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NHL 22 release date and early access

Find out the release date for NHL 22, including for those that pre-order the X-Factor Edition.


Fans who pick up the latest NHL game each year expect to get their hockey in early September, but NHL 22 will be a bit behind this release schedule. Don’t worry, though, as NHL 22 will be in the hands of virtual hockey superstars around the same time the real NHL season begins. Here’s the release date for NHL 22:

NHL 22 release date

NHL 22 Release Date

NHL 22 is scheduled to release on October 15, 2021, for the PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One. Players who pre-order the EA Sports NHL 22 X-Factor Edition will also be given three days of early access, making the game available on October 12, 2021.

Those who are worried about NHL 22 releasing in October instead of early September shouldn’t fret. NHL 22 will be available to those with early access the same day the regular season begins on October 12. If you don’t pre-order the X-Factor Edition, you can get your hands on NHL 22 on October 15, which is three days after the regular NHL season begins. 

Players who don’t want to pre-order for early access before trying the game should also be patient, as it is common for EA Vancouver to feature an NHL 22 beta. We have yet to hear about such an opportunity for NHL 22, but there is no reason to rush your pre-order. You could pre-order the NHL 22 X-Factor Edition on October 11 and still sneak into the early access window of October 12. While many of us buy NHL 22 each year because it’s become a part of our gaming identity, I always encourage people to try before they buy when it comes to video games.

The NHL 22 release date is officially October 15, with an early access release date of October 12 for those that pre-order the X-Factor Edition. You can follow along with all the NHL 22 news leading up to its launch right here on Shacknews, including our NHL 22 preview.


Bill, who is also known as Rumpo, is a lifelong gamer and Toronto Maple Leafs fan. He is known for his guide writing and, unsettlingly enough, enjoys grinding out in-depth collectible articles. Tweet him @RumpoPlays if you have a question or comment about one of his guides.

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From The Chatty
  • reply
    August 19, 2021 8:20 AM

    Bill Lavoy posted a new article, NHL 22 release date and early access

    • reply
      August 19, 2021 8:21 AM

      Can we get some journalism about how the EA NHL games are total trash and have barely changed in a decade? God am I stupid. I buy multiple copies of this game every fuckin year and every fuckin year I feel enormously ripped off ans yet I keep buying it because hockey.

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        August 19, 2021 8:23 AM

        EA pass. Game usually gets released in April and genuinely the game has not changed since 2009. The AI needs a massive overhaul from someone that actually knows how to play hockey.

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        August 19, 2021 8:29 AM

        How there are no central servers, connectivity is super trash in multiplayer, there are almost no modern multiplayer features like drop in/out gameplay (if you get disconnected you just lose the game, even if you have teammates still in the game).

        There are so many lootboxes in NHL21 and they take 15-25 seconds to open every single one. Ive spent upwards of an hour opening my GD lookboxes for my club as GM, becusse you also get loot boxes as a GM specifically for the club. I hate them.

        They make you unlock the same basic shit every single year. I don’t want to unlock hockey boots in loot boxes year after year, it sucks.

        They keep “adjusting” the EASHL in really dumb ways. In 21, they added 7-game stretch “playoffs”, after playing a 7 game season. Under this system you never ever play home games at your arena because you’re always in a user-agnostic “tournament”. I don’t know a single person who likes this.

        The graphics have barely upgraded in 5 years. They changed to the Frostbite engine 2-3 years back and the game actually looked worse for a while. You’d expect graphics to improve year over year, but they either stay the same or get even glitchier than they were last year.

        Every year fighting gets more and more useless as a gameplay addition. It’s basically a pointless mini game that nobody does anymore because it’s so neutered. They also clearly don’t like bit hits, they make it harder to pull off big hits and they make bigger classes and characters worse every year. They want the game to be “finesse”, but the controls are so bad it’s almost impossible to pull off the new moves they added in 21. Nobody uses them online.

        Sigh. This is word salad, but I don’t care. I hate the NHL franchise and yet I’m stupid enough to buy multiple copies every year.

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      August 19, 2021 8:42 AM

      Finally switched engines. I may be interested.

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      August 19, 2021 8:59 AM

      still no PC, fuck this game

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        August 19, 2021 9:22 AM

        You don’t want to play it. Xboxes are free these days and I still wouldn’t recommend it. If you want hockey just watch it, the game is crap and every year the entire gaming landscape pretends that it isnt steaming horse shit.

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          August 19, 2021 9:30 AM

          How do you really feel about this game?

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        August 19, 2021 9:34 AM

        When I worked on NHL15 and we had an all hands meeting I asked this question. Simple answer was they determined it wouldn't sell enough to merit the work needed to do a PC release. That and the NHL team at EA has a tiny budget.

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