Breaking Madden

January 31st, 2014

The Super Bowl, in which the machine bleeds to death:

Over the course of the season, I've discovered lots of different ways to hack Madden NFL 25 into a thing that no longer resembles football as we know it. I've played around with rules, injury settings, all manner of player ratings, player dimensions, and anything else the game's developers have made available to us.

This time is special, though, because I'm pulling out every single one of the stops at the same time. No other scenario I've built in Madden has been so abjectly cruel or unfair; no other scenario has even been close. […]

The GIFs, the GIFs…

[Via kottke.org]

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Very truly yours…

December 22nd, 2010

Back in 1974 James N Bailey, General Counsel to the Cleveland Browns NFL franchise, responded to a letter from an unhappy season ticket holder with what might just be the best reply ever committed to paper.1

[Via Deadspin, via The Awl]

  1. Somehow it just wouldn't have the same impact had it been sent by email. It's something about the letterhead, the "Very truly yours" sign-off, and the fact it was cc:d to the then-owner of the Browns, Art Modell.

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Snow indoors

December 14th, 2010

I know this footage of the roof of the Hubert H Humphrey Metrodome collapsing in the face of a couple of feet of snow and a blizzard has been all over the web over the last 24 hours, but that's because it's disaster-movie spectacular. It's quite hypnotic: I defy anyone to watch it just once.

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Next, can we please have Football Italia back?

September 2nd, 2010

The NFL is returning to Channel 4:

NFL football is coming home! Almost three decades after first appearing on Channel 4, the NFL is returning to its original station in a new deal to broadcast Sunday Night Football. Channel 4 will air the league's premier match-up at 1 a.m. every Sunday night, with the game kicking off at 1.20. The new season will begin with the Dallas Cowboys' trip to arch-rival Washington Redskins on September 12. [...]

I used to enjoy following the NFL back in the 1980s when Channel 4 gave the sport its first mainstream UK TV coverage. I stopped following the NFL once Channel 4 lost the rights, primarily because when Channel 5 took over the contract their coverage initially centred around their live game show in the wee small hours. I could have recorded the shows to watch during the week, but somehow I just never got into the habit. In fairness, it may also have been that the generation of players I'd become familiar with when I first encountered the sport in the early 1980s was starting to retire and I felt less of a connection with the teams than I had a few years earlier.

It'll be interesting to try to follow the sport again in the age of the internet. Back in the 1980s the Channel 4 show early on a Sunday evening would show highlights from the previous weekend's games,1 but given the lack of coverage of the NFL in the UK mainstream media at the time it wasn't a problem to avoid finding out the results over the course of the week so I could safely catch up on the action on a Sunday night. Now that it'd be trivial to find out the weekend's scores online, will I have the willpower to hold out until the next highlights show? If I can't wait, will I end up trying to seek out game highlights on YouTube in preference to waiting for a chance to see the highlights on Channel 4?2

[Via Phil Gyford]

  1. There were exceptions to that rule, with extra mid-week highlights programmes during post-season play and of course live coverage of the Superbowl, but in general Channel 4's NFL coverage existed in a time warp.
  2. Of course, we don't have full details of Channel 4's coverage yet: it's quite possible that they'll put on a highlights show in midweek in addition to their live game coverage.

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