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NHL 18 Trial Available For EA Access Subscribers, Post Your Impressions Here

NHL 18

NHL 18 Trial Available For EA Access Subscribers, Post Your Impressions Here

The NHL 18 EA Access trial is available now for EA Access subscribers, exclusively for the Xbox One. If you aren’t seeing it in the EA Access app, click this link to queue it up.

For those of you that might still be unaware, EA Access is an Xbox One exclusive, allowing members to try upcoming EA games, for up to 10 hours, prior to release, offering 10% off all EA digital purchases and more. It also gives users access to The Vault, which houses a growing library of EA games subscribers can play as much as they want. Users can subscribe to EA Access for $4.99 per month, or $29.99 for a full year.

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  1. Apparently there are out of town scores in franchise mode during games. The scores will pop up every now and then. Commentary apparently does not discuss, however. Cool touch I read on another message board.
    Don't think this was in NHL 17?
    At it's basic level nhl 18 is the same game as 17. If you play the game on a casual level your going to wonder what actually changed.*Skating is a little tighter and refined and they're some new dekes however they are really only for advanced users as some of them are awfully complicated. On defence you now have full control of your stick and now you just don't jab at the puck for poke checks. Now this is still viable but learn how to use the stick for precision will give you an advantage going forward. The A.I. has seen some love but not the love we were wanting. The CPU moves the puck around much better up ice and is smarter on odd man rushs. However what the community wanted,* better neutral zone play defensively and just more aggressive A.I. hasn't been addressed. The A.I. took a step this year too bad we wanted a leap.*

    Then there's the new 3-3 mode. While fun with some friends or just a quick break from a competitive mode I don't see this being a break out mode for the series nor * do I see it having lasting appeal. The other modes Like HUT are more less the same but now with added challenges so you can earn coins/packs that way.* GM mode you can now start a franchise from scratch using authentic expansion league rules. However this is only able to be done at the beginning of your franchise mode.*

    Graphically nothing has changed. There are a few new camera cuts but that's it. I'm assuming this is due to next year NHL will be running on the frostbite engine. Madden and Fifa also had minimum graphical changes the year before the new engine was implemented (with madden looking especially sharp this year, with its first go on frostbite).*

    All in all this seems like a bridge between NHL 17 and NHL 19. While I enjoyed NHL 17 and thought it was the best game in the series, NHL 18 doesn't really change much up, as it only refines and tunes aspects of its game rather then add or redefine any of its main modes or gameplay. NHL 18 might be a stop gap till next years game but it still plays a great game of hockey and heck it has EASHL so can't go wrong with that.*

    Early review score 7.5/10
    5/10 for me. They basically added the NHL 3 on 3 game from NHL 13 and called it NHL 3s. The computer scores at will, on any shot. I am glad I paid 5 bucks to try this so I could save myself 80 bucks later.
    I've pretty much played every EA access NHL game up to now
    And I have to say this this is probably the best playing NHL that I've played since EA axis started putting out NHL on it
    The game play smooth the broadcast angle camera is almost perfect and there's really not much wonky animation going on this is probably the cleanest hockey game that I played
    If only they had a winter classic mode I would buy it
    Played 3 games. Same as 17 except I saw 3 very weird goals from behind the net that hit a new defensive stick blocking the lane that shot backwards right by the goalie. Very weird.
    I found the AI still skates differently that we can. They take the puck when they want, they poke check the millisecond you try to shoot and the pokes checks keep going to them all the time.
    Gotta play with the sliders. But I thought that there was online coop this year in all modes. Maybe I misunderstood that. But I fired up Franchise, no way to invite a friend, same with season. That makes this a definite pass for me at the $60 price point.
    I'll try again tomorrow after some slider tweaks
    Game scores after a couple of hours.
    "Same as 17" from what is supposed to be one of my most hardcore forums.
    Disappointing effort from you folks on the forum. I expect actual specific details impressions and I get the same 20 or so guys who just don't like the game yet play it every year.
    Not sure what I expected, and again extremely disappointed that many of you are not even giving it a chance.
    Millennium
    Game scores after a couple of hours.
    "Same as 17" from what is supposed to be one of my most hardcore forums.
    Disappointing effort from you folks on the forum. I expect actual specific details impressions and I get the same 20 or so guys who just don't like the game yet play it every year.
    Not sure what I expected, and again extremely disappointed that many of you are not even giving it a chance.

    I'm saying what I saw. I also finished with going to tweak some sliders tomorrow and try again. I think that is more than giving it a chance. That is if that was in any way directed at my comment.
    Millennium
    Game scores after a couple of hours.
    "Same as 17" from what is supposed to be one of my most hardcore forums.
    Disappointing effort from you folks on the forum. I expect actual specific details impressions and I get the same 20 or so guys who just don't like the game yet play it every year.
    Not sure what I expected, and again extremely disappointed that many of you are not even giving it a chance.

    You streaming Early Access?
    One of the smaller things I'm curious about is the division realignment feature in Expansion Mode.
    csamuelsvt
    Apparently there are out of town scores in franchise mode during games. The scores will pop up every now and then. Commentary apparently does not discuss, however. Cool touch I read on another message board.
    Don't think this was in NHL 17?

    Oh, I love little stuff like this. So it figures the year I skip is when they put it in. lol
    Millennium
    Game scores after a couple of hours.
    "Same as 17" from what is supposed to be one of my most hardcore forums.
    Disappointing effort from you folks on the forum. I expect actual specific details impressions and I get the same 20 or so guys who just don't like the game yet play it every year.
    Not sure what I expected, and again extremely disappointed that many of you are not even giving it a chance.

    Oh please. There's nothing more to be said than same as last year. There's some cool stuff like the defensive skill stick, but even that's wonky. I just played a game on full-sim, all-star, 10 minute periods, out shot Colorado 55-36 and lost 5-4 because IT'S THE SAME FREAKIN' GARBAGE YEAR AFTER YEAR.
    My goals had to be through skill, hard work and slick passing plays. They just rifle a shot towards the goal and it goes in. It has been happening for years this way and they don't change it. It's a freakin' frustrating thing about these games. Ramjagasingh and his team should be ashamed of themselves and so should EA Sports for allowing this. Alas, no competition so here we are.
    Oh and I just played Madden and then this, the speed between menus is so noticeable, NHL is HORRENDOUS and Madden is great.
    Glad I paid 5 bucks for this to try, though EA should pay me for trying it, because it is C-R-A-P.
    The AI online/offline much improved positionally for the most part. That's huge for franchise and season mode, as of now. We shall see once we can dig deeper.
    As stated though the CPU can just skate and do what they want in a way we can't, so that hasn't changed.
    Presentation, it is what it is now. I turn it off in all sports games so meh.
    EASHL, feels different from the beta. I can't put my finger on it, but it doesn't seem as smooth. The EASHL AI is comical, we usually play with 3-5 guys, but the two or three AI's on our team were a mess. Positinally better, but every other aspect of their game brutal. Passing puck off of each other's skates, was pretty frustrating. Nobody even calling for the puck either. GRR.
    Online goals, same old same.. No matter the new d skill stick, interceptions etc. Skate one way, shoot back the other, goal! Just get old. Even in great position don't matter. Shot gets through, goal. Same breakaway moves work, easy peezy. You don't even have to use the new deke moves. Goalies bite on simplest of moves.
    I'm actually fired up to start a franchise this year just because it it has some upside with the AI changes.
    Didn't they say like 60 plus ways to play co-op? Can't find it in season/franchise.
    Slider saving issue, still there. Save a set, then make a change to the set, save it, go back in and its back to the original save state. You have to cycle through the presets after saving and go back to the created one for the new values to stick. Sigh.
    No roster share by now, zero excuse. No slider share, zero excuse. These two things are important for the NHL gaming community and obviously not a priority. Probably never will be.
    Playing this game makes me wish I wasn't a die hard hockey fan so I could enjoy the game more for what it is.. It's an arcade game with simulation elements. I've stated this back in 09/10/11/12/13/14/15/16 and 17. Yet because I'm a hockey fan I still buy it and play it to get my fix. Although it's getting to the point to where if it didn't have the EASHL to play with my buddies, talk hockey, laugh, etc I probably wouldn't buy it.
    The game is what it is, the NHL Dev team makes a game short handed staff wise, and the lack of sales don't help that matter either.
    Millennium
    Game scores after a couple of hours.
    "Same as 17" from what is supposed to be one of my most hardcore forums.
    Disappointing effort from you folks on the forum. I expect actual specific details impressions and I get the same 20 or so guys who just don't like the game yet play it every year.
    Not sure what I expected, and again extremely disappointed that many of you are not even giving it a chance.

    Absolute shameful response from a "Community Manager" of this site. Just shameful, wow.
    centauris
    Absolute shameful response from a "Community Manager" of this site. Just shameful, wow.

    Community Managers aren't required to defend their communities and quite often need to tell their communities when they need to step up and be better.
    This forum has been horrible for years with quick flashes of brilliance when they actually get together and be constructive instead of bash things generally and mob-like.
    Apologies that you don't like the methods I sue but there are plenty of gaming forums for you to go to to share your opinions.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app
    centauris
    Absolute shameful response from a "Community Manager" of this site. Just shameful, wow.

    Disagree. Mills is right on with his take.
    And shameful? lol whatever, man.
    Millennium
    Community Managers aren't required to defend their communities and quite often need to tell their communities when they need to step up and be better.
    This forum has been horrible for years with quick flashes of brilliance when they actually get together and be constructive instead of bash things generally and mob-like.
    Apologies that you don't like the methods I sue but there are plenty of gaming forums for you to go to to share your opinions.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app

    you can toe the line, bro. The whole game needs an overhaul, it's the same old tired nonsense with a new coat of paint. It deserves all the bashing it's getting.
    Fiddy
    The AI online/offline much improved positionally for the most part. That's huge for franchise and season mode, as of now. We shall see once we can dig deeper.
    As stated though the CPU can just skate and do what they want in a way we can't, so that hasn't changed.
    Presentation, it is what it is now. I turn it off in all sports games so meh.
    EASHL, feels different from the beta. I can't put my finger on it, but it doesn't seem as smooth. The EASHL AI is comical, we usually play with 3-5 guys, but the two or three AI's on our team were a mess. Positinally better, but every other aspect of their game brutal. Passing puck off of each other's skates, was pretty frustrating. Nobody even calling for the puck either. GRR.
    Online goals, same old same.. No matter the new d skill stick, interceptions etc. Skate one way, shoot back the other, goal! Just get old. Even in great position don't matter. Shot gets through, goal. Same breakaway moves work, easy peezy. You don't even have to use the new deke moves. Goalies bite on simplest of moves.
    I'm actually fired up to start a franchise this year just because it it has some upside with the AI changes.
    Didn't they say like 60 plus ways to play co-op? Can't find it in season/franchise.
    Slider saving issue, still there. Save a set, then make a change to the set, save it, go back in and its back to the original save state. You have to cycle through the presets after saving and go back to the created one for the new values to stick. Sigh.
    No roster share by now, zero excuse. No slider share, zero excuse. These two things are important for the NHL gaming community and obviously not a priority. Probably never will be.
    Playing this game makes me wish I wasn't a die hard hockey fan so I could enjoy the game more for what it is.. It's an arcade game with simulation elements. I've stated this back in 09/10/11/12/13/14/15/16 and 17. Yet because I'm a hockey fan I still buy it and play it to get my fix. Although it's getting to the point to where if it didn't have the EASHL to play with my buddies, talk hockey, laugh, etc I probably wouldn't buy it.
    The game is what it is, the NHL Dev team makes a game short handed staff wise, and the lack of sales don't help that matter either.

