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NHL 20 Gameplay Discussion

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  • @EA_Aljo
    EA_Aljo wrote: »
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    @EA_Aljo

    So what I'm taking from all of this is again EA saying that the game plays how they intended and that everything we see with our own eyes is wrong. You're basically blaming all of us for these problems.

    Just one question though.... If these are our mistakes and we're imagining all of this, then what is the cause for things getting worse every year and MORE people complaining about it, as well as some that used to vehemently say it didn't exist being converted to now believe the exact opposite. I think it's unfair and a bit of a slap to our faces for you to place the blame on us. We don't make the game, and SOMETHING is going on for people to think this is happening so wouldn't it be on you guys to figure out what is causing people to think that and fix the gameplay so that it feels more "organic" as you put it, and NOT point the blame at your customers?

    You say these things don't exist, and I believe you that they're not programmed in, BUT if that's the case, then there's some serious fundamental flaws to your game code, engine etc, and we give you guys plenty of feedback and info on what we don't like, what we want, and what works. Instead of telling us we are wrong...I implore you to dig deep into your game and yourselves, swallow your pride a bit because guess what? (the customers are supposed to always be right) and make the game play in a way that feels rewarding and natural and most of all... Like actual hockey. That is all we want. I have spoken!

    All due respect, sir.

    I'm not saying the game is perfect and never experiences any issues. What I'm saying is that there is no ice tilt or DDA affecting the outcome of games. None whatsoever. You guys are welcome to your theories on this, but it's been said for a very long time now, across multiple channels, from multiple official sources that there is no ice tilt or DDA. If something magical was at play forcing an outcome that you didn't have control over, we wouldn't see leaderboards with players that have a very high win/loss record. You will consistently see top players year after year because they have honed their skills and are earning their high rank.

    You guys have given us a ton of great feedback and changes have been made from it. Although, no matter how good the game is, people will always find fault. We're never going to please everyone. All we can do is continue to listen and incorporate as much of your feedback as we can. We all want the best hockey game possible, but what determines that? The crowd here is a hardcore, passionate gathering of hockey enthusiasts. It's a lot different than the more casual fan that loves the game as well. Then you have offline vs online players. Both groups are important and have different needs they want to be met when it comes to a good hockey game. Satisfying everyone is a daunting task.

    We definitely appreciate all the constructive feedback. It helps more than you know. Hopefully, a lot of it is evident with the changes that have been made. Especially when it comes to gameplay. I know a lot of the complaints also stem from issues with the AI. All I can tell you is that it's noted and the studio is always trying to make them perform more realistically. It's no easy feat making them think like humans in a sport as dynamic as hockey. Especially with how much more complex the game has become over the years.

    So, please keep the constructive commentary coming. As always, video also greatly helps. We'll keep doing all we can to listen and act on your feedback. In the end, we're all lovers of this sport and want as good a representation of it as possible in video game form.

    First, thank you for the reply. It's always nice to know you're heard. I do understand and appreciate everything you said but I'm gonna go through your post point by point and rebut. Again this is all in respect, and in hopes of keeping open dialogue.

    What I'm saying is that there is no ice tilt or DDA affecting the outcome of games. None whatsoever.
    I believe you. I do. But, then what is it about the game that makes so many think that? We're not all seeing the same things for no reason. There's nothing organic feeling about this game. Even though it's not scripted, it feels as though it is. That's a huge problem. If that's not what your going for and there's no tilt, the fact that it FEELS like there is, is a huge problem and should be looked into.

    If something magical was at play forcing an outcome that you didn't have control over, we wouldn't see leaderboards with players that have a very high win/loss record. You will consistently see top players year after year because they have honed their skills and are earning their high rank


    You absolutely would still see players with high win/loss records. Some people don't play hockey in this game and win by mastering every exploit in the game. Sure it's skill, but not HOCKEY skill. Nothing about the way a lot of these people play is even remotely like hockey. That's another HUGE flaw. Instead of forcing people to learn how hockey is played to be successful, you've left the door wide open for them to abuse game mechanics to win.

    You may argue that why shouldn't people play how they want, and I agree to an extent. Tighten up the exploits, but do a better job of teaching people how hockey is actually played. Help them understand the nuances of the sport, the strategy, when to go for hits, when not to etc etc. I think if people were helped to learn real hockey they might find it more fun than dangle dangle, snipe,celly. You're still going to have people who want that but give those people their own tuners etc and their own leaderboards.

    I think you guys should make some kind of deep training mode that teaches from the fundamentals, on up. Make this part of be a pro. You could start as a kid and actually have practices etc where an on ice coach teaches you, and you perform drills. Have very short seasons like in real life.

    As you get older, the drills get more in depth, teach you positioning, strategies, what player types play what roles on the team (and at this point in be a pro, you could pick what type of player you want to mold into). This should also be a standalone training mode outside be a pro as well. Heck, you could even give extra attributes for chel for those who successfully complete the training to entice people to learn.

    You guys have given us a ton of great feedback and changes have been made from it. Although, no matter how good the game is, people will always find fault. We're never going to please everyone

    You're right! You'll never please everyone. That is fact. People will always find fault in everything. It's like human nature BUT, if things are made more stable, and the game makes more sense to people and plays good gameplay wise, some things are forgivable. Problem is, the gameplay is all over the place because you can't decide WHO you want to please, and try to please everyone. It isn't working. Not the way you're going about it anyways. Look, if the game played like hockey, I could look past a lot, but in it's current state most of the problems are unforgivable considering how long some of these issues have been around. Not only that but some problems only seem to be exacerbated year after year.

