Generally favorable reviews - based on 22 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 22
  2. Negative: 0 out of 22
Buy On
  1. Sep 23, 2012
    Overall, it can be said that NHL 13 is the best iteration of the franchise to date, and probably the best sports game I have ever played.
  2. PSM3 Magazine UK
    Oct 23, 2012
    Think pinball FIFA and you're halfway there. A fast, frantic sports sim, with simple controls that belie hidden depths. [Dec 2012, p.104]
  3. Playstation: The Official Magazine (US)
    Sep 20, 2012
    When a series' 13th installment leaves us amazed with its highlight moments and has us playing all-nighters again, it's an easy pick-up-call. [Nov 2012, p.86]
  4. Sep 17, 2012
    A must have for the fans, a solid recommendation for newcomers. The best ice hockey game yet.
  5. 90
    One of the highly touted parts of NHL 13 was the boost up in the game's artificial intelligence. AI-controlled skaters now move to more natural positions on the ice, anticipating plays and moving to a spot on the ice that actually makes sense.
  6. Sep 10, 2012
    Another brilliant package, once again. A very serious contender for sports game of the year.
  7. Sep 18, 2012
    NHL 13 has definitely improved in all important areas from last year. You get better presentation, better AI and a better overall experience. NHL fans will love this game.
  8. Sep 13, 2012
    The game feels like a healthy upgrade and a new dawn for this franchise. While there are still some minor issues that hold back NHL 13 including jerky animations and some odd bugs, but this is easily the best NHL title I've played in some time.
  9. Oct 10, 2012
    NHL 13, at its most basic level, is just fun to play when you get right down to it, even for someone who might only watch hockey during the playoffs and Olympics, or not at all.
  10. Oct 8, 2012
    EA Sports raises the bar again with NHL 13. Gamers who are looking for a marvelous game of ice hockey, and much more, don't have to look further. NHL 13 is the best you can get at the moment.
  11. Sep 13, 2012
    The manual boost results not only in a more dynamic offense, but forces you to anticipate on defense. With the enhanced mechanics and the improved AI there's no way around NHL 13 if you're remotely interested in this sport.
  12. Sep 11, 2012
    A fun, engaging and deep iteration of the world's best sport.
  13. Sep 26, 2012
    NHL fans won't get live season this year, but they shouldn't be disappointed by NHL 13 anyway; the quality is still there, even though the collision sometimes lack precision. The updated skating engine allows for more finesse in the gameplay, and that's a superb addition.
  14. 80
    EA Canada has made a solid game with an improved physics system that will serve well as a foundation in the coming years. If we don't get a proper NHL season on TV this year, NHL 13 is a competent substitute.
  15. Sep 18, 2012
    A big stumble forward as the new and greatly improved skating is slightly crippled by physics engine being slightly off. Smarter goalies and better stick checking makes for an improved defense, but not on behalf of goal scoring. Be a GM Connected is the real revolution and could render the looming lockout just a shrug.
  16. 80
    EA Sports takes its NHL series in a more realistic direction with a new skating system. While it's accompanied by some other authentic hockey features, it may turn off casual fans as they struggle to adapt to a slower game.
  17. Sep 11, 2012
    NHL 13 adds some great new skating physics and smarter AI, although you've already seen a lot of what the game has to offer.
  18. Sep 11, 2012
    Like its namesake league, NHL 13's stellar on-ice product is compromised by the questionable decisions of the men at the top. I've never had more fun competing between whistles, but once you skate off the ice and take a seat as the general manager, the poor AI driving the other teams breaks the fantasy.
  19. NHL 13's a hockey fan's dream in many ways, pursuing realism and depth at the expense of newcomer accessibility. It's still a few good ideas away from the elite sports franchises, but I'll be tweaking tactics, refining rosters and racing against icing calls right up until 14 laces its skates.
  20. Official PlayStation Magazine Benelux
    Oct 1, 2012
    Build Your AI is an ever so important feature for any couch strategist wanting to lead his favourite team to the Stanley Cup. You can adjust your team's approach line by line. If you have a couple of fast wingers, it might be a good idea to dump the puck from the back. [October 2012, p.76]
  21. Nov 10, 2012
    All in all, NHL '13 is another solid game as we would come to expect from EA Sports; some areas for improvement that I would like to see personally but otherwise not a horrible way to spend the lockout.
