Kukla's Korner

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NHL 12 Mini-Update: EA Sports Season Ticket and Stamkos vs Roenick at X’11

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Just some of a few quick things today, as EA’s newest NHL 12 blog, which was supposed to be released “soon” has yet to surface. So instead I bring you some old news I should have reported a long time ago, and some a recent tidbit of video from yesterday.

Quick Note: Sorry about the music, just scroll down a bit to the SECOND video that is auto-playing and CLICK ON IT to stop it for the time being, so you can read in peace. I’ll try and figure out the coding to fix this auto-start later.


First up, let’s talk about the old news I should have reported a while back, but as it didn’t directly relate 100% to NHL 12, I skipped over it for the time being. Saving the news for a latter time, when news was slow, such as today. I’m talking about EA Sports new “Season Ticket” program, which was announced back on August 2. Here is the announcement video to give you the basic details.

Video via IGNentertainment YouTube page


So how does this relate to NHL 12? - Well It’s pretty simple.

- You will get to download a digital copy of NHL 12 (for retail cost of course) 3 days before it’s public North American release date! More specifically, starting on September 9, at 6PM EST through September 13 at 6AM EST.

- You will get a 20% discount on all downloadable content for NHL 12, which includes all Hockey Ultimate Team Card Packs, as well as skater and goalie boost slots and equipment boosts, as well as the general “boost packs” for your Be a Pro and EASHL skater or goalie. As well as any other possible additional DLC, but unless EA announces some new kind of DLC for this year, then I covered everything that should apply to this 20% discount. Unless there is some kind of outside chance that EA and the NHL finally worked out a deal with Microsoft to allow for NHL team sweaters to be downloaded as wearable avatar items… because I’ve been dying for a Wings jersey for my avatar ever since Microsoft added them to the 360 dashboard, and other games that use your virtual cartoon likeness. Although I don’t know if these would count as NHL 12 DLC though, but they might, because of the way these things get categorized. Plus every other major sport has team uniforms for download (even colleges) so hopefully this is the year that injustice to us hockey fans finally gets set right.

- Free Premium Web Content, which at the moment EA Sports has only announced this as it applies to FIFA’s Creation Centre. Although every aspect of this “Season Ticket” will apply to all 6 applicable games, which includes NHL 12. EA’s official website for the “Season Ticket” program states that “Access to premium web content for free from your PC or MAC. Provides you with the ability to alter your in-game experience.” So for now we can only speculate what exactly this might apply to for NHL 12… personally I’m hoping for something like an “advanced highlight editor” which would allow you to upload a ton of saved clips from NHL 12’s new Action Tracker feature, and then go online at the EA Sports website where you would log in, and then have the ability to take all of your uploaded clips. and edit them into an easy to share highlight reel. Although as I have just proven by going on EA’s site and messing with the new “replay” feature on there, something similar to this has already been implemented for all current EA Sports games… but as you can see from the clip I put together real quick, this could use some improvements, like better resolution, in-game sound, and more overall options, etc. So with that said, who knows what they might be thinking about for this Web Content for NHL 12… anyway, here is the clip I pieced together from a handful of saved highlights from NHL 10 & 11, along with some generic music provided by EA.

 

EA Sports: NHL 10-11 Highlight Test

Game footage recorded and edited by myself using in game and on site tools - hosed by EA Sports’ servers


Perhaps this free premium content will be additional server space to upload more files than the current limit, which is either around 5 or 6 clips per game title, I think. Similar to what Bungie did with Halo 3, when they released Bungie Pro, which was paid premium, that allowed you to increase your server space from 6 spots up to 25. However if this were to be the case with EA in NHL 12… I’m thinking they might let you do a lot more… like have longer overall clip length, and perhaps even record some kind of commentary as well… not to mention graphic overlays instead of just lame effects and transitions that are currently in place. Of course, something like this would likely cost something, unless you had this “Season Ticket”. One more thing on that by the way.

- The final feature of the “Season Ticket” program, is an “Exclusive Membership Recognition Badge” that will appear both in-game and online at EA’s Sports website. The website goes on to state that this badge will appear next to your Xbox Live Gamertag or PSN Network ID. Although I’ve had this “Season Ticket” for awhile now, and haven’t noticed anything special by my Gamertag, so I’m assuming this applies only when online in EA Sports games that support the Season Ticket. The fist of which will be Madden NFL 12, to be released later this month. I did notice this “badge” though, when messing around with my EA Profile on EA Sport’s website. It’s just a small little blue ticket-shaped icon that says “EA Sports” on it, and it appears on the site anywhere that my account name or Gamertag does.


So, you might be asking yourself, how do I get my hands on one of these “Season Tickets” so I can play NHL 12 early, get discounts on DLC, get free access to other web-based features that still remain unknown, and have a cool little icon next to my name in-game and on EA’s website? Well, it’s all pretty simple really. I will explain how it works for the Xbox 360 below.

1. Sign into your Xbox Live account on your Xbox 360 dashboard
2. Search for, and then download the free EA Sports app from Game Marketplace - or - for the time being, you can likely find it listed among the other featured things on the Game Marketplace section of the dashboard
3. Then go to your “Game Library” where the EA Sports ‘game’ will appear after you download it. Select it and then hit “Play Game”
4. After it loads up, you’ll see a bunch of menu options telling you all that you might want to know about the benefits of EA Sports “Season Ticket” program. From these menus, you can then purchase the Season Ticket for 2000 Microsoft points (about $25)

The process is very similar for PS3 users, just sign in your PSN profile, then search the PlayStation Store for the EA Sports Season Ticket, and agree to pay your $25.

I should note, that this is the only way to purchase the EA Sports Season Ticket. You have to do it though your system, as it cannot be done online over the internet.

These other facts are also worth a mention as well. The 2000 Microsoft points fee (aka $25) - is for a full years worth of the service. After that year is up, you will have to pay the same fee again for the next year, and this “year” goes by date of purchase. Also, the 20% discount does not apply to the early download of the full games, those cost their normal retail price of around $60 (plus tax I’m assuming).

Anyway, the last question that might be on your mind is… well, is it worth the money? My answer to that would be “yes” -  at least for myself. Mostly for the discount on the DLC alone, as I play goalie in the EASHL, which is arguably the hardest position to play in any sports game, and this year goalies will have to earn their own Legend cards, as only your games as goaltender will count towards your goalie Legend card. Skaters, which include all forward spots and defensemen, are a separate card system now. Which I’m actually very happy about, because that is how it should have always been, since the EASHL was first introduced back in NHL ‘09. I know that I’m going to need all the help I can get though, as playing goalie in the EASHL is a tough job, especially at the lower ranks, when you don’t have raw stats on your side, so the equipment boosts and slot boosts are well worth the money in my mind, but again, that’s just me. However, I’m always striving to improve my game and become a top goaltender in the league, as the people that can manage to put up numbers comparable to NHL goaltenders, are usually quite rare, and are all (for the most part) in the Top 100 on the EASHL Goalie Leaderboards.

That’s just in my case though… some of you might not care about this stuff, especially if you only have an interest in NHL 12’s offline modes. However, if you play a bunch of EA Sports games, and spend a lot of time in their online modes… then it’s definitely worth the extra money in my opinion.

 

Also, just a little side note here, not related to the Season Ticket. I’ve already mentioned this before, but it’s worth repeating, should you have happened to miss this news earlier.