    We all want the best hockey game possible, but what determines that?


    This is the easiest question to answer and I doubt ANYONE here disagrees... Simple.. What determines that is a game that plays like hockey, and looks like hockey, not figure skating and one man shows. There's too much emphasis on doing things yourself and not having to play smart to get the puck to good scoring areas to EVEN HAVE A CHANCE to score. As it is now, games are fine when both people play how hockey is played but you're at a bit of a disadvantage over those who don't know what they're doing.

    They can simply hog the puck and spin in circles until the ai goes crazy and a lane opens (or the goalie bites) and they get off a TERRIBLE angle shot that squeaks in. Fine, that happens from time to time in real life but they count on it as a way to score consistently and it works, while, if you set up and cycle and open up Lanes that way, the game plays more realistic, as does the goalie, which makes it harder to score and makes it look and feel more realistic. I don't want to dumb my game down because that's the easy way to score. I want the other guy to be forced to step up and learn to play hockey.

    Satisfying everyone is a daunting task.

    I have no doubt about that, but you can't fully satisfy ANYONE while trying to please EVERYONE. Imo you guys lack direction. You need to decide who you want to make the game for, or at least have the different modes tailored better to the different crowds. I believe the reason this game feels a mess to so many is because you guys are so worried about pleasing everyone at once that you don't know which direction to move and instead do very little, if not nothing to fix the issues. I don't think it's going to work out much longer if this game doesn't start to go in one focused direction.

    Again, there is no disrespect meant here whatsoever. Just telling you what I see.
  • 5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.
  • Greyinsi wrote: »
    If there is no DDS, then the code is really really messed up.
    I played 2 games against this guy in OVP. Ping was 20-25ms. First I lost 3-2 even thou I had shots 2:1. Nothing went in. Lost only 6CR so he was clearly better.
    Then the second match. Every shot goes in, his AI constantly wanders out of position, mine is suddenly aggressive and always on the puck. So EA whats going on? This win was decided 100% by game and not skill.
    ssxg8ci8cgaa.jpeg

    Show your recent games for proof ;)
  • No DDA, yet I can't tell you how many games I run into this in drops and club. This game is the epitome of using "some method" to keep teams in games. Either the other team's AI is a stud and yours is basically a bantam player, or vice versa. I've been starting to pay more attention to games that feel like it has a tilt based on CR ratings.

    nDDHWsu.png
  • Taste-D-Rainbow
    2514 posts Member
    edited January 2020
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    I'll try finding it but it was around NHL 15/16 Rammer got interviewed and said he has a team of about 200.

    Edit: Just watched the NHL 20 credits, there were 128 people mentioned in the development team not including audio or art teams.

    NHL 19 featured a development team of 107.
    Post edited by Taste-D-Rainbow on
  • 5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    I'll try finding it but it was around NHL 15/16 Rammer got interviewed and said he has a team of about 200.

    Edit: Just watched the NHL 20 credits, there were 128 people mentioned in the development team not including audio or art teams.

    NHL 19 featured a development team of 107.
    https://forums.ea.com/en/nhl/discussion/145252/i-found-the-missing-link
  • j0rtsu67 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    I'll try finding it but it was around NHL 15/16 Rammer got interviewed and said he has a team of about 200.

    Edit: Just watched the NHL 20 credits, there were 128 people mentioned in the development team not including audio or art teams.

    NHL 19 featured a development team of 107.
    https://forums.ea.com/en/nhl/discussion/145252/i-found-the-missing-link

    Good find! Thank you.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun/amp

    I stand corrected, a team of 250.
  • VeNOM2099
    3178 posts Member
    edited January 2020
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".
  • For the comparison Witcher 3 had team of 250...
  • Greyinsi wrote: »
    For the comparison Witcher 3 had team of 250...

    Maybe you should toss a coin to your Witcher then. Lol sorry, wasn't trying to be rude. Just wanted to use that line.
  • VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

  • WainGretSki
    3660 posts Member
    edited January 2020
    VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

    Agree, but I want to touch up a bit on the bold part.

    I do not understand why they went the route of this outdoor rink fiasco knowing full well having 12 different jerseys/parkas or whatever would be absolutely confusing in a 6v6 setting. I also do not get the 2 different modes for 3s, then Ones, etc...

    IMO it would have been logical to instead have other 6v6 modes with different tunings. IE, a tuner for more realism and a tuner for as it is, or maybe even a tuner for more arcade. You still end up with different modes, such as now, but at least those modes would tailor a specific crowd instead of this "let's try to please everyone with one single tuner" mentality.

    I don't know anymore. Seems resources could have been spent more wisely imo and this CHEL stuff is ridiculous, confusing, and very poorly implemented.
  • VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

    Agree, but I want to touch up a bit on the bold part.

    I do not understand why they went the route of this outdoor rink fiasco knowing full well having 12 different jerseys/parkas or whatever would be absolutely confusing in a 6v6 setting. I also do not get the 2 different modes for 3s, then Ones, etc...

    IMO it would have been logical to instead have other 6v6 modes with different tunings. IE, a tuner for more realism and a tuner for as it is, or maybe even a tuner for more arcade. You still end up with different modes, such as now, but at least those modes would tailor a specific crowd instead of this "let's try to please everyone with one single tuner" mentality.

    I don't know anymore. Seems resources could have been spent more wisely imo and this CHEL stuff is ridiculous, confusing, and very poorly implemented.

