Not only does crowding your own teammates gain absolutely NOTHING, it also prevents a (most likely much better) player from scoring, dribbling, passing or doing pretty much anything because you are breathing right down their neck and knocking them off the puck and stopping them from moving.
This is easily the most irritating thing new players do and if you they stopped doing it they would see they can take a step back and options arise for them to enter the game in a more productive way.
An example of crowding another player too much (not a perfect example)
Just chill out.
Take your foot off the gas and realise that chasing the puck around for the full amount of time in the match doesn’t gain anything. Yes you do need to attack opponents at times, if no one else is going in to get possession then feel free to dive in, but if there are two people relatively close to that area and are already doing that, don’t go charging in like a bull in a china shop! It’s not necessary and you’ll leave the goal wide open.
- When another teammate is already in the goal
- When YOUR team is on the attack and deep in the enemy’s half
- When you haven’t got a good grip of the mechanics of the game and let every single shot go past you
That list is not exhaustive and there are more reasons when you should and should not be sitting in the goal.
Above is an example of good goalkeeping, the puck is in your own half and no one else is near to the goal defending it.
BUT I think you’ll agree that’s enough talking about what you shouldn’t do, now we should move on to the things you SHOULD do!
So here’s what you should do as a new player!
(Some you may have already done and that’s awesome!)
- Play the tutorial. (This seems obvious, but going over the tutorial once or twice will 100% give you the basic game mechanics you may be missing.
- Use the practice modes!
- Check your sensitivity and settings.
- Learn to adapt in the matches (Seems vague for now, but I’ll delve more into it)
- Passing the puck!
This may seem just as obvious as playing the tutorial, but most new players don’t use the practice modes to their full potential! I quite consistently before playing my first quick match go into free skate and flick the puck and trying to keep it under control and dribble around, trying out new skills I have seen people use in previous game.
I love the free mode as it’s great for just messing around for an hour or two, especially after changing settings like sensitivity to get used to the new movement. I cannot express enough how useful free mode is, it’s definitely aided me in being able to dribble past people and pass the ball better.
Goalie mode is also really cool and fun to play, you get a variety of different speed shots fired at you, with varying heights and from different distances. This mode is awesome for getting good at small movements in the goal to really save the game in the real matches.
I use obstacle mode a fair bit because of the cones in it as well as the bouncy parts on either side of the goal. The cones are cool to simulate players as well as for your dribbling ability. The bouncy parts I enjoy using because it simulates a pass into the goal mouth very well and it improves your timing of when and how to hit the puck!
Your most important setting is of course the sensitivity!
Most new players may experience this right as they go into their first game that they just can’t seem to swing fast enough and need their sensitivity to be higher. I’ve got my sensitivity set to 14 and asked a couple of more experienced players and their sensitivity is more or less the same.
That being said though have yours set to whatever makes your comfortable and what works the best. Don’t be to hasty to change it all the time as you’ll need a few matches to get used to it before you can see if it’s right or not.
You may want to change the camera settings also shown in this screenshot if it helps you.
The old video settings. Some people like to help reduce the lag in the game by removing the audience or cloth particles or particle effects. This is a judgement call I would say and I personally don’t bother. It’s most likely a tip for people with much older computers as I don’t often experience lag over than ping related.
Instead you’ll want to just play it cool and float back into a more defensive position, even from further back you’ll notice that the puck will still come your way and you may even find you have more time to set up and nice skilful dribble without your teammates bothering you or crowding you.
If you have the puck and are making your way towards the opponent’s goal, with 2 opponents closing in on you, and see you have a teammate free on the other side…what do you think you should do? Pass of course! Pass! Flick the puck over to them and put the opponents on the back foot, now they have to scramble across to try and stop a shot, but usually won’t make it in time.
Using your teammates is a skill even many experienced players don’t do due to a lack of trust in their team and their abilities, but in my book everyone deserves a chance at least once. So if you flick the puck to them and they completely miss and can’t even touch the puck, fair enough. You tried. They failed horribly and maybe it wasn’t the best call if they also can’t play. BUT definitely always give players the chance once or twice in the game to see their ability before you judge them.
TOO LONG DIDN’T READ
So you lazy souls that don’t want to read the full guide, I’ll bullet point it for ya nice and simply:
- Don’t crowd your teammates
- Use practice modes
- Don’t puck chase
- Know the right time to be the goalie
- PASS the puck, use your teammates!
- Check your sensitivity settings and possibly your video settings too
- Adapt to how your team play and fill in the gaps
Awesome! You’re now ready to not be a negative influence on the team! Now all you need is a bit of practice and game time and before you know it you’ll be running circles around me and all the other greenhorn players!
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