For this upcoming season of NHL 12, I’ll only be covering the EASHL on the Xbox 360, as that is where the overwhelming majority of top teams and top players are. It used to be somewhat of a split community, but after a “PSN hacking incident” that I heard about either last year or the year before… nearly all of the top teams and players have migrated over to the 360, and thus, that is where the highest level of competition is at now. Outside of GameBattles, which is an online gaming tournament site that was acquired by the NHL of professional video gaming, if you will, Major League Gaming (or MLG for short) who has been around for nearly forever at this point, and is the most sought after and highly respected organization in the professional gaming community. As they have had several of their national “finals” tournaments televised in multiple countries. I’ll also be covering these “professional” NHL 12 Leagues on Xbox 360 as well. GameBattles, which I again feel I should remind people of, isn’t just some little affiliate of MLG. As Major League Gaming now owns as operates GB for the most part, as it is their platform for various other popular games that aren’t in the main MLG rotation, like Halo: Reach is, for example. Anyway, GB just recently opened up registration for players and teams for the upcoming season in NHL 12 for both Xbox 360 and PS3. However, those of you who may be interested in that, I suggest you hold off fro the time being, as I’ll have some future announcements coming out before NHL 12’s release date. These announcements are related to both the EASHL’s Clubs and GameBattles’ NHL 12 Teams, in regards to registered members of Kukla’s Korner. At least for the Xbox 360 anyway, which is all I’ll be covering, as I previously stated.

Don’t expect total coverage though, just consider it an extended part of my EASHL coverage in this blog, along with the CHL and NCAA Hockey. Speaking of which… I don’t think there will be an “Around the Leagues” update posted tomorrow (Sunday - when I first wrote this post at least). I have another post already in mind that I’d much rather write. Plus, I’ve been watching then news feeds… and there isn’t anything major going on, as is usual this time of year. That, and no one ever seems to read those things anyway… or at least no one read least week’s, apparently. Since I figured that the news about Michigan and OSU playing in an outdoor game this year would have gotten some people’s attention around here, and lead to at least one comment… but apparently not.


Moving on to the last part of this little mini-update though, as it’s getting late in the day (again).


The following clip has been posted up online, which is from yesterday’s Microsoft X’11 event in Toronto, where they showed off several of their upcoming games, such as NHL 12. As I mentioned in yesterday’s NHL 12 update, several NHL players, both past and present, had a chance to play the game for themselves. Usually this was done solo, or with NHL 12 Line Producer Sean Ramjagsingh (aka Rammer). However, one match-up happened to feature two members of two different generations, who also happen to be teammates on the new “Legends Team” in NHL 12… oh wait, I already gave this away in the title, why am I trying to surprise you with it now? Anyway, here is the video.

 

Footage via The Canadian Press - YouTube video via user Timbitsx


Just a few quick things to note about that clip. First, we got a lot better look at the “Legends Team” uniforms, as well as their logo, which can been seen at center ice during the live gameplay footage. Also, it’s worth taking note of the names of three (well - four really) more players that can be confirmed as current players included on this team. Sidney Crosby, Martian St. Louis, and Henrik Sedin. Since Henrik is there, we can assume Daniel will be too. The funny part though, if you watch carefully, Henrik Sedin is wearing number 23 as opposed to his usual 33… because on the Legends Team, that number belongs to Patrick Roy.


Alright, well, that does it for now, I’m off to go play some of the Madden NHL 12 demo actually, need a slight break from hockey, at least for a few hours, but expect another blog post tomorrow, one which will likely spark the start of a bunch of arguments and discussions among you readers. Thats part of the fun of this blog though… as I start doing some research, which makes me think “Hmm… maybe such and such a thing isn’t as bad as everyone thinks it really is” and then I feel compelled to express my opinions about it. So, until then… enjoy your the remainder of your weekend, because later tomorrow, (well later today actually, as it’s now past 1AM Eastern Time here in Michigan) I’m going to seriously start messing with your hockey brain on a particular subject that has gotten a bunch of talk here on Cluster Pucks’ comments section as of late…

 

Filed in: Fantasy Hockey and Gaming, Doug Miller, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ea+sports+nhl+12, ea+sports+season+ticket, jeremy+roenick, steven+stamkos

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

 

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