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NHL 23 brings cross-platform play to the franchise

Cross-platform play will make its first appearance in the series, allowing players an expanded pool for online matchmaking.

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NHL 23 will feature cross-platform play for the first time in the history of the franchise, giving players larger pools for matchmaking in EASHL, HUT, and World of Chel online modes. The system has its limits, however.

Cross-platform play in NHL 23 won’t be as straightforward as one might assume. During a press briefing for Electronic Arts’ upcoming hockey simulation, developers revealed that players would still only be able to team up with gamers on the same platform as themselves but would be able to match against players on other console platforms. For example, if you play on Xbox One you can still only team up with players who are also on Xbox One, but you can match against players who are on either Xbox One or PS4. It’s the same in reverse, as PS4 players can only team up with other PS4 players, but they can match against anyone on PS4 or Xbox One.

An NHL 23 promotional image showing the Washington Capitals celebrating after a win.
NHL 23 will feature cross-platform play, but it's a very light version.
Source: Electronic Arts

Cross-platform play shouldn’t be confused with cross-generation. This means that if you’re on the PS4 or Xbox One, you won’t be matching against players on PS5 or Xbox Series X|S. You also can’t team up with players on a different generation of consoles than yourself, so you can’t team up with your Xbox One friend while you’re enjoying life on your Xbox Series X. Of course, since NHL 23 won't be releasing on PC, that's of no consideration.

The addition of cross-platform play in NHL 22 is a step in the right direction, but what we’re seeing this year is only a step. Until players on different consoles and different generations can play on the same team, the system can’t be considered fully realized. With ongoing shortages still making it difficult to pick up current generation consoles, cross-generational play will remain a priority for the community. Today’s news, however, is a positive step.

Co-EIC

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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