Right on schedule, the fourth title update for Madden NFL 21 is now available, and it’s a big one. The September 22 patch introduces a series of new player abilities, makes fixes and tuning changes for several issues, and addresses bugs with Franchise, Madden Ultimate Team, and The Yard.
One of the most notable fixes in this patch is for the bug that could cause the kick meter to “hitch” during field goal tries. Many complained about the kick meter bugging out, causing frustration and missed extra points in some scenarios. In GameSpot’s Madden NFL 21 review, we said there was “fairly extreme lag” that could cause kicks to go array.
In terms of the new abilities, these include Run Committed and Pass Committed, which help defenders break up plays. Another new ability is called Deflator, and this causes increased fatigue-related penalties when using an aggressive tackle on a ball-carrier.
The Madden series is known for its various bugs, and these often get smoothed out over time. This newest patch addresses a few silly-sounding bugs, like one where the runner would run continuously after scoring, and another where the quarterback would pitch the ball with the wrong hand. The patch also fixes an issue that could cause the football to pass through a defender’s body, which sounds terribly painful.
You can see the full patch notes below, as posted by EA on the Madden website.
Madden NFL 21 Title Update 4
- (NEW) Run Committed – Defenders with this ability will dominantly win run blocks when they correctly use the Guess Play adjustment to predict a run. Incorrect guesses will result in a loss.
- (NEW) Pass Committed – Defenders with this ability will win pass blocks when they correctly use the Guess Play adjustment to predict a pass. Incorrect guesses will result in a loss.
- (NEW) Deflator – Defenders with this ability will cause increased fatigue penalties when tackling a Ball Carrier with a non-conservative tackle.
- Enforcer – Addressed an issue causing CPU-controlled defenders with the Enforcer ability to use hit-stick tackles too frequently, and as a result also cause more fumbles than intended
- Updated QB-Slide functionality so that a double-tap of the dive button will now always be slide while a single press will always be dive, which will align with the non-QB ball carrier ‘give-up’ functionality
- Modified the new ‘Jurdle’ animation to reduce over-steering
- Fixed an issue that would sometimes allow the QB to enter a tackle animation while attempting to slide, which could lead to fumbles
- Fixed an issue where Ball Carriers would stumble and fall well after having a collision with their legs
- Fixed an issue where ball carriers were stumbling and falling too frequently when running through the line and colliding with their blockers
- Fixed an issue rarely causing the ball carrier to continuously run after scoring a TD
- Fixed quarterbacks pitching the ball with the wrong hand on option plays
- Fixed issue allowing the ‘Bunch Verticals Flanker Motion-Snap’ quick-throw exploit vs Cover 3 and Cover 4:
- DEV NOTE: A longstanding legacy issue, allowing users to call Bunch Verticals, motion the flanker to the outside, snap while in motion and quick throw to that receiver who would be open against Cover 3 and Cover 4. We have added logic for the Curl Flat and Quarters Flat defenders to cover that throw.
- Addressed a Motion issue causing defensive backs in man coverage that were covering a receiver in motion to swap assignments with another defensive back on the other side of the formation, leaving the motion receiver open
- Fixed an issue allowing route-swapping out of any passing formation by audible & resetting their play call twice
- Addressed an issue with Cornerback Matchups by Route causing linebackers and cornerbacks to switch alignments in pre-play vs. certain offensive formations
- Fixed an issue causing man-coverage defenders to get into a bad position vs motion-wheel routes
- Fixed multiple defensive alignment issues caused by motioning the Slot Receiver to the inside in Gun Empty Bunch and motioning a HB out wide in Gun Trips, resulting in inverted assignment and alignments
- Fixed issues with Defensive Backs reacting too slowly to WR auto-motion and user-controlled receiver motion, leaving the receiver wide open at the snap
- Addressed an issue where defenders mirroring a receiver in motion would sometimes stumble on their teammate when the ball was snapped
- Fixed an issue rarely causing pass-rushing outside linebackers to flip their gap assignment to the opposite side of the formation when the ball was snapped
- Fixed an issue causing a defender in man coverage vs. a screen-blocking receiver would run past the blocking receiver on some RPO Alert plays
- Tuning for a variety of tackling animation issues that sometimes prevented tackles from triggering vs. ball carriers in Juke moves, and some cases where the ball carrier was not using any special move
- Fixed an issue causing an offensive lineman on the ground to warp back up to be part of a multi-player sack interaction between the pass rusher and quarterback
- Fixed an issue causing a CPU-controlled defender to celebrate while the ball is still live after a fumble
- Improved multiple issues where the ball was going through players’ torsos on swat and catch attempts
- Addressed an issue allowing user-controlled receivers using Aggressive Catch to make catches that they should not have specifically on jumping and diving catch animations. The player ratings will have a heavier impact on the outcome of these specific catch animations
- Fixed an issue preventing a teammate from catching a pitch on kickoff returns
- Tuning to ball physics to reduce the frequency of footballs consistently/repeatedly bouncing off of moving players and keeping the play live
- Fixed an issue with users being able to grief their opponent online by getting endless False Start penalties
- DEV NOTE: We have addressed this issue and now 3 consecutive False Starts, Delay of Game, or any combination of those penalties will result in the user committing the penalties getting booted.
