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09-14-2007, 09:58 AM
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I played the demo last night (PS3 version). First impressions are mixed.

The game presentation, like with all EA Sports games, is top notch. I can't believe I actually missed the Gary Thorne/Bill Clement duo.

If the demo is accurate, the AI is vastly improved. I moved over to the 2K brand because of it's more realistic gameplay, but I might switch back to EA now. Positioning, especially on defense, matters.

I hate the controls. I hate using the R2 button to pass. The R3 stick seems counter intuitive - no matter if I pressed up or down, my player would shoot the puck. I do like the dekes, though.

On defense, the controls are even worse. Again, I hate the way the shoulder buttons are used. In every hockey game I've ever played (except this one), changing what player you control on defense is normally done with the X button. The shoulder buttons are normally used to dive for a puck, pinning a player on the boards, or for kicking the puck along the boards if the player you're controlling is pinned to the boards.

The feel of the pokecheck, in the demo, is sloppy. It's hard to anticipate exactly how far your player will reach.

If I do buy it, I'm definitely changing the control scheme.

So, people who own it all ready, how does this game compare to the 2K series? Is there a franchise mode? Is there a decent create-a-player system?

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