Each year, the NHL Development Team at EA Sports attempts to recreate the fast-paced, hard-hitting sport of professional hockey in its games. Although the results have been hit and miss for the past few years, EA Sports aims to deliver a myriad of updates to NHL 24 to make it feel more authentic to the game of real hockey than ever before.
It’s all about the exhaust engine, which is a system that dictates player performance based on stamina while also rewarding players for attacking on offense. The new Goalie Fatigue system ensures that the goaltender is not as effective on the first shot from a power play as on subsequent shots. Goalie fatigue levels increase or recover as goals play, so if the puck is at the other end of the rink for long periods of time, it gives the goalie a chance to regain his huffs as the other goalie begins to drown under the pressure. . Every missed opportunity on defense makes it harder for the goaltender to save the puck before it hits the back of the net.
This leads to a new goal meta, as tiring actions like multiple shots on goal, extended time in the area, or passes through the crease drain the goalkeeper’s stamina. The stamina bar is displayed for the goalkeeper, so you know the full extent of the situation. To combat this, goaltenders have new save highlight animations that help them stop more pucks. If you’re playing player lock modes as a goalkeeper, there are also newly updated controls to make goalkeeper play more intuitive, an auto-return-to-center mechanic to reduce the likelihood of being out of position for the next shot,
This plays into the new Sustained Pressure system, which rewards offenses for extended time spent attacking in the zone. Each team can increase the sustained pressure in the game through possession of the puck, hitting and shooting within the scope of the shot. To balance this, the defense has new tools, including a revamped control system with shoves with less penalty risk, but also a reduced impact on the opposing team’s stamina. After watching a highlight check reel in NHL 24, the various checks on the boards and benches look extremely satisfying, but I wish I could have seen a smash check which the team says.
Checks can be done with just a swipe of the stick, but NHL 24 also offers a brand new option to refresh controls. Total Control layout cards highlight reel moves in an accessible and intuitive way and allow you to fake, pass or deke with every move. If you’re a long-time player who doesn’t want to adapt, don’t worry: the legacy control scheme is still available. The Vision Passing system also allows for simple one-touch passing so you can quickly move the puck across the ice.
As for the modes themselves, World of Chel is adding a Battle Pass with free and premium tiers that includes a new collection of vanity and utility items, as well as a new crafting area that streamlines the user experience. . The Showcase now allows you to spend your currency on the gear you actually want instead of having to rely on drops from loot boxes. Meanwhile, EASHL offers a 16-game path to the playoffs with a do-or-die format, with game progression earning you points and losses resulting in elimination. On the Ultimate Team side, HUT Moments now lets you recreate moments from hockey history, as well as the final moments of modern sport.
While you’re on the ice, NHL 24 improves its presentation in multiple ways, including more than 75 new goal celebrations, as well as new camera angles, lighting effects, and dynamic rink panels where you can assign and customize player banners. The atmosphere of the crowd has also been enhanced through various events and actions, for example, the home team rushing onto the ice, the crowd cheering on their team during a comeback, or calling the home team to shoot the washer. Additionally, Cheryl Pounder, who has convened multiple Winter Olympics, joins the broadcast booth.
Like most EA Sports games, NHL 24 features cross-platform play with HUT, World of Chel, and EASHL on a single gen. PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S players can play together, while PlayStation 4 and Xbox One players are in their own cross-play league. With crossplay, you can invite friends to a game or join a club from either platform. EA Sports claims that crossplay in World of Chel and HUT improves matchmaking quality in hopes of reducing matchmaking wait times.
NHL 24 also announced its cover athlete as Cale Makar of the Colorado Avalanche. The game is scheduled to arrive on October 6 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The X-Factor Edition gives you an exclusive Cale Makar Player Item, HUT Power Up Icon Choice Pack, extra NHL Points, double entitlement of last-gen and current-gen versions, and three days of access anticipated in the final game.