With millions of sports gamers debating the differences between the upcoming Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles, EA Sports is teaming with Microsoft to offer an exclusive second screen app called CoachGlass that should send Madden fans making a mad dash toward the One.
Utilizing CoachGlass, gamers will be able to use their tablets or smartphones to help strategize against opponents, almost like becoming a computerized defensive coordinator. You’ll be able see your opponent’s offensive strategies as the game plays out, complete with previous play calls, and even player tendencies per formation.
Seriously, this is the type of next-gen technology Madden fans have been begging for, and the fact that it’s exclusive to Microsoft’s new system, could really help swing the console race, especially considering that EA Sports’ Madden NFL 25 is expected to be one of the best-selling games when the two systems launch in November.
Here’s a quick breakdown of how CoachGlass works:
As soon as your opponent picks a play, CoachGlass will give you three recommended defenses based on tendencies, formation, and personnel straight to your tablet or smartphone. The recommendations aren’t just based on pre-programmed Madden A.I., however, as the details on how to stop the offense will be based off of tens of thousands of online games. The information you receive gives you the specific defensive formations and plays that work best to shut down your opponent. Once you select your defensive play (simply tap the touchscreen), you’re then given a quick breakdown of the offense’s biggest threats on the field so you know who to focus on out of their called formation. And with all of this info constantly updated throughout the game, you’ll see the recommendations change as the percentages of success also change depending on how the calls actually play out.
And the information gamers receive through the app is truly amazing, showing, for example, out of the bunch formation, the percentage your opponent passes compared to runs, while also breaking down what side of the field the quarterback tends to throw to (left, right, middle), in addition to whether they prefer to pass the ball short, medium, or long.
But that’s not all, as you can also quickly scroll through the last 64 plays your opponent has called in the game, enabling you to not only know what formations you need to work on stopping in the future, but what plays are working so next time you’re playing as that team (or that team’s playbook), you’ll know a few calls of your own you can make in order to find success.
CoachGlass is also a fun new way to play co-op, as one person can play the game with the controller on the TV, while the second player calls the plays and tracks the trends using the tablet or smartphone. This is a way to not only really get down and dirty in the details, but is also a great first step to teaching strategy to younger football fans who want to learn more about formations and play types.
And with CoachGlass working across all play modes (excluding practice), I can already see this becoming a natural fit into the Madden universe, and might just be the coolest innovation the series has seen since the Hit Stick. With so many back-of-the-box features debuting and disappearing every year, this is one of those sticky-type tools I think will be around for years to come. It’s already an extremely useful feature year one, and with the second screen technology continuing to advance, this is one of those features that should just continue to improve as the years go on.
If you’re a sports fan, this is the type of innovation that should make the Xbox One jump to the top of your holiday wish list, especially if this is just a hint of SmartGlass features to come with the new console.
Who knows, maybe the next Rob Ryan will get their first taste of defensive strategy thanks to Madden 25 and CoachGlass. It’s the type of feature that’s not only teaching you the knowledge necessary to improve your video game skills, but it’s teaching you advanced football IQ that translates from polygons to real life.