EA Sports' remake/update of Midway's classic arcade football franchise, NFL Blitz, was officially announced on October 19, 2011. The game was developed at EA Tiburon, the studio most commonly associated with the Madden NFL series of games.
Blitz runs on an updated version of the Madden engine that, unlike EA simulation franchise, runs at 60 frames per second and has a new collision system. It plays fast and loose with the rules of football, eliminating penalties that allow players to knock down receivers as soon as a play starts, potentially busting up the play.
The game features 7-on-7 gameplay, with up to 2 cooperative players controlling each team, both online and off. Each quarter is two minutes long and players will have to go thirty yards to get a first down. During gameplay announcers Tim Kitzrow (of NBA Jam/ NFL Blitz fame) and actor Brian Haley will do color commentary on the match-ups.
The main content in Blitz is made up of the following game modes:
A local match mode where 1-4 players can play as any NFL team and fight with the computer or each other.
Blitz Gantlet is a fairly straightforward arcade mode, takes you through a series of increasingly challenging games against teams varying from real NFL teams to "Fantasy Team Bosses". Up to 12 Boss characters/teams can be unlocked for use as player skins upon defeating them, and include:
NFL Blitz Designer Yuri Bialoskursky also mentioned that they wanted to include Viking, an Alien, an FBI Agent and even President Obama, but they were cut from the final product.
Essentially a standard online ranked match mode. One player can choose any professional NFL team and be ranked on their performance locally (by US State/Territory), regionally and nationally. Two players can also get together to make their own personal team to battle other co-op teams on the leaderboards. Blitz Bucks can be earned in this mode.
Elite League features a card collecting twist on typical career modes, a trait it borrows from recent entries in the Madden NFL and FIFA franchises. After starting with a small deck of cards representing various NFL players and a team logo/name of your choosing, you will be able to expand your team's lineup by spending in-game currency called "Blitz Bucks" on booster packs to find new characters and expand your team's capabilities.
Blitz Bucks can only be earned by playing matches online, with a more points awarded if the players finish their game without quitting mid-match, and even more to the player who has the higher stats and score at the end of the match.
Standard cards require you to "update" their contracts after enough usage. There are greater rewards for completionists: for collecting all cards from a single NFL team in your deck, you will receive a "Pro" version of that team's best player with a couple of maxed-out stats and an infinite contract length. The substantially better version of this perk comes from collecting the cards of an entire NFL division in your deck, yielding an "Ultimate Player" with all stats maxed out as well as an infinite contract.
The team you develop will take you through your Elite League career, and can be used in all other modes, including online match-ups with your friends or random players and even the Blitz Gauntlet mode. Players will be able bet cards against each other in online matches called "Risk and Reward" matches.
Similar to "Blitz Battles," except the matches are unranked and winning or losing will not help or hurt you on any leaderboards. However, you can still earn Blitz Bucks in this mode.
Late hits were originally planned to be placed in the game, but officials from the NFL objected to their inclusion after seeing an early build of the game. The developers responded by locking all player controls after the whistle blows until the next play is set.
- Several play formations from the first two incarnations of the game-- NFL Blitz and NFL Blitz 99--appear in the new game.
- It was announced at the 2011 VGAs, that Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens will grace the cover of NFL Blitz.
- There are over 100 cheats you can buy using blitz bucks to change the look of the game.