    I'm just about to fire up the game now, but I feel like I will basically rewrite your whole post minus the online stuff because I don't really play it unless I feel like beating someone who tries to cheat. I'd be willing to bet I will also include no neutral zone pressure in my post too.
    I hate how I have this poor attitude going into the game without already having played it, but I just do. It's been year after year of the same and when you and Shogun are saying the same things, it means nothing has really changed. The AI improving is definitely promising and after seeing some of the things the devs did to franchise mode, I think that helps offline too. Whether I can get past my normal issues will remain to be seen. I think sliders will have to drastically help it.
    Fiddy, your last two "paragraphs" sum up everything in my brain. Being a hardcore hockey fan sucks when it comes to video games because too much can piss you off. You just have to take it for what it is.
    Its an absolute disgrace what they are passing of as a new game.
    I personally have had enough
    Not giving it a chance? I gave it 07-17.
    Absolute Joke they are passing this off as a full release.
    Im voting with my wallet.
    SocialAssassin
    you can toe the line, bro. The whole game needs an overhaul, it's the same old tired nonsense with a new coat of paint. It deserves all the bashing it's getting.

    Toe the line? I'm asking this forum for constructive feedback, something EVERY other forum has been able to give with it's core for years.
    Don't like it - go to the EA Forums. Because I'm no longer sitting back and watching senseless bashing as opposed to constructive criticism.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app
    I have been down on NHL series for as long as I can remember. And I have been quite vocal about it. Is NHL 18 a whole new engine? No. Is it much improved from last year? Yes. And that is saying a lot for me to say that. I was encouraged by the beta, and I think the final version (have only played a couple games) plays even better. I finally feel like I can at least play a season now without getting very frustrated. And this is without making any changes to the default settings, which will make the game even more enjoyable to play. Would I have liked to see a laundry list of improvements like with 2k? Yes...but you'll have to decide if improved AI (along with a few extra bells and whistles) is good enough for you. I have enjoyed the games I have played thus far. I do feel like this series is trending in the right direction. EA just needs to allocate more resources to the game.
    Millennium is jut giving his opinion like I am. I can assure you I am not being paid by EA or any other manufacturer. You only need to read my history of comments about this and other games.
    Millennium
    Toe the line? I'm asking this forum for constructive feedback, something EVERY other forum has been able to give with it's core for years.
    Don't like it - go to the EA Forums. Because I'm no longer sitting back and watching senseless bashing as opposed to constructive criticism.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app

    What can be said about NHL 18 that hasn't been said about NHL 17, 16 and 15? It's bombed out and depleted. There's no point in constructive criticism if I've been constructive about it for four years and not one of my major complaints has been listened to.
    But there are people out there who keep the fatcats at EA happy by buying the new game every year no matter what.
    They be like
    SocialAssassin
    What can be said about NHL 18 that hasn't been said about NHL 17, 16 and 15? It's bombed out and depleted. There's no point in constructive criticism if I've been constructive about it for four years and not one of my major complaints has been listened to.
    But there are people out there who keep the fatcats at EA happy by buying the new game every year no matter what.
    They be like

    So you're telling me that you've played it and the defensive skill stick & upgrades to the CPU AI (which I showed on stream tonight) aren't two HUGE changes to gameplay? Did I miss that?
    Just because you personally haven't been heard does not give you and excuse to not be constructive. And if you feel like it does I am telling you it is not welcome at OS.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app
    Millennium
    So you're telling me that you've played it and the defensive skill stick & upgrades to the CPU AI (which I showed on stream tonight) aren't two HUGE changes to gameplay? Did I miss that?
    Just because you personally haven't been heard does not give you and excuse to not be constructive. And if you feel like it does I am telling you it is not welcome at OS.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app

    They're not massive improvements. When the core game breaking catchup logic still exists and other exploits that have been long running, whatever they added does not matter until they fix all the flaws that has hampered the series for years.
    Your tone to members of the community isn't appreciated just because they're not painting a rosy picture for you.
    Those AI improvements and defensive skillstick should probably have been in a while ago. NHL 15 for this gen should have pushed the series into a new paradigm in the way NHL 07 did, but due to a number of reasons was a complete failure and misstep for the series and its development.
    That said, we all know the broader case of NHL's development, and that development costs and returns don't scale the same with today's hardware as they did when NHL 07 was being worked on starting around 2005.
    I feel like given the relatively niche status of the game (outside of Canadian markets), development costs, and EA's size and its nature as a publicly traded company, that the NHL series is about as ambitious as it could be. I mean that in a positive way.
    The addition of relocation and overall refinements made to Franchise mode last year, and expansion mode this year, and implementing small, hardcore, single player features like in-season re-signing, nmc's, division realignment (which I believe the latter two are coming in a day zero patch), are things I wouldn't really expect in the era of Ultimate Team.
    We also don't know the nature of licensing agreements and how that could make things murky when it comes to roster sharing—especially after what EA went through with NCAA. Madden, which has one league has roster sharing. NHL and FIFA have many leagues and do not. It obviously could just be that there is no priority to build the feature, but it could also be a legal roadblock.
    I hear the complaints, and I want more ambition, and execution, and a bigger, more impressive hockey video game, but given the scenario that we only have one company willing to develop an NHL game, and it's EA, I'm pretty happy with what NHL has done since 16.
    I have my complaints, sure, but I enjoy the game. I can also understand those who are more passionate, and have their own expectations, and are disappointed, or even angry with how the series has turned out over the years.
    I guess I could sum up my own feelings of the NHL series as disappointed and underwhelmed, but very satisfied with its feature set and the tools it gives me to make it play in a way I find very enjoyable.
    SocialAssassin
    They're not massive improvements. When the core game breaking catchup logic still exists and other exploits that have been long running, whatever they added does not matter until they fix all the flaws that has hampered the series for years.
    Your tone to members of the community isn't appreciated just because they're not painting a rosy picture for you.

    I don't care about a rosy picture. Look at the Madden forums: Lots of feedback both negative and positive. I care about how you give your feedback. This forum specifically has spent years chasing out anyone with anything to say about the game that isn't "Fire Rammer" or "This game sucks, oh yeah I didn't actually play it " and, as I said, it's the same 10-20 cancerous people that it is every year.
    And it's already been proven time and time again that there is no catch-up logic in the game - the CPU adjusts their coaching strategies based on situation and if you turn the "User Coach Adjustments" slider to 3 or higher you see an immediate change in that. Even most of the comp guys don't believe in "ice tilt" (Yes, I know what it's called and all of the accusations against it because I actually research the issues outside of OS) anymore due to dev interaction and testing.
    As I said - It's time to clean up how we give feedback. I'm 100% okay with negative feedback formed in the way of specific issues that we can show. Every other forum in this site can do it - The NHL forum will no longer be given a pass.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app
    Millennium
    Toe the line? I'm asking this forum for constructive feedback, something EVERY other forum has been able to give with it's core for years.
    Don't like it - go to the EA Forums. Because I'm no longer sitting back and watching senseless bashing as opposed to constructive criticism.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app

    I understand your role in this forum and what you're trying to do.
    It must be frustrating to read blanket statements when you're looking for precise pro's and con's.
    But if I can ask an honest question, without any agenda attached...
    The community here has pointed out some AI issues/flaws for several years now and EA hasn't addressed them yet.
    Just a quick inventory;
    - CPU can do things users can't.
    - every team plays the same.
    - not enough player separation
    Those three things have been brought up more than anything else (gameplay wise).
    Perhaps the OS community has grown tired of trying to help when their requests are ignored?
    It's a two-way street (if in fact EA cares about OS's opinion).
    If the developers genuinely look to OS for advice, then I believe they should take some time to answer some questions or provide insight as to why the same complaints are never addressed.
    Money99
    I understand your role in this forum and what you're trying to do.
    It must be frustrating to read blanket statements when you're looking for precise pro's and con's.
    But if I can ask an honest question, without any agenda attached...
    The community here has pointed out some AI issues/flaws for several years now and EA hasn't addressed them yet.
    Just a quick inventory;
    - CPU can do things users can't.
    - every team plays the same.
    - not enough player separation
    Those three things have been brought up more than anything else (gameplay wise).
    Perhaps the OS community has grown tired of trying to help when their requests are ignored?
    It's a two-way street (if in fact EA cares about OS's opinion).
    If the developers genuinely look to OS for advice, then I believe they should take some time to answer some questions or provide insight as to why the same complaints are never addressed.

    The issue is that dev interaction on this forum WAS a thing in the past until they were attacked enough that now they just read it (and I know for a fact that they do read the forum).
    I agree with team separation. Have said it myself for a few years (and on the Press Row Podcast where I tore the beta apart this year, so much for the "company line"). I think player separation/ID is near perfect - you can absolutely feel the difference between roles (moreso this year due to the ratings changes).
    The CPU doing things that the player can not is simply not true. Are there a little too accurate when passing? Maybe. But there is a ton of user error involved that I don't believe want to admit to as well.
    If you or anyone else is frustrated I'm fine with that. But expression of that needs to be focused in a constructive manner.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app
    Alright where to start with my initial thoughts after playing a couple hours last night simply only playing offline games in play now:
    I'm a sim player who only plays offline. I typically play on PS4 and played the beta on the PRO. The beta seemed to pop on my OLED 4K C7, playing on XBOX one S, the game looked rough, honestly. Was surprised by that. This game is not a looker at all. Frostbite engine did wonders for Madden. Going from Madden to this, yikes. Menu speeds are pretty bad as well. When you play Madden you IMMEDIATELY notice how great it looks especially in 4K, this game, eh. Just my opinion. Also noticed frame-rate issues at the beginning of the faceoff once the puck is dropped.
    Presentation/Audio. Besides some new camera angles before faceoffs and new goal replays that we all saw in the beta that look good, it is pretty much exactly the same as last year and the year before. Commentary was tweaked on goal calls to "attempt" to make Doc sound more excited, when all they did was insert his loud "score" that was used for a minute left in the 3rd, into other situations throughout the game. Eddie is the exact same word for word and Ray may have the exact same lines as well(dont quote me on that, but everything sounds verbatim) *edited just watched Millenimum's twitch game and Ray talked about Austin Matthews* The added some new, updated goal horns, however the same ones that have been wrong for years, Minnesota and Florida, are wrong again. I know someone that has been working with the audio guy on this and they are trying to fix the right ones.
    It appears EA went all out on presentation with NHL 15 and 16 because they have not really updated commentary lines, graphics, etc since. Was hoping for more. Really disappointed with the commentary. In other games you'll AT LEAST hear some new lines. Everything is pretty much the exact same so far and that is inexcusable.
    Gameplay: Defensive Skill Stick is a good addition. Takes time to get a hold of, but it's a good tool that was added to help improve defense. The AI is improved in some areas definitely. They use the boards to pass now! I got dangled as well by the AI which was great to see. The changes are under the hood and don't hit you at first because they are simple hockey plays that they should be and should have been doing all along. I typically play on All-Star Sim and I got my *** handed to be as the Avalanche against the Canucks my first play through which was good to see. Then played as the Hawks vs. Canucks and scored 3 goals in the first period. I liked that. Looks like perhaps the players play to their ratings? I tried deeking with Kane and he was far superior to a 4th line player for example. The 4th line player lost the puck.
    AI however STILL does unbelievable, things that makes you scratch your head on how they do some of the moves they do. The turning into the boards and quick turns, etc are eyesores. The skating engine really needs work. You have to be careful not to chase the puck, as if you do, the AI will absolutely punish you with the high slot or backdoor one timer. Have pretty much seen the same old goals.
    Very disappointed to not really see any goalie improvements/ new animations. Look exactly the same as the past couple of years. The stances etc are cosmetic like last year, but they all play the same.
    Puck pickups are tough and they really need to work on this. We said this last year as well.
    All in all, I'd say this is more of a refined of the same game we have seen over the years, with some better AI and defensive skill stick, and new skill stick moves, which are nice.
    I don't play 3s and may only play a couple of times.
    Need to play more, but these are my initial constructive opinions on NHL 18 so far.
    ALSO, sliders, i have NOT touched these at all. Perhaps this can help with some of the issues.
    There is probably a day 1 patch coming too to help fix any issues. I noticed there was a gameplay update last night. Not sure what it did.
    Wow :(
    Infrequent poster these days but as I'm still on the fence as regards to 18 thought best to read this thread but there are a lot of overly strong words being thrown about from all directions, community *and* community manager alike.
    Regarding the game itself, I really am undecided for the first time in a decade on whether to pick it up on release day. The gameplay is what is, and I'm not expecting much difference from 17, but if anyone at all could answer any of these non-subjective questions that would be appreciated. If quite a few little details are there, then that can certainly sway a decision.
    Is the CHL accessible in early access? That's the European Champions Hockey League which was reportedly in this year. If you play it, do you get any CHL branding on ice? Do the teams all have similar uniforms with the one universal sponsor? Are the "Top Scorer" uniforms in there?
    For reference.
    https://www.championshockeyleague.com/en/gamecentre-articles/recaps/panthers-shock-swiss-champions-to-top-group
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champions_Hockey_League
    Moving to the NHL itself, are "out of town" scores, if in, also present in Season Mode or just Franchise?
    Other than mascots, any new logos / templates / SFX for Create-A-Team? My biggest wish for that was being able to put a wordmark around your logo at center ice but I assume that's not made it.
    This gen NHL on a standard PS4 always had a slight blurriness to it that the Xbox One doesn't. Verified this by owning 17 on both platforms on exactly the same Bravia TV with exactly the same TV settings. Any change in 18 on PS4?
    Is the commentary *exactly* the same? Any new lines at all? I know the game's only been in Early Access for a short while but that's enough to know if "waffle boarded!" or "to start something" are still as annoyingly frequent. ( edit: thanks for the info above csamuelsvt )
    Thanks in advance for any replies.
    Millennium

