User Score
3.8

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 44 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 44
  2. Negative: 25 out of 44

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  1. May 8, 2018
    0
    This has to be the worst hockey game I ever played, I don't know why EA games are so different than each other, I mean... if you are going to focus everything on HUT, it should be atleast as good as FUT but is a complete mess, you are forced to go 3 4min periods in HUT even in single player tournaments...
  2. Jul 24, 2018
    2
    NHL 18 is an incredibly uneven game, particularly when playing in offline modes. Overall, the game is plagued with control issues and the AI — which has been problematic for years continues to be very broken. When playing against the CPU, it quite often seems as though the CPU is playing with very different playing mechanics than human controlled teams and this is part of the issue withNHL 18 is an incredibly uneven game, particularly when playing in offline modes. Overall, the game is plagued with control issues and the AI — which has been problematic for years continues to be very broken. When playing against the CPU, it quite often seems as though the CPU is playing with very different playing mechanics than human controlled teams and this is part of the issue with the AI, which has not truly adapted in years and leads to a cheap playing experience and not one that truly feels within the player’s control

    The only saving grace for me is that I have been playing via EA access and didn’t have to actually buy this game. I will also say that reviewers who continually give games like this a passing grade only underscore what is wrong with gaming “media”. NhL 18 shouldn’t be getting above an average score of 5 in even the most optimistic reviews. To continually support it with positive reviews does a disservice to the medium of sports gaming and precludes the possibility of a company like EA Fromm ever improving their product in a meaningful way

    This product has been broken and simple for years. It’s time to expect more as a community

    Positives:
    - Creation Modes
    - Graphics and Cutscenes
    - Updated Rosters

    Challenges
    - Core Gameplay (especially offline v. the CPU)
    - AI
    - The AI again, because it is THAT BAD
    - Lifeless, redundant commentary
    - EA, an unchanging, unevolving monster that should be chemically neutered and then be immediately put to sleep and incinerated so that no clown can possibly clone something from the carcass
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  3. Jan 4, 2018
    3
    EA Sports has continued to focus on money generating, micro-transaction based game modes like ultimate team. By doing so, they have made no real improvements to my personal two favourite game modes: Be a GM and Be a Pro. The gameplay has not really changed since last year with the exception of a few minor deking and defensive mechanics added to the game. NHL Threes is a good a change butEA Sports has continued to focus on money generating, micro-transaction based game modes like ultimate team. By doing so, they have made no real improvements to my personal two favourite game modes: Be a GM and Be a Pro. The gameplay has not really changed since last year with the exception of a few minor deking and defensive mechanics added to the game. NHL Threes is a good a change but the excitement wears out quickly. My favourite addition to this game is the ability to create an expansion team in Be a GM. However, this feature is rather basic and is the only real change from year to year in the Be a Gm game mode. I have purchased an EA NHL game since NHL 98 on PS1. Unfortunately, until I see efforts to make offline game modes more engaging and immersive, I will not be purchasing anymore EA NHL games. Expand
  4. Nov 5, 2017
    0
    New moves, more things that goes wrong. All you need to do i use the poke check as much as you can and shoot when you get in the zone. Nothing has changed the last years in this franchise
  5. Mar 2, 2018
    0
    How does EA get away with ignoring everyone?
    What is the logic behind continually releasing new NHL titles each year having not addressed lingering issues from years passed?
    Greed, greed and more greed.
    I don't have the words ... shame on you Eectronic Arts
  6. Feb 20, 2018
    0
    Worse game ever without a doubt! Not sure how EA does it however every update the game just gets worse! how does this happen!in EASHL you can only pass, shoot, skate faster, hit, control or pick up pucks, make plays if the momentum is with your team otherwise none of this will work!

    In GM Mode it is very slow in simulating and unrealistic with garbage contracts based on a rating rather
    Worse game ever without a doubt! Not sure how EA does it however every update the game just gets worse! how does this happen!in EASHL you can only pass, shoot, skate faster, hit, control or pick up pucks, make plays if the momentum is with your team otherwise none of this will work!

