If you’ll excuse me, I’m just gonna go ahead and stare at that for a while.12 Comments
If you’ll excuse me, I’m just gonna go ahead and stare at that for a while.12 Comments
So I spent a good chunk of yesterday playing NHL 15 and I have no idea how to review it. I was tempted to just give the thing a 10 sight unseen because the promo videos looked so good, but that would make me a blind consumerist [Exclusive Apple Watch Review: 10!]. The way I see it, there are two types of NHL players, and therefore, there needs to be two reviews.
If you’re like me and don’t have the time or patience to play a 30-season franchise, or guide a created player from infancy to Flyers Ambassador, or rule a multiplayer online Matrix, and just want to play – online or off – casually and against friends, then you’ll love the game. The graphics, presentation and, most importantly, gameplay are outstanding. Never has so much attention been paid to detail in a hockey game (I’m pretty sure the Wells Fargo Center actually includes the retractable risers behind each net). The controls and feel of the game are familiar, but it’s crazy realistic, and the new puck and player physics will allow for maybe unprecedented variety. I feel like you could play this game for a year and still see new types of goal (deflections, tipped pucks, scrambles in front of the net, etc.). There are few sports video games that accomplish this. FIFA is a great game, but, at least in the current version, there seems to be a finite number of ways to score, and goals start to look and feel repetitive (it sounds like the new version is improving this area). That’s not the case with NHL 15– every game, every play feels unique. There is of course an element of randomness with all of this that makes it feel like you have less control than before… but that’s realism, for better or worse. When you do pull off a great move or set up a great play – like that gorgeous Read goal – you feel like you’ve earned it. Gone are the days of defying the laws of physics by cutting on a dime (two dimes?) or setting up one-timers all over the place. Your players… actually have to be in shooting position. I really do get the sense that this will be one of those games that the longer you play, the more you’ll appreciate it. It’s fun, and from a gameplay and graphics standpoint, it delivers. 8.8.
Most reviews are coming in well below mine, however. There’s no sense in rounding them all up, because the consensus amounts to: Great gameplay, horrifying lack of modes. Here’s a screenshot from Operation Sports of what’s not in the game:
That’s… a lot. And some of those things are basic, mundane features (three stars?) that have been in games since Sega (SEGA!). To his credit, the game’s lead producer, Sean Ramjagsingh – RAMMER! – posted an update on Operation Sports and outlined the modes that will be added, including playoffs and online team play.
Basically, depending on how much you play these modes or rely on these features, your score will vary. Start with an 8.8 for gameplay and work backwards from there.18 Comments
Flyers left wing Zac Rinaldo has signed a two-year extension on his contract one year after signing a two-year extension on his contract. From Kyle, who’s too busy lambasting Donovan McNabb at the moment: Yes, because the top priority of any GM, especially one touting his use of analytics, should be to extend your lunatic goon when there’s absolutely no reason to do so (!!!). Even Rinaldo can’t fucking believe his good fortune: “I’m surprised that we’d even started to talk about it so early, but I am thrilled.” Some things never change.
Elsewhere in things never change land: CHANGE! Tonight, Phillies prospect Maikel Franco will start, batting 7th and playing third base. Franco, who has been the subject of many “Why aren’t they bringing him up?” cries for some time now, has the expanded rosters to thank for his call-up. We’ve got no idea what Franco has at the Major League level, but tonight he becomes the youngest position player to debut for the Phils since Jimmy Rollins.
And over in “everything is always changing” land, the 76ers are reportedly looking at Australian forward Joe Ingles. Coach Brett Brown knows Australian basketball from coaching the national team, so it’s no surprise they’re looking in that direction. The 26-year-old Ingles is currently playing for the national squad in the FIBA World Cup, where he is averaging 14.5 points and shooting 75% from the floor in two games. According to Liberty Ballers, Ingles has played four seasons in Spain, and in Tel Aviv in 2013. He’d likely come very cheap, which is the only word Sam Hinkie heard in this whole conversation.6 Comments
Mark Madden, a Pittsburgh sports radio jock who only tweets pictures of porn stars and desserts, is selling that incredibly stupid shirt above on Etsy. That’s right, Etsy, the same place that person you know (definitely not you) gets handmade greeting cards and jewelry. There’s a number of things wrong with this shirt, starting with the shitty Hanes Comfortblend it’s printed on. Then, there’s the use of the Flyers colors — printing it in say Yellow and Black would at least obviously say that you are anti-Flyers and make it less awkward to wear to a game — and the Flyers name, which is just begging for a cease and desist order. Finally, hashtags look stupid enough on Twitter, so let’s keep them off of our goddamn t-shirts where they serve no purpose.
