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Author Topic: [360] NHL '07 Impressions  (Read 5436 times)
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Devil
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« on: September 14, 2006, 01:29:30 AM »

I've played one game on All-Star with the Devils against the Oil, everything else default. One game. Keep this in mind!

Forget about any other hockey game you've ever played. This is different. VERY different. I would suggest anyone thinking of getting this AND 2K7 might want to re-think their decision.
I know why IGN focused on the analog stick so much. It is 85% of the game and actually takes hockey to a different level and is something that you're going to need to get used to if you plan on using the new controls (you can go back to old school).

I'll give you the things I notices off the bat:

-From a company that is notorious for piss-poor manuals. This one takes the cake. The credits and warnings are 1/3 of the 9 page manual. 6 pages of highly detailed reading. It's a joke. A bad joke.

-Along those lines, I have no idea what to do on a faceoff. 0-27 in the circles.

-It plays SLOW. Slow like how we wanted it. Slow like the first 2K hockey. Slow like you can actually set up a play. Slow like NHL speeds.

-No speed bursts. Get used to it. Your defenseman will not be able to rush end to end and then be back on D to break up a 2-on-1 the other way.

-Guys get tired if they are out too long. You can see them wearing down as they go through their shift.

-You can use your point men on offense. Cutting down on the speed means that the opposing wingers aren't EVERYWHERE in the defensive zone.

-The CPU WILL poke check you. They have to. You can swing your stick around at will now, they need to use this tactic.

-Crazy EA hitting is gone. Brian Gionta didn't knock anyone over. He bounced off. He could knock them off balance, but he wasn't plastering anyone onto the benches.

-Momentum is there. In hitting and skating. It takes a few steps to get up to speed.

I'm not sure how good it is at this point and will reserve judgement but so far, I'm loving what I've seen.

Off to play again, post some quick questions if you have them and I'll try to get you some answers....
« Last Edit: September 14, 2006, 01:59:30 AM by Devil » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2006, 02:07:39 AM »

Thanks for the info, much appreciated. thumbsup

It sounds like EA did a much better job this time around. I didn't purchase any hockey title last year, but maybe 07 will draw me back in again.
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« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2006, 02:16:08 AM »

Powerplay:  Is it actually possible to set up the powerplay?  Just about every hockey game in the history of man has made powerplays near impossible to set up.
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Devil
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« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2006, 02:20:56 AM »

Ark -

I'm not saying that the powerplay is perfect, but the pace of the game leads you to actaully be able to take advantage of the powerplay by having the open man be open for more than a second.

The game I played was 2-1. 2 of the 3 goals were on the PP.
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« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2006, 04:52:12 AM »

I bought NHL2k7 but I am going to have to give this one a rental.  The skill stick just sounds like too much fun to pass up and the puck physics sound neat as well.
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« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2006, 03:30:10 PM »

Quote from: GatorFavre on September 14, 2006, 04:52:12 AM

I bought NHL2k7 but I am going to have to give this one a rental.  The skill stick just sounds like too much fun to pass up and the puck physics sound neat as well.

Same. I only got to play one full length game of 2K7 last night but REALLY LOVED what I saw (I worked over the sliders too before the game) and am happy with the choice I made. Hopefully owners of both titles will be very pleased with their purchases this year.
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« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2006, 04:08:46 PM »

I picked this up last night.  Since I only played a few games, plus a bunch of shootouts to get used to the skill stick, I can only speak to my first impressions of the gameplay.  I think this game is a winner.  Iím actually shocked it was developed by EA.  This is the important distinction for me compared to all of the previous hockey games Iíve owned over the years:  I felt like I was actually playing a game of NHL hockey, not some arcade game of hockey.  The skill stick is a break-through.  Iím still getting used to controlling wrist shots, snap shots, slap shots, and all of the dekes and moves, but the level of control I already felt last night was unlike any sports game Iíve played.  To be able to move in one direction while holding the stick in the opposite direction, and then flipping the stick over, drawing back with a slapshot stroke, only to slide over to the backhand at the last second and snap one into the top shelfÖwell, itís hard to explain how good it felt until you try it yourself. 

