The core gameplay and game modes have remained largely unchanged, which is a good thing as anyone who played last year’s game knows. When you first step onto the ice in an exhibition game you’ll swear you’re playing NHL 09, but that will quickly change as you spend more time with it.
Visually the game looks fantastic with awesome player model details and animations. There has clearly been several new moves added, namely in the way of goalkeeper leaps and swats.
Fighting from a first-person vantage point in a hockey game simply feels unnatural and the experience, though improved from what I originally saw, is still too forced. Punches don’t have much of an impact and the fact that there’s no bruising and bloodying (knocking helmets off is as close as you’ll come) because of NHL restrictions is a real bummer.Other changes on the ice are more finite but not all are for the betterment of the gameplay. This year players have the ability to hit pucks out of the air for highlight-reel goals. They’re tough to score, but when you do it’ll be a video you’ll want to save and upload to EA Sports World.