Madden 18 Tips Guide - Offensive and Defensive Money Plays, MUT Budget Studs, Earn MUT Coins Fast, Madden 18 Controls Guide

Madden 18 Tips Guide - Offensive and Defensive Money Plays, MUT Budget Studs, Earn MUT Coins Fast, Madden 18 Controls Guide

Your essential Madden 18 guides, including how to get drafted in the Longshot mode, and the best plays to call on both offense and defense.

Madden 18 was released as usual last August in 2017, bringing a fresh new roster for every team alongside the latest in football technology - who doesn't want to play Madden 18 in 4K? In this Madden 18 tips guide, we'll be running down all the information you need on the latest iteration of the football sim, as well as giving you all the Madden 18 tips and tricks you need to find the best players in order to dominate the competition in online matches. If you want Madden 18 Offense Tips, Madden 18 Defense Tips, as well as a guide for Madden 18 controls, we’ve got them for you right here.

Madden 18 Guides

Madden 18 Tips Guide

Madden 18 includes a story mode for the first time in the history of the franchise, dubbed the 'Longshot' mode. This mode takes after the Telltale Games formula, as you take on the role of a young prospect and guide him from the classroom all the way to the NFL Draft, with the aim of being drafted at the highest position possible.

Aside from giving you all the Madden 18 Longshot tips you need to get the best end result possible, we'll also be giving you a wealth of general tips and tricks in order to get you winning every Madden 18 game you play. Read on for tips on how to return a Kickoff in Madden 18, and how to kick a perfect Field Goal.

Madden 18 Offense Tips

With the offense in Madden 18, it’s as much about being able to read the defense, as it is calling the right plays. In the Madden 18 Offense tips below, we’ll give you all the info you need in order to dominate on the offensive side of the ball.

  • As soon as you call a play, look at the position of the defenders on the field. If they’re up close to your receivers, the coverage is probably man, but if they’ve backed off, then it’s more likely to be zone.
  • Do any of the defenders move before the snap? If two defenders move at the same time ie on comes forward to the line and another fills their place, then the player that moves forward to the line is getting ready to blitz.
  • As a general rule, only use the 'aggressive blocking' option for your offensive line if you absolutely need to, as offensive holding calls are far more likely when using this.
  • If you aren’t confident in the play you’ve called, you can audible (switch) to another play in the same formation, by pressing X/Square.
  • To change the route of a single receiver, press Y/Triangle, press their corresponding button, then change their route with the D-pad, analogue sticks, shoulder and trigger buttons.
  • Don’t force the ball! It’s better to take a sack in Madden 18 than it is to throw a pick, and give possession over to your opponent.
  • When you’re controlling either a running back or receiver with the ball, hold the right shoulder button to protect the ball if you know you’ll be tackled. This helps prevent your player fumbling.
  • Alternatively, press B/O with the ball carrier and use the right stick to spin to either side, taking you out of the grasp of oncoming defenders.
  • Take note of the button prompts after you’ve thrown the ball. The game will advise you to make a possession catch with X/Square, or an aggressive catch if you’re fighting for the ball with Y/Triangle.

Madden 18 Defense Tips

On the defensive side of the ball in Madden 18, it’s all about reacting to your opponent’s moves. You can call the best play possible, but it won’t mean anything if you don’t adjust according to your opponent. The Madden 18 Defense tips below will give you the edge.

  • Look at how the offense lines up in relation to your defense. Do you have enough players in coverage to match up to every receiver and tight end?
  • If not, or if you need to modify anything, press Y/Triangle, and then the corresponding button over the head of a defender to change their assignment.
  • Alternatively, you can switch plays just like on the offense, using the X/Square button to bring up a list of plays you can change to.
  • You can choose one player to take control of while playing defense, and you’ll be able to move around freely while doing this. Stick to your assignment though, or the entire play could end in disaster if a receiver goes completely uncovered.
  • You can change the type of pass rush you want, for example you can opt for an 'aggressive pass rush' before the snap, and all blitzing personnel will gain increased stats relating to pass rush.
  • Once the ball is throw to a receiver, press B/O to switch to the defender nearest to them. If you plan on intercepting the ball, hold Y/Triangle before a catch is made, but if you need to tackle the player with the ball instead, then press X/Square.
  • If your defender gets blocked by an opponent, and the player with the ball is running nearby to you, you can extend an arm and attempt to grab them as they pass. Press the left shoulder button if the ball carrier is running to the right, and vice versa for the left side, to grab the ball carrier.