    In GM Mode it is very slow in simulating and unrealistic with garbage contracts based on a rating rather then their seasons point production....so in otherwords if you have a player rated a 90 lets say a center, he is automatically gonna be hard to sign with the salary cap even though he might be a 20-30 point player... garbage! Also in GM mode it takes 10 years to set up lines for players to return after simulating 1 day to having to start all over again because you cant save lines! you should be able to edit attibutes in gm mode, over-ride trades (its a video game should be fun to stack teams), should be able to pick the 8 exhibition games of any league you wanna play, should have rookie tournaments, rosters should be larger and should have ECHL affiliates and option to play that league, should even have the world championships every year in gm mode by now! it isnt 1990 anymore!

    EASHL is the worse gameplay i have ever seen in my life, players cant pass 5 feet to a player beside them! all the skaters skate like zombies!, Your USER and teammates cant control loose pucks, will constantly lose pucks from poke checks 15 feet away from the players! The computers A.i just skates near you and takes the puck away without any effort at all as if he's a magnit! Your USER and Teammates will lose pucks for no reason at all just cuz they held onto the puck 3-5 seconds or itll force him to make an awful pass. EA skates your user away from loose pucks when wide open nets and hits! 1-2 second delays to get shots off however the others team reaction time is perfect, A.i are completely retarded on your team however the other teams is perfect making perfect backhand passes every time right through USERS! You cant take passing lanes away or anything! why bother diving to take passing lane away when the puck just goes through your USER as slow as it does (plus you are more likely to get a penalty anyways as a player will just stumble over you!) There are shields around hits, the puck physics are pure horseshiit! players and teams who play hockey right will more then likely lose! EA will skate your USER right into teammates, hits and a crowd of players on purpose! When you do finally give off a hit or whack the puck off of the opponents stick the puck somehow always land on that opponents stick for open nets or break-aways. There is 200 by 85 feet of open ice however this game acts like there is only 2 directions to pin point anything! example is killing a penalty so you skate behind your goal to let the opponent chase and forcheck, but for some reason when the pressure is on my USER opponents will somehow always pick off that puck before we clear it...since my player cant make a pass or use the glass to clear if or icing or %90 of the time you dump the puck out it'll go over your own glass for a penalty as well! This game is just way to slow, choppy, glitchy...garbage game!

    Until the ea fan boys who suck ea's ass stop waisting money on this broken game which is sold at $80 canadian, this game will never be fixed! if the gameplay sucks the game will always suck! EA only cares about the coin they make in hut while its the same for the garbage game of fifa with its money grab fut! Anybody who has ever played ice hockey will know that this game will suck! this isnt hockey at all! More like a bunch of zombies skating around at the same speed! EA needs to learn that NHL players do avoid collisions! They can make passes! 5 foot passes or 45 foot passes, they can hit any time, they can forcheck any given time! This game is simply the worse pile of shiit along with nhl 16, nhl 15, nhl 14, nhl 13, nhl 12, nhl 11, nhl 10! thats right...every game in which Sean Ramjagsingh has takened over! Get rid of your garbage prestige passing! learn that players can control the puck longer then your 2-3 seconds without losing the puck! players can go at full speed, medium speed or even slow speed to trail plays! Man fix this garbage game! Us Canadians try so hard to love this game but how so when you play your first game and 20 seconds later you are ready to smash controllers! Get rid of your garbage ice-tilts and momentum which has ruined these games for the pass 10 years! this game should be fun! Like they used to be not like this garbage in NHL 18 with stupid garbage puck physics! Brutal game and Sean you should be fired! just quit while you are ahead!
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  7. Nov 28, 2017
    1
    I honestly don't know where to start with this game, there's so much wrong with it, and the worst part about all these problems is that they have been in the game for years now. While there are some highlights this year, there are just way too many problems for this game to even exist and justify an $80 (CAD) price tag. I got this game recently on EA Access for 50% off in their "We are wayI honestly don't know where to start with this game, there's so much wrong with it, and the worst part about all these problems is that they have been in the game for years now. While there are some highlights this year, there are just way too many problems for this game to even exist and justify an $80 (CAD) price tag. I got this game recently on EA Access for 50% off in their "We are way below selling expectations" panic sale, and I still feel like I overpaid for this product.

    I have played this franchise since NHL 99 and have admittedly enjoyed the instalments over the years as they all had their own little innovations year over year that made me continue to buy them, unfortunately this only applies to the generation before Xbox 360 and PS3. This past decade has brought little to no innovation since NHL 07's skill stick and control switch. NHL 13 boasted true performance skating and it was a disaster (still is), and NHL 15 brought the NBC broadcast scheme for games, beyond those two "updates", I cannot remember a single innovation that would even qualify for having the ability to entice players to try the game, and that in itself is a stretch.

