While its name is slightly different, EA College Football 25 effectively represents the return of the beloved NCAA Football franchise. It’s been about a decade since we’ve gotten a proper college football game, and the overwhelming support for EA College Football 25 shows just how much people missed those titles. Of course, the NCAA games have, much like college football itself, always enjoyed an especially enthusiastic following closely associated with the memories of college days gone by.

However, those memories may betray some longtime NCAA Football fans in this instance. As the name suggests, EA College Football 25 is not an exact copy of the NCAA games that were. They’re quite similar in many ways, but that change in name also reflects a number of changes that have occurred to the series since then. Many of those changes have resulted in exciting new options. Others have resulted in the loss of certain NCAA legacy features. These are some of the biggest “missing” features in EA College Football 25.

Mascot Mashup Mode

Unfortunately, the much-beloved Mascot Mashup mode from previous NCAA Football games will not return in EA College Football 25. There’s no word on why the mode will not return in this reboot of the series. It’s likely not a licensing issue given how prominently the mascots are featured in the game’s promotional footage, so we can only assume it came down to the time and resources required to implement that mode. 

This missing mode is already dividing longtime NCAA fans. On the one hand, the ability to pit teams of mascots against each other was always a gimmick that some barely even touched. On the other hand, it’s both an iconic mode and one that has come to define the NCAA series’ unique personality over the years. While there’s a chance Mascot Mashup could return in future installments, its absence will likely be felt hardest by the YouTubers and Twitch streamers who previously got quite a bit of mileage out of the meme-like nature of the concept. 

Road to Glory High School Options

While EA College Football 25 will feature a Road to Glory mode that allows you to guide a custom-created player through their college career, that mode will not allow you to begin that career in high school as previous NCAA Football games did. Instead, you’ll jump straight into college. Again, it’s not clear why that option is missing, though this could certainly be a case of reworked licensing deals creating new complications. 

Unfortunately, that means you will no longer be able to increase your high school athlete’s star rating as part of the recruitment process (a notable feature in previous versions of the mode). Fortunately, the rest of Road to Glory offers an extensive 10-20 hour story mode as well as a variety of features unique to a college athlete’s career (including the transfer portal). The additions seem to be a net positive for the mode, though we can always hope the high school feature will return. 

A 30-Year Cap On Dynasty Mode

EA College Football 25 will feature a reworked version of NCAA Football’s beloved Dynasty mode, which allows you to effectively guide a school and athletic program through decades of competition. While that mode will include a variety of new and returning features (including the ability to share your dynasty online with up to 32 people), you will be capped at 30 seasons of Dynasty play. Previous NCAA games would let you guide a school for up to 60 years. 

Unfortunately, this is another change we can likely blame on Madden NFL, which also imposes a 30-season limit in its Franchise mode. While the Madden and College Football series are meant to be different games in many ways, this is one of those instances where the standardization of one has almost certainly affected the other. 30 years is still a significant investment, but this change will be felt by NCAA diehards and those who have long asked for Madden’s franchise mode cap to be raised. 

Custom Team Limits

EA College Football 25 will almost certainly not feature the extensive (“comically absurd” may be the better phrase) customization features that previous NCAA games offered. However, the game will still allow you to customize numerous aspects of your team and players. From what we’ve seen, those customization options at least appear to be more extensive than what we’ve seen in recent Madden games. 

However, the ability to create custom teams in EA College Football 25 (aka “TeamBuilder” mode) has certainly taken a hit. Not only will you be able to create 16 custom teams, but you will need to replace an existing team in the game whenever you do so. Again, it’s not a massive loss on paper, but it is a step down from previous NCAA titles that would allow you to pretty much make your own game if you chose to do so. 

Real-Life Restrictions For Manually Added Players

Thanks to a sweeping series of NIL-based agreements, EA College Football 25 will feature the names and likenesses of numerous real college football players. Previous NCAA games famously featured generic versions of real players and required players to import modded save files to make their rosters as true-to-life as possible. Obviously, no longer having to do that is a pretty big deal.

However, this is another new feature that comes with a catch. While you will still be able to create and add custom players to EA College Football 25, you will not be able to manually add players who have not signed the required NIL deal. It’s not clear how the game will prevent you from adding those players, but the smart money is on making sure you can’t use the player’s names during the character creation process. In other words, there will likely be workarounds if you want to pursue them.

No FCS Schools

Along with the aforementioned ability to create new teams, EA College Football 25 will feature a fairly extensive collection of college teams from across the biggest NCAA conferences. However, some of the smaller conferences did not make the cut. Specifically, you will not be able to choose to play as any FCS schools in the game. 

The absence of those schools can likely be attributed to licensing agreement issues, and it should certainly be noted that some previous NCAA games were also missing FCS schools. There seems to be genuine hope that these schools will eventually be added to the game, but it’s another reminder that this game may not feel quite as extensive as some of the Wild West entries into the series that have gone by. 

ESPN/College GameDay Presentation

Interestingly, EA College Football 25 will actually feature several commentary teams. While Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will be in the booth for the biggest games in a given season, lesser matchups will feature different commentators. It’s a nice little detail that is both true to life and should help the biggest games feel appropriately epic. 

However, not every major EPSN personality and program will be included in the initial version of the game. Notably, the College GameDay program will not be featured in the game as it has been in some previous installments. While more recent NCAA games did not feature the College GameDay presentation elements that some older entries in the series did, it’s been long enough since most people played any of those titles to ensure that this change may come to some as a surprise.

The post EA College Football 25: The Biggest Missing NCAA Football Features appeared first on Den of Geek.

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