    Like I said before, they lack direction. They don't know who to cater to so they try and please everyone yet end up satisfying nobody
  • WainGretSki
    3660 posts Member
    edited January 2020
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

    Agree, but I want to touch up a bit on the bold part.

    I do not understand why they went the route of this outdoor rink fiasco knowing full well having 12 different jerseys/parkas or whatever would be absolutely confusing in a 6v6 setting. I also do not get the 2 different modes for 3s, then Ones, etc...

    IMO it would have been logical to instead have other 6v6 modes with different tunings. IE, a tuner for more realism and a tuner for as it is, or maybe even a tuner for more arcade. You still end up with different modes, such as now, but at least those modes would tailor a specific crowd instead of this "let's try to please everyone with one single tuner" mentality.

    I don't know anymore. Seems resources could have been spent more wisely imo and this CHEL stuff is ridiculous, confusing, and very poorly implemented.

    Like I said before, they lack direction. They don't know who to cater to so they try and please everyone yet end up satisfying nobody

    Yea, I know. And that's the biggest issue I have with this game.

    Seems the more casual a player you are, the more you enjoy the game. However, one would think that after 6 years (should have been done by now honestly) EA would go and say "Hey for all you fellow hardcore hockey fans, here is a (tuner, game mode, league, whatever you want to insert) for you guys to enjoy".

    BOOM. Instant satisfaction boost of at least 60% by your user base (if done correctly). Alot of your clients would be like "Wow, EA! You finally listened! Thank-you!"

    No, instead I get face masks, baseball caps and a bajillion parkas to wear on some random pond to hopefully satisfy the hockey purist in me. What a joke. It's basically like saying that whoever is a true hockey fan does not have his place in an EA hockey game with the words "NHL" in it. This isn't Backyard Hockey 2019, no??
  • EA_Aljo
    3229 posts EA Community Manager
    Ampereturn wrote: »
    EA_Aljo wrote: »
    Ampereturn wrote: »
    EA_Aljo wrote: »
    EA_Aljo wrote: »
    It's been stated time and time again. There is no DDA or ice tilt. None whatsoever. Games are won and lost based on how the humans holding the controllers are playing as well as the ratings of the players on the ice and the strategies being used. This has been mentioned by game developers and community managers. It's also been discussed with other games that have Ultimate Team. In the end, games are not determined by a script that chooses one side to win when they don't deserve it. If that were the case, it would happen when you win as well.

    We play our own game. It would be incredibly frustrating to not feel like you're controlling the outcome. Not to mention it goes against what we want with fair competition. While player ratings help, in the end, more often than not, the player(s) with more skill are going to win. Not always. There are of course times when one team gets dominated but still pulls out the victory. That happens in the real world as well.

    Ok, I am not going to argue or point fingers. However, I feel the need to point out that way too often, or actually,almost every single game, the AI does not play equal on both teams. There is always a team with better AI and it is mostly evident on the goalies. How one goalie will consistently stand on his head and make absolutely amazing saves whereas the other goalie seemingly struggles with routine saves. It does seem fair though in a way as sometimes I have the all-star AI, other times I have the peewee AI.

    To be clear, I will admit I am one of the people that absolutely does not believe in ice-tilt or DDA in any way. That being said, there is absolutely something going on that makes people feel like there is DDA or some form of tilt. I think that enough people complain about it that it warrants a good looking into and see if you guys can find whatever it is that gives players that perception. In my opinion, it is not people that can't accept losing or will not take accountability for their skill. Too many times, things don't feel organic and feel forced.

    Take into account I base all of this solely on EASHL as this is all I play. But I have seen many people in HUT and/or VS where you can clearly see the AI outplaying the AI on the other team. Certainly does not look balanced when you see the AI stepping up on one team while the AI on the other team seems like its wandering around and not sure where to go or what to do on the ice.

    Goalies, and AI players for that matter, are the same on both ends of the ice in EASHL. HUT is a different story as ratings are involved. Regardless, it's not like both teams are taking the exact same shots or are setting up the same plays. There are different strategies involved as well. One thing that never happens would be the game choosing one goalie to play out of his mind and the other like a beer leaguer. Goalies are identical in EASHL, but the guys playing in front of them may not be. One side is probably defending better and not allowing as many quality shots. I've been in plenty of close games. Which means 2 well-matched teams are playing each other. I've also played in blowouts where one team is heavily outmatched. Either way, it's about how the humans are playing and most definitely not the game deciding the outcome for you.

    I get that people can believe there's a mechanism in place for making games more even, but you're talking about 2 very mismatched teams based on what? Why would the game decide to have one team's AI play so much better than the other? It really doesn't make any sense to have that in the game. Especially not EASHL. There's a very heavy amount of confirmation bias. I see it every time I play, which is mostly daily. Whether it's good friends of mine or drop-ins, people are constantly blaming the game when it's quite clear they're own play is at fault. They say that wasn't offside, that wasn't a charge, that wasn't a trip, that shot shouldn't have gone in, etc. What doesn't change is the AI. They're the same every time but will play differently based on how the humans are playing and what strategies you're using. The human-controlled players make a big difference as they could be calling for bad passes, not getting open, playing way out of position, etc. That's going to affect the AI players.

    When you see one team's defense stepping up, think about what's involved. For one, the carrier is most likely in a good position to be hit. The AI aren't chasing for hits. They choose to do so when it's a good option. A lot of times the carrier could negate that play by passing, changing direction, dekeing or dumping the puck. So many would rather play a run and gun offense instead of make smarter plays involving their teammates. They carry the puck right into traffic. You also will see defense step up more when you make the defensive pressure strategy more aggressive.