    This is actually sad at this point because I do not see this franchise going much further at this rate, sales figures are way down, well below expectations, I am almost sure there have been firings over in Burnaby, and EA will have to make a tough decision on its NHL sim soon.

    But, at the same time, I cannot feel sorry for them at all, year after year, this game has literally just become a roster update for the full price of a new game. People have complained about problems and bugs in the game on EA's self help website and none of the issues have been addressed. On top of that, there are more bugs and glitches in this game which can be considered "game-breaking" like taking away goals, adding minutes, and looping faceoffs that halt the game from advancing.

    Pros:

    - NHL Threes is a fun mode that offers a bit of novelty
    - The defensive skill stick is a nice addition
    - At least it has another soundtrack this year for the menu

    Cons:

    - Game breaking bugs and glitches
    - Game play feels identical to NHL 13 and has for years
    - Goals are scored the exact same way as all the previous entries (one-timers, break aways etc.)
    - Poke checking is horribly over powered
    - Menu layout is basic and boring
    - Soundtrack does not have enough songs
    - NBCSN commentary and scheme is stale, boring, and littered with advertising
    - HUT mode is the only focus as it is micro-transaction based, yet it has horrifically inconsistent outcomes as a result of momentum and "tilt", they could not even get the sinister P2W system right
    - True performance skating is terrible as ever, stopping and starting as well as turning sharp makes players look like they belong in the Timbits league
    - The new one touch dekes are unnecessary and have somehow made the normal dekes from previous year completely broken for some players
    - Absolutely no changes or updates to the EASHL which most likely saved this game from bankruptcy, only reason I can think of is because it does not generate extra revenue, much like the be a pro, and franchise modes, which also suffer from lack of updates

    A.I. is absolutely atrocious for both your team and the opposition, there is literally no balance here, your A.I. teammates will not be able to make simple "hockey plays", their movement is broken, they are rarely ever in the correct position, they constantly get in your way, they will almost never be in position on the blue line resulting in offsides and some of the most difficult D to D passing plays ever. While on the other side, the computer A.I. (mostly in franchise and offline) can keep the puck away from you with their picture perfect passing and invisible shield bubbles that stop you from making contact with them, all while it becomes an absolute swiss cheese goal fest on your goalie for them on All Star & Superstar difficulty. There is literally no balance whatsoever to make these difficulties challenging, but fair. I should not have to tamper with every single slider to make the game even remotely playable.

    All of these negatives would constitute a rating of zero, which some users have evidently given and I completely understand that, but to me, they did add a fun mode in NHL Threes which is enough for me to give this game a 1 (10%) rating.

    I am sorry to say this but EA has absolutely failed this game and this franchise, you guys have done absolutely nothing to advance this series since 2012, and that change was for the worse. This game should not be full price, at best it should be a $10 update, there is absolutely nothing in this game in the way of innovation to justify the full price tag. Sean Ramjagsingh has to go, along with everyone who follows him before you absolutely destroy the only NHL sim on the market for good. Wake up EA, you are the cancer of the gaming industry.
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  8. Oct 6, 2017
    0
    The AI in this game is horrible its like you got a bunch of learn to play hockey teammates on your team. The HUT game mode is basically pay to win. The HUT online season is a joke, the match making sucks you get matched against a lot higher ranked opponents. The games are not realistic at all its basically who is better at poke checking the whole game. Invisible shield on players that areThe AI in this game is horrible its like you got a bunch of learn to play hockey teammates on your team. The HUT game mode is basically pay to win. The HUT online season is a joke, the match making sucks you get matched against a lot higher ranked opponents. The games are not realistic at all its basically who is better at poke checking the whole game. Invisible shield on players that are hard to knock off the puck. Out of all the sports games it has to be the least realistic. The game is garbage. Expand
  9. Nov 25, 2017
    0
    Waste of money. Worst sport game ever. Pay money and buy expensive players f you want to win games. Stay away. Games are scripted, no matter how better you are than AI, if you don't pay money for players the AI scores 3 goals in 3 seconds
  10. Oct 11, 2017
    7
    NHL 18 is a game that is maddeningly close to being superb. It is undoubtedly a game that suffers from not having any form of competition and as a result this highlights its flaws. In terms of gameplay, it's basically cut and paste from NHL 17. Puck pickups, player physics and poke checking are still not up to scratch, you'll often find yourself going in circles to pick up a loose puck andNHL 18 is a game that is maddeningly close to being superb. It is undoubtedly a game that suffers from not having any form of competition and as a result this highlights its flaws. In terms of gameplay, it's basically cut and paste from NHL 17. Puck pickups, player physics and poke checking are still not up to scratch, you'll often find yourself going in circles to pick up a loose puck and get pinned to the boards by the opposition from ridiculous distances. Goalies still make odd decisions in terms of positioning and saves and faceoffs still feel very much like a game of chance rather than actual skill.