Also, the route of attacking a franchise’s history instead of what they are right now is always the cowardly way. Unless it’s the Mets. The Mets are always fair game.
h/t reader Rudolph24 Comments
Today, a person wondered if the Flyers’ new alternate jersey will actually be their 2012 Winter Classic jersey. Here’s that thought, undoubtedly told in a hushed tone, perhaps you’d even call it a whisper*:
Among them [at the Skate Zone] was Zac Rinaldo, wearing black pants with an orange stripe down the side and many players donned black helmets, which had cream-colored numbers and an orange outline. Usually, the Flyers wear solid black pants and the black helmets have solid white numbers on them.
In the locker room, the striped pants hung in most players’ stalls with the cream-numbered helmets above. In all likelihood, this is part of the Flyers’ new alternate kits this season. .
Shh. As I murmured quietly last month: I bet the Flyers’ new third jerseys are the Winter Classic jerseys from 2012.
Those robots will be here any day now, and even they’ll know that kits is a soccer word.
*That’s how Dave cites reports nowadays:
#Flyers formally announce what's been whispered for a while. Coatsey back to radio and Chris Therien to TV.
— Dave Isaac (@davegisaac) August 27, 2014
Goodbye, my ladies.
Earlier today, Flyers ice girl Erika Choi Smith tweeted that the team will be getting rid of ice girls for the upcoming season and presumably for the foreseeable future now that Comcast is fully running the show. Credit to Flyers Nation for injecting it into our timelines:
In the hours since this unfortunate revelation, there has been other ice girl chatter* online confirming the news.
There’s no specific reason why, but we can assume that lunatic fans in San Jose protesting the Sharks’ ice girl uniforms (and the ensuing media attention that got) and a former Flyers ice girl – whom another former Flyers ice girl referred to as “a twat” on Facebook today – complaining to Mother Jones that working conditions were sub-par were contributing factors. The fFig, who wanted to form an ice girls union, alleged that ice girls were mistreated, told not to eat on the job, too cold standing near the Wells Fargo Center doors, and paid poorly ($50 per game). Of course, the counter to her argument is: YOU VOLUNTARILY SIGNED UP TO BE AN ICE GIRL!
Whatever the case, the Flyers won’t have ice girls this year. Good news: the playing surface will remain frozen. Bad news: nothing to stare at every five fucking minutes because the league insists on cleaning ice that doesn’t really need to be cleaned.
The Flyers have not yet officially confirmed the news, but if they release a statement that says: “We got 99 problems and now a bitch ain’t one,” I promise not to write anything negative about the team for the entire 2014-2015 season.
*I go deep web on days like today.35 Comments
The Flyers and CSN also announced a change to their broadcast teams. Former Flyers defenseman Chris Therien will move from the radio broadcast to the Comcast SportsNet television broadcast crew and will serve as the inside-the-glass ice-level reporter for Flyers game broadcasts, joining the team of Jim Jackson, Keith Jones and Bill Clement. Steve Coates, a 32-year veteran of Flyers TV and radio broadcasts, will return to the radio booth to handle color commentary alongside play-by-play voice Tim Saunders on the Flyers Radio Network.
I think Bundy’s great, and I’m looking forward to this. Just gotta keep that raw emotion while rinkside.9 Comments
Free agent RW Brett Hextall(#52 above) has been signed to an AHL contract with the Phantoms for this upcoming season. Hextall was born in Philadelphia while his father was working in the city, doing something or other. The 26-year-old Hextall, whose name sounds familiar but I really can’t place why, played the last three season for the Portland Pirates where he had his best season last year, notching 11 goals, 12 assists, and 83 penalty minutes in 50 games. With the Phantoms, Hextall will play under Terry Murray, who coincidentally coached a different guy named Hextall with the Flyers from 1994 to 1997. That’s probably something he can discuss with his new coach as a way to break the awkwardness. Once a Flyer, always a Flyer.9 Comments