NHL 23: Release Date, Pre Order for Early Access, Rat Cannons & More

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NHL 23 continues to get more news as reveals pile up with launch now just a few short weeks away.

Here's everything we know so far about NHL 23 including the official release date, how to get Early Access, pre order rewards, and more.

Latest - Rat cannons among presentation upgrades

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The newest deep dive into NHL 23 focused on some of the many presentation upgrades coming this year, starting with a new interactive Stanley Cup celebration.

Of course, the more jarring reveal was a new customizable Hat Trick animation where cannons shoot objects onto the ice, such as hats or even rats.

We've got more details here about all these presentation upgrades and what else you can shoot out of cannons in NHL 23.

NHL 23 Release Date

After some speculation, we've now learned the official NHL 23 release date is confirmed for Friday, October 14, 2022.

This lines up exactly as we predicted, as with NHL 21 the release window shifted forward a bit by releasing on October 16, 2020.

NHL 23 release date
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THE VISUALS: NHL 22 looked better than ever, and NHL 23 should step that up even more
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This timing stayed the same for last year, as NHL 22 was released on October 15, 2021, and we expected them to stick to that new window for NHL 23.

However, there will be a few ways to earn Early Access to NHL 23 that we've outlined below.

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Pre Order for Early Access

If you're hoping to get in on the action even earlier, the best way is by getting your pre order in place, but not every edition qualifies.

Players who want to score Early Access can pre order the NHL 23 X-Factor Edition today to start playing on Tuesday, October 11, 2022.

PRE ORDER NOW: Secure your copy of NHL 23 before it arrives

You can score your pre order now at the link above, and by scoring the NHL 23 X-Factor Edition you'll get all of these rewards:

  • NHL 23 on both next gen and current gen (PS4/PS5 or XB1/XBXS)
  • 3-Days Early Access
  • 4600 NHL Points
  • X-Factor Women's Choice Pack
  • HUT X-Factor Player Choice Pack
  • 5 World of Chel X-Factor Ability Unlocks
  • Signed Sarah Nurse Jersey (Digital)
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If you get your NHL 23 pre order in by September 16 you'll also receive an extra HUT Team Builder Choice Pack.

Reveal & Gameplay Trailers

We've already gotten a few looks at NHL 23 ahead of launch, and that all kicked off with the reveal trailer you can see below.

The next reveal was the NHL 23 Gameplay Trailer, and this is our best glimpse so far at how playing it will actually feel.

More deep dive reveals are expected in the lead-up to the NHL 23 release date, and players can snag their own exclusive preview in the EA Play Trial outlined below.

NHL 23 Cover Athletes

EA has finally revealed the NHL 23 cover athletes, Anaheim Ducks sparkplug Trevor Zegras and Canadian Olympic icon Sarah Nurse!

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NHL 23 Cover Athletes Trevor Zegras Sarah Nurse X Factor Edition
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TWO FOR ONE: This year's cover features two massive stars

This year will mark the very first female cover athlete for the EA NHL, with Sarah Nurse breaking this ground.

These definitely weren't the favorites coming into the reveal, but there's no denying how great this year's cover looks with two absolute stars.

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Early Access EA Play Trial

As has become standard for all EA Sports titles, NHL 23 will receive their usual 10-hour time limited EA Play Trial.

This will be an exclusive offer for EA Play subscribers only (Xbox Game Pass Ultimate includes EA Play), and after the 10-hour time limit expires the trial will end.

The NHL 23 EA Play Trial is set to arrive on Tuesday, October 11, 2022, the same day as Early Access kicks off for those who pre order the X-Factor Edition.

The trial will be a fully unlocked version of the game, but after the 10-hour clock has run out players will have to purchase the full game in order to continue playing.