    Organic vs forced is a good way to put it. A lot of people force plays instead of being patient and looking to set up good breakouts as well as scoring chances. Forwards take off for the neutral zone as soon as there's a turnover and defenders force passes to them or they call for them from the AI when there's no open lane. In the offensive zone they force passes to the slot for one-timers and abandon their defense who are wide open. Some guys insist on trying to deke their way to glory by forcing themselves through multiple defenders. My point is, you can try to force the game to behave how you want it to or you can slow down the play and pull your opponents out of position with good passing which leads to good scoring chances. That feels a lot more organic, but the lack of patience many people have leads to bad decisions that frequently end up being blamed on the game instead of themselves.

    Dear @EA_Aljo , could you please explain, why godlike AI players, especially Malone, Rhodes, Bates or Peters are occurring in EASHL Drop-In game? Have you ever played against these cheaters? Really nice competition when they are winning games and scoring hat tricks for guys who don't even know how to skate. You destroyed the whole Drop-In game! And then we should not think of the DDA/ice tilt being present in the game!

    Are you saying the AI players in EASHL are now cheaters? How often are you seeing them get hatties? Are there just 2 human D and 3 AI forwards? They can be pretty deadly when going against an opposing team that doesn't know how to defend against AI players. You can't play them the same as you can human players. So, if you play a very high-pressure style of play against them, you're going to leave open lanes for them to exploit. Regardless, the AI players are not boosted. They react to the strategies that are set for them as well as what the human-controlled players are doing.

    Dear @EA_Aljo , yes, I'm saying, that they are like "cheaters", because "you can't play them the same as you can human players." They have superhuman abilities and that is completely wrong. Please, tell me what kind of competition is it when players of the losing team are disconnecting, because they cannot beat us, they are replaced by AI players with superhuman abilities scoring hat tricks and make miracle comeback? Players without skills are rewarded. Why??? This is Drop-In game, in most cases we are playing together as a team for the first time. The philosophy behind that is completely wrong. If you play with AI, you should be at a disadvantage, not an advantage. This kind of AI players should be toned-down, otherwise I suggest at least 4 human players on each side (not 2) to play 6v6 Drop-in game. Please, consider this. Thank you in advance!

    The AI players don't have superhuman abilities, but they can react faster than humans at times. You definitely have to play them differently. They look for open lanes for passes and shots. If you chase them, as many people do in drop-ins, that's just going to open up lanes for them to make quick passes to. Which of course generates excellent scoring chances. When you have guys on your side that know how to shut down AI players, they are most certainly beatable.
  • EA_Aljo
    3229 posts EA Community Manager
    i wouldn't put too much into the messages from community managers. They aren't developers that actually know the ins and outs of how the game functions. Even then the devs are likely divided up into many pieces where they work in a silo just on their piece of the game.

    there were comments made earlier about slower skaters not being able to catch faster skaters but we all know thats not true. It's been proven and acknowledged by actual Devs in the past that AI will out skate a human to the puck in various situations because of programming.

    There is no DD or Tilt or anything like that. there's just bad AI programming. I don't care to dive deep into this conversation for 100th time. there are many factors that affect the outcome of what the AI does but even then i think there is some kind of randomization of what you will get from them.

    But if you don't think there is serious issues with the AI then you have never played this game. I could give 1000s of examples but i'll leave this one. 1/10 breakaways I see AI do some sweet dangle and tuck or even just snipe of the goalie. The other 9/10 ? total disaster. skate in and then shoot from 10 feet and miss the net by a mile (or put it straight into his chest). Even worse I bet about 1/3 of the time they just skate in and crash into the goalie and lose the puck. Or my favorite seem confused, crash into goalie and lose puck but somehow score and it counts.

    I won't even start on how stupid the AI goalies are.

    Here's my biggest AI pet peeve. How come a game that has been around for 25+ years, based on the sport of hockey where a hockey net is pretty much the most important "prop" on the "field" and yet EA's AI seems to have no awareness that its even there or how to "avoid" or "deal with" it ??? I love watching AI skaters (or hell even goalies) just go straight behind the net but somehow get caught up on it, stuck around it, pass pucks into it, etc...

    Sometimes it feels like this game is a summer project for kids that want to get into game development. Every year little tiny tweaks, usually full of bugs/issues, and only have enough time to deal with a few bugs after release. Besides that it's "tuning". Even that is something that happens once or twice a year. That sounds like something someone could do with their free time when they aren't doing their actual job 40 hours a week.

    The only way to avoid most of the disaster that this game has become is to play pure 6v6 online with good people. Even then it has its issues but so much better.

    I know the ins and outs of this game quite well. I'm not a developer, but have been working closely with the NHL studio for several years. My responses are based on my knowledge of playing more than a couple thousand games each year for many years now. That and the insight I gain from directly communicating with the dev team.

    Can you show me where we said AI players are programmed to outskate human players regardless of their fatigue or positioning? There is nothing built in to the game that boosts slower players so they can outskate faster players. Nothing more than their ability to hustle. Which is affected by fatigue.

    I'm not saying the AI players are perfect. I doubt they ever will be. I know the dev team is always looking to make improvements and resolve issues with them.

    As far as tuning goes, there used to be more frequent updates, but due to community feedback about the game playing better during the beta, we have tried to make only minimal changes.
  • EA_Aljo
    3229 posts EA Community Manager
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    @EA_Aljo
    EA_Aljo wrote: »
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    @EA_Aljo

    So what I'm taking from all of this is again EA saying that the game plays how they intended and that everything we see with our own eyes is wrong. You're basically blaming all of us for these problems.

