Things That Drive Me Insane In NHL 13: “I can’t touch the puck!”

With the NHL season in limbo, it’s only natural that many of us have been breaking more and more frequently with reality. That is, we’re opting for a virtual reality over the one we’re being presented by Gary Bettman, Donald Fehr, and their muppet minions.

Alas, I don’t enjoy EA Sports’ NHL 13 the way I had hoped. In the coming weeks, I intend to showcase different (and frustrating) shortcomings of the game as part of a series of posts.

This time, we’re going to take a look at how frequently the puck seems to slip "through" players sticks, bodies, and apendages.

Perhaps the reason this "glitch" is so annoying is that it’s obviously just EA’s way of making the AI more difficult to play against. Rather than create more sophisticated defensive systems, they’ve just cut virtual holes through all of your players.

This has always been frustrating, but it became glaringly obvious when I first began playing online. Suddenly, my poke checks and pass interceptions were so effective that my human opponent (TLN’s own Danny Gray) was reduced to non-verbal shouting. What had changed?

Is the computer really any better at protecting the puck? Ha.

There are plenty of other infuriating aspects of the game, so share any others you’d like me to feature.

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  • It appears you are playing a lot of Maple Leafs…there’s your first problem ZING!!

    Seriously, though…it’s easy to blame the game for things that you perceive as glitches when you might find if you changed your playstyle you would have more success. You’re trying to pull off moves that have worked in 12 and earlier before they revamped the physics engine.

    In the video above, your poke checks don’t work because you’re standing on top of the defender. Try checking from a distance where when the blade of the stick is extended it knocks the puck loose…

    and a lot of the clips were just spots where you body checked at completely the wrong time…at 0:12 you are completely out of position flying past a guy, at 0:20 you’re standing on top of the puck trying to block it instead of getting an angle on him…

    don’t kill the messenger, it’s just that your expectations are clearly still in NHL 12 mode. sorry brah but play better defense. anticipate instead of mashing buttons

  • Other than the one shot that goes right through the defender’s skate, those all looked reasonable.

    It’s worth noting that how effective a poke check is is based on a combination of your player’s poke check rating and the other player’s puck control rating. Poke check with Ryan Suter on Matt Frattin and it’ll almost always work. Poke check with Cody Franson on Pavel Datsyuk and it’ll work a lot less. If you know what kind of players you’ve got on your team you can use that to your advantage. In my GM Connected mode I’ve got a team of big, strong guys like Backes, Lucic, and Thornton, and it’s really tough to get the puck away from me because I can protect it so well.

    • What? Every single one of those clips shows the puck going through a stick or skate.

      It’s only natural that some players are tougher to strip the puck from, but nobody’s legs, feet, or sticks are any less material than anyone else’s.