    The CPU doing things that the player can not is simply not true.
    Operation Sports mobile app

    Skating is the biggest thing here with the CPU. Moving, stopping, starting, turning, and agility. Speed Burst, biggest issue of all with the skating. CPU guys catching speedsters on breakaways. Almost like a suction, they speed up, user slows down. Happens way too often.
    Do us human buds have access to it? Sure, but can't pull them off the way the CPU does. Needs to be a way to tone that down and even out somehow.
    The game is what it is now and basically always will be. I've toned down my complaints and learned to enjoy it for what it is an arcade game and tune it with sliders for my sim liking. But it is frustrating to see if i pull up old gripes that the majority of them have not been addressed. Maybe I didn't come off constructive enough for the Dev's to read it and care, but others did at those times and they still remain.
    Any update on all the ways to play co-op? They said 60 plus ways and what does that consist of? Or did I read that wrong?
    Fiddy
    Skating is the biggest thing here with the CPU. Moving, stopping, starting, turning, and agility. Speed Burst, biggest issue of all with the skating. CPU guys catching speedsters on breakaways. Almost like a suction, they speed up, user slows down. Happens way too often.
    Do us human buds have access to it? Sure, but can't pull them off the way the CPU does. Needs to be a way to tone that down and even out somehow.
    The game is what it is now and basically always will be. I've toned down my complaints and learned to enjoy it for what it is an arcade game and tune it with sliders for my sim liking. But it is frustrating to see if i pull up old gripes that the majority of them have not been addressed. Maybe I didn't come off constructive enough for the Dev's to read it and care, but others did at those times and they still remain.
    Any update on all the ways to play co-op? They said 60 plus ways and what does that consist of? Or did I read that wrong?

    You can play almost anything coop (couch and online). That includes HUT challenges as well.
    Sent from my Pixel XL using Operation Sports mobile app
    DISCLAIMER: I only watched Millennium play on Twitch -- Full Sim/All-Star
    Yes, it's still the NHL series, so folks hoping for some kind of core breakthrough will be disappointed. Still saw some of the same awkward looking movements and questionable plays that we won't see in real life -- namely backhand passes when facing away from the intended receiver. A lot of this happens as players approach the boards.
    It'd be great if we could get some new animations -- that actually trigger in a consistent, reliable manner -- for gathering the puck and getting in better body position before playing the puck, especially when near the boards. Also, they need to find a way to differentiate more between what kind of plays, and how quickly, you can make on your forehand/backhand. Way too many quickly released hard, accurate backhand passes. It's just not that easy to do, and often requires more of a sweeping motion as opposed to the quick flick of a forehand. Again, maybe some new animations would help, along with tuning the speed/accuracy of passes based on body/stick/puck position.
    On the plus side, and it left quite the positive impression, the CPU did some things I haven't seen before (granted my offline play has really dwindled over the years). I saw several puck reversals in the D-zone, as opposed to holding the puck too long/self-pinning or relying on only basic passing to get out of the zone. It seemed like less aimless regrouping too, even seeing some slap-dumps and gaining the zone but then buying time to wait for support. Still a little too direct and not enough desperation plays to simply advance the puck or get it out of danger, but Mill wasn't exactly at the top of his defensive game...
    Along the same lines, the CPU uses the boards to make passes, tossed a few saucers across a crowded slot, and seemed more aware of where teammates were when passing. In short, lots of good puck movement, even if it is somewhat undercut by some of the issues I described above (CPU loves to pass blindly to the middle of the ice so much a coaches head would explode). And man did they move the puck around of the powerplay. Sure looks like we'll need to keep our shape and protect the house, because they'll move the puck and pass to danger areas in the middle if it's open. Which it usually is, because we all probably chase the puck too much and that throws the AI teammates coverage off.
    So TLDR, I watched one AS/full-sim game on Twitch, saw some of the same issues, saw some encouraging play out of the AI, and can't really say much else without playing.
    Millennium
    Oooooo...that's a great question. Didn't check - I'll do that later today.

    And if not, would share play be an option?
    il_tedesco
    There is no Division realignment in Expansion Mode. You Always start in the Central Division. Very disappointing to me.

    That's off. I know I saw Division Realignment in the Franchise reveal video. Was this just doing the LV Knights and not adding a 32nd team?
    il_tedesco
    There is no Division realignment in Expansion Mode. You Always start in the Central Division. Very disappointing to me.

    That was in the video EA posted a few weeks ago. I was planning on creating Hartford but moving them into the Eastern Conference. This has killed any realism now forcing you to put a team in the West.
    Nickflyers
    That's off. I know I saw Division Realignment in the Franchise reveal video. Was this just doing the LV Knights and not adding a 32nd team?

    Was adding a 32nd team.
    Maybe it's a later build and will be added in a day 1 patch?
    sadler
    Was adding a 32nd team.
    Maybe it's a later build and will be added in a day 1 patch?

    Yes, I assumed this, plus the nmc's shown in the franchise video, and possibly Addidas templates will be in a day zero update.
    Fiddy
    This would be fantastic if this was an option. Hope you report back with some good news lol.

    Just looked up some Youtube videos of Franchise and unless it's another button then no you can't. Wasn't it R1 or something on PS4 to bring up the invite menu during the beta? (Assume it was bumper on Xbox).
    So, if this is true then whatever "# of ways to play co-op" seems to be just hyperbole. Was really hoping this was in, and don't see why it's not.
    Anyone have any news on a Day 1 patch? I know the last few years they have had them and wondering if one was announced or is included already with the EA Access version?
    Peter_OS
    I tried to give this game another chance but it's just not happening. Piss poor effort on EA's part. I feel ripped off. I bought the digital version and I can't get a refund. Learned my lesson. Not buying another EA NHL Hockey game again.
    - Poor and dumb AI. Cpu AI players passing the puck and going off-side for no aparent reason.
    - Some poor choices made on placing camera replays. I saw one where the referee was in the way and I didn't see the replay. lol. Do they have a QA team at all?
    - CPU called on a penatly for tripping after diving to block a shot. lol.
    - Goalie cpu making a save and dropping puck in front of him. Picked it up and almost scored. dumb.

    You for sure can get a refund. The game isn't out yet. You can call and get refunded by Microsoft. They have a window to cancel digital games even after release.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Madwolf
    How's player development im Franchise mode?

    A Reddit user posted this
    Well I got my free trial and burnt it within a day, so I figured what better to do than write it up for all you folks who can't play yet.
    I picked the 32 team expansion mode and brought hockey to houston in the form of the Houston Mustangs. Creation is more or less the same as 17 and annoyingly, the custom jerseys are still Reebok branded rather than adidas.
    Moving on to the expansion draft, I was able to craft a decent team drafting players like ekholm and martinez. Goalie tandem was mike Smith and grubauer.
    After some smart trades, I was able to acquire Duchenne, aho, fiala, and Sam reinhart. Essentially setting me up for the future.
    I summed the first season, made the playoffs (yay) , and got swept in round one. (Not yay).
    For me, midseason extensions are a huge addituon. I was able to extend reinhart and fiala to 4 year 4mil contracts at the trade deadline. Saving a lot of headache at the re-sign phase.
    Player development seems largely improved and the adjusted overalls helps a lot with that. All my top forward prospects saw meaningful improvement and it seemed to have some basis in their stats from the last season but I could be wrong about that. Duchenne has a great season leading the team with 70 points. He progressed from 84 to 87. Aho and reinhart both start at 82 and rein hart had about 20 points more than aho, progressing to 85 where aho only improved to 83.
    Prospect development feels better too, I was able to put debrincat comfortably on my 4c slot with his overall climbing to 77 in the second year.
    Overall I had a very good time with the game And will no doubt be buying it. There's nothing revolutionary and things like goalie colors remaining bugged are really frustrating, but the quality of life improvements are there and imo, very worthwhile.
    I think only the huge hockey fanatic who likes to play the game offline will buy this year Online is already a disaster. Less than 200 players online during primetime is a good representation how no one gives a f*ck about NHL right now. It doesn't help that Destiny 2 just got release.
    I'm hearing a lot of shoddy stuff about 18 so far, I was skeptical and hesitated, definitely skipping. At least I got previous releases to play for a while, I'm almost 20 years into a franchise with 3 cups.
    BSDShoes
    I'm hearing a lot of shoddy stuff about 18 so far, I was skeptical and hesitated, definitely skipping. At least I got previous releases to play for a while, I'm almost 20 years into a franchise with 3 cups.

    It feels very much like last years game to me. Thinking I wont buy either.
    Drakar
    I think only the huge hockey fanatic who likes to play the game offline will buy this year Online is already a disaster. Less than 200 players online during primetime is a good representation how no one gives a f*ck about NHL right now. It doesn't help that Destiny 2 just got release.

