Even With Lockout NHL 13 Sales Rise

Posted September 20th, 2012 at 4:30 pm

Following in the footsteps of Madden NFL 13, which launched to record high sales numbers, comes another strong debut for EA Sports with NHL 13. Despite the league lockout and threat of no season the game pulled in a 9% increase in its first week out over the same period last year.

Consumers of NHL 13 have already created nearly 50K GM Connected leagues have played over 3.7 million online games. The Rangers, Flyers, and Penguins are the most popular teams used across all modes.

Concerns over a video game representation of a sport heading into a lockout were always greatly tempered with NHL 13 compared to Madden NFL 12 (which avoided one extending into the season) and NBA 2K12 (which was adversely affected early on by the absence of the league).

The base of consumers for NHL – which is less influenced by a casual contingent that would avoid the game due to strife or even the loss of a season – proved to be dedicated enough to support the product in record numbers. It has certainly helped that NHL 13 succeeded on delivering a rich feature set and has garnered generally positive reviews even though the consensus has come in slightly lower compared to NHL 12.

  • Count me as one of those optimistic adopters. I think it does help that NHL has some additional leagues, and hockey fans do appreciate the AHL and the major juniors (having the KHL would be nice, but EA’s had trouble licensing it, KHL doesn’t want to be an NHL tack-on). The connected careers is working out a bit better than a lot expected I think. Hockey fans in general are a more dedicated bunch than hoops junkies, they have to be if their sport still survives without a truly mainstream TV deal.

    • Crimson

      There will NEVER be a mainstream tv deal for hockey. That would be like country music suddenly becoming a popular choice of music for EVERYBODY. Oh hell no. That shit ain’t never gonna happen either.

      • Actually that’s a really good correlation. While I seem to like hockey more than you I don’t like country music at all – but I do recognize that it has its fans and they are an extremely loyal (to a fault) bunch.

        This all reminds me of my two former co-workers at a newspaper sports desk I used to work at. We had two TVs always tuned to the biggest games being broadcasted that night. One guy, a die-hard Avs fan, always had it tuned to the local cable network that broadcast every game. The other guy would wander over sometimes and all you’d ever hear from him is “what the F is this shit”.

      • pumpiron38@aol.com

        What exactly qualifies as “mainstream”? The NHL on ESPN was available for many years already. And with that deal done, cable TV is available virtually to everyone at low cost, satellite subscription to every game, every night is affordable (and I love it by the way, thank you DirecTV). The new NBC Sports Network does a fantastic job linking regular season with playoffs on “mainstream” NBC. The NHL doesn’t really need more than that, and if their popularity again tops the year before – as it has for the last five seasons – then ESPN will jump back in it. Mainstream TV is old thinking…all the new sports networks bring unlimited sports into virtually every home now.

    • 49ersfan1


  • Anon

    And now we wait for Keith’s rebuttal…

    • Crimson

      That’s only because the first person to comment, failed to contribute anything worthwhile to the conversation. Keith is good at predicting the minimum comment count for these unpopular articles about hockey and soccer, and interjecting with something worth reading about…though sometimes off topic, but still, always worth a read and reply.

      Obviously, YOU, being the first to comment on a hockey article, weren’t able to pull that off all by yourself. So…maybe Keith CAN come in and save this thread, giving it a chance to increase from the usual 5 or 6 total comments .

      After all, its like I’ve always said previously, who really gives a shit about the NHL anyway? The sport of hockey just plain sucks ass.

      • Anom

        Second comment. If you want to be anal, I can do the same thing.

        • Crimson

          LOL…no, that’s not you being anal…that’s you being butthurt.

          • Anon

            LOL…looks like nobody agrees with you. What a shame.

    • Keith.

      My “rebuttals” are almost as predictable as these first day/week press releases that EA does for each of its sports games, always based on their own “internal estimates.” LOL

      By this point I think most people (other than Pasta and the Game Changers) see them for what they are…nonsense. Personally, I think the more telling news is that EA’s been getting pounded in the stock market again this week, down 29 cents Monday, 21 cents Tuesday, 6 cents Wednesday and 45 cents today. If Madden and NHL really were lighting it up at retail, like EA’s estimates would have you believe, shouldn’t it be going the other direction? Lol.

      • Riposte

        Don’t think one or two games could single-handedly skyrocket stocks.

        • Keith.

          Not a good sign when your biggest title (Madden) and another “A” game (NHL) are released and the stock goes down.

          • Deus Legend

            The leader of the negative post count is here^, if you were speaking the truth, people wouldn’t vote down every post you make.

      • Keith.

        Down another 35 cents so far today, and down more than $1.35 for the week.

      • Amen_Ra

        Keith you used to get a bunch of “ups” now boys “down” you at almost evry opportunity. I really don’t see why you have so much hate for these EA goons.

        • Keith.

          You don’t think I care about up or down votes, do you? Popular or not, truth needs to be told.

          • Amen_Ra

            I highly doubt you care about the votes, and generally neither do I. I only use them this time as an example to show the shift in popular opinion.

            Folks used to love the updates on EA’s fall..Now…not so much. time to switch tactics homey. You lost the people.

  • 49ersfan1

    the sharks will have to wait to hold that stanley cup.

  • oREo 1O

    First time I’ve bought this game in 5 years. I’m glad I did. I really like it.