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NHL 16 boldly changes everything you know about the award winning franchise

Hockey is my favorite sport. I played year-round throughout my childhood, and I watch it religiously (go Islanders!). One of the reasons I love hockey so much is because it's fast, strategic, and dynamic on so many different levels. The good news is that NHL 16 understands this. It's fun to play on a moment-to-moment level, and it's accessible to anyone that can hold a controller; should you want to delve into its finer points, there are complex techniques like poke checking, throwing your body around, and winning battles in the corners. As such, playing against the AI in Exhibition, Be a GM, or NHL 16 Moments felt hollow because things were either too easy or overly frustrating.
Oddly, Be a Pro doesn’t seem to suffer from these extreme difficulty fluctuations and playing at Pro or All Star difficulty was quite satisfying, although I did have to sit through my time on the bench in real time. I think all in all the gameplay is pretty good, and most of the major issues I have probably could be fixed or mitigated with patches (other than the sloppy defence), but when you look at the game modes it’s a different story. While Crosby is regarded as the best all-around player in the NHL, Washington Capitals left wing Alexander Ovechkin is arguably the best pure goal scorer. Crosby racked up 36 goals last season, but for the fifth time in his career, Ovechkin racked up at least 50 goals in a season (51 to be exact.) There are legitimate questions about his ability and willingness to defend, but there is no doubting his offensive attributes.

While the fighting is merely a ‘mini-game’ to give you a break from the fast paced action on the ice, knocking several shades of shite out of your opponent is still one of the most enjoyable aspects of the game. It’s the little things that make this game pretty damn good in JOE’s opinion. With that in mind, if you absolutely smash an opponent with all your might then his helmet will go flying off and he’ll be left skating around hatless until his shift is over. If you manage to stop an opponent’s rocketing slap shot with your stick then it will break in two and your player will have to make his way over to the bench for a new one. A late addition last year, coach grades return to Be A Pro in NHL 16, though they remain largely the same.
The player morale system being introduced in Be A GM does not play a role in Be A Pro this year. "It's one of those things that as we developed we've seen it has a lot of far-reaching avenues it could move forward with," Agostino says. "We think of it as the first layer moving forward and we've also talked about it potentially moving to Be A Pro in the future. It just might need to be looked at how that integration works, because unlike Be A GM where everything you do as a GM affects your locker room, you're one person reacting to the GM so we'll need to figure out how that might work. We said, 'Let's make it a Be A GM feature and then for Be A Pro it's something we'll potentially look at in the future.'
EA Sports NHL 16 boldly changes everything you know about the award winning franchise. Experience the hard hitting chaos and unpredictability of the sport as real-world physics are extended to all 12 players on the ice, as well as the puck itself. Look, move, play and think like a real hockey player with all new authentic player modeling and an evolved arsenal of tools, including the Superstar Skill Stick and Vision AI that allow for an unprecedented level of control and elevated player intelligence. Take in the emotion of every play as you immerse yourself in authentic arenas across the National Hockey League. You'll play in front of a full house of fans created with 9,000 dynamic and individual crowd models, the most ever in a sports video game.
From the ice, to the fans, to the presentation, NHL 16 brings to life the sights, sounds and feel of the fastest team sport on the planet like no other game before. On our new scale of Buy, Wait and Don’t Buy, NHL 16 gets a Wait with a potential slide towards Don’t Buy. If you hold off until the game gets a minor price drop and EA Sports patches in a few of the modes that didn’t make the release day cut, you’ll get an experience that comes much closer to what we should have. If, however, you live and breathe the EASHL and use it as the sole reason for buying this game on a yearly basis, you’ll want to skip the new generation version of NHL 16. EA has said they’ll be working it into NHL 16, hopefully, but its absence from 15 is huge.