    The game isn't out yet.
    You're playing a version guys have 10 hours of access to if they pay for EA Access, which is only available on XBox.
    Im downloading the trail now...ill make a thread tonight of 5 minute highlight montages from franchise games showing presentation additions and all goals from each game. Keep an eye out...itll be good.
    Nevermind about the video montages...it took one game to see that this wont be enough to convince me to move on from nhl 17 and my amazing quebec franchise that im absolutely loving. Im going to play another game with some adjustments slider wise but im not seeing any reason to upgrade.
    13whitebread
    Is the 5 man celebration after a goal is scored in? Is there any new dialog or any improvements to docs delivery?

    From what I've read and experienced, there seems to be little (or possibly no) new commentary....which is mind-blowingly poor.
    From reading this. It looks like they've been stuck on the same game since 2007 (whenever the full overhaul of the game for ps3 was) I think it's time for another full overhaul. Scrap the game and start over. I love hockey but lost interest the past couple years. It's sad. It's time for EA to wake up and do something about the game. Same thing year after year basically with minor additions here and there with the exception of the expansion/create an arena modes. But that's basically replaced the winter classics.
    Sent from my SM-G900W8 using Tapatalk
    1-9 so far in EASHL. lol I know we don't suck this bad. We were 35 games above .500 last year. The regular 3 vs 3 is fun. More offense of course. AI is still dumb for 6 vs 6. But will likely play over 1000 EASHL games, Franchise, Be A Pro and maybe some HUT now that they added single player challenges.
    The commentary is the exact same. Heck the presentation doesn't seem like anything has been added. Still only 2 players celebrating after a goal at least in PLAY NOW.
    I'll only buy this game when there's a steep discount.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    sportdan30

    I'll only buy this game when there's a steep discount.

    I don't blame anybody anymore for not buying sports games in general. Not worth $60 every year. I only buy NHL because its my favorite sport. All others the 10 hour access is perfect until they go on sale for $25 or $30 in November. I'll buy Live 18 this year at launch to support the game but also because it's only $35. I'll get 2 NBA games for the price of one this year. Makes me miss having another NHL game option.
    csamuelsvt
    Alright where to start with my initial thoughts after playing a couple hours last night simply only playing offline games in play now:
    I'm a sim player who only plays offline. I typically play on PS4 and played the beta on the PRO. The beta seemed to pop on my OLED 4K C7, playing on XBOX one S, the game looked rough, honestly. Was surprised by that. This game is not a looker at all. Frostbite engine did wonders for Madden. Going from Madden to this, yikes. Menu speeds are pretty bad as well. When you play Madden you IMMEDIATELY notice how great it looks especially in 4K, this game, eh. Just my opinion. Also noticed frame-rate issues at the beginning of the faceoff once the puck is dropped.
    Presentation/Audio. Besides some new camera angles before faceoffs and new goal replays that we all saw in the beta that look good, it is pretty much exactly the same as last year and the year before. Commentary was tweaked on goal calls to "attempt" to make Doc sound more excited, when all they did was insert his loud "score" that was used for a minute left in the 3rd, into other situations throughout the game. Eddie is the exact same word for word and Ray may have the exact same lines as well(dont quote me on that, but everything sounds verbatim) *edited just watched Millenimum's twitch game and Ray talked about Austin Matthews* The added some new, updated goal horns, however the same ones that have been wrong for years, Minnesota and Florida, are wrong again. I know someone that has been working with the audio guy on this and they are trying to fix the right ones.
    It appears EA went all out on presentation with NHL 15 and 16 because they have not really updated commentary lines, graphics, etc since. Was hoping for more. Really disappointed with the commentary. In other games you'll AT LEAST hear some new lines. Everything is pretty much the exact same so far and that is inexcusable.
    Gameplay: Defensive Skill Stick is a good addition. Takes time to get a hold of, but it's a good tool that was added to help improve defense. The AI is improved in some areas definitely. They use the boards to pass now! I got dangled as well by the AI which was great to see. The changes are under the hood and don't hit you at first because they are simple hockey plays that they should be and should have been doing all along. I typically play on All-Star Sim and I got my *** handed to be as the Avalanche against the Canucks my first play through which was good to see. Then played as the Hawks vs. Canucks and scored 3 goals in the first period. I liked that. Looks like perhaps the players play to their ratings? I tried deeking with Kane and he was far superior to a 4th line player for example. The 4th line player lost the puck.
    AI however STILL does unbelievable, things that makes you scratch your head on how they do some of the moves they do. The turning into the boards and quick turns, etc are eyesores. The skating engine really needs work. You have to be careful not to chase the puck, as if you do, the AI will absolutely punish you with the high slot or backdoor one timer. Have pretty much seen the same old goals.
    Very disappointed to not really see any goalie improvements/ new animations. Look exactly the same as the past couple of years. The stances etc are cosmetic like last year, but they all play the same.
    Puck pickups are tough and they really need to work on this. We said this last year as well.
    All in all, I'd say this is more of a refined of the same game we have seen over the years, with some better AI and defensive skill stick, and new skill stick moves, which are nice.
    I don't play 3s and may only play a couple of times.
    Need to play more, but these are my initial constructive opinions on NHL 18 so far.
    ALSO, sliders, i have NOT touched these at all. Perhaps this can help with some of the issues.
    There is probably a day 1 patch coming too to help fix any issues. I noticed there was a gameplay update last night. Not sure what it did.

    This is a very good assessment. It is pretty spot on with mine. Guys you need to keep in mind the NHL dept gets screwed on resources over the other EA games each year. So the improvements will be more incremental. There are lots of things that still need to be improved/added. We can only hope for a NBA2k list one day. That said, the game has definitely improved. Anyone who says differently either has not played or is not being honest. Are the improvements enough to buy the game. For me..yes. You'll have to decide that. But bashing just for the sake of bashing in repeat posts doesn't accomplish much.
    knich
    This is a very good assessment. It is pretty spot on with mine. Guys you need to keep in mind the NHL dept gets screwed on resources over the other EA games each year. So the improvements will be more incremental. There are lots of things that still need to be improved/added. We can only hope for a NBA2k list one day. That said, the game has definitely improved. Anyone who says differently either has not played or is not being honest. Are the improvements enough to buy the game. For me..yes. You'll have to decide that. But bashing just for the sake of bashing in repeat posts doesn't accomplish much.

    You know what I'm not buying the money and resources defense anynore and I was one that threw that around as well so I'm not calling anyone out. I understand that hockey doesn't rank along with other sports in popularity but it has grown in popularity by leaps and bounds since the EA NHL series came out it in the early 90s and EA No longer has to competie with 2K for sales. The problem as I see it is a development crew that doesn't truly understand the sport and uses its resources poorly. I'm not even talking about the 3 on 3 I'm talking about wasting time Mascots, Mascot creator, Arena creator, 2 Dozen idiotic goal celebrations, and Fancy dekes before working on 5 man celebration, intelligent line matching, roster share, updated commentary, and AI improvement. I honestly feel as if Rammer and the crew have a genuine distaste for the hardcore hockey fan. Bottom line is they have ignored the wishes of the sim hockey community for many years so if sales are not good maybe it's time to listen to us...they can't do any worse.
    il_tedesco
    There is no Division realignment in Expansion Mode. You Always start in the Central Division. Very disappointing to me.

    This is supposed to be added in through the release day patch. Otherwise, yea, very dissapointing.
    I enjoyed last year's game and they added three new leagues in Europe so that's enough for me. But this is a really poor effort for those on the edge in terms of upgrades. The commentary is particularly poor Auston Matthews not mentioned along with any other second year player I've looked for. Team creation is worthless without custom logos.
    I have to say that I am not a fan of the EA NHL team, or at least management. I don't agree with the direction they are going.
    I was hoping to bash this game, but I was pleased to see some AI improvements. Board passes by AI are a nice and well overdue touch. I also saw a defenseman carry the puck into the zone, which I don't remember seeing much, if at all, last year. I even saw some timely dumps into the offensive zone.
    With that being said, a lot of these things are well overdue, and the lack of feeling like we (the consumer) are "truly" not heard, is very frustrating.
    Sales are driven by the consumer, not by an executive deciding what is important. That's where I think EA has sadly lost its way. Catering to Ultimate Team (or whatever it is in NHL, I don't play it), is fine. I don't agree, but that's ok. The part that gets me is that there is not a balance with franchise mode. You cannot ONLY (seemingly) put time and effort into one aspect, while not addressing the communities concerns year after year. When you do, the frustration we see here is just. How we present is important, but also see from the other angle that no matter how we present our ideas, they seem to be ignored.
    The fact that roster share is still not available is one of the biggest confusions for me. And no explanation as to why not. If there is a compelling reason, we may not agree, but how can you argue against it?! Being able to modify the rosters and create that separation to our liking would be huge, and actually take some burden off of the design. And I do mean some. Theoretically at least.
    More than anything I'm sad that a game that has potential is left without any/much creativity. NBA 2K truly does it right. We can argue about the importance of the size of teams and whatnot, but in my opinion, management needs to push upper management to understand this is not the right direction to go in. That's where I feel lot is missing. I could be totally wrong, but that's my thoughts.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Infinite_Jester54
    This is supposed to be added in through the release day patch. Otherwise, yea, very dissapointing.

    Ok that's what I thought. Day One Patch it is
    The thing about sales and the NHL series, is that lower sales don't incentivize management to spend more to make the game better, they just won't make an NHL game. We saw this with 2k. It wasn't worth their investment to try and increase sales by spending more resources on the title. The better option was to just not make a hockey game, and roll some of that development budget into NBA or other titles with greater potential for consistent and long term bigger returns.
    Not that I'm arguing, "you should buy it or none of us get any hockey games." If people don't like it, they won't buy it, and the market will have spoken that it doesn't support a title that costs what EA NHL costs to develop and is sold the way it is.
    Doesn't mean there isn't a model that a segment of the market does support—like indie high customization, or a passion project, and hopefully we'll see that at some point alongside EA's NHL.
    bad_philanthropy
    The thing about sales and the NHL series, is that lower sales don't incentivize management to spend more to make the game better, they just won't make an NHL game. We saw this with 2k. It wasn't worth their investment to try and increase sales by spending more resources on the title. The better option was to just not make a hockey game, and roll some of that development budget into NBA or other titles with greater potential for consistent and long term bigger returns.
    Not that I'm arguing, "you should buy it or none of us get any hockey games." If people don't like it, they won't buy it, and the market will have spoken that it doesn't support a title that costs what EA NHL costs to develop and is sold the way it is.
    Doesn't mean there isn't a model that a segment of the market does support—like indie high customization, or a passion project, and hopefully we'll see that at some point alongside EA's NHL.

    I agree with what you're saying. To me though, they're at a point where someone needs to decide, or convince someone that even a slight increase in resources could be worthwhile.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Christian9
    I agree with what you're saying. To me though, they're at a point where someone needs to decide, or convince someone that even a slight increase in resources could be worthwhile.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    Absolutely agree.
    I feel like it's just not the direction for EA right now with how profitable ultimate team is with minimal investment. The emphasis is on ultimate team and story modes to draw new users in with who they hope will ultimately be ultimate team consumers.
    It's a very rational strategy, but it means that the art of the sports game in terms of taking risks and trying to create bolder gameplay is a potentially damaging process to what is already a stable cash cow.
    bad_philanthropy
    The thing about sales and the NHL series, is that lower sales don't incentivize management to spend more to make the game better, they just won't make an NHL game. We saw this with 2k. It wasn't worth their investment to try and increase sales by spending more resources on the title. The better option was to just not make a hockey game, and roll some of that development budget into NBA or other titles with greater potential for consistent and long term bigger returns.
    Not that I'm arguing, "you should buy it or none of us get any hockey games." If people don't like it, they won't buy it, and the market will have spoken that it doesn't support a title that costs what EA NHL costs to develop and is sold the way it is.
    Doesn't mean there isn't a model that a segment of the market does support—like indie high customization, or a passion project, and hopefully we'll see that at some point alongside EA's NHL.