The presentation is slick, the graphics are great, but itís all about the gameplay in this version.  I hated the speed burst feature.  In this version, players move at a speed that feels like a hockey game.  Itís still a little too fast at times, but itís much better than previous years.  A fast break actually feels like a fast break, not some guy zipping down the ice in 2 seconds.  I was able to work the puck around during power plays, setup guys in the slot, and never did I feel any of the goals were cheesy 1-timers.  The defender AI seems ok, but itís still too early for me to really get a feel for it. 

Like Devil mentioned, I have no freaking clue what Iím doing on face-offs, since the manual doesnít mention anything about it.  I think Iíve won a total of 3 face-offs in multiple games. 

It took me awhile to figure out that the skill stick is relative to the direction of the opposing goal.  If that throws you off too much, you can toggle an ďalways upĒ box.  Being able to freely move your stick around, while skating in any direction, is just too coolÖand it directly impacts the game.  The skill stick is not an added novelty feature.  The animations for all of the different stick movements are great.  I actually flubbed a few shots on goal because I was too busy watching the cool stick work animations. 

Very early impression:  great hockey game.  Canít wait to play more tonight.     
« Last Edit: September 14, 2006, 05:12:06 PM by Roguetad » Logged
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« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2006, 05:43:00 PM »

Hmmm.... 

Tempting.
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LD

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Devil
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« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2006, 05:56:51 PM »

Tempting!?!?

Get yer ass over to Target and buy it there to get a $10 gift card that you can use later to buy yourself a pocketbook to match your pink skirt.
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« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2006, 01:15:52 AM »

Listen up, Nancy!

Pink skirts are in now.

Just ask Fred Funk!



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LD

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« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2006, 01:33:15 AM »

Yeah, LD.  Go buy yourself one.

At least I have the excuse of not owning a 360.
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« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2006, 01:37:56 AM »

And we all miss gaming with you pr0ner. 

 tear
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LD

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« Reply #12 on: September 15, 2006, 04:49:56 AM »

Holy hell am I enjoying this game.  I've played 11 games today alone and absolutely am amazed by it.  It plays a nice game of hockey out of the box (slightly fast), and with a few slider tweaks plays a great game of hockey.  The variety of goals is miles beyond what we've seen in any title so far, and the game is just fun fun fun.

There are definitely a few shortfallings, such as presentation (utter lack of stat overlays), a bit of a discrepency in the hits stats during a game, and a relatively steep learning curve with the dual analog sticks, but these are minor nicks on a damn fine game so far.

* gellar goes to play more.
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« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2006, 12:39:02 PM »

Anyone figure out faceoffs?
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Devil
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« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2006, 12:51:43 PM »

LD - You are the perfect model for the pink skirt.

pr0 - Get yerself a 360

gellar - I actually think the speed is right on, out of the box. Without the speed bursts and pinball hitting I think it plays at a great pace. The other stuff you mention would be nice but I usually end up getting pissed when I see overlays covering up something as the game goes on. I look at it this way, if I want stats, I can hit pause.

Don - read all kinds of hints on face-offs but have won a grand total of ONE


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« Reply #15 on: September 15, 2006, 01:08:20 PM »

And the follow-up impressions from you are where, exactly?

In the cooker?  Being formulated?  Coming to us by way of China perhaps? 

So far we have your one game impressions, Teh (I talk in the 3rd person) gellar's 2 whopping sentences, and tad's very good, but also limited gametime impressions.

I would love to hear more.  How are slide-blocks done, if at all?  You know, going prone in front of the net like a moron?  I love doing that in hockey games to try and block incoming pucks, even if all it normally does is screw my goalie up royally.   :icon_confused:
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LD

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Devil
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« Reply #16 on: September 15, 2006, 01:35:29 PM »

Listen, Clown, this game has added such a different element with it's control scheme, it's tough to focus on too much else.

Slide blocks!?!? The guy who couldn't pass ("A" Button is really tough) under the old control scheme is asking about, maybe the 18th thing on the list of controls that I'm trying to get down with some sense of regularity.

Jerk, I'm 1 for 376,353 in face-offs! What type of prayer do you think I have of getting David Hale to fly across the ice on his balls to block a shot!?