  22. Play UK
    Oct 2, 2012
    This does just feel like a slight adjustment over NHL 12, which felt like a minor tinkering of NHL, which... well, you get the point. [Issue#223, p.85]
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 62 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 62
  2. Negative: 12 out of 62
  1. Sep 18, 2012
    Avoid at all costs! Easily the worst edition released in years. I've been playing it often hoping I'd get over it's flaws but it's impossible.Avoid at all costs! Easily the worst edition released in years. I've been playing it often hoping I'd get over it's flaws but it's impossible. The game play is much slower - just turning your player feels like a chore, handling your dman in your own zone is extremely frustrating - you're better off just standing in one place as a defensemen instead of moving into the corners where you're guaranteed to be blown by..I cannot stress this enough they have butchered this aspect of the game, one click boost is a bad gimmick, stick lift is useless, poke checking has changed a bit but I've gotten the timing down, etc. Some positives: goaltender movement and reactions have improved IMO, players automatically skating backwards is neat...that's all I can think of. I'm a hockey fanatic and have gotten EA NHL titles every year so it's not like I'm just entering the series. This is a TRASH title, EA. Full Review »
  2. Sep 13, 2012
    Does the new skating system take a little fun out of the game? Maybe for casual players but most hockey fans are hardcore and want a realisticDoes the new skating system take a little fun out of the game? Maybe for casual players but most hockey fans are hardcore and want a realistic gaming experience. The checking system in nhl12 was good,NHL 13 has to fix the games biggest flaw,checking is soooo bad. My biggest complaint is the ps3 online games. Very,very bad all around so far,ill stick with it but going to ps3 from Xbox last year,its very dissapointing. Full Review »
  3. Sep 22, 2012
    I've amended my score from a 8 to a 6 because after one short week EA decided they did not have enough faith in the new play engine and theyI've amended my score from a 8 to a 6 because after one short week EA decided they did not have enough faith in the new play engine and they toggled gameplay as close to last years version as much as possible. With that comes the horrid momentum engine which abolishes the whole meaning behind the stats of each player. So now players all feel the same again and the game is no longer hockey. Avoid this game it is now no more than a roster change from NHL12 with slightly more animated goalies. My old review was as follows:

    NHL 13 is an extreme evolution over both NHL 11 and NHL 12. I must admit I got my wish they have decided to remove the horrid momentum engine from previous NHL's and just rely on stats of each individual player. When you crack open this game you can really feel the difference between the individual players, no longer are they all the same and controlled by some fake momentum engine which controls the big picture. Now, you are fully in control of building your "RPG" team, do you decide to go with quick and nimble players who will get pushed around or do you go with slow moving brutes. At least this year the game has allowed you to be in control of what happens on the ice and as a player strategy and vision will be key. EA has definately headed in the right direction and this is a must own. I'm not prepared to give this game higher than 8 at the moment however because the game does show some typical problems of EA rushing out games. I'm an owner of the Stanley cup collectors edition and it came with codes for packs, both codes say they were successful but packs are not anywhere to be found. You also get EA pucks for logging in daily and logging in today, the second day, free pucks are not given out. There also seems to be a bit of a problem with AI receiving the puck. For a rebuilt engine it is frustrating that some design remnants of past versions exist. Now that they made the players individual again, it was not necessary to keep some patch scripting from previous editions. All in all though this is a solid title. It stands out alone from any past version of NHL and I can tell you NHL 11 and NHL 12 in my house just became dust collectors, because this version EA succeeded in making gameplay the most important aspect and this year it is fully in the players control. You now can make a grinding team or an elite team which can skate fast but thats about it, or any type of team your heart desires. For this I am gratified towards EA. I always thought the game should be tuned by the players stats and go from there, and that is exactly what has been built. No longer will it be possible to make a player like Chara a dangling machine or St. Louis a powerhous checker. In this version the name on the back of the sweater will be believable. Hopefully balancing remains throughout the year but for now it does seem what I would expect and I am proud to say I am on board with this years similation (so far). Room does exist for improvement, it seems fighting is now gone (i could be mistaken) and the arenas look like a high school dance rather than a packed coliseum. But gameplay is key for my beyond anything else and clearly this game shines in that area.
    Full Review »