My initial impressions after first few games (3-4 games) I thought it felt better than beta, I played a bunch since then to give a full impression. Really think most of the tools are there but human goalie has LONG ways to go till it makes it rewarding and fun to play. Overall I think goalie mode was better in beta, idk what they did but its like they made offense even more OP that it already was. Lets not kid ourselves, offense in this game has an advantage by a LARGE margin.
To make human goalie mode enjoyable and rewarding to play I think they not only need to tweek/tune goalies but how offence/skaters work in this game as well.
Some of the things off the top of my head that needs tuning/patching:
-Tip ins/deflections are OP af! So many times I seen howitzer slap shots from the point going 3 feet wide of the net but only for a forward to place his stick perfectly and deflect in the tiny open area of the net. Deflections and tip ins happen WAY too often...even if you are out challenging the shot. Tune that shit down...I knew it was gonna be something like this when I first saw their first ever trailer for 17.
-RS slides need to be faster and INSTANT. Goalies literally have to make a split second decision so every mili second counts, but the goalie does this leg kick, long ass animation before doing the RS slide, which makes this as a desperation slide pretty much useless bc you will never get there in time on cross crease passes unless you cheat and leave short side exposed. Take off some of the frames from the leg kick animation of completely get rid of that starting animation and make it instant...idc if its not realistic...just look at all the unrealistic stuff the skaters are allowed to do, so who gives a F if instant RS slide is not realistic. It's like realism goes out the window when its making skaters OP but EA wants realism only when its for goalies or defence.
-In EASHL when facing against human goalies, turn down the max speed for those charged up passes. Or least make it extremely hard to pull off those blink of an eye one timers while receiving those charged up passes....make the receiver go into a set waiting for one timer animation or something if they want to pull it off successfully at the rate they do now. EASHL skaters are suppose to be ~75 overall? Yet they can pull of perfect one timers off those full charged up max speed passes like its nothing while in motion. Turn down the max speed of these charged up passes or change how those blink of an eye one timers off these passes are pulled off. Its a joke how unrealistic some of the shit the skaters are allowed to pull off, but nah cant give goalies more tools to stop these bc be unrealistic. Its a f video game, at least make it balanced.
-While in RVH post hug when the puck is behind the goal line, it feels weird coming off the post or RS sliding out when they pass the puck across or front. It feels like there is even a larger delay when coming off the post while in RVH post hug.
-Like OP said precision needs to be faster, especially for the fact that skaters have UNREALISTIC and ridiculous lateral acceleration in this game. Cut across and snipe all day and goalies cant do shit bc they don't have the speed to keep up with skaters lateral acceleration. This is more evident in breakaway situations, it feels worse than in did in beta bc now even if you come out to challenge and shadow the skater while skating back in the net it now feels like skater is 100x more faster in every way than you. Its impossible to play breakaways how you would in real life...come out and shadow the shooter while skating back. You better off just f sitting goal line goalieing and just guess a side.
-Tune down skaters shot accuracy/power when they are not facing the net while shooting or coming off a deke and shooting etc. Its so dumb how much these ~75 ovr skaters can snipe in situations where they are not even fully set to have the best accuracy.
-As a goalie making minor adjustments while shot is being taken will result in goal almost every time, its like EA wants everyone to play goal line goalie this year. Don't even make the smallest adjustments while shot is being take...just stay perfectly still and you have better chance of stopping it.
-Way too make weak goals go in after you stop it...puck just hits your body and finds a way to trickle in somehow...and this is extremely frustrating af for human goalies since they have to already put up with so much unbalanced shit in this game. Think these are the "cool ways for pucks to go in" goals that Rammer said in those interviews for the new engine. Its f dumb, get rid of these bullshit goals.
-Somewhat minor, but always hated how often shots hits bodies and gets blocked. You be out challenging and in perfect position to play the shot, only for it to get a skater in front and bounce off perfectly into a opposing forwards stick on other side for easy goal while you completely out of position. However, passes even slow ones can go through like 2 defenders skates and sticks into intended receiver waiting for cross crease no problem. Balanced game!
-Rebound control for goalies are a joke. Even on the easiest shots the puck just hits and drops in front of you or the goalie pushes to the opposing forward (even if your D is right there) instead of the pushing them off to the sideboards or teammates like any even pee wee goalie would. Add that with the hungry hungry hippo puck cover animation which makes the situation even worse.
These are the things that I can think of rn, but I am sure there is more gripes with goalie mode but forgot to mention.
tl;dr: be forward>make mistakes>get rewarded. be goalie>play perfect>get punished. balanced game.