Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

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Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby djlm on Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:41 pm

Hello,

Just to let you dudes know that a new version of Eastside Hockey Manager is now available, just like that, out of the blue. Having played the original NHL:EHM, NHL:EHM 2005 and the final NHL:EHM2007 only to be bitterly disappointed with Franchise Hockey Manager, EHM is back!!! It's currently at a cheap price whilst it's under the early access program of Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/301120/

The current version does not have license, so no real player names, BUT, the good guys at "The Blue Line" that have kept NHL EHM2007 updated have already released a working and updated roster with real names and stuff (see here: http://www.ehmtheblueline.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=13590 )

For the logos, I just copied my downloaded logos from my NHL EHM2007 installation and it worked like a charm. For a quick test, fired up a game with the Pens, went through the training camp, played the preseason games and once the season started I went "on holiday" so the game would sim all the way until the last regular season game. I "took over" the team again for the playoffs, without Fleury from February 25 onwards (UCL Tear). Here is what happened in the playoffs with Greiss in goal and Malkin out for the first two rounds of the playoffs and bellow the scoring leaders so you guys can see the current UI:

Image

Regular Season:
Image

Playoffs:
Image

Those who enjoy management games will surely be happy to know this one is out.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:16 pm

It's a beautiful thing. I had been chatting recently with one of the developers...it was almost a feedback session on EHM 2007 at times...then all of a sudden this thing pops up...I had no idea, but it makes sense now. I've spent more time on EHM 2007 than every other game I've ever played combined I gotta think at this point (maybe you'd have to exclude Tecmo Super Bowl for NES to make that accurate, but for sure without that counting)...

Really excited for this, thanks for posting.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby AlexPKeaton on Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:28 am

Oh wow thanks for posting. The one last year by OOTP guys was very disappointing with a crappy interface and lots of bugs. I'll definitely give this one a shot.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby AlexPKeaton on Fri Mar 27, 2015 10:45 am

Hopefully the community is making some Let's Plays for newbies. I got into OOTP after watching some Let's Plays, but the old 2007 EHM didn't have many of those since they didn't become popular until recently.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby Admin on Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:07 am

How hard would this game be for a total noob?
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:24 am

Not very. You just have to think. Think about all aspects of management and coaching...you'll play five saves or whatever and go, "ok, next time, I'll do this differently..." Hell, I've been playing the game for almost a decade (EHM 2005 and 2007) and there's still times where I'll be done with a game and go, "hmm, next time, let me explore doing things like this...that might be better..."

Easy to play, tough to master type of game...unless you are a complete noodle and just try to exploit the game...if you're the person that tries for the "glitch" goal in NHL every time you come down the rink, a) this game is not really for you. b) you should be sentenced to turning a giant wheel in the center of the earth for no known purpose for all of eternity.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby djlm on Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:03 pm

With the changes made in regards to the 2007 version, where there are now "roles" I'm going to see if it's possible to constantly win playing defensive hockey. EHM2007 for me was about outscoring the other guys with my goalie in the .89X% range. If I tried to play defensive i'd still allow goals, but I would no longer score.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:30 pm

I've gotten good at defense, as it's the last challenge really. Over the past two or three actual years, I've played nothing but defensive systems. Offense is too easy.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby Rylan on Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:33 pm

For little over $10 on steam, even if you are a noob you can enjoy it. Just have to put effort into it. My first few teams in EHM 07 were terrible. But over time, I could be competitive and started to win. Until the board wouldn't give me the money needed to retain the head coach that helped make my team win and from there...lots of fire.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby AlexPKeaton on Fri Mar 27, 2015 6:33 pm

Mikey if you were to make a Let's Play series on youtube you would probably get a lot of hits, what little there is on this video is all done by UKers who know nothing about hockey lol.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Fri Mar 27, 2015 6:38 pm

Hmm, interesting concept...my roommate watches these Let's Play things all day long...they don't appeal to me in the least bit, but it would be quite a lark...I might just do that...thanks for the tip...
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby djlm on Sat Mar 28, 2015 1:07 pm

mikey287 wrote:I've gotten good at defense, as it's the last challenge really. Over the past two or three actual years, I've played nothing but defensive systems. Offense is too easy.


Any defensive tactical tips you care to share? My goal in EHM EA is to have my goalie win an award. Impossible in EHM 2007 for me.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Sat Mar 28, 2015 5:05 pm

djlm wrote:
mikey287 wrote:I've gotten good at defense, as it's the last challenge really. Over the past two or three actual years, I've played nothing but defensive systems. Offense is too easy.


Any defensive tactical tips you care to share? My goal in EHM EA is to have my goalie win an award. Impossible in EHM 2007 for me.


Yes, but only if I can use old posts on the subject and not re-type it haha...obviously, I was having a different conversation in these posts, but the notes still work the same...

---
It's not an exact science. You just think the game logically though and piece it together. And then try to make adjustments for what the game doesn't "know"...

