With so many major sports games to pick from in 2022, we're breaking down who won the year for Franchise Mode.
Ranking the Best Franchise Mode in every major sports game (2022)
Every player has their own way of approaching games, and having a good Franchise Mode can increase the hours of enjoyment a sports game provides exponentially.
Here, we're gonna break down the top Franchise Mode experiences in every major annual sports game of 2022.
Before we get into these, it's worth mentioning the outliers which would wreck the scale here: Football Manager 2023 and Out of the Park Baseball 23.
As fully dedicated Franchise Mode experiences, those two games set a stratospheric bar that even the best mainline sports title can't hope to clear.
If you want nothing but Franchise, those two are top-notch, but they don't bring the same level of gameplay and game mode versatility that comes with mainline sports simulation games.
Madden 23 Franchise Mode
Starting at the bottom, very definitively at the bottom, we have to get through the mention of Madden 23 Franchise Mode.
Dedicated NFL fans who enjoy Franchise have been harping on the company to improve the mode for years, and it continues to inch forward at a snail's pace.
Perhaps the biggest failure of Madden 23 Franchise Mode is the massive lack of team customization with the clunky Relocation system giving you only a few predetermined choices.
If Franchise is a big part of what you're hoping to enjoy, Madden 23 may struggle to scratch that itch unless you're patient about the limitations.
WWE 2K22 MyGM (GM Mode)
Next up we have a promising option in the renovated GM Mode experience WWE 2K22 has delivered with MyGM.
Blending the storyline elements of wrestling with the multi-week experience of a Franchise Mode, MyGM is a surprisingly fun return after years without an equivalent in the WWE 2K series.
The biggest thing that drags it down this list is your experience maxing out at 50 weeks in length, but there could be plenty of room to grow as MyGM expands when WWE 2K23 arrives.
MLB The Show 22 Franchise Mode
An experiment in providing the best of both worlds, MLB The Show 22 is stuck at a transition point when it comes to Franchise Mode as it's built on "legacy code."
While official word from Sony San Diego has been vague, as of now it looks like they've been slowly preparing March to October to have the expansiveness of Franchise with a new system.
Despite that, MLB The Show 22 is a pretty solid experience with a great interface and fantastic team customization options in Franchise Mode.
You can also tackle a condensed and more streamlined Franchise experience by playing only the most crucial moments in March to October.
NHL 23 Franchise Mode
While EA Sports may not be able to deliver a quality Franchise Mode in Madden 23, the development teams have had better luck in other titles.
NHL 23 majorly expanded this year with Custom Leagues, which offers the massive customization option of creating a league with between 6 and 48 existing or custom teams.
You can even alter every detail of the yearly schedule including the season length, playoff rules, and more as you build the hockey dynasty to end them all in NHL 23.
FIFA 23 Manager Career Mode
While the upgrades in FIFA 23 compared to FIFA 22 weren't quite as great as they could've been, there's no denying the Manager Career Mode still delivers.
The addition of Create A Club in FIFA 22 carries over this year and continues to provide versatility in the experience as you can start at any level of the football world.
If you're looking to play things out with a specific manager, that's the highlight of FIFA 23 as real-world managers (and Ted Lasso, of course) can now be picked for your journey.
The nature of FIFA 23 having so many different clubs across so many different leagues, in addition to customization options and tons of budget settings, provides one of the most versatile Franchise Mode experiences available.
NBA 2K23 MyNBA Eras
Finally, we have the undeniable winner for 2022's best Franchise Mode as years of work culminated with the inclusion of MyNBA Eras in NBA 2K23.
All sports evolve through the years, but few sports simulation games even come close to capturing the feel of the game from a completely different era.
You can create a classic team with all the custom players you want, but the gameplay itself is never going to feel quite like it would've in that era of the game.
MyNBA Eras is the one exception, and it's truly revelatory as you are given the option to start in The Magic vs Bird Era (1983), The Jordan Era (1991), The Kobe Era (2002), or The Modern Era (2022).
Choosing to start in a different era will literally transplant you back in time with all the league adjustments, rule changes, and upcoming draft classes you'd expect.
The only flaw in MyNBA Eras is the actual interface, which could be more streamlined by taking some cues from MLB The Show 22 or NHL 23, but the strengths more than cover that area of potential improvement.
MyNBA Eras has set a new standard, and sports fans need to see for themselves just how great the experience can be.