Let me guess, your next question will be "How do you re-tape your stick on the bench?"

You are the worst!
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« Reply #17 on: September 15, 2006, 01:47:24 PM »

You are funny sometimes.  I will admit that.

Listen... find out for me if slide-blocks are in.  If they are, and if they aren't too hard to do, I will go get the game after work and we can make idiots out of ourselves over the weekend.  Deal?

The first one to win 5 faceoffs buys lunch the next time I'm in Boston.  We'll invite Scott, Myto, and anyone else who lives up there, so your bill will be expensive as shit.

 icon_wink



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LD

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Devil
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« Reply #18 on: September 15, 2006, 01:53:22 PM »

I can't answer your slide block question, maybe someone else in here can but you need to get the game either way.

As for your 5 face-off bet. It's a coin flip. I could throw the controller on the floor and kick it around the room to get better results at this point.
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« Reply #19 on: September 15, 2006, 01:57:08 PM »

Here:

LB+RB=Block Shot

Now go get it!
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« Reply #20 on: September 15, 2006, 02:03:57 PM »

All the defensive controls are apparently the same as last year apparently.  Next year they are focusing on revising the defensive system.

Held the game in my hand at the store last night, but just couldn't do it!  Any good trade in deals around?
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Devil
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« Reply #21 on: September 15, 2006, 02:17:32 PM »

Quote
All the defensive controls are apparently the same as last year apparently.  Next year they are focusing on revising the defensive system.

No buttons. Not the same.
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« Reply #22 on: September 15, 2006, 04:06:38 PM »

Quote from: Devil on September 15, 2006, 01:57:08 PM

Here:

LB+RB=Block Shot

Now go get it!

Yep... I've done it a few times.

The defensive game is pretty good actually.  I love being able to time a hip check at the blueline and laying out a guy like Paul Kariya with Rob Blake.  The fact that hard hits are so few and far between this year makes the ones you do land ever so satisfying.

* gellar can't wait to go home and play more.
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« Reply #23 on: September 15, 2006, 04:24:01 PM »

Well, considering you're all so "focused" on the new control schemes we're sure not getting any decent descriptions of how it works.

Ok, I got the RS=stick movement thing on offense.

But  - let's say I'm on D, I want to poke check a guy at the blue line and then hip check him if the poke doesn't dislodge the puck.  You're saying I don't use buttons to do that?  How does it work?  Huh?  Eh? What?
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« Reply #24 on: September 15, 2006, 04:25:44 PM »

I've been sacrificing my guys without hesitation during PKs, flopping them down on the ice to catch rockets in the face and chest.  The block animations are different too, depending on their momentum and position I think.  Sometimes my guys will drop to their knees, other times they flop out on their backs or chest (ouch!).

I'm still trying to get a hang of managing defense.  I think I need to use the different defensive strategies more.  I've seen my defenders happily skate backwards without even a poke check while an opposing forward skates from the center line right up to the net and takes a shot.  Taking control of the defender solves this, but I was hoping my guys would be a little more aggressive.  I'm going to try setting defense pressure to aggressive tonight, and see if that helps.  

I also need to figure out how to use my goalie.  All he does right now is cover-up and squirt out slow moving passes.  I'd like to see him handle pucks behind the net, clear out pucks, and setup some rushes.  

     I've noticed the left shoulder button on the face off seems to be a skate kick back from the center.  Timing the face off exactly right with just the right stick seems to pass the puck in the direction of the left stick...if that makes any sense.  In other words, I think the LB is a different face off technique than just using the right stick.  It's a little slower on the draw.  

I'm still loving the skill stick.  I figured out how to do a 360 spin.  Move the right stick to the left or right at 9 or 3 o'clock, and then rotate the stick back towards 6 o'clock and up to 12 o'clock.  Your guy will do a 360 spin.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2006, 04:32:05 PM by Roguetad » Logged
Roguetad
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« Reply #25 on: September 15, 2006, 04:29:49 PM »

Quote from: jament on September 15, 2006, 04:24:01 PM

But  - let's say I'm on D, I want to poke check a guy at the blue line and then hip check him if the poke doesn't dislodge the puck.  You're saying I don't use buttons to do that?  How does it work?  Huh?  Eh? What?