    However, the gameplay does some things incredibly well. It's still immensely satisfying to use the hit stick, it's still rewarding to ping a one timer and work a scenario for a tip in. Powerplays (I play 4 mins a period with real time powerplays) can be extremely frenetic and fun to play and dekes are as fun as ever.

    However, evidence of developer complacency is demonstrated in lazy recycling of celebrations, commentary and crowd effects. Sports games are inherently linked to the atmosphere of the sport, so it would be great to see full bench/team celebrations for crucial goals, or a half empty arena if you're up 4-5 on the road. (and not just at Florida Panthers). Some new angles for goal replays add a little, but it's not enough to justify a completely new game in terms of presentation. Menus feel a bit stiff and I miss the team specific menu that was present in NHL 17. These are things that could be cleared and tidied in a short space of time, so again it's evidence of EA's laziness, simply because they don't have a competitor for hockey games.

    In terms of modes, as a British hockey fan the addition of Champions Hockey League and my beloved Nottingham Panthers is a hugely positive step, and it's a remarkably fun and novel mode to play with a unique format. So good marks there NHL. However Franchise mode feels rehashed again, and new menus don't detract from the fact it's still pretty much identical to NHL 17. There are still no suspensions for ejection or dirty hits, and there is no incentive to rotate players on rosters. Some youth players still grow stupidly quick, while others with supposedly higher potential stagnate. However scouting remains fun, I drafted a 17 year old from Sweden scheduled for 4th round pick, yet by the end of his first season he was 82 overall and still growing. This encapsulates a positive and negative, the positive is ability to find stars, the negative is the instant gratification without the feeling you're really developing a player. I still find Franchise Mode enjoyable however, but EA need to learn that the ability to offer contracts mid-season is not a feature to bring to market. With some minor tweaking (such as the ability to hire coaches, lead training sessions, play prospects in your team off against each other) franchise mode could become the all encompassing mode it should be.

    Be a Pro mode is the biggest victim of EA's complacency, nothing is new in the mode. In 2009 this kind of mode was revolutionary, but now given 2K, Fifa's The Journey and now Long Shot in Madden, Be a Pro looks tired. The rookie season is still immensely fun, but there is genuine frustration when you lead to league by 30 points and get drafted 49th overall. Again the lack of realism harms the game. After that the progression to NHL is fast, but you never really feel the threat of being moved down, which you should do if you fail to perform. My biggest problem is still the lack of the All-Star games, what the hell is the point of mentioning it on the calendar and the infamous "Hockey Analyst" if you don't get to play it? On that note, a better news and social feed would greatly benefit both Franchise Mode and Be a Pro.

    Online play is exactly the same, other than the addition of European players, so there's not really too much to say. 3s was billed as this fun mode that you'd want to pick up and play a lot, but the problem is it just feels 3 on 3 OT with a smaller rink, skill is not rewarded and if you have a sniper you'll win. For me it grew stale pretty quickly.