    Completely understand your point.
    I'm done trying to figure out EA (execs, not devs).
    They've beem pouring money into their Live series for the last few years without getting much return at all.
    Yet they don't seem to have any interest in re-booting the MVP series which sold over 2M copies in 2005
    Especially when there isn't a baseball option on the Xbox.
    Regardless, I doubt Treyarch/Kush/VC had a lot of resources at their disposal and yet they still made a pretty realistic and well-liked hockey game.
    EA has an MO for all their sports games.
    IIWII.
    This really hurts. Lets be honest, the game is stale. No one is playing this game. Its stale so they tried going the arcade route. There are some AI improvements which i mentioned, the game needs a new director tho like Madden did with REX, it is what it is. Rammer say what you want about him, the game isn't doing it anymore. The game is too simliar too the past couple years. From every category, i tried like everyone else. It's too simliar. The game if not careful will DIE very soon and it sucks because I love hockey.They tried to make more money appealing to the casual crowd, but this game, it just does not work. DJ NEO called this awhile ago.....its not a good game.
    By the way, make excuses for the team, how aren't there 5 man celebrations in this game? How are there ZERO updated commentary lines in this game? Would love to hear the reasons why this is expectable?
    NHL 2K has the perfect opportunity to capitalize on this. We as a community have to stop saying, its "ok!"
    Im just so sick of my sport being overlooked. Look at NBA 2K, NBA live, MLB the SHOW, Madden, etc, this game is TERRIBLE. We can't keep this up!
    The fact that EA took a chance competing with 2K, and the rebuild that was done for Live is so contra to what we see with NHL. I guess if there is a silver lining, or hope for one. It's that some changes can come for this series, and the new blood can convince the suits that change is needed, and a calculated risk could pay off. Wishful thinking maybe, but to be honest, I thought the Live series was dead, or at least close.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    I just think with the profile of the NBA the prospect of tapping into NBA-based Ultimate Team (NUT? BUT?) revenue is a risk they want to take. Also possibly generate youtube culture of "ripping packs" for Live fits with their overall strategy of emphasizing the low cost/high return of Ultimate Team these days. And of course cut out a piece of the massive sales NBA 2k does year after year.
    Man, I'd love 2k hockey to come back, but why would 2k do it?
    From the outside it seems to me like Andrew Wilson is a good suit for EA Sports, but bad for the older, legacy sports gamer market.
    If we really want things to change we have to hope that people get bored of UT. It's digusting if you look at most sports game content on youtube, it's just people spending a ton of money to open packs of cards that cost EA nothing but the overall licensing costs. It's not even lack of competition right now so much as it is that UT is so popular and insanely profitable with limited investment, or extensive development of the software year over year.
    EDIT: Forgot to mention that this is evident if you just look at the multiple "versions" of the game the sell. The most expensive one comes with more and special cards. and lets you play early. If you just want to play the game and not spend additional money on it you get to play it several days later than its traitional release date.
    The fact that some of the madden team went to the nba live team, and it SHOWS, this team needs to go to the NHL team.....the NHL series is close to being DOA. Its embarrassing. How do you have Rammer say they can get Doc anytime they want and not update 1 commentary line the entire series? Come on!
    And STILL no 5 man celebration???
    The state of sports gaming Is sad 😭. If they aren't going to upgrade the game majorly they should just keep game and add packs to buy like rosters , gameplay enhancements , sliders, etc . That way they can make a mJor upgrade every 2-3 years.
    I wish there was more competition. The NFL needs to let 2K back in the mix and 2K needs to make a NHL game.
    bad_philanthropy
    The thing about sales and the NHL series, is that lower sales don't incentivize management to spend more to make the game better, they just won't make an NHL game. We saw this with 2k. It wasn't worth their investment to try and increase sales by spending more resources on the title. The better option was to just not make a hockey game, and roll some of that development budget into NBA or other titles with greater potential for consistent and long term bigger returns.
    Not that I'm arguing, "you should buy it or none of us get any hockey games." If people don't like it, they won't buy it, and the market will have spoken that it doesn't support a title that costs what EA NHL costs to develop and is sold the way it is.
    Doesn't mean there isn't a model that a segment of the market does support—like indie high customization, or a passion project, and hopefully we'll see that at some point alongside EA's NHL.

    I agree. I'm not asking for more I'm asking for instead. All their gimmicks have not led to increased sales so why not start actively and truly listening to the hockey gaming community and focus the resources on that. I honestly think sales would improve a bit. They would not decline.
    csamuelsvt

    NHL 2K has the perfect opportunity to capitalize on this. We as a community have to stop saying, its "ok!"
    Im just so sick of my sport being overlooked. Look at NBA 2K, NBA live, MLB the SHOW, Madden, etc, this game is TERRIBLE. We can't keep this up!

    Same! Drives me nuts that my favorite sport gets no actual love. If they could even some how get 25% of what games like The Show and NBA2K get, man we would have one heck of an NHL game.
    I also don't know how NHL is still a yearly release. They could do a two year cycle. Update rosters and menus with DLC. Maybe a tuner or two and that be that.
    Same with a company like 2K, why not just release a digital version of an NHL game only? Every two years etc.
    Someone stated this already but the state of sports gaming is sad, the only thing booming is Ultimate Team modes. People buying packs and streaming it.
    You can tell there have a lesser budget and team than other games like NBA, FIFA and Madden. The sales has been declining for years and I predict this year will be the worst to date. So the compulsive gamblers will continue playing HUT and people who don't like really like hockey will play the 3 vs 3 arcade (nhl hitz wannabe mode). There is a need for a competitor to push EA to do something drastic. I am sure Rammer is also frustrated by the whole situation. We like to blame him but he was to work with what he is given.
    If EA did ever pull the plug, I have to imagine somebody develops an NHL game, and the NHL is directly involved. There's no way in this day and age the league can not have a licensed video game out there in the entertainment sphere.
    I don't know what quality or direction it would be, but I bet something fills the void. Only problem is, it might be more underwhelming than what EA does.
    This is exactly why I picked up an Xbox One and EA Access. My purchasing decison has been made and it'll be a hard pass on NHL 18.
    For those that have called 18 very similar (almost a carbon copy) of 17, it's really hard to argue that point. There's really not a point in going into more detail; you either like this brand of video game hockey or you don't. For me, there's too many legacy issues and other non-simulation issues that I can't overlook to invest time in this game/series.
    jake19ny
    You know what I'm not buying the money and resources defense anynore and I was one that threw that around as well so I'm not calling anyone out. I understand that hockey doesn't rank along with other sports in popularity but it has grown in popularity by leaps and bounds since the EA NHL series came out it in the early 90s and EA No longer has to competie with 2K for sales. The problem as I see it is a development crew that doesn't truly understand the sport and uses its resources poorly. I'm not even talking about the 3 on 3 I'm talking about wasting time Mascots, Mascot creator, Arena creator, 2 Dozen idiotic goal celebrations, and Fancy dekes before working on 5 man celebration, intelligent line matching, roster share, updated commentary, and AI improvement. I honestly feel as if Rammer and the crew have a genuine distaste for the hardcore hockey fan. Bottom line is they have ignored the wishes of the sim hockey community for many years so if sales are not good maybe it's time to listen to us...they can't do any worse.

    Christian9
    I have to say that I am not a fan of the EA NHL team, or at least management. I don't agree with the direction they are going.
    I was hoping to bash this game, but I was pleased to see some AI improvements. Board passes by AI are a nice and well overdue touch. I also saw a defenseman carry the puck into the zone, which I don't remember seeing much, if at all, last year. I even saw some timely dumps into the offensive zone.
    With that being said, a lot of these things are well overdue, and the lack of feeling like we (the consumer) are "truly" not heard, is very frustrating.
    Sales are driven by the consumer, not by an executive deciding what is important. That's where I think EA has sadly lost its way. Catering to Ultimate Team (or whatever it is in NHL, I don't play it), is fine. I don't agree, but that's ok. The part that gets me is that there is not a balance with franchise mode. You cannot ONLY (seemingly) put time and effort into one aspect, while not addressing the communities concerns year after year. When you do, the frustration we see here is just. How we present is important, but also see from the other angle that no matter how we present our ideas, they seem to be ignored.
    The fact that roster share is still not available is one of the biggest confusions for me. And no explanation as to why not. If there is a compelling reason, we may not agree, but how can you argue against it?! Being able to modify the rosters and create that separation to our liking would be huge, and actually take some burden off of the design. And I do mean some. Theoretically at least.
    More than anything I'm sad that a game that has potential is left without any/much creativity. NBA 2K truly does it right. We can argue about the importance of the size of teams and whatnot, but in my opinion, management needs to push upper management to understand this is not the right direction to go in. That's where I feel lot is missing. I could be totally wrong, but that's my thoughts.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    Guys..I feel your pain..really. I want all the things you talk about too. This is an ongoing issue with all sports games. Heck..arguably the greatest video game ever..MLB THE SHOW..has plenty of folks complaining (including me) about some of their priorities. Why do you think we have 3v3 this year? Something a hard core NHL player probably will never play...I know I won't. They do all kinds of focus groups and hire these so called media genius who tell them to what audience to market the game. If I was a casual hockey fan, I would play 3v3 because it is fun. I don't have to figure anything out. Why do you think all these video games today have a fun/casual mode no hard core player is likely to play (e.g. retro mode in THE SHOW) and all these tutorials and on screen graphics on how to play the sport? Because data has shown that that is what folks play the most. They like to jump in and play a game for a few hours a month without a learning curve. I personally stopped playing Battlefield 1 because I can't get past one of the darn scenes you have to complete before you can even get to the main campaign. This is not what developers want to hear or see. The reason games like THE SHOW and NBA 2k can offer more than just arcade is because they make enough money with the arcade play. So they can devote some resources to the hard core fans. NHL has not gotten there yet.
    But don't confuse what is on your wish list with gameplay improvements. I now have created a set of sliders that make NHL 18 really fun and realistic for me. I stopped playing NHL 17 because I could not create such sliders. And that was after waiting a month for decent sliders to even start playing the game as the game was not good out of the box. Just like Madden was not good out of the box. But I am now enjoying Madden after the patch and some simple settings. NHL 18 has just enough tweaks to make the replay value high. Is NHL 18 where I want it to be..No. But improved enough for me this year. So I am buying. If you are not, enjoy 17!
    ejf0255
    It is not too bad at all... Love the new presentation. Finally feels like a TV broadcast. Can't wait for Friday. Used up the preview in EA Excess. LoL.
    Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Operation Sports mobile app

    There are very minor presentation changes, what are you talking about?
    the one new replay angle from the entrance tunnel?
    centauris
    There are very minor presentation changes, what are you talking about?
    the one new replay angle from the entrance tunnel?

