As we’re writing this, the 2018 NFL season has just gotten underway, and that could also mean you’re getting into the thick of things video game-wise. If you’re a console gamer, there’s a chance you already own EA Sports’ Madden NFL 19, but in case you’re not, or if you’re also an avid mobile gamer, the company has something for you in the form of Madden NFL Overdrive. Much like their NBA Live Mobile Basketball and FIFA Soccer, Madden NFL Overdrive is sort of a companion game/little sibling to the console version, as it is specifically designed for mobile gamers — a portable, yet in-depth experience that promises to be the “biggest and best launch” in the Madden franchise’s history on mobile devices. Can you turn your team of has-beens and never-were into a Super Bowl-caliber team?
The better question, however, may be how you’re planning to turn your ragtag team into a contender. This is a question we admit could take a while to answer, but since we’re willing to take it slow and cover all bases across multiple guides, we’ll get you started with this Madden NFL Overdrive beginner’s guide, which includes an overview of the game’s basics, some basic tips for performing better on the field, and similarly light stuff on the otherwise heavier topics of currency, player packs, and player development. We’ve compiled eight tips for you below, but take note that this isn’t our last guide for this excellent new release from EA Sports!
1. The Basics Of Madden NFL Overdrive
Madden NFL Overdrive may not be the same as EA Sports’ Madden games for other platforms, but it’s as close as you could get to being able to play football on your mobile device, while playing a game optimized for the mobile experience. You will start out the game by choosing any one of the 32 NFL teams, but if you choose the Green Bay Packers, for instance, don’t expect to play games with Aaron Rodgers as your starting quarterback. You will be given a random lineup of mostly scrub/journeyman-level players, though you will also have a captain assigned to your team, a top-tier NFL player standing out among the mediocre players you’ll be starting with. It would seem that the starter captain is Steelers receiver Antonio Brown, who happens to be the game’s cover athlete.
The game’s tutorial will waste little time before it allows you to play an Overdrive game, which you’ll notice soon enough has a lot of similarities, but also a lot of differences from actual American football. The premise here is that you will be playing against a human-controlled opponent, but instead of scoring six points for touchdowns, three points for field goals, and single points after touchdowns, you will score based on “Fantasy Points,” which you will get whenever you do something good on the field. If your running back gains some yards, if your quarterback successfully completes a pass, or if you score a touchdown/field goal, you will earn some points.
While you can also earn points for defensive plays, these will only happen when it’s your opponent’s turn, with the AI playing defense for you in the background — Overdrive games only require you to play offense, so there’s no need to worry about controlling defensive players to intercept passes, sack the quarterback, etc. Basically, the goal here is to outscore your opponent once the three-minute game is over (or more than three minutes — overtime periods, however, are extremely rare when both teams can easily score in the hundreds!) Also take note that Overdrive games are typically ranked, as you may expect when playing against human opponents.
The main process of improving your team is adding new players to your lineup through the packs that you open, though we’ll be getting to that a little later on in this guide.
2. Act Quickly, But Especially In The Third Down
Scoring touchdowns, much less simply getting a first down, is not enough to win games in Madden NFL Overdrive. If you’re matched against an opponent whose Team Power is much greater than yours, that opponent will find it easier to throw Hail Mary passes or have their RB make 50-yard runs to the end zone. In other words, they’ll score faster than you, which means it’s imperative to think quickly when choosing and calling plays. Don’t take too long to make a decision, and when in doubt, always go for the suggested plays! The game won’t always give you the best advice, but on most occasions, it will.
Aside from choosing plays and executing them as quickly as possible, we also suggest that you act fastest in the third down when running a passing play. Opposing defenders will often blitz in the third down, which means sending a defensive back or two out to rush the quarterback, with their speed giving them a better chance than usual to sack him. And you know what happens when you don’t capitalize on a third down — you’ll have no choice but to punt the ball or, if you’re within 50 yards of the end zone, attempt a field goal, which is only worth 3 points. (Or 30, if you’re talking Fantasy Points in Madden NFL Overdrive.) Of course, you can also run a conventional play in the fourth down, but such moves are very rare, and are only recommended if time is running out and you’re trying to come back from behind!
3. If Your Offensive Line Is Weak, Score Points Faster By Passing The Ball
Now this might not work with everyone, but in our case, it’s harder to get a first down by running with the ball as opposed to passing it, especially if your offensive linemen’s ratings are typically below 70. This is especially true when you’re up against tougher opponents in Madden NFL Overdrive, as gaining a couple yards in a rushing play won’t really be worth too many Fantasy Points at all. But if you’re not getting too many Fantasy Points from your rushing attempts, chances are you may be having a hard time getting a feel of using your RBs to their full potential, or perhaps are lacking quality run-blockers on offense. Throwing the ball, in this case, is a much better way to advance further into your opponent’s territory than simply rushing just because you’ve unlocked a running back such as Ezekiel Elliott or Todd Gurley.