    Just one question though.... If these are our mistakes and we're imagining all of this, then what is the cause for things getting worse every year and MORE people complaining about it, as well as some that used to vehemently say it didn't exist being converted to now believe the exact opposite. I think it's unfair and a bit of a slap to our faces for you to place the blame on us. We don't make the game, and SOMETHING is going on for people to think this is happening so wouldn't it be on you guys to figure out what is causing people to think that and fix the gameplay so that it feels more "organic" as you put it, and NOT point the blame at your customers?

    You say these things don't exist, and I believe you that they're not programmed in, BUT if that's the case, then there's some serious fundamental flaws to your game code, engine etc, and we give you guys plenty of feedback and info on what we don't like, what we want, and what works. Instead of telling us we are wrong...I implore you to dig deep into your game and yourselves, swallow your pride a bit because guess what? (the customers are supposed to always be right) and make the game play in a way that feels rewarding and natural and most of all... Like actual hockey. That is all we want. I have spoken!

    All due respect, sir.

    I'm not saying the game is perfect and never experiences any issues. What I'm saying is that there is no ice tilt or DDA affecting the outcome of games. None whatsoever. You guys are welcome to your theories on this, but it's been said for a very long time now, across multiple channels, from multiple official sources that there is no ice tilt or DDA. If something magical was at play forcing an outcome that you didn't have control over, we wouldn't see leaderboards with players that have a very high win/loss record. You will consistently see top players year after year because they have honed their skills and are earning their high rank.

    You guys have given us a ton of great feedback and changes have been made from it. Although, no matter how good the game is, people will always find fault. We're never going to please everyone. All we can do is continue to listen and incorporate as much of your feedback as we can. We all want the best hockey game possible, but what determines that? The crowd here is a hardcore, passionate gathering of hockey enthusiasts. It's a lot different than the more casual fan that loves the game as well. Then you have offline vs online players. Both groups are important and have different needs they want to be met when it comes to a good hockey game. Satisfying everyone is a daunting task.

    We definitely appreciate all the constructive feedback. It helps more than you know. Hopefully, a lot of it is evident with the changes that have been made. Especially when it comes to gameplay. I know a lot of the complaints also stem from issues with the AI. All I can tell you is that it's noted and the studio is always trying to make them perform more realistically. It's no easy feat making them think like humans in a sport as dynamic as hockey. Especially with how much more complex the game has become over the years.

    So, please keep the constructive commentary coming. As always, video also greatly helps. We'll keep doing all we can to listen and act on your feedback. In the end, we're all lovers of this sport and want as good a representation of it as possible in video game form.

    First, thank you for the reply. It's always nice to know you're heard. I do understand and appreciate everything you said but I'm gonna go through your post point by point and rebut. Again this is all in respect, and in hopes of keeping open dialogue.

    What I'm saying is that there is no ice tilt or DDA affecting the outcome of games. None whatsoever.
    I believe you. I do. But, then what is it about the game that makes so many think that? We're not all seeing the same things for no reason. There's nothing organic feeling about this game. Even though it's not scripted, it feels as though it is. That's a huge problem. If that's not what your going for and there's no tilt, the fact that it FEELS like there is, is a huge problem and should be looked into.

    If something magical was at play forcing an outcome that you didn't have control over, we wouldn't see leaderboards with players that have a very high win/loss record. You will consistently see top players year after year because they have honed their skills and are earning their high rank


    You absolutely would still see players with high win/loss records. Some people don't play hockey in this game and win by mastering every exploit in the game. Sure it's skill, but not HOCKEY skill. Nothing about the way a lot of these people play is even remotely like hockey. That's another HUGE flaw. Instead of forcing people to learn how hockey is played to be successful, you've left the door wide open for them to abuse game mechanics to win.

    You may argue that why shouldn't people play how they want, and I agree to an extent. Tighten up the exploits, but do a better job of teaching people how hockey is actually played. Help them understand the nuances of the sport, the strategy, when to go for hits, when not to etc etc. I think if people were helped to learn real hockey they might find it more fun than dangle dangle, snipe,celly. You're still going to have people who want that but give those people their own tuners etc and their own leaderboards.

    I think you guys should make some kind of deep training mode that teaches from the fundamentals, on up. Make this part of be a pro. You could start as a kid and actually have practices etc where an on ice coach teaches you, and you perform drills. Have very short seasons like in real life.

    As you get older, the drills get more in depth, teach you positioning, strategies, what player types play what roles on the team (and at this point in be a pro, you could pick what type of player you want to mold into). This should also be a standalone training mode outside be a pro as well. Heck, you could even give extra attributes for chel for those who successfully complete the training to entice people to learn.

    You guys have given us a ton of great feedback and changes have been made from it. Although, no matter how good the game is, people will always find fault. We're never going to please everyone

    You're right! You'll never please everyone. That is fact. People will always find fault in everything. It's like human nature BUT, if things are made more stable, and the game makes more sense to people and plays good gameplay wise, some things are forgivable. Problem is, the gameplay is all over the place because you can't decide WHO you want to please, and try to please everyone. It isn't working. Not the way you're going about it anyways. Look, if the game played like hockey, I could look past a lot, but in it's current state most of the problems are unforgivable considering how long some of these issues have been around. Not only that but some problems only seem to be exacerbated year after year.

    We all want the best hockey game possible, but what determines that?