    Yes the between plays looks. Nice touches. Makes it nice to play the game. Corners as well. Sides. Not just the tunnels.
    Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Operation Sports mobile app
    I played the beta and liked it but not a ton different than 17... I did like the new 3 on 3 mode though...it'd be something my buddies would love to play who aren't hardcore NHL fans.
    This isn't worth $59 to me but I am going to keep an eye out for a good deal on it for sure..
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Do you guys think that Division realignment will be in the final game? It's an absolute dealbreaker if not. Wasn't it in the franchise mode Trailer? Why it's left out of the access Version?
    il_tedesco
    Do you guys think that Division realignment will be in the final game? It's an absolute dealbreaker if not. Wasn't it in the franchise mode Trailer? Why it's left out of the access Version?

    No, it wasn't in the trailer.
    tjpeg44
    au contraire

    Umm, this doesn't show anything about division realignment. That's what I said no to.
    You can control the 32nd team, you can't control all 32 teams as someone asked in another thread in Franchise mode. Maybe Season Mode?
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Fiddy
    Umm, this doesn't show anything about division realignment. That's what I said no to.
    You can control the 32nd team, you can't control all 32 teams as someone asked in another thread in Franchise mode. Maybe Season Mode?
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Well crap, I missed that again. Ha.
    Well well well.. Let's hope this gets working asap. Lol. Great find.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    any new sliders???
    Can you you adjust how quick whistle speed is when the goalie covers the puck??
    I hate how they hold onto it for like 3 seconds and then pass it out in front.
    any offsides challenge??
    hand passes? too many men penalties??
    Splitter77
    any new sliders???
    Can you you adjust how quick whistle speed is when the goalie covers the puck??
    I hate how they hold onto it for like 3 seconds and then pass it out in front.
    any offsides challenge??
    hand passes? too many men penalties??

    Sliders are the same.
    Whistle speed is the same. Just raise the goalie cover puck, that helps for most part.
    No offsides challenges as of yet for me. Doubt they are in.
    No hand passes.
    No too many men penalties.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I've played close to 8 hours in NHL 18 as a goalie and I have experience this bug on multiple occasion. I know it will frustrate the **** out of everyone. So the premise that if a puck trickle down slowly toward the goalie, you will be stuck in an animation while the puck goes right between your leg.
    This is the video : http://xboxdvr.com/gamer/Symtex/video/36244209
    You will notice my goalie stays in the save animation. During the whole time, I was pressing trigger. I was powerless as I watch the puck slowly trickle down. You may think this is a fluke. I have seen this happen on at least 5 separate occasion. RIP Human goalie.
    Fiddy
    Umm, this doesn't show anything about division realignment. That's what I said no to.
    You can control the 32nd team, you can't control all 32 teams as someone asked in another thread in Franchise mode. Maybe Season Mode?
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    That picture clearly shows an additional tab for realignment. Videos of early release on ea access do not have this tab. The video was clearly from an earlier/later build.
    I'm hoping ea access has an earlier build and the video EA released was a later build which will be added via a day 1 patch.
    Seems a little pointless allowing us to create a 32nd team and then forcing that team into the Western Conference. Especially when they are promoting the fact you could add a European Team into the league.
    I was going to create Hartford, add them to the East, and move Detroit back into the Central Division. If I can't then I won't be using this new feature. Loses all realism putting the Whalers into the West!!
    I'm always confused as to why EA does not push out Day 0/1 patches to EA Access trials. My only guess is MS certification. Madden did the same thing.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    DJ
    Did they remove auto-aim (shooting) from the settings? I can't seem to find it anywhere.

    In 17 you would find this setting right before playing a game.
    Christian9
    I'm always confused as to why EA does not push out Day 0/1 patches to EA Access trials. My only guess is MS certification. Madden did the same thing.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    They did the last 2 years though, which is why I'd love to know if it will have one or if it's already patched.
    MizzouRah
    In 17 you would find this setting right before playing a game.

    OK, I'll have to look again, because I definitely didn't see it the other day. Seems like it'd be an easy thing to include in the controller options/settings.
    Elite49
    They did the last 2 years though, which is why I'd love to know if it will have one or if it's already patched.

    When I check the update history on my date locked digital copy it said "v 1.01: various bug and stability fixes." I don't know if that's the day zero/one or if there is a 1.02.
    I think it's outrageous that they sell this at full price. I'm skipping this year.
    Also, do you want to bet they will not update to frostbite engine next year too ?
    The game needs a new dev team. A more ambitious one with a fresh take on everything.
    Don't worry about too many penalties. The past few years the first patch after release usually all but wipes out any realistic penalty stats, that is if it wasn't screwed up to start with. That's another less talked about beef. This development crew does not understand the importance of special teams in the NHL or how to implement it properly.
    DJ
    OK, I'll have to look again, because I definitely didn't see it the other day. Seems like it'd be an easy thing to include in the controller options/settings.

    Check under visual settings. I believe it's called aim assist.
    Going to download the trial tonight and play a few games. I'll post impressions after. I did not play the beta but have been a hardcore offline GM guy since '11.
    So in NBA LIVE we have the option to play shorter seasons in franchise mode but we can't get that in the NHL game!!
    Sent from my VS985 4G using Tapatalk
    I'm skipping this year, and I'm a LG player!
    Had to sit down and really think this one through as LG has been a fantastic experience playing 6v6 . But there just hasn't been enough changes to the game to make sense to spend 70-80 buck so on this. I play as a dman and while the new d stick is most welcome, again, not enough for me.
    I will wait for NHL 19 and retire from LG in the meantime.
    Ya this sux skipping NHL game this year and have been a die hard gamer. The game needs revamped engine, organic gameplay- puck physics, individual player differences, signature animations, more atmosphere- edit arena music, chants , better face scans and graphics on level w madden and 2K
    I'll buy it simply to support sports video games. Its all I play really. Its a tough situation but honestly if we dont buy it there may not be anymore NHL games for the near future, if not longer
    Sent from my SM-G920P using Tapatalk
    So, I've already seen some evidence against this, but wanted to make sure: Is it possible to invite a player online to play co-op in Franchise mode? So just to play in the same team with you in the matches?
    thunder80
    So, I've already seen some evidence against this, but wanted to make sure: Is it possible to invite a player online to play co-op in Franchise mode? So just to play in the same team with you in the matches?

    Okay, just read the whole thread and saw that this can't be done in the game. Pretty lame as they advertise it has over 60 ways to coop...
    Anyone tried this in Share Play though?
    thunder80
    So, I've already seen some evidence against this, but wanted to make sure: Is it possible to invite a player online to play co-op in Franchise mode? So just to play in the same team with you in the matches?

    If this mode was in I'd definitely be buying so I can play coop Franchise with my buddies. But we'll stick with our GM Connect from NHL 14 which is still up and running. Unfortunate.
    Played a few more games. Messed with some sliders and had some decent results. Defensive skill stick is a nice addition. I have also seen some better AI. Without coop Franchise I'm still going to stick with 17 for my Franchise and 14 for GM Connected coop with my buddies(as long as they keep it open).
    I usually play a little bit of the NHL demo every year, but I can't even remember the last time I bought the full version. Nonetheless, my 9-year old enjoy the NHL games so he's been playing NHL 17 since it was made available through EA Access earlier in the year.
    We downloaded the trial for NHL 18. We just played a quick game on Semi-Pro set to 8 minute periods. I'm not sure if that's too much or what, but it was 7-6 after the 2nd period. That's insane. I'm not very good, and he really isn't either. But the fact we scored that many and gave up that many is pretty absurd. I'm going to bump up the difficulty and try to slow things down to see if it's a bit more realistic. I know that's really not a great first impression, since I'm not a diehard fan of the series. But I just found it pretty odd as my first game.
    What difficulty do you casual NHL fans usually play on, and how many minutes per period do you set it at?
    So far I have liked what I have seen. I did however keep the original version for offline and do not use the latest version ( not even sure what the patch did, lol). It's nice we now have this choice.
    The AI is much improved and they don't board play themselves like last year. Also the don't throw the puck in front of the net as much in the defensive end. Teammates look for better passes and move around more, especially on the PP.
    Goalies seem solid, with fewer odd or soft goals.
    I also like that we can edit line tendacies such as shoot/cycle, dump/carry, etc. Gives a better feel to your team. Hope I can adjust all teams in the league(have not looked yet).
    Online EASHL was smooth and fun. No warping or stuttering.
    I liked the added cut scenes between plays, overall graphics look great. I also like the pin option on the first page for the most used modes.
    So far I find NHL18 a good hockey game and a step up from NHL17. Keep in mind I play locked into position offline.
    I Just bought the Youngsters edition lol or what ever you call it
    anyways after playing it , it is a lot like 17 but there is a lot more under The hood , i like the turn overs you can create that leads to breakaway chances
    and you can make contact without feeling like every time you attempt to make contact you miss them, the net comes off its mornings. the graphics are way better than 17 the image is sharp i love this because i have bad eye site please do not blend it in and make edge definition non existence, nhl 17 was blurry this games colors pop with a sharp image, plus you can tell the actual lighting is better and all the cyber faces look more natural, this is all from playing only one game i am sure i will uncover more as i play, but too me this game is worth
    paying the asking price, your best product yet
    As purely an offline franchise player, the only thing of note that stood out to me in this year's features list was the greater differentiation among players, so the fourth line grinder actually feels different than the first line sniper. So, the magic question to those who have played this year's offering - is there really a noticeable difference in how each player feels? Different than in past editions?
    I play locked into center but I did notice a difference with the players, especially on faceoffs. I need more time to test to see if there is enough separation. The ten hours play time was not enough, lol. I think the real game changer for the feel of the game will be that we can adjust the line tendacies. So the first line will play differently from the first line.
    Thing I hate the most about this game is the fact that the computer does stuff easier and better than I can. They receive passes and continue without any lag whatsoever and can accelerate quicker. I tried playing with sliders but it doesn't have an appreciable difference to it. It's wholly frustrating to see how the AI has an immediate leg up over the user.
    And the contact with the boards is idiotic. You can't stop your guys from slamming into them and losing the puck to a turn over when racing back to get it before the opposing team does.
    SocialAssassin
    Thing I hate the most about this game is the fact that the computer does stuff easier and better than I can. They receive passes and continue without any lag whatsoever and can accelerate quicker. I tried playing with sliders but it doesn't have an appreciable difference to it. It's wholly frustrating to see how the AI has an immediate leg up over the user.
    And the contact with the boards is idiotic. You can't stop your guys from slamming into them and losing the puck to a turn over when racing back to get it before the opposing team does.

    This happens in all of the NHL games for a long time... The thing that i do to at least decrease this a little bit is put game speed at 0. That way it seems that the CPU doesn´t have so many speed turn advantage over our players because our reaction time gets bettes with the game slower.
    Slamming into the boards is a very easy fix. Stop skating as fast as you can straight into the boards to pick up the puck and glide into it and move with the boards.
    As far as the ai being able to do things that you cant. Well, if you are expecting the game to lag itself you are out of luck. You have to anticipate much more with the ai because of that but my god, you are so right. It can be frustrating as anything I've ever played. The ai keep away game is a massive frustration as well
    Sent from my SM-G935W8 using Tapatalk
    csamuelsvt
    Apparently there are out of town scores in franchise mode during games. The scores will pop up every now and then. Commentary apparently does not discuss, however. Cool touch I read on another message board.
    Don't think this was in NHL 17?

