selecting your ideal team from the list.
Madden 18 Longshot Season Finale Guide
In the Longshot Season Finale, Devin Wade and Colt Cruise will be presented with a series of challenges, each of which can advance both their standings in the eyes of both players and general managers around the NFL.
For the first challenge, your objective is to basically hold onto the ball, either long enough to score a touchdown, or long enough to run out the remainder of the clock. It's the most simple of all the challenges in this scenario, as all you need to do is play it safe, checking down to the nearest receiver if you're unsure, or throwing it to a receiver if they gain any separation in man coverage.
Your second challenge is a 2 minute drill, starting from your own 20 yard line. Simply proceed as you did on the last challenge, checking the ball down to the safest option, and you should have relatively little trouble passing the second challenge of the Longshot Season Finale.
For the third challenge, you have to make it to your opponent's 35 yard line, but the catch is that you start off from your own 1 yard line, so taking a sack isn't an option here. Hit small routes to begin with to move yourself away from your own endzone, and from there you can start taking bigger risks with plays that take longer to develop, but don't forget to check down if you need to.
The fourth challenge is slightly different, in that you have to score a touchdown in 1 minute, without passing the ball to Colt. You have a decision to make here: don't pass the ball to Colt and increase Devin's standing, or pass the ball to Colt, and increase his ranking but not your own. It's a tough choice, but ultimately it's better for Devin if you leave Colt out of the mix. In our experience, if you throw to Colt in this situation, it drastically increases Colt's chances of being drafted, but damages Devin's chances of landing with a team.
For the fifth Longshot mode challenge, you have to overcome Devin's past, either forcing the ball to Colt downfield, or checking down to the receiver near you. We'd recommend going for the check down option in this situation, as it's a guaranteed completion, and you'll be congratulated by both Colt and Jack. As with the previous challenge, Colt's standing will increase dramatically if you can force the ball to him, but Devin's ranking will take a hit for not checking the ball down.
For the sixth and final challenge of the Longshot Season Finale, you finally have the ability to playcall for yourself, selecting the plays that you want to use in order to drive your team downfield to victory. Select whichever plays suit you best, but bear in mind that you might want them to revolve around Colt, as his standings can be significantly increased if you throw to him during this victory section.
We have a wealth of other guides covering all different aspects of Madden 18 here at USgamer, including guides on the best offensive and defensive playbooks, as well as a guide to the best offensive money plays in Madden 18.
The next iteration of Madden NFL is on the horizon in late 2018, and for everything you need to know about the upcoming game, make sure to head over to our Madden 19 everything we know guide. Alternatively, you can check out our Madden 19 Ultimate Team guide, where we list all of the changes that EA are making to the popular mode for the next year.