There is something about video games which makes it a vital link between our childhood and adulthood. Once a gamer, you will remain one for the rest of your life. Even if your likes and dislikes do change, you will always love fighting for that winning spot.
If ice hockey is your favourite form of sports, then you must have tried your hand at it virtually whether it be on your Super Nintendo or the latest PlayStation 4. Almost all video game platforms have developed a hockey-simulating game at some point or the other.
However, if the ones dealing specifically in ice-hockey attracted you the most, here’s a walk down the memory lane.
Considered as one of the greatest sports video games of all-time, NHL ’94 retains its popularity amongst gaming fans even in 2017. Made realistic with background organ music and the inclusion of real-life hockey moves, it was joyful to play. It also had several new game modes which meant you could play the regular season, playoffs, shootout mini-games and more! These additions gave gamers variety which helped them increase their expertise.
The inability of NHL ’98 to leave a mark in the gaming world made EA Sports determined to launch a better and improved NHL ’99. They did not disappoint, and this one is a fan-favourite even now. The integration of the career mode-cum-franchise mode set it apart from the previous editions and showed a glimpse of what was to come. The higher resolution graphics and a smoother refresh option added to its pros.
You might remember the NHL 2K series both for its failures and successes, but nonetheless, it evokes a sense of nostalgia. NHL 2K2, especially, turned out to be a fantastic game and is considered to be the best 2K release. Some even say that it is one of the best hockey games of all time, but that is open for debate. The graphics were incredibly realistic- starting from the rosters to every small detail on the field. The slowed-down gameplay was an exciting feature that provided a lot of enjoyment to the players. One of the few video games that have lived up to their pre-release hype, it finds a place in the hall of fame of video games.
Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey
A legendary video game, it is still a reigning topic of discussion among gamers. When you consider that it was a game which allowed you to set the net ablaze if you scored high, you know why it was and is such a ‘raging’ favourite. Amusing and appealing at the same time, Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey was ideal both for beginners and experts. While the Nintendo 64 has more fan following, the stand-up arcade-style version is still a winner. The children who could not take to the ice in Break Away slot machine then had their share of fun in arcades that had Wayne Gretzky’s 3D Hockey.
The NHL ’11 revolutionized the field of ice hockey video games with fantastic features and brand new graphics. It said goodbye to the older animations and featured a reinvented physics engine that let players score goals more freely. They could also break their hockey when defending shots. It got a fair share of superb reviews once it came out, and is still a favourite among gamers.
This game was a landmark in the NHL series and is still talked about because of its better checking system, higher puck control and the advanced game modes that it allowed us to play. It also included a Stanley Cup victory celebration clip where players could give a victory lap. One o the main reasons why it is still played among certain gaming communities is that the PC version of the game was an absolute steal. You can also search the Internet to find modified versions of the game which, in some cases, can turn out to be better than recent games launched by EA.
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