I play Madden every year and got sick of the same franchise mode as last years game so I wanted to try another game. Not a big hockey guy but I know the stars. I haven;t played a hockey game since Blades of Steel. HAHA I wanted a franchise mode comparable to maddens but found it to be too much to do and its not cut and dry. On the otherhand I am hooked on be a pro. Its the best feature in a sports game that makes you feel like your part of the team. I wish the football games would pick this version up cuz superstar mode sucks. I will continue with the Be a pro but not doing the GM mode. Apparently I don't know enough about hockey to do it. This games got me excited about hockey and might turn me into a fan!!!! Hope this helps someone out there!!!!!!
If I could force EA Vancouver to learn one lesson from NHL 11 it would be "stick to your guns". When this game first came out it was a very nice hockey simulation. Unfortunately, the online hockey community consists mostly of people who don't try to emulate real hockey because they either don't know how or don't care to try.
EA's forums were flooded with posts complaining about how people weren't able to carry the puck into heavy traffic and not lose control, how passes through 3 defenders weren't getting though, or how the old scoring tricks from NHL 09/10 weren't working anymore.
EA is a business; I understand that. So when it appears that the majority of people complain they will modify their product to make that apparent majority happy. This game, online, has become less a hockey sim and more focused on individualism. Tried and true hockey fans know that hockey is the ultimate team sport. In no other sport is one player unable to carry a team on his own. In no other sport is the success of the team dependent upon the abilities and contributions of the entire roster. This is no longer the case with NHL 11 online, and as a result the online team play modes are mostly unplayable.
For those who prefer offline play, the game isn't that bad. They expanded on the Be A GM mode a little by adding restricted free agents, more tradable draft picks, and some more stingy trading AI. Unfortunately, player progression is still unrealistic, simulating games yields unrealistic results, and 95% of prospects won't pan out.
EA Vancouver made a solid effort with this game and produced something very good. They then proceeded to take a fine hockey sim and dumb it down for those who couldn't handle it. Before the tuner updates this game would have been an easy 9/10 with some flaws in offline modes that need attention. Unfortunately now it yields more frustration and anger than enjoyment when played online.