Madden 18: How to Return a Kickoff

You’ll want to follow your blockers when returning either a kick or a punt, and so do this, select the option to return down the middle. Once your receiver has caught the kicked ball, follow the blockers directly ahead of you, going directly through either any gaps that open up ahead of you, or going behind any players that are currently blocking players for you. You don't want to get so close that the player being blocked will peel off the block and tackle your receiver, so make sure to keep a distance of at least a few feet from any blockers in front of you.

Madden 18: How to Kick a Perfect Field Goal

When you set yourself up to kick a field goal in Madden 18, you’ll be given the trajectory of the ball, depending on how much power you put into the kick. You can move this trajectory around to aim, and ideally you want to have the middle trajectory marker aimed between the center of the goal posts, to give you as much margin for error as possible.

Next, press A/X to start the kick, and as the meter increases, you want to stop it as close to the top as possible, ideally in the red zone. Don’t hesitate once the meter goes into the top section, as if you let it go into the red zone but don’t stop it, your kick will be incredibly weak. With the meter now decreasing after you stopped it the first time, you want to now stop it in the zone down the bottom, or as near to it as possible, in order to kick as near to the marked trajectory of the ball as possible.

Bear in mind that the higher OVR (overall) rating the kicker has, the more easily he can make field goals from a further distance. The ‘kicking power’ and ‘accuracy’ stats of a kicker always factor into every kick they make, and for example if they were to have a higher kicking power statistic, the trajectory of the kick would be able to reach further across the field.

Madden 18 Player Ratings Guide

In this section of our guide hub, we'll be running down the best Madden 18 players at every position on the field, in order to give you an idea of the overall best team in the game, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of each team. For example, if you want an offense that focusses more on the pass, then you'll probably want to go with either New England or Green Bay, but if you want a team that favors the running back, then it might be a good idea to go with Seattle or Dallas.

We'll be adding to and adjusting the list above throughout the NFL season, based on the changes that EA make to player ratings based on their real-life performance every week.

Madden 18 Review Round-Up

With Madden 18 now upon us, take a look at the impressive reviews the game garnered just below, in case you're on the fence about whether to buy it.

  • USgamer: 4.5/5 - "Madden 18 shines where it matters most: On the field. The transition to Frostbite is seamless, and the balance of the running, the pass rush, and coverage feels better than ever."
  • Polygon: 8/10 - "Madden 18 doesn't shake up its gameplay, but the new story mode is a success."
  • Forbes: 8.1/10 - "This is a really good football game that you will probably enjoy, but you will also likely still have some gripes. Madden 18 takes noticeable steps in gameplay and depth, but it's still teasing us with true greatness."

Kat went hands-on with Madden 18 and came away with three main thoughts: Passing feels totally different, running is hard, and those new passing mechanics take while to get used to.

FIFA 17 made the switch to EA's internal game engine, Frostbite, made by DICE and made famous for its use in the Battlefield games. Madden NFL 18 makes the move over to Frostbite this year. It's fair to say that FIFA 17 wasn't a drastic change from FIFA 16, but it did allow the dev team to create the slightly bizarre but engrossing story mode, The Journey.

At EA’s EA Play 2017 event, the publisher revealed the "Longshot" Story Mode for Madden 18, which will follow the story of Devin Wade, as he attempts to turn his hopes of an NFL career from a dream to a reality. In a story mode that resembles FIFA 17's The Journey, but also draws from Telltale games like The Walking Dead, players will have various choices to make, in order to help or hinder the career of Wade.

According to EA's Mike Young, there will be multiple endings for the Longshot mode, and icons like Dan Marino, Chad Johnson, and Bill Cowher will be making an appearance. A scouting report will track the decisions that you make in the shoes of Devin Wade, both on and off the field, and it's entirely possible that our protagonist never even makes it as a star in the NFL.

Young revealed to us that there won't be a single NFL game played in Longshot, as instead the story mode will begin at the 2017 Regional Combine and finish up on Draft Day, so you're following Devin Wade through what is effectively his origin story. On top of this, Young told us that there won't be a single loading screen in the entire mode, as Longshot is billed instead as a playable movie, entirely separate from Connected Franchises, but it will allow you to unlock cards like Chad Johnson for Madden 18 Ultimate Team.

Fore more from Mike Young, check out our Madden 18 Longshot interview.

Fans of career mode in Madden might want to set their expectations pretty low as, according to USG Editor Kat Bailey, EA isn’t making many strides with this side of the experience.

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.

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Hirun Cryer

Guides Writer

Hirun Cryer is by far the most juvenile member of USgamer. He's so juvenile, that this is his first full-time job in the industry, unlike literally every other person featured on this page. He's written for The Guardian, Paste Magazine, and Kotaku, and he likes waking up when the sun rises and roaming the nearby woods with the bears and the wolves.

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