    Has anyone confirmed that this is actually in? Just adds to immersion.
    Thanks
    oilersfan99
    Slamming into the boards is a very easy fix. Stop skating as fast as you can straight into the boards to pick up the puck and glide into it and move with the boards.
    As far as the ai being able to do things that you cant. Well, if you are expecting the game to lag itself you are out of luck. You have to anticipate much more with the ai because of that but my god, you are so right. It can be frustrating as anything I've ever played. The ai keep away game is a massive frustration as well
    Sent from my SM-G935W8 using Tapatalk

    If you don't hustle, they beat you for the puck every time.
    Honome
    This happens in all of the NHL games for a long time... The thing that i do to at least decrease this a little bit is put game speed at 0. That way it seems that the CPU doesn´t have so many speed turn advantage over our players because our reaction time gets bettes with the game slower.

    And they never do anything to fix it, which is just unacceptable as far as I'm concerned.
    I don't even know where to start....this game and it's mechanics are steaming hot piles of garbage... I'll be back to put my 2 cent's in.
    Sent from my LG-US996 using Tapatalk
    MDgolf
    Why isn't Austin Matthews name announced by the commentators during the game? That's crazy !
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    It's insane that normal names in general are not said, yet they have hundreds of goofy comical names in.
    MDgolf
    Why isn't Austin Matthews name announced by the commentators during the game? That's crazy !
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Embarrassing.......and zero excuse
    MDgolf
    Why isn't Austin Matthews name announced by the commentators during the game? That's crazy !
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Small dev team ?
    Sent from my VS985 4G using Tapatalk
    I've played a 32 team expansion franchise up to 2025 and noticed a big scouting bug. Once the rookies all start being auto generated in 2020 or so, 80% of the 1st rounders are always from the WHL.
    Consistently year after year the top 10 picks are from the WHL with only 5-6 players from other leagues scattered in the 1st round at all.
    Makes scouting assignments very easy to say the least.
    Otherwise I've found it great to see the first 3m-Ickes generally between 76-83 overalls with Elite potential. Winning the draft lottery assures you a player near the 80s especially if the scout thinks this draft year will be a good one.
    I'm going to avoid the generalized cliche - the AI is terrible - even though that would about completely sum it up...
    - Leaving your D zone, winger's start skating up ice then just stop skating. Incomplete passes galore.
    - Carrying the puck through the neutral zone with, teammates literally skate into your path. Offsides or turnovers.
    - Changing player is absolutely HORRENDOUS. For the love of God, there's literally no ryhme or reason. It's not closest player, it's not the direction of the thumbstick (it should be). Just give me icon changing. If you're going to make it impossible to control who I want, just make it as dumbed down as possible. Even holding change player to get the last man back is delayed to the point that you're probably already burnt. I try to switch player as least often as possible, but there are times you need to.
    - Player positioning: When I can manage to control who I want, without accidentally pulling them out of position, my AI D does nothing. I'll take away the man for the cross-crease pass only for my D skate away or literally just do nothing to cover the net. This game actually punishes you for controlling the player. Which is a catch-22 because the AI on the human controlled team is absolute trash.
    - On the other side of the coin, bad play is not punished. I can deke and make defenders miss, getting my opponent to go for the hit and miss, setting up the perfect play only to be stoned by some ridiculously flailing goalie making an obnoxious save. But in a perfectly played defensive zone, give up weak, stoppable goals.
    - Passes: NO, I am not trying to pass to the guy who's completely covered on the other side of the rink, I'm passing to the guy 2 feet in front of me who's open. This game will force passes to the player it thinks you should pass to, instead of the one player you're clearly aiming at. Try to combat this by turning the pass assist percentage down - it helps a little but the game still decides to make obscene, ill-advised passes all on it's own. If there are 2 players in the direction of the pass you're making, it'll pass to the wrong player. Forget about controlling the pass power, almost never works.
    - Poke check/Defensive skill stick: needs major work. Mash it and you get penalized, as you should. But the reach on some of these pokes is just asinine....when you have more than a step or two on the defender, you should not be poke checked and lose possession as often as you do.
    Full disclosure: I've been playing this game since NHLPA on SNES. I am almost strictly an Online vs player. Each year I am always above .500 and probably closer to .750 win percentage...not bragging (not even a little) I'm simply stating that I know this game, that is all.
    Almost none of this is new info. None of my gripes are new. But some how, some way this game gets worse. And more canned, and more uncontrollable. I don't expect a Sim hockey game (would LOVE it) we're so far from ever getting that. I just want a game that I feel like I am controlling. Win or lose. I don't want everything I do to work perfectly every time, it's not about that. I just don't want the outcome decided by crap AI or some uncontrollable mechanic. Maybe Rocket League has me spoiled. But if the real-time nature and physics of that game could be incorporated into hockey, I'd be a happy man.
    Finally, for the first year, I am speaking with my wallet and passing....I just can't handle the BS any longer.
    Sent from my LG-US996 using Tapatalk
    I actually feel like the teammate AI seems like it's back to 17 levels and not like it was in the beta. I felt like in the beta teammates would setup intelligently, but now it feels like they are back to being turned in all sorts of weird directions, taking up odd spots relative to the puck carrier, and watching pucks drift slowly by them.
    bad_philanthropy
    I actually feel like the teammate AI seems like it's back to 17 levels and not like it was in the beta. I felt like in the beta teammates would setup intelligently, but now it feels like they are back to being turned in all sorts of weird directions, taking up odd spots relative to the puck carrier, and watching pucks drift slowly by them.
    Same thing happened last year.
    17' Beta - huge improvement over 16'.
    17' EA Access build - 2 steps back to how it was on 16'.
    17' full release - better but not as good as Beta.
    17' first patch - back to square one and almost identical to 16'.
    I've never played a game that changed so drastically and frequently as NHL 17. Worst part of it all was the beta was probably the best build they've ever had...
    Sent from my LG-US996 using Tapatalk
    Yeah, it's definitely weird. I also feel like players are staying way too static when we have the offensive zone. In the beta they tried to setup in triangles and seek out and setup in space for a shot or to dish on a 1-2. I still see a bit of the triangles starting to setup, but it's way more rare than it was in the beta. Also, I'll be in a glide and square up with a defender to open up a lane and my wingers won't even attack the open lane like they would last year or in the beta. They aren't taking advantage of space at all. I fear something got changed late in the cycle.
    EDIT: I should say I do like the game. I feel like animations and skating are generally smoother, and it retains a lot of the solid things I liked. The colors seem a little off on my monitor. The Leafs uniforms look purple. I wonder how long we'll have to wait for all the Addidas jereys to be in the game and for that update with NMC's and Division relignment. I do find it odd that it was shown in a video that came out over a month ago, and it nowhere to be seen at release.
    I've only played one game, but I think the AI is MUCH better than 17 ever was.
    Adidas jerseys are in, love the Blues new Adidas jerseys. (I d/l the 9/12 roster update)
    CPU now finally hits and actually out hit me in my first game. I think the rating changes are great, I see low level players losing the puck now or shooting wide of the net.
    Love the D stick, so much better on D now and shot totals are down to a realistic level.
    Penalty slider up to max I had a total of 7 penalties using 8 min periods. Typically I also have to touch the other penalty slider, but maybe not this year.
    Goalies seem quicker to me, puck even more lively this year. CPU player passes off the boards, their D doesn't chase and leave the lane to the net wide open.
    Love the new camera angles.. does add a touch of realism as subtle as it may be.
    Again.. only 1 game but I really like the AI improvements so far. I'm sure as I play more things will stick out to me, but in my first game Blues vs Vegas.. nothing made me scratch my head or come off as cheap.
    MizzouRah
    I've only played one game, but I think the AI is MUCH better than 17 ever was.
    Adidas jerseys are in, love the Blues new Adidas jerseys. (I d/l the 9/12 roster update)
    CPU now finally hits and actually out hit me in my first game. I think the rating changes are great, I see low level players losing the puck now or shooting wide of the net.
    Love the D stick, so much better on D now and shot totals are down to a realistic level.
    Penalty slider up to max I had a total of 7 penalties using 8 min periods. Typically I also have to touch the other penalty slider, but maybe not this year.
    Goalies seem quicker to me, puck even more lively this year. CPU player passes off the boards, their D doesn't chase and leave the lane to the net wide open.
    Love the new camera angles.. does add a touch of realism as subtle as it may be.
    Again.. only 1 game but I really like the AI improvements so far. I'm sure as I play more things will stick out to me, but in my first game Blues vs Vegas.. nothing made me scratch my head or come off as cheap.

    Can you expand on that? What kind of new camera angles?
    Still seeing plenty of crappy stuff from AI teammates like skating into coverage and just staying there, and staring at a puck gliding right to them only to twirl away from it at the last moment. Hopefully I can figure out some sliders.
    MDgolf
    How do I use the defensive stick? I'm on ps4
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Move the the right stick while holding the poke check button.
    Hilariously, it'll say Matthews name sometimes. Same with Hischier, Zacha for example. Andy Greene is still Andrew Greene, for years. They've never changed it because they're dumb. The commentaryis the worst.
    Man, I really feel like something is up with the supposed improved AI. It feels like my AI teammates have no idea where the puck is, and are worse at using the skating engine than last year. It's just odd looking. Here's a clip of what I'm seeing. Teammates trying to make a move to get open, but then at the end of the movement just going dead and gliding into the boards, AI teammates randomly going for skates while facing strange directions, defense clumping together and playing like peewee teams, having zero awareness of the puck whatsoever. Once I have the puck in the offensive zone teammates are just going static, and staying covered up. It's just weird. Feels nothing like the beta where I could really really on my teammates positioning.
    Anyone else seeing this?
    Is that all in CHL games? I think messing and having the players so lowly rated is the problem. There should be 2 ratings. One for junior and 1 for NHL.
    From most of the things I had read I really thought the game was going to be terrible. I almost skipped it. I didn't even play the beta this year. But in my opinion it really isn't bad. At least not as bad as some had made it out to be. I'm pretty much strictly an off line player these days and so far have played 3 games and have enjoyed all three, winning only one. I actually won with a shutout. Playing solid defense and getting that shutout felt pretty rewarding, no weak goals by the cpu, and some pretty surprising saves by my goalie. As I said, I was pretty on the fence about getting the game, but so far I'm not disappointed whatsoever.
    Sent from my Pixel using Operation Sports mobile app
    speels
    Is that all in CHL games? I think messing and having the players so lowly rated is the problem. There should be 2 ratings. One for junior and 1 for NHL.

    Yeah, but the junior players should still be able to play hockey. I should have clarified that I was comparing my experience to NHL 17 as well.
    I don't mind Jr players being inferior to pros, but they shouldn't play like they've never been in skates before.
    I'm also seeing it in NHL games too.
    Hm, so I think the tuner update may be a total piece of garbage. I wasn't seeing a lot of the things I was in my first few games, and then I downloaded the tuner update. I just reverted and the game played like night and day, it was slower and felt more under control, the cpu AI was using the boards to pass the puck again, skating seemed smoother, and most importantly, my teammates were spacing themselves and facing where they should be. Obviously can't conclude anything yet, but hopefully someone else can run a test and report their findings.
    Tuner 1.00 feels like the beta to me, and plays great, 1.01 or whatever is crazy different. I don't think it's in my head.
    bad_philanthropy
    Hm, so I think the tuner update may be a total piece of garbage. I wasn't seeing a lot of the things I was in my first few games, and then I downloaded the tuner update. I just reverted and the game played like night and day, it was slower and felt more under control, the cpu AI was using the boards to pass the puck again, skating seemed smoother, and most importantly, my teammates were spacing themselves and facing where they should be. Obviously can't conclude anything yet, but hopefully someone else can run a test and report their findings.
    Tuner 1.00 feels like the beta to me, and plays great, 1.01 or whatever is crazy different. I don't think it's in my head.

