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EA left many of the legacy features out of the new iteration of NHL 15

Among EA's many sports franchises, few have enjoyed the level of consistent quality that the company's NHL series has over the last several years. The on-ice action, even at its worst, has remained thoroughly entertaining, and the wealth of modes and features has generally gotten better with each successive installment. Considering that, like with the NFL, EA has no competition when it comes to NHL games, the fact that it has mostly avoided stagnation for so long is, in itself, something of a minor miracle.
Owing to time constraints imposed by developing the game for the next-generation PS4 and Xbox One consoles, EA simply left many of the now legacy features out of the new iteration of NHL 15. The company says that some of these will make their way back to the game in the form of updates, but that isn’t sitting well with hardcore sports gamers. Some of them say they may pass on the NHL series for the first time ever. Popular features such as online team play, Season Mode, fantasy draft in GM mode, the ability to edit players or teams, plus a host of others, simply aren’t part of the new game and its fans have no assurances as to if and when they will be incorporated. Theres a lot of modes missing this year, and even the ones that are returning are mostly shadows of their former selves. If you only care about 1vs1 online games, head-to-head exhibition games, Ultimate Team, or just playing an 82 game season with your favourite team and that’s it, you will probably still end up enjoying NHL 15 and the missing modes won’t affect you that much.
Unfortunately, my favourite modes in the past were Be A Pro and EASHL. EASHL just doesn’t exist in the game anymore. And Be A Pro is missing a huge feature– simulating between shifts. Since there’s no simulating between shifts, instead of playing 20 minute periods in that mode, it defaults to 5 minute periods. And since you’re playing only 5 minute periods, the game lets you play about 80% of the game (even if you’re not a top player on the team) to make up for the shortened periods. This is how Be a Pro was the first year they implemented it, and its hard for me to go back to playing this way. It’s not realistic and doesn’t feel as immersive. You don’t get that feeling of being one player in a team of 20 this year. It was such a revolutionary mode when they first introduced it, because you got that feeling of what it was like to be only one cog in the machine for the first time, and to have that gone from this mode is devastating. So I’ve been stuck playing Be a GM, and even that feels old to me because I stopped playing Be a GM since NHL 09 when they introduced EASHL and Be a Pro.

The NHL series has always had some glaring bugs when it comes to scoring. For years skating horizontally in front of the goalie and shooting would result in a scores 90% of the time (and let’s not even get started on the slap shot from the line as you enter the zone that has plagued online play since its inception). I’ve become accustomed to their inclusion but NHL 15 brings it all to a new level of absurdity. For the 21st straight year, goaltenders move side-to-side with the finesse of a Russian Icebreaker and once again they can’t see anything sent towards them from outside 10 feet. Worse now is the fact that goalies overcommit dramatically on nearly every play. Sometimes this results in a spectacular save, something truly amazing to see, but nine times out of ten the dive sees giant swaths of the net open for easy pickings. Add in the fact that the rest of the players on the ice are seemingly handled by dice rolls on whether they will be effective or not and you’ll end up playing in some ridiculously lopsided matches with goals coming from all angles at all times.
What if you’re a huge hockey fan of NHL 15, you sold your older console(s) and you only have a PS4, what then? Well it really depends on what modes are your favorites in NHL. If you enjoy the single player and online one-on-one games then you won’t be disappointed. The promised patches won’t add back in everything that’s missing so even with them, if you’re looking for an experience closer to NHL 14… then it’s going to be a long, cold winter. When it comes to GM Connected, Ramjagsingh explained  it was a tough decision to cut the feature, but ultimately he feels not very many people were taking full advantage of the ability to play a full franchise online with friends anyway. Popular video game sports website Operation Sports has a full list of the features absent from NHL 15 on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, although not everything on the list has been confirmed. EA also recently released a list of upcoming updates and additional features they’re bringing to NHL 15 over the next few months. It’s believed the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions of NHL will still include many of the series’ missing features.