Off hand:

- Strong at center. I believe in the three-center model. The center is the forward with the most defensive responsibility in most systems. Strong two-way centermen are a must for me.

- I like to have a nice, mobile defense. Mobility, pokecheck, positioning. Strength and stamina too. When you look in a player search and go to attributes and select "defensive" strength and stamina are there, so the game tells you, right? Stamina is good because you get those long shifts in your own end sometimes, you get those tough changes in the 2nd period - when are the most goals scored in the NHL? Bingo. So you need to be able to finish shifts strong. Strength in front of the net to tie up, wall off, box out, be tidy near the crease.

- That's modern defending in a nutshell. Most goalies will stop the first shot, it's the ones after it that matter. A lot of teams (with the removal of the center line) choose to give lines and protect the rink within the rink. So allow the long shot and collapse now...even fundamentally horrendous goalies like Tim Thomas can notch exorbitant save percentages because the team will take care of you. The game isn't too different in that regard.

- Gotta be smart. Hockey sense is the key to all things. Smarts allows for a lot. It's the single most important trait any player can have. Anticipation is big for me.

- From then on, tactically, you want to do what makes sense, right? Don't necessarily be a "my way, or highway" coach (see: Tortorella in Vancouver), you have to adapt. Got a fast team? Got fast wingers that maybe aren't that great defensively or aren't that smart. Carl Hagelin, Tyler Kennedy, whatever...apply the pressure, tighten the gap, get the forecheck going. These guys like Kennedy, they are just disrupters...you wind them up and put them down and they go at the puck...no think, just go...got slower players? Be smart and passive. Reduce space and then put your enemy in the ground.

- You want to out-number. Even numbers or better favor defense. Out-numbering is a huge advantage. 1-2-2, 1-1-3 type of forecheck, you're tracking above the puck, you're getting back in the right way and you breakout together in transition...

- Turnovers are killers. Gotta be smart with the puck, make it easy to chip pucks out. Defensemen handedness on their strong side at ES. Wingers on their proper side. Varied center handedness so they can win faceoffs on either side of the ice (not that the game allows for this deployment really).

Note: Though, if you watch games, there are still unnerving things that happen. Guys just wander off in to oblivion, they miss obvious things, but over the long haul you get the right mix and the right tactics and your defensive stats go way up. You gotta tinker though. It's not like offense in the game where one size fits most, anyone can score in this game...defending properly is what ticks the game up to "intermediate" skill level, IMO. Challenge yourself to think the game, it's more fun that way for me at least.

--------------------------

Yeah, all that top portion sounds excellent to me. That's exactly how I felt about it. I can sign Marc Staal 10 years, $1.8 million if I want to (old database) but why would I...that's not any fun really, it's just novice...amateur hour...

So, I feel like the game clues you into more than we think. Defensive attributes are labeled as such in the player/staff search. So I want players that are strong in those if I had the choice. I like smart players by default, so anticipation is big for me.

I don't make too big of a deal about player types. Though, I do anecdotally note that I have trouble with utility forwards for some reason...

Again, you want to make tactics that fit your group. So it's part GMing, part coaching...that's why you're allowed to do both...

So I'm defense in my mentality, and normally I'm tactically defensive, not bludgeoning defensive...I feel like hits are for removing players from the puck and anything else will take you out of position...so aggressive shouldn't be high, plus, I don't want to be taking a lot of penalties either. I always take the least PIMs in the league.

We backcheck hard and keep a tight gap. Tight gap is for quicker teams, quicker players. Kristopher Letang is a good example of this. He can play a tight gap, he can get taken wide, but because he has such great skating and recovery ability, he can still make a play. In the mean time, challenging players is the best way to disrupt them. I'm a nut for proper spacing. Too much space and you have problems. That's both with the puck and without. One-on-one situations and zone structure.

For instance, if you're playing a 1-1-3, or you're playing on the PK a 0-4 (which I even do sometimes, depends on the group) you're going to allow a lot of speed to be build up. You're going to allow an attack with numbers. If you're setup 0-4 on the PK, you're going to get slingshotted every time on the entry I bet. And in real hockey, these things might be effective (well, no "might be", they are...I've used the 1-1-3 before to great success)...however, that assumes robotic defense. And if you've ever watched these games, you know there's nothing robotic about it. Sometimes players just wander off into the abyss...

Plus, the game engine, I'm guessing, was developed before the NHL's more modern means of defending took hold. With the removal of the red line, many teams don't feel as strong of a need to defend lines (as zone entries are easier), so they defend their net. Which is why save pct. is so high now a days, goaltending isn't better, it's just defenses are...

