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[1.4.1] New old player decline mechanic isn't working properly

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Since 1.4 it seems like you've implemented a CA floor for old players to stop them becoming completely useless as fast as they did in the older patches, as much as that's a good idea it isn't working properly at the moment. I have to make some assumptions as to how you made it work here, but what seems to happen is this:

1. Player hits 31-34 years of age and start declining (based on Natural Fitness).

2. Player loses only physicals at first, then physicals, mentals and tech.

3. Player hits his CA floor based on his PA, physicals still keep declining.

4. Players hits roughly 34-36 years of age, the physicals have declined so much that the player's total attributes are now lower than the value needed to hit the CA floor.

5. The Player is not allowed to regain physicals or mentals, however the tech isn't limited in this way. This causes the very old player's technicals to start increasing past how high they were at his prime.

6. If the player was a Top 6 forward he now has 17+ in essentially all technicals, still retain most his mentals , but has very bad physicals. However the net effect is either break even or positive on his overall performance.

7. Every single top 6 forward and top 4 defenceman in the league plays until they are 40-41 years old with next to no decline in their performance, however their reputation still goes down with age.

8. At around 38-39 the player's rep is so low that he's willing to sign 1 year 1-2M$ a year deals despite still being a Top 6 forward, this leads to the top 6 of most AI teams being clogged with super old players on nearly no salary.

9. Upwards of half the teams in the league will sit below the salary cap because they are just loaded up on underpriced superstars in their top 6.


As much as the old patch behaviour where a player could go from star to useless in about 6 months was a bit extreme, this is hardly better. You really need to make it so their technicals can't exceed their peak values with this floor in place, since the CA mechanics lead to 40 year olds with 20 stickhandling and deking; That's just silly.


Here's a screenshot of an aging Tavares in the new patch to show what ends up happening:


and then compare that to an aging Bobby Ryan in the old patch behaviour:


The difference is quite staggering, also note that until the final two years when Tavares reputation finally went low enough that the AI coach stuck him on the 2nd line he remained an 80 point scorer throughout his 30s, and was still scoring 60+ from the 2nd line in his last 2 seasons. And this is happening to essentially all players so you have to get to around 2030-33 before Crosby, Ovi and Co. start retiring and making room for new talent in the top 6 of teams.

This is what the process looked like for Blake Wheeler in my save, as shown by the spreadsheet I use to track player progression:


as you can see there is a 3 season phase of accelerating decline, but then in the final two seasons with us the decline in physicals is accompanied by a similar growth in technical ability.

and finally just how low the wages go for a player who some of you may have heard of:



While we're on the subject of the CA system in this game, why is it that growth in the Playoff based attributes over time for players as well as their mental attribute growth over time isn't taken into account when a player develops to their PA? What ends up happening in gameplay is that you get your player to their PA by anywhere between 19-21 years of age based on a few parameters. They then keep gaining 1 Positioning/Faceoff every 2 years as well as having a chance at gaining Temperament and Important Matches attributes every playoff and also gaining Anticipation, Creativity and occasionally Workrate/Bravery just by becoming older and more experienced; These attributes do count towards a player's total PA. But the player is already at their full PA at age 21, so over the course of their career they will start losing Skating, Teamwork and some Technicals to "make room" for the newly gained Mentals and Hidden attributes. This seems awfully counter-intuitive; Why would getting better in big games make you worse at skating? Why doesn't the gains in these attributes that are reached over the course of a career also increase the player's PA by the required amount to not cause loss in other attributes? In it's current state it just seems like an unfinished system.


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