Several of my friends are hooked on Madden. For the uninitiated, "Madden" is a video game called "Madden NFL XX", with XX being the annual re-incarnation of this franchise (pun intended). I recall attempting to play this game at my friend Dave's house and losing by approximately 50 points by the third quarter. The word complicated is re-defined by this game.
I borrowed a friend's copy of "last year's Madden," Madden '06, and tried playing it last night with my roommate. I can see it's going to be a long road ahead.
I'm not a hardcore gamer- I am rarely interested in spending countless hours on something which only frustrates me. The only exception to this rule is Diablo II: Lord of Destruction (not counting the three straight days I spent playing A-Train when I was 9), which was such a great game that I had no choice but to power past my frustration.
Gaming enthusiasts write about the dividing line between enjoyably difficult and impossibly difficult, and I hope that my own experience helps me to understand that line. I'll let you know when I master Madden 06.
Why call this the Madden Curse, then? Well, when I drafted Shaun Alexander for my fantasy team, "Requiem for Denver," I apparently ignored the conventional wisdom: the player on the cover of the Madden video game will have a horrible year, or get injured, or something otherwise terrible. That player this year is Shaun Alexander, who has been good fort a whopping (sarcasm) 140 Rushing yds, 10 receiving yds, 1 TD, 1 fumble, and I daresay, 1 Madden Curse.
And yes, I am a Broncos fan, have been since 1984. Go Broncos, and take the Nuggets with you!
UPDATE 9/20 3:00PM
I just saw an Advertising Age article describing the NFL Network's 14-team fantasy football league, with each team representing one of the 14 major media agencies. They had a live draft, and somebody used a high pick on guess who:
OMD led off the draft, picking Kansas City's Larry Johnson. Universal McCann took San Diego's LaDainian Tomlinson with the second pick. Horizon Media, defying the legendary "Madden curse," chose Seattle's Shaun Alexander third. (Since 2000, players that have appeared on the cover of the box for Madden NFL video games have tanked.)
How's that for timing?