4. Pay Close Attention To Your Receivers
Naturally, focusing on your passing game does come with its share of pitfalls. You could, for example, put yourself in jeopardy of passing to someone from the other team, and there’s always the chance you could get blitzed while trying to attempt a pass. That’s why it’s very important to take a good look at how things are going downfield — pay close attention to which receivers are covered and which ones are open, and don’t rush your passing motion either! One common mistake beginners make (we’re sure we did) is to hit the “Snap” button too eagerly — hitting on it twice will cause your quarterback to make a weak, errant throw with a bad angle, and such passes will often result in an incompletion, which means no points for you in a Madden NFL Overdrive game! Still, we feel it’s more important to be alert and make sure you’re passing the ball to the right target, as opposed to someone who has defenders all over him. That’s simply an interception or incompletion waiting to happen.
5. Get Coaches And Captains By Playing The Madden Academy Event
Coaches and Captains are a key part of your roster in Madden NFL Overdrive, as each of them could give your team some valuable boosts in Overdrive games. For example, if you unlock Jimmy Garoppolo of the 49ers, you’ll get 106 points in Madden NFL Overdrive if he has at least five passes of at least 10 yards, and if you unlock Matthew Stafford of the Lions, all you need to do is have him pass all throughout a game so you can get his Captain’s Bonus of 85 points. As for Coaches, each of them, starting from the man and the legend himself, John Madden, have their own “tactics,” which can actually be best described as buffs which you can activate once your Captain has enough Overdrive in his meter. These Coaches and Captains can be exchanged with another one at any time. But how can you get these all-important members of your mobile NFL team?
When you tap on the Events tab, you’ll see on the upper left of your screen an event called the “Madden Academy,” which specifically says you can unlock Captains and Coaches. The challenges within these events come in the form of minigames, where you need to perform a certain task a given number of times, all while following the instructions stated. Some of the challenges are very easy, such as getting three first downs in seven tries, scoring three touchdowns in seven tries, etc. — the game will show you the difficulty from one to five stars, thus giving you a clear idea of what you should need to do. However, there may be more difficult challenges you need to complete — these are the ones with three stars difficulty or more, and may include, but not be limited to scoring a rushing touchdown without straying from the path specified by the game, or eliminating the zones on the screen by successfully throwing the ball to your receivers while they are within the zones. This applies to both the Coach and Captain challenges, as completing them will place you one step closer to unlocking a new Captain or Coach!
6. Currency, Currency, And More Currency
Madden NFL Overdrive is, if nothing else, known for having a ton of currency types — this isn’t just a matter of common coins and premium cash! That said, Coins and Madden Cash are arguably the main forms of currency in this game, but there are other resources that can arguably be filed under the currency category, including Coach Whistles, which are used to upgrade your coaches, Captain Patches, which are also obviously used to upgrade your captains, Blitz Tokens, which can be used to purchase player packs, and Training Points (TP), which can be used to level up your existing players. Yes indeed, that is a lot of currency (or resources), and in many cases, you’ll be able to win more currency by moving up to higher leagues in Overdrive and opening the packs you win as a reward for leveling up from one league to the next. Likewise, you can get some of these rewards (TP, in particular) when you move from one player level to the next, so it really would be in your best interest to keep playing those Overdrive games, win or lose! You earn more points in winning than what gets docked against you when you lose, and that means you might not have to wait as long in between rewards as expected.
7. Complete Your Daily Goals
Want a quick and easy way to win different types of currency, all in one day? Tap on the Daily Goals tab on the bottom right of your screen and you’ll be able to view a list of tasks you need to complete within the current day. Some of the easier tasks, such as playing a single Overdrive match/game, will get you some combination of Coach Whistles and XP, while the more time-consuming ones, such as winning three Overdrive matches with a West Coast captain (e.g. the aforementioned Jimmy Garoppolo) will get you a combination of Blitz Tokens, Captain Patches, and Coach Whistles. Even if some of the tasks may take up a lot of your free time, we believe that they’re all very much worth it due to the rewards you can earn, all available to you without having to pay a single cent!
8. Don’t Forget To Use Your Resources To Make Your Team Better
It doesn’t matter if they’re Captain’s Patches, Coach Whistles, or whatnot — if you’ve got some resources on hand, do what you could to improve your roster by training players (including your Captain) and your Coach! We suggest focusing on your better players when it comes to this specific upgrading process, as well as the Captain you use most often. You can also use your Coins, Blitz Tokens, and Madden Cash to buy a wide variety of player packs in the in-game shop, though these packs won’t always be affordable, and some of the better player packs/reward packages in the shop will cost you real money — we’re talking about $50 packages in some cases, so take note of this if you’re trying to avoid going “pay-for-play” in Madden NFL Overdrive!
We won’t go into too much detail about the player packs, but there are several types in the shop, with a corresponding chance of getting a player of a certain rarity level. Just as long as you don’t go overboard and leave yourself with nothing more to spend for future purchases, we see nothing wrong with paying Blitz Tokens or Madden Cash for player packs!
Regardless of how you choose to improve your team — you will need to improve it in more than one way anyway — the important thing is that you do so, because as you rise up in the rankings, you will be matched against increasingly powerful teams, and you don’t want to be in a situation where you’re just plain overmatched against someone who’s at a similar ranking as you are!
And this ends our compilation of Madden NFL Overdrive cheats, tips and strategies. If you know other tips or tricks for the game, be sure to let us know in the comment area!