    This is the easiest question to answer and I doubt ANYONE here disagrees... Simple.. What determines that is a game that plays like hockey, and looks like hockey, not figure skating and one man shows. There's too much emphasis on doing things yourself and not having to play smart to get the puck to good scoring areas to EVEN HAVE A CHANCE to score. As it is now, games are fine when both people play how hockey is played but you're at a bit of a disadvantage over those who don't know what they're doing.

    They can simply hog the puck and spin in circles until the ai goes crazy and a lane opens (or the goalie bites) and they get off a TERRIBLE angle shot that squeaks in. Fine, that happens from time to time in real life but they count on it as a way to score consistently and it works, while, if you set up and cycle and open up Lanes that way, the game plays more realistic, as does the goalie, which makes it harder to score and makes it look and feel more realistic. I don't want to dumb my game down because that's the easy way to score. I want the other guy to be forced to step up and learn to play hockey.

    Satisfying everyone is a daunting task.

    I have no doubt about that, but you can't fully satisfy ANYONE while trying to please EVERYONE. Imo you guys lack direction. You need to decide who you want to make the game for, or at least have the different modes tailored better to the different crowds. I believe the reason this game feels a mess to so many is because you guys are so worried about pleasing everyone at once that you don't know which direction to move and instead do very little, if not nothing to fix the issues. I don't think it's going to work out much longer if this game doesn't start to go in one focused direction.

    Again, there is no disrespect meant here whatsoever. Just telling you what I see.

    There is no scripting. None whatsoever. You can't just put your controller down and have the game play out the same way as if you were actually playing.

    As far as exploits go, what would you consider an exploit? If you're constantly giving up the short side and getting sniped repeatedly, that would be someone exploiting your poor defense. Now, something like the glitch wrap in previous years would be an exploit. LT'ing was seen as an exploit, but it also could be stopped. Regardless, just because someone sits at the top of the leaderboards, it doesn't mean they're exploiting the game. Even if that were the case, why doesn't everyone have the same record if they are using the same "exploits"? Because they're better at it than everyone else? If you know how to exploit the game, you should also know how to defend against it. In that case, you're still talking about a skill gap. Part of that skill gap is also having a vision of the game that many people don't. They know the game well enough to understand where their players are going and are thinking ahead of the play. That's not something even a stacked team of 99s are going to naturally have, yet many think that just because one team is rated higher than the other, they should win.

    There are tutorials built into the game that can help teach you how to play hockey. A lot of it is also just gathered from having a knowledge of the sport as well as playing it. If guys are getting away with dangle, snipe, celly all the time, you're not learning how to defend them. Of course, they're going to go to the well, so to speak, when they come up against someone that isn't good at defense. Part of winning is learning your opponent's weaknesses and exploiting those. So, when you go up against someone that wants to dangle and snipe all the time, you learn to take away their time and space to do so. However, many will chase for a hit, miss and give them the time and space they need to score repeatedly. People need to adjust to their opponents. Many will do the same thing over and over again regardless of who they play.

    It's easy to pick apart the game and find faults. What many miss are the good plays that happen more often. Yes, mistakes are made. We're not denying that, but they are very easy to focus on more than the high amount of good hockey play. It's easy to not notice the AI getting in good positioning for loose pucks or when they see a chance to skate to the slot for a good one timer opportunity or lining up a good hit. There's a lot of great hockey in this game, but there's a huge amount of focus on the bad. In no way am I saying we need to ignore the bad and focus on the good, but give credit when it's due.

    If someone is playing as a one-man show, why are they being allowed to do so? If they can get away with it, why shouldn't they? That shows they're going up against defense that aren't skilled enough to stop them. Hockey is a team sport. I'm not a fan of greedy players that insist on being the hero, but very frequently defenders learn to play them better and not let them get away with embarrassing a whole team.

    You say it's frequent that terrible angle shots are scoring consistently. Yeah, those will happen, but I'm seeing way more wristers & slapshots from the slot, as well as cross-crease one-timers than shots sneaking in from bad angles. Unbelievable shots are a part of the game. That includes the muffins and crazy bounces that find the back of the net. I'm not saying it's impossible, but it's pretty rare a game has several goals where all of them are from bad plays and weak shots. Again, the focus tends to shift to the negative.

    Don't take what I'm saying as we think the game is perfect and it's all your fault. That's not the case at all. The dev team is always listening to feedback and making changes based on it. Which you, of course, don't see until updates or future games. On the other hand, not everything is the game's fault. We all need to step back and recognize the good along with the bad. You have to see the whole game and not just the negative.
  • EA_Aljo
    3229 posts EA Community Manager
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

    Agree, but I want to touch up a bit on the bold part.

    I do not understand why they went the route of this outdoor rink fiasco knowing full well having 12 different jerseys/parkas or whatever would be absolutely confusing in a 6v6 setting. I also do not get the 2 different modes for 3s, then Ones, etc...

    IMO it would have been logical to instead have other 6v6 modes with different tunings. IE, a tuner for more realism and a tuner for as it is, or maybe even a tuner for more arcade. You still end up with different modes, such as now, but at least those modes would tailor a specific crowd instead of this "let's try to please everyone with one single tuner" mentality.

    I don't know anymore. Seems resources could have been spent more wisely imo and this CHEL stuff is ridiculous, confusing, and very poorly implemented.

    Like I said before, they lack direction. They don't know who to cater to so they try and please everyone yet end up satisfying nobody

    Yea, I know. And that's the biggest issue I have with this game.