    When did the new tuner come out? I'm liking what I've seen so far so I'm not installing any tuners.. but I need to see which one I'm using.
    MizzouRah
    When did the new tuner come out? I'm liking what I've seen so far so I'm not installing any tuners.. but I need to see which one I'm using.

    It was there this morning on the main menu as "gameplay update available."
    You can revert any time in the sliders menu though.
    Gameplay - I think the gameplay improvement is fairly improved. Not a lot different, but a definite improvement. AI is noticeably smarter IMO. This includes your teammates as well. Your teammates aren't completely pointless anymore. Seems to be more variety in HOW you get turnovers by the CPU and your CPU teammates. Finally getting good results with what they choose to do. The CPU and your AI teammates finally hit! Definitely an improvement on realism and stats. It feels much more like hockey than NHL 17.
    Rating: 8/10
    Presentation - Am I playing NHL 17? Just kidding, but that's basically what you're getting as far as presentation. FINALLY, the menus are much better faster and smoother. This has been an issue for too long. Much better now. Besides maybe a couple additions, it's really no different. I now play with the commentary off for the 3rd year in a row. My rating will be based on in comparison to NHL 17 because it's too similar.
    Rating: 4/10
    Customization - Customization is still great as it was last year, but obviously better. So many options and choices you can make. EA NHL has been doing a good job with the customization which is surprising honestly. BUT one thing they still fail at is goalie mask. There's just still not enough there. As far as customization goes this would be the one I'd choose over anything next. I wish they had at least 8-10 preset goalie mask for each team. 6 would be okay as far as any other league. Besides the goalie mask, you have nothing to worry about. Customization is still good. I would move it to great with better goalie mask customization.
    Rating: 9/10
    Franchise - as far as this goes I'll have to get back to you on this. The ability to re-sign players mid-season is a huge improvement. That is a very important addition. I haven't dived too deep, but the trade logic is an upgrade as far as I can tell so far. We still NEED 32 team control. I see no reason we shouldn't have had it already. With the new expansion teams, this was the perfect moment, but they blew it. They could have at least given us the chance to change teams any year you wanted. With 32 team control that wouldn't be an issue.
    I wish they had a better and much more active Twitter feed, but it's just a minor "issue". As far as division re-alignment I'm not sure and I doubt it's in the game. I will have to check, but I doubt it's in. With the expansion mode, division and conference re-alignment would drastically improve Franchise mode. I'll have to come back to this a little later once I've put more time into it. So my rating is still subject to change.
    Rating: 8.5/10
    3v3 - FUN! This **** is just fun! Just add the use of customized teams and players to choose from and you're pretty much good to go.
    Rating: 9.5/10
    As far as everything else I don't play anything, besides offline Franchise Mode. I love hockey so I get sucked in. It's worth buying, but probably better buying at a $45 price tag. The game isn't bounds and leaps better, but enough to warrant a buy rather than sitting on NHL 16 or 17. I'll take it over NHL 17 any day or time of the week.
    Final rating: 8.5/10
    bad_philanthropy
    It was there this morning on the main menu as "gameplay update available."
    You can revert any time in the sliders menu though.

    This is why they need separate tuners because they tune the game for EASHL and not franchise mode.
    Anybody find notes on what was tuned? For now, I'm not touching it.
    bad_philanthropy
    Man, I really feel like something is up with the supposed improved AI. It feels like my AI teammates have no idea where the puck is, and are worse at using the skating engine than last year. It's just odd looking. Here's a clip of what I'm seeing. Teammates trying to make a move to get open, but then at the end of the movement just going dead and gliding into the boards, AI teammates randomly going for skates while facing strange directions, defense clumping together and playing like peewee teams, having zero awareness of the puck whatsoever. Once I have the puck in the offensive zone teammates are just going static, and staying covered up. It's just weird. Feels nothing like the beta where I could really really on my teammates positioning.
    Anyone else seeing this?

    That last clip that showed the players grouping up, was that PK? No matter what tuner I had that happened often on the PK in NHL 17. I think fatigue level of the PK unit played a role
    After playing more games with release tuner, I'm having a blast with this game and getting punished for sloppy play vs the AI teams.
    Until we see what was tuned.. if you are an offline franchise player I would NOT touch the new tuner! I haven't used it to see differences, but I have no desire to since the game plays a great game of hockey out of the box with the penalty slider up 4/4, I also put human strategies on 3/6 to match the CPU.
    Buffalo just destroyed me and Carter Hutton 7-2 but every single goal was a mistake by me as the player.
    Also, player separation.. while not totally perfect, is so much better with the rating changes!
    jake19ny
    That last clip that showed the players grouping up, was that PK? No matter what tuner I had that happened often on the PK in NHL 17. I think fatigue level of the PK unit played a role

    Yeah, I think it was a 4-on-3 in OT.
    Played 4+ games (intermission de-sync in last one) of 3v3 EASHL last night. Obviously can't say much at all about the AI, aside from the fact I really, really wish they'd use 3v2 for powerplays. Going 4v3 doesn't really feel like an advantage. I know that's not how the rules work, but this is the EASHL and it can, and really should, take steps to be unique.
    As for player control and such, playing as a jumbo playmaker and power forward, I felt skating was a little more deliberate, at least when starting & stopping. I like that there seems to be a little more emphasis on incidental contact. I'm not much of a finesse player, so being able to use positioning and a bigger body to get in the way or slow someone down is welcome.
    Along the same lines, the defensive skill stick will help once I get the feel for how to best use it. However, I had many instances where it did not respond at all. Who knows, maybe it's my R1 button, as it wouldn't even poke at times. Anyone else seeing this?
    Qb

    Along the same lines, the defensive skill stick will help once I get the feel for how to best use it. However, I had many instances where it did not respond at all. Who knows, maybe it's my R1 button, as it wouldn't even poke at times. Anyone else seeing this?

    I don't think I'm clear on how it's supposed to work. I thought it would be like it was in 2k back in the day (hold ie and RS controls the stick), but sometimes it doesn't seem to activate or respond to RS inputs. Could be I don't understand it though.
    One thing I do like about the AI, is I feel like the strategies are played a lot better and effectively overall. I've been having a fun time being a jerk and trapping, and just killing everything through the neutral zone and transitioning into some fun little counters.
    On superstar you have to have a passing understanding of what your team is supposed to be doing and the AI's strategies are to be effective. In the past I could just play whatever style regardless for the most part, but I do find myself reading a a wider scope of the play with and without the puck than I've had to in the past, and actually chipping the puck out of my own zone when I can't setup a good breakout, or don't have a skilled enough line to move the puck out against an aggressive forecheck.
    bad_philanthropy
    I don't think I'm clear on how it's supposed to work. I thought it would be like it was in 2k back in the day (hold ie and RS controls the stick), but sometimes it doesn't seem to activate or respond to RS inputs. Could be I don't understand it though.

    Yeah, I'm wondering if there are restrictions based on how fast you're skating or something. Would make some sense to not be able to use it indiscriminately, but I haven't quite figured it out yet either.
    Sadly, I won't be purchasing NHL this year, I have every other year. Taken this one off. Honest I could careless about 3vs3. Not many changes IMO
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Learning curve for me. I feel like I was able to get away with some much cheese in NHL 17. Im using AlTito's sliders and the AI is very challenging. I don't care much for the dekes or "Threes" but overall, I think it is a general improvement.
    However, using AlTito's sliders, I am yet to win a game. I've have a few close ones but, usually I end up giving up the lead by the mid-second period. I know it's much of a polished version of 17 but, I am definitely enjoying the AI improvements and the defensive stick.
    Only got one game in but initial impressions are a mixed bag of frustrstion. Why do my teammates insist of. Skating backwards in the neutral zone when im breakibg out???? Its so weird.
    Also, can we get sometging out of the way here? Player faces are laughable and have been for years. How do people keep thier jobs in this department? 90% of them are not even close. It's embarrassing to be honest. Takes immersion right out.
    Keirik
    I could be wrong but doesn't this seris mess with tuner files far too much????

    They do, which I normally wouldn't have a problem with but for the last __ years they consistently automatically overwrite tuner "1.00" with the newer ones.
    The first year or two after they introduced tuners were great for offline players, as we could easily choose which version we preferred. Now it's hit or miss whether or not a tuner is going to overwrite the base 1.00 version so I mostly don't even bother downloading.
    So here we are 3 years later and EA still has 1 forward and 2 defenseman out for OT. Totally inexcusable, totally annoying, and totally embarrassing. Hey but you can create a really cool mascot who can rally the fans to cheer on the totally incorrect and stupid OT..........ugh.
    jake19ny
    So here we are 3 years later and EA still has 1 forward and 2 defenseman out for OT. Totally inexcusable, totally annoying, and totally embarrassing. Hey but you can create a really cool mascot who can rally the fans to cheer on the totally incorrect and stupid OT..........ugh.

    Just to show u how lazy EA is and how they put ZERO effort in.. We all agree that Nashville is an important team in the NHL, right? they made it to the Cup Final and ppl love to watch PK Subban. Having said that, they couldn't even change their goal song this yr. The song is.. I like it.. I like it.. I want some more of it... and they still have the same song as last yr on EA. yeah, i know a goal song is minor to some people, but seriously, how long can it take to change a tune... what.... 12 seconds???? GEESH. instead, we have to hear a song that doesn't even exist after each goal. It just makes it feel more real when they play the real goal song.
    But this is just 1 small example of how EA doesn't put in any effort. I can probably give 200 more examples, but i don't want to waste my time on them.
    MDgolf
    I feel it's hard to even take a slap shot this year for some reason
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    I'm seeing this too.. I go to take a slapper sometimes and it just goes back to puck handling.. odd..
    jake19ny
    So here we are 3 years later and EA still has 1 forward and 2 defenseman out for OT. Totally inexcusable, totally annoying, and totally embarrassing. Hey but you can create a really cool mascot who can rally the fans to cheer on the totally incorrect and stupid OT..........ugh.

    Didn't I read somewhere that was supposed to fixed this year? I need to search...
    bad_philanthropy

    Tuner 1.00 feels like the beta to me, and plays great, 1.01 or whatever is crazy different. I don't think it's in my head.

    MizzouRah
    After playing more games with release tuner, I'm having a blast with this game and getting punished for sloppy play vs the AI teams.
    Until we see what was tuned.. if you are an offline franchise player I would NOT touch the new tuner! I haven't used it to see differences, but I have no desire to since the game plays a great game of hockey out of the box with the penalty slider up 4/4, I also put human strategies on 3/6 to match the CPU.
    Buffalo just destroyed me and Carter Hutton 7-2 but every single goal was a mistake by me as the player.
    Also, player separation.. while not totally perfect, is so much better with the rating changes!

    Hey, Jake :p I told you;).
    bad_philanthropy
    Anyone been able to pull off a one-timer with a windup? I've gone into practice mode and just can't make it happen, no matter how I try to time it.

    I can confirm that I did, but I can't give you the button input.
    I don't understand why people keep calling 1.01 a "tuner." It's a patch in the PS4 dashboard. I had to keep my PS4 in offline mode to block it from auto installing.
    I am positive on this game. The defending is better across the board. However the CPU trying to defend you on the powerplay is too disorganized and is crossing into immersion breaking territory. It would be a shame if EA didn't address it in a patch. I am using Al tito's sliders. Now, it may be an issue of the aggression slider being too high at 55 which is causing some positional issues, will look at lower settings.
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