    So, in conclusion, it's not without it's issues, but NHL18 is still immensely fun to play from my point of view. Whether this is emphasised by the lack of a competitor remains to be seen, but until that point it's still the best we have, even if that is by default. EA's inability to come up with novel presentation and a lack of attention to detail holds the game back from greatness, and like a great man once said "you miss 100% of the shots you don't take"....so EA....take a shot once in a while it might work wonders.
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  11. Oct 24, 2017
    5
    Terrible AI both in your team and opposing team, in HUT why bother with ratings when a team in the 60's plays like world beaters? They are able to stop and deke on a dime while you float way past unable to pull up allowing open ice for the opposing AI to skate without you able to do anything about it. One word frustation.
  12. Mar 15, 2018
    5
    This game is fun, like every other NHL, but it's appropriate to say that EA's NHL franchise' is melting ice.
  13. Nov 18, 2017
    6
    EA is on a mission to make money and disrespect all it's consumers. The pay to play paradigm may work for the Clintons...but it has no place in video game sports. Everyone should be on the same level...instead EA allows HUT players to purchase million dollar teams...making HUT completely worthless unless you have millions of dollars to spend on players. What next pay for in game goals?
  14. Sep 27, 2017
    8
    After watching and reading some reviews about NHL 18 i was thinking about skipping this one. But then I decided to buy it and give it a chance. And then I was a liite surprised. Yes - the presentation is still like NHL 17 ...but there are more camera angles and they give some new kind of cool views. The Gameplay feels not new at all, but its clearly not the same as NHL 17. The defenseAfter watching and reading some reviews about NHL 18 i was thinking about skipping this one. But then I decided to buy it and give it a chance. And then I was a liite surprised. Yes - the presentation is still like NHL 17 ...but there are more camera angles and they give some new kind of cool views. The Gameplay feels not new at all, but its clearly not the same as NHL 17. The defense skill stick is a really cool feature. There are also new movements that I've never seen in NHL 17.

    Yes the steps are small in this years NHL - but there are many new things in detail that makes this game cool. I don't regret that i buyed it anyways. I had some funny hours gameplay. Its more than just an update. But as said - the changes are in detail. But they're making the game more fun.
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  15. Jun 16, 2018
    10
    Awesome! I own a PC and after becoming a hardcore hockey fan this year was SAD to see there is no PC version of this game or any real hockey game for that matter... I read a lot of reviews on here and was very doubtful I would be buying or playing NHL 18... but I was obsessed... So I went out and bought an Xbox One and NHL18. So much money for one game considering everything else InplayAwesome! I own a PC and after becoming a hardcore hockey fan this year was SAD to see there is no PC version of this game or any real hockey game for that matter... I read a lot of reviews on here and was very doubtful I would be buying or playing NHL 18... but I was obsessed... So I went out and bought an Xbox One and NHL18. So much money for one game considering everything else Inplay will be on PC... COULDN'T BE HAPPIER! All these bad reviews are from jaded players that have been playing NHL series for years. Fair enough. I get that perspective... but if you’re just a hockey fan looking to play a hockey game then this game is AMAZING! Don’t think, just buy and enjoy the hell out of it! Expand
  16. Aug 11, 2018
    6
    having played nhl 09 for 2 years nearly every day when it came out i fell in love with nhl. i purchased nhl 12 and was disappointed. i picked up nhl 18 this year on sale and gameplay wise i feel like I'm back on nhl 12. Ie it's the same game. The ai is broken and all you need to do to win is poke check. The sliders are also broken which makes getting the easy achievements that normallyhaving played nhl 09 for 2 years nearly every day when it came out i fell in love with nhl. i purchased nhl 12 and was disappointed. i picked up nhl 18 this year on sale and gameplay wise i feel like I'm back on nhl 12. Ie it's the same game. The ai is broken and all you need to do to win is poke check. The sliders are also broken which makes getting the easy achievements that normally take 5 mins max over an hour. The game was fun for first hour or so but gets extremely boring. Biggest selling point is the soundtrack which is really good Expand
  17. Aug 17, 2018
    0
    When NHL 15 hit, sports games as we knew it died. Now everything is full of lootboxes and all of it feels like another roster update. If you think a subscription will make things great, well then there will probably be no updates, and by a couple of months you will run out of things to do. There is no hope, 2K can make a comeback, but with EA, the magic of 94 to 14 is gone
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. Oct 12, 2017
    90
    NHL 18 will satisfy hockey fans; that goes without saying. Its real achievement though is in its design, which will seamlessly teach and assist a player who knows nothing about hockey. They’re likely to stick around too, because as it turns out, hockey is a blast in videogame form.
  2. Oct 11, 2017
    75
    The new NHL Threes mode is fun and takes up a lot of time without getting boring. The Training Camp also stands out from similar modes in other games. The graphics and weird behavior of the AI sometimes could have been better, but NFL is still a good game.
  3. Oct 6, 2017
    75
    NHL 18 introduces some welcome novelties in the Threes and Training Camp mode, but it ultimately feels too similar to the previous game.