    Seems the more casual a player you are, the more you enjoy the game. However, one would think that after 6 years (should have been done by now honestly) EA would go and say "Hey for all you fellow hardcore hockey fans, here is a (tuner, game mode, league, whatever you want to insert) for you guys to enjoy".

    BOOM. Instant satisfaction boost of at least 60% by your user base (if done correctly). Alot of your clients would be like "Wow, EA! You finally listened! Thank-you!"

    No, instead I get face masks, baseball caps and a bajillion parkas to wear on some random pond to hopefully satisfy the hockey purist in me. What a joke. It's basically like saying that whoever is a true hockey fan does not have his place in an EA hockey game with the words "NHL" in it. This isn't Backyard Hockey 2019, no??

    You don't have to play drop-ins. The more hardcore players are probably in 6s where you don't have any of the casual gear. There were many requests for an outdoor rink. There were also requests for more customization. Not everyone is happy about it, but seeing as how a very high number of people use the casual gear in drop-ins, it seems to be pretty popular. It would be nice to have an outdoor setting for club games. I'd like that as well. Regardless, there is a way for hardcore players to play together in club games.

    What would you change to make the game satisfy the hardcore crowd better?
  • WainGretSki
    3660 posts Member
    edited January 2020
    EA_Aljo wrote: »
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

    Agree, but I want to touch up a bit on the bold part.

    I do not understand why they went the route of this outdoor rink fiasco knowing full well having 12 different jerseys/parkas or whatever would be absolutely confusing in a 6v6 setting. I also do not get the 2 different modes for 3s, then Ones, etc...

    IMO it would have been logical to instead have other 6v6 modes with different tunings. IE, a tuner for more realism and a tuner for as it is, or maybe even a tuner for more arcade. You still end up with different modes, such as now, but at least those modes would tailor a specific crowd instead of this "let's try to please everyone with one single tuner" mentality.

    I don't know anymore. Seems resources could have been spent more wisely imo and this CHEL stuff is ridiculous, confusing, and very poorly implemented.

    Like I said before, they lack direction. They don't know who to cater to so they try and please everyone yet end up satisfying nobody

    Yea, I know. And that's the biggest issue I have with this game.

    Seems the more casual a player you are, the more you enjoy the game. However, one would think that after 6 years (should have been done by now honestly) EA would go and say "Hey for all you fellow hardcore hockey fans, here is a (tuner, game mode, league, whatever you want to insert) for you guys to enjoy".

    BOOM. Instant satisfaction boost of at least 60% by your user base (if done correctly). Alot of your clients would be like "Wow, EA! You finally listened! Thank-you!"

    No, instead I get face masks, baseball caps and a bajillion parkas to wear on some random pond to hopefully satisfy the hockey purist in me. What a joke. It's basically like saying that whoever is a true hockey fan does not have his place in an EA hockey game with the words "NHL" in it. This isn't Backyard Hockey 2019, no??

    You don't have to play drop-ins. The more hardcore players are probably in 6s where you don't have any of the casual gear. There were many requests for an outdoor rink. There were also requests for more customization. Not everyone is happy about it, but seeing as how a very high number of people use the casual gear in drop-ins, it seems to be pretty popular. It would be nice to have an outdoor setting for club games. I'd like that as well. Regardless, there is a way for hardcore players to play together in club games.

    What would you change to make the game satisfy the hardcore crowd better?

    I play club very regularly, but I also play a decent amount of dropins. The dropin portion is horrible and much better suited for a Ones scenario, not a team scenario. When it comes to LG, which I no longer play, it is sometimes a struggle to find club games which is when I will usually dropin.

    As for what would I change? Easy question to answer actually. Go back to the exact same settings and tuning of the first day of the NHL 19 beta. This would also fix LT abuse as it was extremely hard to hog the puck during those first few days. That would be an excellent starting point to actually bringing this game to resemble more its real-life counterpart. Next up would be to polish and clean up the AI intelligence. AI goalies right now are just horrible and the D AI has extreme difficulties navigating near its net.
    Need to tune the pass interceptions. Right now it is ridiculous how so many players are cleanly picking off passes with their backs to the play. The new puck pickup animations, imo, are hindering and what is causing so many clean interceptions.

    Also, when I choose LD in EASHL and my RD bails on me, the replacing AI always jacks my LD position as his default path on the breakout. Alot of times he actually hinders me and goes into my skating path. It is extremely evident and you can replicate this in mere seconds in any single EASHL game. Whether the AI replaces a bailed human, or is there from the start, he jacks my position.The only way he won't jack it on the breakout is if I am ahead of him and breaking out very aggressively, which I strongly advise not to do. Jacks my position as well in my zone, but not as aggressively. Been exactly like this since NHL 14.

    That is what I suggest right off the top of my head to getting this game more in tune to how I want it to play.

    As for the many requests for an outdoor rink, you are correct in saying many people requested it. Sadly, it was more along the lines of a club format in a Winter Classic setting. Not a casual Levi's jeans/parka setting in some farm or in the mountains with backup alarms and helicopters in the background.
    Post edited by WainGretSki on
  • EA_Aljo wrote: »
    Kmahrle83 wrote: »
    VeNOM2099 wrote: »
    5 years of next gen with a development team of 200+ and this is what we get.

    there is no chance they have a dev team of 200+ ... not unless they are simultaneously working on many other games at the same time.

    "Ramjagsingh leads a team of about 250 people in Burnaby who work only on the NHL game with an average age in the low 30s."