The right shoulder button poke checks (in the direction of the right stick), or default directly in front if you don't use the right stick. 

You hit someone by simply pushing the right stick in the direction of the victim. 

The left shoulder button can be used to hook or tie up someone.  I hooked someone on a break away and definitely got called for it.  You can use the left SB to keep guys pinned against the boards too. 

Pressing both shoulder buttons at the same time makes your guy block. 

That's pretty much it!  You can clear pucks by doing a slap shot or pulling the right trigger for a pass.
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« Reply #26 on: September 15, 2006, 04:39:57 PM »

Excellent!  Thanks Roguetad. 

Looking forward to hearing more about the defensemen before I pull the trigger.  Need to make sure they aren't sloths you know.

(Devil - Shhh... I know you want to make a smartass comment right about now.  Hold it in.)

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LD

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« Reply #27 on: September 15, 2006, 05:19:51 PM »

Yeah, well I would think you....OK...I'll "Shhhh" for now.
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« Reply #28 on: September 15, 2006, 05:39:27 PM »

Quote from: Roguetad on September 15, 2006, 04:29:49 PM

Quote from: jament on September 15, 2006, 04:24:01 PM

But  - let's say I'm on D, I want to poke check a guy at the blue line and then hip check him if the poke doesn't dislodge the puck.  You're saying I don't use buttons to do that?  How does it work?  Huh?  Eh? What?

The right shoulder button poke checks (in the direction of the right stick), or default directly in front if you don't use the right stick. 

You hit someone by simply pushing the right stick in the direction of the victim. 

The left shoulder button can be used to hook or tie up someone.  I hooked someone on a break away and definitely got called for it.  You can use the left SB to keep guys pinned against the boards too. 

Pressing both shoulder buttons at the same time makes your guy block. 

That's pretty much it!  You can clear pucks by doing a slap shot or pulling the right trigger for a pass.

There's a bit more than that.  Holding left trigger causes you to skate backwards.  Left trigger skating backwards + left stick moving towards opposing player + well timed flick of the right stick towards opposing player = flattened Paul Kariya.  You do have a good chance of completely whiffing that though, so I really only try to pull it off if I have support from my forwards (just like real hockey!).

The Y button allows you to slash and try and start a fight.  In my last game, I was dicking around and slashed some Avalanche player with Tim Gleason.  The game called a 5 min major on me AND a game misconduct.  I don't think I've ever seen that in a video game before.

Defense is a combination of having good body positioning and poke checking.  You can use the poke check to try and intercept a pass too (I've done it twice) and set forth on a break of your own.  There are only a few players on each team that can actually lay the lumber well enough to knock an opposing player down, but every player can try to bump the opposition off the puck.  Sometimes that works better than others... if I am Mike Cammaleri, I'm better off trying to poke check Chris Pronger than run into him and just bounce off.

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« Reply #29 on: September 15, 2006, 06:30:07 PM »

Nice.  I didn't know about the left trigger for skating backwards. 

I've noticed that if you try and check a bigger player, you can actually be knocked off balance yourself.  Pretty cool. 

The AI is still getting in almost 2x as many shots as me each period, but the balance in scoring feels right on.  I get about 2x as many hits against the AI each period, but the penalties seem roughly about the same.  Sometimes hits actually work against you, especially if you try and slam a smaller forward against a defensemen.     
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« Reply #30 on: September 15, 2006, 06:35:04 PM »

Quote
Defense is a combination of having good body positioning and poke checking.

Just as it is in real life!  icon_biggrin
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« Reply #31 on: September 15, 2006, 06:35:55 PM »

Quote from: Devil on September 15, 2006, 06:35:04 PM

Quote
Defense is a combination of having good body positioning and poke checking.

Just as it is in real life!  icon_biggrin

Really?  I would never have known.  I always thought it was about lowering your shoulder into a guy's chest and watching his helmet fly 15 feet off his head from the impact.   icon_twisted
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« Reply #32 on: September 15, 2006, 06:46:53 PM »

That was last year, pr0ner!

