Photo: @EASportsNHL

On September 9th, EA Sports will release the latest edition of their hockey franchise, NHL15. With the game jumping up to the more-powerful Xbox One and Playstation 4 consoles this year, video game designers at Electronic Arts could finally push some parts of the franchise that have been lagging for a long time.

For Washington Capitals fans, that means an impeccably designed Verizon Center, the Rock The Red logo literally everywhere, and a few pesky Penguins fans invading the arena during rivalry games.

But first, let’s see how realistic their model of Verizon Center really is.

Photo: Chris Gordon

Wow. The only things I can notice off, and I’m nitpicking here, are:

  • The main scoreboard design that tells you the score is actually from a few years ago.
  • The Rock The Red video animations are old.
  • The white banners, which in real life are dedicated to the Wizards, are now Southeast Division Champion banners.
  • The font used on the Capitals’ retired numbers banners are off.

Did I mention I was nit-picking?

Also, the virtual crowd has been completely re-invented, which frankly was in desperate need of an overhaul. For example, take a look at this Alex Ovechkin goal.

He takes the puck to the net and…

He scores! Look how excited that fan with the sign is.

Oh man, even the hugs are more realistic in this game.

NHL15 Producer Sam Ramjagsingh introduces more of the updates in the video below.

There’s beer guys in the stands now? If only I could have Alex Ovechkin Hercules-check Sidney Crosby into the crowd and take out that guy and the invading Penguins fans, then the game would be perfect.

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  • DustinPenncakes

    Well I never thought I would see RMNB link to 2BC. This makes me happy.

  • Rob W.

    Ovi and Nick hugging like its 2009-2010

  • Bilal

    I like live of gaming (and hockey, but mostly hockey). Honestly the NHL franchise’s games seemed like a waste of time. There isn’t much different between the games. So I have a 3 year rule for buying NHL games. But I gotta say, 15 looks sick (and not just the graphics).

  • Zach Evans

    Right there with you. Havent bought an NHL since 12 because you play any version from about 2008-2012 and they were all the same. But played the demo for this and its great.

  • GetchaGrubbOn

    13 revamped the skating engine, which I really like. The ability to pivot is very useful. Otherwise the only point in the new games is the roster update.

  • GetchaGrubbOn

    Any idea if the arena has the same details in the 360/PS3 versions? Obviously the next gen gaming systems are going to look incredible, but if they half-assed the 360 I’m going to have many sads.

    I’d lose my mind if they ever added “dnnnnnng…..UNLEASH THE FURYYYYY” in the middle of the 3rd period.

  • Dave


  • GetchaGrubbOn

    Dear, EA. Please yellowficate Alexander’s boot laces. Thank you.

  • Owen Johnson

    Yes on both points. I’m too poor to afford an Xbox one. And the new EA Sports games are basically roster updates with a different, yet very similar soundtrack. But in the words of Ovechkin: this looks hahahahahahaah so sick)))))))))))))))))

  • Trina

    This is really cool. But not gonna lie, I’m surprised there’s no article on Ovechkin singing karaoke with Malkin yet. I kind of expected you guys to be on that within fifteen minutes of him tweeting it, given the speed you cover politics, feral cats, and Mike Green being a goober.

    But it’s Labor Day weekend, so I figured you guys were relaxing with some well-earned time off 🙂

  • DustinPenncakes

    Which is pretty pointless when you can just download custom rosters that work a lot better than the ones EA makes.

  • Anthony Elworthy

    They got Ovi’s Goal Celebration wrong. Doesn’t look right to advertise NHL15 with him gliding along the boards celebrating instead of crashing into them. #Nitpicking for #OviCelly (see below)

  • Luke Anthony

    Played the demo. Massively disappointed, will be the first time I don’t buy the game in years. And no, I never even played EAHSL or whatever it was. The actual game play is horrible.

  • orlovme

    PS4 is cheaper and the better hardware choice.

    Anyways, the ps3 and 360 versions will be missing many of the polishing updates. You will get “Doc” and Eddie on the PS3 and 360, as well as 12 player physics, but the “living crowd” and authentic arenas are only on the PS4 and Xbone.

  • orlovme

    No, the arenas will not have the same level of detail on the PS3 and 360 versions.

  • Jeremy in Bethesda

    Wow so realistic that I think I just saw myself in the crowd.

  • OvechkinFiresAndScores08

    Too bad these grapics are only on the Xbox one, not the 360. Oh well at least I still get Emrick

  • OvechkinFiresAndScores08

    Anyone else reallly dissapointed that Pierre isn’t the inside the glass guy? I really wanna know who Riley Barber’s best friend in 2nd grade was. Oh well. Maybe Ian can look that up.

  • OvechkinFiresAndScores08

    Well they got the water bottle popping part right!

  • OvechkinFiresAndScores08

    And the kiss of the glove.

  • capsfan19

    i really want to get this for ps4 but without eashl its not worth it to me..will have to settle for ps3

  • Jonah

    i was about to roast you until i saw the sarcasm. good save

  • Derek Eklund

    That is generally a good rule to go with on any EA Sports game and COD/ Battlefield game. The yearly iterations become bland, but if you skip a few years between it remains fun with enough of the slight annual enhancements built up.

  • Goat

    In the spirit of nit-picking, I think the restaurant is on the wrong end. Other than nit-picks, it’s definitely the most realistic in-game Verizon Center I can recall seeing.