    Source: https://montrealgazette.com/sports/hockey/stu-cowan-designing-nhl-video-games-for-a-living-sure-looks-like-fun

    Edit: Oops... shouldn't have doubted @Taste-D-Rainbow . He's a smart cookie! ;)

    I mean, we can argue that maybe 250 aren't just "devs", but as they so often like to point out, it's not just the Devs working on this game. There's an art department (probably devided into many parts like 3D models, 2D textures, Animations, etc). There's probably an online department, a physics department as well. There's obviously a Research & Marketing department that tells the rest what "the people" want... Still they ALL make the game as a team. You don't see the Art Department at The Coalition touting "Yeah, Gears 5 is good because of our textures! We're only 10 in our department, so the game is made by a small team!" LOL

    Whether there are 200 or 150 or even just 30 people dedicated to pure coding, they're all part of the same team of 250 (or more) people that work on this game every year. That's no "small team".

    I wasn't questioning Taste. I'm questioning what Rammer and EA is saying. I have friends in the industry, been around gaming for decades, etc... Dedicated teams of 250+ are for AAA titles with budgets near 100million USD, expectations of revenue in the 100s of millions over a 2-3 year period. At this point I would doubt NHL has more than 30-50 million in sales each year. FIFA probably has close to a billion.

    If you told me FIFA team a team that large, I would be a bit surprised since that is an annually released game with very little change from year to year. BUT the revenue would justify it. FIFA has to have a revenue 10-20 times that of NHL.

    Even then it is possible that EA could justify a larger team and less profits to deliver an "EA Sports label product".

    But my point was based on the product we see and the things we hear like "this is niche product without much demand, unlike FIFA, as such they have very limited resources. They have to pick a few things to work on...blah blah blah". Supposedly this is why they only release one or two minor patches each year and many game breaking bugs/features last years.

    Yeah maybe they have 150 artists (interns) working on various colored mouthguards and baseball hats. But there is no way they have a "development team" anything close to the size of traditional AAA title teams. If they do... sorry thats just SAD.

    There's a lot that goes into creating games but usually smaller titles like this have tricks to do more with less. EA is considered by most to be a "profits at all cost" type company and as such I would think they would expect the NHL team to do just that.

    This is why its so frustrating to see the things they have done. Time wasted on things that bring no real value or even worse backfire and end up being a negative. Sure that may not be taking away from gameplay dev time but its sure taking a slice of budget that could have been better spent elsewhere.

    Agree, but I want to touch up a bit on the bold part.

    I do not understand why they went the route of this outdoor rink fiasco knowing full well having 12 different jerseys/parkas or whatever would be absolutely confusing in a 6v6 setting. I also do not get the 2 different modes for 3s, then Ones, etc...

    IMO it would have been logical to instead have other 6v6 modes with different tunings. IE, a tuner for more realism and a tuner for as it is, or maybe even a tuner for more arcade. You still end up with different modes, such as now, but at least those modes would tailor a specific crowd instead of this "let's try to please everyone with one single tuner" mentality.

    I don't know anymore. Seems resources could have been spent more wisely imo and this CHEL stuff is ridiculous, confusing, and very poorly implemented.

    Like I said before, they lack direction. They don't know who to cater to so they try and please everyone yet end up satisfying nobody

    Yea, I know. And that's the biggest issue I have with this game.

    Seems the more casual a player you are, the more you enjoy the game. However, one would think that after 6 years (should have been done by now honestly) EA would go and say "Hey for all you fellow hardcore hockey fans, here is a (tuner, game mode, league, whatever you want to insert) for you guys to enjoy".

    BOOM. Instant satisfaction boost of at least 60% by your user base (if done correctly). Alot of your clients would be like "Wow, EA! You finally listened! Thank-you!"

    No, instead I get face masks, baseball caps and a bajillion parkas to wear on some random pond to hopefully satisfy the hockey purist in me. What a joke. It's basically like saying that whoever is a true hockey fan does not have his place in an EA hockey game with the words "NHL" in it. This isn't Backyard Hockey 2019, no??

    You don't have to play drop-ins. The more hardcore players are probably in 6s where you don't have any of the casual gear. There were many requests for an outdoor rink. There were also requests for more customization. Not everyone is happy about it, but seeing as how a very high number of people use the casual gear in drop-ins, it seems to be pretty popular. It would be nice to have an outdoor setting for club games. I'd like that as well. Regardless, there is a way for hardcore players to play together in club games.

    What would you change to make the game satisfy the hardcore crowd better?

    this game in no way caters to the casual player. its likely the most difficult sports game for a casual player to pick up and be any good at it. Its the primary reason drop in is a nightmare and has gone from NHLs best feature to its worst.

    The game is less forgiving than ever except in one way, goalies are complete garbage.

    "good" teams completely dominate mediocre to bad teams more than ever.

    I've played 1000s of club games over the years but its a poorly implemented system. Its what lead to many people spending much more time in drop in until EA destroyed drop in and turned it into the laughing stock of video gaming world.

    Club is still a total mess. The matchmaking is a mess, no good controls over who and how you play in club, there's no "practice" capabilities, there's no lobby/community system for "public club", the list of faults goes on and on.

    Other than 3rd party league communities, there's no way to meet people in this game yet club is essentially where a group would get together and compete in anything other than clown hockey on ice surfaces where you can't see anything in a game full of trolls and just down right awful hockey players.

    100s of suggestions as to how to improve things are sent out every year in 100s of threads. The only ones I ever see get into the game are usually the worst ones or EA goes it's own route, deviating from the suggestions and poorly implements them.
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