This year EA has decided to put the hockey back in hockey!
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« Reply #33 on: September 17, 2006, 08:43:22 PM »

After about 10 games, I still have won a grand total of 2 or 3 faceoffs.  I've tried all sorts of timing with the right stick, and the only time I even have a chance at winning the faceoff is if I wiggle the right stick up and down and ignore the ref altogether.  The problem, of course, is that that's the motion for a slapshot, and if I actually get the puck, it goes flying down the ice for an icing.  So now I only do that in the offensive zone.

But really, why is it so hard to win a faceoff?  I've tried bumping the difficulty down to amateur (I think that's what the easiest difficulty is called), and still can't win a freaking faceoff.  I did get some achievement for winning at that level, but still..all I want is a decent chance at winning the damn faceoff.  I'd settle for 1 in 3 or 1 in 4 even.
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« Reply #34 on: September 18, 2006, 12:17:51 AM »

I disliked nearly every aspect of this game.  First and foremost, the skating.  They're skating on ice, right?  Then why does it feel like mud?  I appreciate them trying to get the whole aspect of momentum...but good lord, hockey's a sport with fluidity, not choppiness.

Having no turbo just didn't do it for me.  It felt more un-realistic, actually.

Glad we only rented it...
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« Reply #35 on: September 18, 2006, 12:39:27 AM »

I actually think the lack of turbo is by far the best design decision (other than the skill stick) the series made.  I always found turbo annoying.

* gellar is still loving NHL.
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« Reply #36 on: September 18, 2006, 01:19:26 AM »

But turbo adds realism to the game.  Maybe if "turbo" was renamed to something like "sprint" it would make more sense...

But without a true turbo button, it's like there's no sprinting.  There's no motivating a skater to push harder than usual for whatever reason - also, a turbo button helps bring more strategy and realism to the game in terms of fatigue.  Skate around with turbo all the time and your team is DEAD tired by the end of their shift; how is this handled in NHL '07?  The more you skate in a straight line, hence going "faster", means you get more tired?
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« Reply #37 on: September 18, 2006, 01:40:25 AM »

Quote from: TheMissingLink on September 18, 2006, 01:19:26 AM

But turbo adds realism to the game.  Maybe if "turbo" was renamed to something like "sprint" it would make more sense...

But without a true turbo button, it's like there's no sprinting.  There's no motivating a skater to push harder than usual for whatever reason - also, a turbo button helps bring more strategy and realism to the game in terms of fatigue.  Skate around with turbo all the time and your team is DEAD tired by the end of their shift; how is this handled in NHL '07?  The more you skate in a straight line, hence going "faster", means you get more tired?

I'm not sure how much hockey you've played... but since shifts are generally just a few minutes long, in reality, you are "sprinting" the entire time.  You get winded just by playing.  If the game wants to do a realistic impression of fatigue, your player is dog tired after about 1 minute and skating up and down the ice approximately 3 times.  Unless you're Chris Pronger.

The only way "sprint" is even remotely close to realistic in hockey is if it lasted for about 3 strides.  Some players do have a burst to get past a defender, but it's literally just to get by a guy.  That's it.

You don't take shifts off in hockey.  You don't skate slower.  You do that, and you get benched.

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« Reply #38 on: September 18, 2006, 01:42:25 AM »

Just to add... I'm not saying you're wrong if you like the turbo button.  It's been around forever.  I'm just saying the omission of it doesn't make things unrealistic.  It does the exact opposite.
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« Reply #39 on: September 18, 2006, 01:53:37 AM »

I'm actually going to split the difference on the turbo button.

I've mentioned this to Lockdown as well: You're dead tired at the end of your shift and the puck squirts loose giving you a chance at a breakaway. I always found it well within my abilty to find some extra juice and step it up.

This wasn't my freshest, fastest skating but it was a 'speed burst' from the condition I was currently in.

Going back to the games. I DO like that EA got rid of the turbo button (and a bunch of other things) because they took everything WAY over the top.

I'll say it again - This is the best hockey game since the original 2K.
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XBox Gamertag: Devil13Devil
Wii Number: 0305 6568 6417 2609
PS3 Thing: Slived
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