Hey all, I just watched an hour long webcast that EA put on about NHL 13 describing new features etc. I wanted to relay the information to anyone here who may be interest come it's release date, September 11.
One of the big features in this game is revamped skating. This includes taking momentum and real physics into consideration. You will not be able to turn on a dime anymore, rather your momentum will carry you and you will need to compensate for that. Because of this, gap control will be very important for players who play defense. Momentum will also carry you when missing a check, or trying to pinch in at the point, and anywhere else on the ice.
The accuracy of passes will change depending on your speed and whether you are skating or gliding.
Skaters can also lose their footing if they try and turn too sharply or if they are turning sharply and are bumped, nudged or checked. From what they showed us with the Alpha software, the skating is much more fluid.
Another big part of NHL13 will be the new work done on the AI. They spent more time on AI this year than they had in the past 3 years combined. Rather than the AIs only being aware of the puck, they are aware of their surroundings. They won't attack the puck carrier if it will give up an odd man rush, etc. Goalies AI is also changed. Rather than just being aware of the puck carrier, you will see them cheat in certain situations such as 2 on 1s. This opens up the possibility of short side goals or nice passes across the crease which the goalie may anticipate. There will be a large variety of desperation saves by goalie because they will not perform the same 10 save animations. Every animation will be varied depending on where the puck is shot.
They have added 5 times the amount of team systems (assuming this means forecheck and breakout aggression).
As in all games, there are glitches. What they are doing to prevent glitches (glitch goals) is that they are trying to make goalies as perfect as possible, being able to save anything at any time and really making the players work for their goals. It isn't fun when people exploit the game to score. When glitches are found, they will have tuners to adjust for these glitches. You will have many more opportunities to score legit 5 hole goals this year as well.
Leverage and body position will play huge roles in checking this year. Rather than players bouncing off checks when those checks should have knocked them at least off the puck, players will actually be knocked off the puck or will fall due to their lack of leverage.
The new online Be a GM will allow players to player against each other with different franchises, or with each other on the same franchise. You can have up to 29 other people be the GM of all the franchises, and then you could technically have 6 people player on your team. That is technically a possibility of 180 players playing in the same league, although I doubt this scenario will ever play out. You can also control the strategy you want your AI to play. How you want them to set up, whether you want them to play a hard grinding game, a possession game or a run and gun game.
They are testing incidental contact with teammates, but feel like it slows down the game.
They are also testing to get rid of the invisible force field in the crease but fear that players will exploit that for many goals if it is taken away.
There will be no new celebrations.
That's all I got from the webcast. It was a great opportunity to see some of the game play and has me really excited for NHL13 this year. Hopefully this little write up benefits the few of you that I know play this game.