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“CTRL C, CTRL V”: We Spent a Day With the Madden25 Devs

SANTA CRUZ, Calif. – In a rare move, Electronic Arts granted the media full access to the entire Madden25 development team for a whole day leading up to the game’s November release. This Hard Drive reporter was one of the few to step foot into the offices, speak with game developers, and investigate what it is that makes people hate these games so much.

After arriving at EA’s headquarters in Redwood City, we were shuttled one hour south to the Madden offices in a deluxe bungalow on a beach in Santa Cruz. At the door we were greeted by Tripp, a 22-year-old intern in a cutoff shirt.

“Welcome to casa de la Madden!” He said as bong smoke billowed out of the doorway, “Make yourselves at home, beers in the kitchen, the bros are out back by the pool, and stick around after hours for movie night on the flat screen, we got Fast Five on deck!”

Tripp pointed to an underlit living room with three couches and four TVs. The beach house, which appears to have been a place where video games were programmed many years ago, has devolved into a frat house that seemingly only throws LAN parties.

“It’s not being released until November, so we’ve still got a ton of time to get started,” Senior Gameplay Developer Scoot MacReady told us without making eye contact. “Aside from adjusting the rosters and thinking of a card tier higher than 99 OVR there’s not much else to it. Maybe something like Amethyst Black Diamond?”

During the “work day” we witnessed a 45 minute meeting on the game’s soundtrack and cover athlete, an optional brainstorming session on microtransactions, and a handful of entry level programmers copying and pasting the code from Madden 24, 23, and 21.

“The hardest part is convincing the US Federal Trade Commission that buying Fantasy Packs isn’t gambling for children,” said Executive Assistant Chad Thurman in response to highlighting the difficulties of making a new game every year. “Luckily EA has lawyers out the ass to make all those government dorks disappear.”

At press time, the launch date for Madden25 has been delayed to account for the boy’s summer trip to Tahoe.

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