So the 1995 Devils, what did they do? They defended lines. Shots against were bad. Don't allow the zone entry all together. Now, shots are fine because of the proliferation of efficiency goaltending. 45 foot wrist shots will not score. So, allow those, defend the net, defend the rebound, etc. Notice how many fewer battles we see in front of the net today compared to back in the day. Pronger and Tkachuk just wailing on each other in all out war to see who gets to stand nearest to the goalie...now, defensemen line up in front of that guy and try to block the shot or the pass...battling with them just allows a lane to form for a closer shot...

So I take that mentality too...the old school that is...defend lines, shots are bad. So the forecheck is 3-2, the NZ defense is 1-2-2 generally, then collapse in the defensive zone if they get through. Because second chance opportunities are killer...

The look of the spacing on the 3-2 forecheck seemed much more palatable to me than the others...so since I have a more aggressive forecheck, you want tempo to be high...you don't want to go into a full-court press type of style and be drowsy...the thing is I don't want to allow them to gain speed and attack with numbers if I can help it. Hitting is easier or normal depending on the team...most of my guys are not big hitters, so typically easy. Puck pressure is naturally heavy when you have a high tempo, a tight gap, a hard backcheck, and a 3-2 forecheck...I can't imagine it could be anything else in that situation...

Passing/shooting/dumping are all things to do with the puck. Though, I would say turnovers are not a friend of the defensive clubs. Safer passing, heavier shooting and more dumping of the puck would be wise. But again, when you have the puck, these are not defensive characteristics...

Shifts are short. Defense is zone, as man is much harder at the NHL level...man could be used for 4-on-4 situations or while on the power play. Because it makes a little more sense there, but most NHL teams play zone. The Avs played man defense to start the year and the Pepsi Center ran out of red light bulbs by November 12th...

You want to win faceoffs too...defensive zone faceoff wins are like practically erasing a shot per...

I don't really invest too much in line matching because all of my lines play defense. And sometimes line matching can negatively effect a bench or certain players and it makes ice time a little wonky...I'm not against line matching, but sometimes it's disruptive to flow in real life, so I don't use it as much in the game...

And then you want to get the personal tactics involved for the players that you have...if you have a player like Mark Stuart - if he's a lower-end skater - you don't really want a tight gap maybe, maybe you want him to direct players to their impending doom...and Stuart is going to want to hit people, so someone might have to mop up for him (I've seen him paired with Jacob Trouba at times this year), someone smart, positionally aware and a good skater...just like Toby Enstrom would mop up for Dustin Byfuglien's liberal interpretation of defense over the years...

The game doesn't always think correctly. But if you think correctly, you're giving yourself a good base and then you tinker as needed. But it's going to be a little frustrating...it took me many seasons, many many seasons to start to figure out what works...and even then, sometimes you'll get teams or stretches where it just doesn't work...or you'll get what you think is the perfect player for what you're doing and he just doesn't fit...it's a lot of trial and error...a lot of patience is needed. It's a process, like any NHL season, it's a process. If you get bent out of shape over losing three in a row, you're gonna have a bad time...
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby djlm on Sat Mar 28, 2015 6:08 pm

Thanks Mikey, this is gold. Marked for my bedtime reading :-)
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby Admin on Sun Mar 29, 2015 6:34 pm

So if I buy early access does that mean there's another charge for the release version?
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Sun Mar 29, 2015 8:02 pm

That is not my understanding of it, no.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby Rylan on Sun Mar 29, 2015 9:02 pm

Admin wrote:So if I buy early access does that mean there's another charge for the release version?


You will own the game with no more charges if you buy it now.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby AlexPKeaton on Tue Mar 31, 2015 12:10 pm

Got some time to spend a few hours with this game last night and get into it. It seems like it will be highly addicting. My biggest issue is that the interface is pretty bad. They need to update it, especially allowing differing resolutions which can therefore use more screen.

This UK guy has started a let's play, which has helped learn it. He doesn't know much about hockey, however he has a good radio voice and knows the interface from playing football manager.



So far I'd rate this game lower than OOTP Baseball, but far better than Franchise Hockey Manager. Looking forward to some updates.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby André on Tue Mar 31, 2015 1:36 pm

Must. Stay. Away.
Must. Stay. Away.
Must. Stay. Away.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:17 pm

Embrace it, André...you better buy it.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby Admin on Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:26 pm

AlexPKeaton wrote:This UK guy has started a let's play, which has helped learn it. He doesn't know much about hockey, however he has a good radio voice and knows the interface from playing football manager.

He picked to play the Leafs in Episode 1. Should be interesting.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby mikey287 on Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:56 pm

Maybe I should make one of those...
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby Admin on Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:58 pm

mikey287 wrote:Maybe I should make one of those...

Please do.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby AlexPKeaton on Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:55 pm

Admin wrote:
mikey287 wrote:Maybe I should make one of those...

Please do.

.
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Re: Eastside Hockey Manager - Early Access

Postby AlexPKeaton on Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:53 pm

Can someone explain what the "Form" stat is when looking at players?
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