Facepalm: If you are a fan of EA's Madden NFL 23, you might not be after its latest fiasco. Sometime during the cleanup of a bug that wouldn't allow players to log in to their franchises last month, developers somehow corrupted the save files on the servers. On Tuesday, EA announced that "the [development] team is currently projecting around 40 percent of leagues to be recovered."
Many Madden NFL 23 players will not be happy to find that their Connected Franchise Mode (CFM) saves permanently lost. Fans widely consider franchise mode to be the best part of the Madden series, particularly Madden 23, which is a hot mess.
Deadspin's Jon Hoefling notes, "If I can't play connected franchise mode, I'm not playing their terrible game."
The problem began on December 26. Players reported having trouble logging on to their CFM leagues. The developers at Madden NFL Direct tweeted that they were aware of the problem and were working on a solution.
Update!— MaddenNFLDirect (@MaddenNFLDirect) December 28, 2022
After todays maintenance users should now be able to play CFM without issue. If you continue to have trouble please contact EA Help or let us know in this thread. Thank you!
Two days later, they said they had patched the bug during "maintenance" and that things should be back to normal, but they weren't.
Many users who tried to log in after the fix found their saves corrupted. Some speculated that the data storage issue and the subsequent server maintenance caused the data loss. This assumption was fair, considering EA admitted as much.
The good news is that the devs can restore saves from the backup servers. The bad news is that they think they can only recover 40 percent of the corrupted franchises. Ultimately, over half of the lost CFM leagues will have to start over entirely from scratch per EA's announcement. The blog post was vague on why more than half of the saves were unrecoverable, but my inner John Madden has an explanation:
See, EA can't recover franchise players' save files because the save files are corrupted. When save files are corrupted, that means they can't be recovered. You can try to recover them, but most of them won't recover because they are corrupted. EA can recover 60 percent of the unrecoverable corrupted files because they had backups. That's pretty good since the files were unrecoverable because they were corrupted. But it could have been worse. If all the corrupted files were unrecoverable because the backups got corrupted, then 100 percent of the players would have lost their franchises instead of just 60 percent, and they would have been 40 percent Madden — I mean madder. Heh-heh.
There is a silver lining for some, however. So long as you didn't attempt to log in to the CFM servers between 2:45 pm EST on December 28 and 12:45 am EST on December 29 (the maintenance window), your progress should be unaffected. So glass half — er, 40-percent full. Since the problem affected only those trying to log in during maintenance there could be a larger pool of players who are safe, but EA was not forthright with the numbers.