We are getting closer and closer to the launch of NHL 21, as the game will launch this October. If you’re wondering what’s going on with NHL 21, Gamepur has you covered. Here’s what you need to know about the upcoming release of NHL 21.
What is the release date?
In a letter to the NHL community on July 20, the development team stated that the game will launch in October 2020, a few weeks later than the typical mid-September release of the franchise. This change was due to development changes that were caused by the coronavirus, as the developers shifted to remote work.
On July 21, it was confirmed that NHL 21 will be released worldwide on October 16. Individuals who purchase the Deluxe and Ultimate Editions will receive three days of early access to NHL 21 beginning on October 13.
Is the game available for pre-order?
NHL 21 is available for pre-order. There are three versions of NHL 21 that players can choose from: the Standard Edition ($59.99), the Deluxe Edition ($79.99) and the Ultimate Edition ($99.99). The Standard Edition does not come with any pre-order bonuses, but the Deluxe and Ultimate Editions do. The Deluxe Edition includes two unlocked Hockey Bags for the World of CHEL, a HUT Cover Athlete Choice Pack (one of six players) and three days of early access beginning on October 13. The Ultimate Edition includes five unlocked Hockey Bags, a HUT Cover Athlete Choice Pack and three days of early access to NHL 21.
Who is on the cover?
Typically, the cover athlete for the yearly game is announced in late June during the NHL Awards ceremony in Las Vegas. That, however, did not happen this year, as the NHL Awards ceremony was postponed due to COVID-19.
On August 24, the covers for NHL 21 was officially unveiled. EA Sports announced that Capitals LW Alex Ovechkin will be on the cover for all editions of the game. Here’s a look at the cover for the standard edition of NHL 21.
Have any new features been announced?
Yes. EA announced in the release announcement on August 24 several new features that are coming to NHL 21. Here’s a look at what’s coming to this year’s game:
- Revamped Be a Pro mode – NHL players can experience what the athletes do on a daily basis, as well as build their background from the ground up
- Additions of EASHL Club Finals and EASHL Practice
- CHEL Ranked Seasons expanded to include NHL Threes, ONES, and EASHL Drop-In play
- New HUT RUSH feature will offer Hockey Ultimate Team players a quick and streamlined gaming experience
- Experience the crunch of Trade Deadline Day in Franchise mode, as trades will happen in real-time and player values will fluctuate throughout the day
Will NHL 21 be available for next-gen?
NHL 21 will be available for next-generation, but only through backwards compatibility. In the same letter to the NHL community, the developers addressed this question, stating that they have focused on adding new features rather than “the resource-heavy task of porting the game to new console technology.” So while you should be able to play the game on a Xbox Series X (thanks to Smart Delivery) or PlayStation 5, an official next-generation version of NHL will not be released in 2020.
How does the gameplay look?
EA Sports on August 24 released the first gameplay trailer for NHL 21. Here’s a look at it: