EA Punts Madden NFL 2005 into Stores

Electronic Arts today announced that Madden NFL 2005 has shipped to retailers nationwide and will be in stores in time for National Madden Vacation Day on Tuesday, Aug. 10. EA SPORTS’s flagship offering, the Madden NFL line has sold more than 37 million copies to become North America’s best-selling game franchise.

Developed by EA Tiburon, Madden NFL 2005 celebrates the franchise’s 15th anniversary with new defensive innovations including the Hit Stick, a dynamic control that gives players the power to change the momentum of a game with a single, perfectly timed hit. Defensive Playmaker controls let players modify defensive assignments at the line of scrimmage and a host of defensive AI upgrades make defenders more intelligent than ever before. Other updates include an immersive new Storyline Central in Franchise Mode, where player chemistry and personalities come alive, and enhanced online features including Xbox Live support.

A special limited issue Madden NFL 2005 Collector’s Edition with exclusive Madden Moments, classic versions of the game, collectible packaging and behind-the-scenes videos is also available exclusively for PlayStation 2. Adding to early demand is the fact that the third annual nationwide EA SPORTS Madden Challenge kicks off August 14th with a $50,000 grand prize check for the winner.

Madden NFL 2005 is available for PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube, Game Boy Advance. Playstation 1 and PC versions are scheduled to ship in September. The game is rated “E” (Everyone) and lists for $49.95 for PlayStation 2, Xbox, and GameCube, $39.95 for PC, $29.95 for Game Boy Advance and $24.95 for the PlayStation 1. More information on the title and the EA SPORTS Madden Challenge can be found at the game’s official website, www.madden2005.com.