- Fixed a blocking issue causing the fullback and offset tight end to collide with each other following the snap on certain formations
- Fixed an issue causing offensive players to rarely move out of their formation positions in pre-play, such as a QB moving to a guard position or a guard moving to a WR position after an audible:
- DEV NOTE: We were able to finally narrow down the steps to identify the cause of this rare bug, based on detailed feedback we gathered from our community. Thank you! While we are confident this specific situation is fixed, there could be other situations that could cause some similar behaviors so we will continue to monitor and address issues here as they come up.
- Fixed an issue causing the CPU-controlled offense to call passing plays sometimes when winning late in the game instead of running plays
- Fixed an issue causing CPU-controlled quarterbacks to roll out of the pocket but then suddenly stop to try to throw resulting in unnecessary sacks
Madden Ultimate Team Updates:
- Improved the accuracy of difficulty descriptions for Challenges
- Various quality of life improvements among different MUT UI screens
- Addressed an exploit where users could complete one play challenges and get bonus XP
- Updated logic to address player feedback that the play clock would wind down to the point where pre-snap adjustments were difficult to execute
- Addressed an issue allowing users to intentionally leave certain positions in the depth chart empty to get receivers to auto-sub in at the tight end positions, and then use this to exploit the ‘audibles by personnel’ feature in gameplay; with this change, you will now get defensive players subbed into any offensive position that is left empty on the depth chart, which will prevent any audibles from those sets as the defender doesn’t fit any offensive personnel packages
- Addressed a gameplay issue specific to Ultimate Team where specific QB’s would cause bad snaps over his head occasionally on Jet Sweep types of plays
- Face of the Franchise Updates:
- General stability improvements
- Added a new cutscene for users named NFL MVP in The Comeback storyline
- Fixed issue with audio not playing correctly in the final Face of the Franchise cutscene at the user’s high school field
- Fixed several issues in storylines with branching logic, rewards, ability unlocks, typos, and goal tracking
- Fixed performance issues in the 1st High School game
- Franchise Updates:
- Fixed an issue with users input not working when navigating positions in the Formation Subs screen
- Fixed an issue with Slow Sim for PS4 users
- General stability improvements
- Fixed issue with Veteran players receiving votes for Rookie of the Year awards
- Added league names to Franchise cloud save tiles
- The following abilities have been added Franchise:
- Run Committed
- Pass Committed
The Yard Updates:
- Added visual indicator for whether you are viewing H2H or versus CPU events
- Added your own score to Frienderboard display
- Fixed issues around player control and loot round drafts
- Fixed an issue where abilities would not display correctly if accessed in quick succession
- Fixed an issue where maxed out prototypes would display blank rewards
- Stability and online connectivity improvements
- Fixed an issue where CPU-controlled quarterbacks were always getting sacked when the play matchup was Trips Verts Hook vs Safe Zone Blitz
- Fixed the Slot Streak being open every time when running Deep Dish vs 1 Deep Zone Blitz
- Fixed an issue causing the ball to warp between the passer’s hands while throwing out of a sack
- Addressed an issue causing the offensive receiver icons to sometimes appear after the defense had made an interception in the backfield, which could result in the defender unintentionally passing the ball back to offensive players when attempting skill moves
- Fixed an issue preventing players from attempting to recover a loose ball after a fumbled pitch or lateral
- Updated helmet and chinstrap placement lots of high profile players who have changed helmets like Derek Carr, Devin Bush, Denzel Ward and Alex Smith to name a few
- Fixed an issue with Titans AFL jersey
- Updated multiple generic heads with newer high quality ones
User Experience (UX) Updates:
- Updates have been made to address general performance that impacted reliability of the kick meter, where it would sometimes hitch during field goal situations.
GameSpot may get a commission from retail offers.