The NHL series hasn’t seen a dramatic overhaul since EA Sports designed and introduced the Skill Stick in NHL 07. The yearly releases that came after that banner product have been incrementally better (with the addition of the EA Sports Hockey League and more dynamic collisions), but nothing has matched the evolutionary leap the team made back with 07.
EA Sports is hoping that this year will stand as a large budge forward as the devs have worked hard on including a better A.I. system which they’ve dubbed “Hockey IQ.” The trailer above showcases the improvements this new system brings specifically to the goalie position.
I spent time talking about the revamped goalies in my E3 coverage of the NHL 13 demo. Here’s what I said then:
The goalies, too, are part of this [A.I.] change. Rather than only being able to make saves by committing their full body, goalies now have the intelligence to control all four limbs. That mean dropping for a low shot and getting a high one won’t necessarily guarantee a goal. Goalies can react and get one hand up to make desperation saves. It looks great, and really makes them seem much more likeNHL goalies.
Now that you’ve seen both the independent limb movement and more dramatic saves in motion, what do you think about the future for net-minders in the NHL series?