Three Things We Loved (And Hated) About EA Sports NHL 17 Beta

The Hate List

Limited Customization in EASHL

While EA Sports boasted that there would be more customization in NHL 17 than ever before, this game mode lacked customization. Although there are options to customize your character both as a male or a female, there is not much variation from NHL 16. There are customization options that are only unlocked as you level up, but for individuals who may not be too great at online play, this could take a long time. Besides customizing the player features, there is a limited amount of equipment customization available. This is a bit disappointing, but I am hoping that the reason for this is because EA Sports wanted to leave some of the customization for the full game release. I guess we’ll all find out together in September.

NHL 17 Beta

A Few Minor Bugs/Glitches

Now as with any beta, we can expect some glitches, and bugs to be smoothed out before release, and NHL 17 is no different. There are a few that caught my attention, including a few customization bugs and a glitch that occurs upon a body check impact.

The customization bugs include one where the facial hair you choose for your player in EASHL disappears after leaving this particular customization menu. There seems to be no apparent reason for the disappearance, but it happens every time, with every style. Further to this, you have to click on every different face, hair style etc. in order for it to show up on the character. While this could just be an oversight by EA, it makes the available customization process longer than it needs to be. As for the gameplay, there is a glitch that causes one on one collisions to appear out of context with the rest of the graphics and animation. This happened a few times, all resulting in choppy graphics that did not match with the rest of the game.

Lack of Offline Play

As I mentioned earlier, there was a bit of an offline component to the Hockey Ultimate Team mode, although I was genuinely expecting more of the offline gameplay in the beta. I’ll be the first to admit that the offline game modes are my favourite where the NHL series is concerned, and maybe that’s because I like playing at my own pace, with the ability to pause the game whenever I want. While I do not see this lack of offline play as a problem where the full game is concerned, it was one of the worst parts of the NHL 17 beta.

NHL 17 Beta

If EA Sports fixes the issues of the beta, the full game will be spectacular. The focus of NHL 17 appears to be the level of authenticity and realism, as the improvements made to the gameplay and graphics all suggest this. Overall, this was a great beta, and I am excited to see the rest of the content NHL 17 has to offer, especially the new franchise mode.