Today, EA Sports announced CoachGlass, which will integrate Microsoft’s SmartGlass second-screen app into Madden 25 when it launches on the Xbox One this fall. Essentially, it’ll let gamers choose plays, as well as give them analytical data based on opponents’ “offensive tendencies, personnel groupings and major weapons.” The app will then provide suggestions for what plays might be best.
CoachGlass will also give gamers stats on how well other plays called performed on the field, as well as stats on how plays performed in other matches played by other Xbox One gamers. If you’ve ever wanted to get deep into managing your Madden 25 games—like, to the level of obsessive craziness that actual NFL coaches do—this is your dream come true. Interestingly, CoachGlass is marked as exclusive to Xbox One, and I don’t see any kind of equivalent second-screen integration for the PlayStation 4 version utilizing the Vita.
Moreover, this game isn’t coming out for the Wii U at all. The economics of that decision make sense—why would EA want to bother making a last-gen port of a game for a platform without many users? But at the same time, the Wii U’s absence, as well as the presence of the CoachGlass functionality seems pretty incongruous. The Wii U’s whole reason for being is that damn second screen that’s built right into the Wii U GamePad. I’m not going to decry something I haven’t tried, but I can tell you for certain that using a second screen that’s already built into your controller is going to be a hell of a lot more manageable than picking up a whole separate tablet or smartphone to use this feature.
That’s just my two cents. This almost seems like a feature that was probably being built for the Wii U in the first place—and then when EA decided to pull its support for the console, it was retrofitted to work with the Xbox One and SmartGlass. Will EA announce something that takes advantage of the PlayStation 4’s second-screen options? For parity’s sake, let’s hope so.