Last year a 14 year old girl asked EA to include women in their hockey game. This was because she felt she was underrepresented as a female hockey fan. EA responded by putting in generic female characters. Well it’s great to see that wasn’t just a stunt. EA has committed to bringing Women in NHL13 and even stepped it up a level. In NHL 13 the Women’s Olympic Hockey team stars will be featured as playable characters. Former Team USA superstar Angela Ruggiero will join former Team Canada great Hayley Wickenheiser, both four-time Olympic Ice Hockey medalists, as playable legends in NHL 13.
“With the release of NHL 12 we added generic female characters in our Be a Pro mode based on a request from a 14-yr old female fan who emailed our staff because she felt underrepresented as a hockey videogame fan,” said Dean Richards, General Manager, NHL, EA SPORTS. “This year we are very excited to continue our effort of creating a more representative experience for female hockey fans by adding two of the greatest female athletes to ever play the game in Wickenheiser and Ruggiero to NHL 13.”
“The EA SPORTS NHL franchise took a big step last year by including female characters to create a more inclusive experience for female hockey fans,” said Hayley Wickenheiser. “I’m excited to be a part of NHL 13 and hope that the addition of women’s hockey legends will encourage greater participation in hockey from young women everywhere.”
This is so exciting and hopefully a more encouraging trend. It’s great to see EA not lean on the “it’s too much effort and cost to make another character frame” excuse and instead deliver on something that is incredibly important.
NHL 13 is available as a playable demo right now on PSN and XBLA. NHL 13 will be available on September 11, 2012 in North America and September 14, 2012 in Europe.