NHL 2001
Genre Sport -> Sport
Today's Rank 0
Date N/A
Publisher N/A
Date 2000-11-24
Publisher Electronic Arts
North America Retail Box ArtUnited Kingdom Retail Box ArtDepending on whom you talk to, ice hockey is either an intense and tactical experience or a game for hooligans, played by hooligans. Whichever way you look at it, it's a fabulous subject for a computer game.Making full use of their latest graphics engine, EA Sports have done a superb job of bringing NHL 2001 to the PlayStation 2. The much-hyped Emotion Engine within the PS2 creates a stunning and believable atmosphere, bolstered by some of the best in-game commentary I've heard in a long time.The AI of the opposition teams provides an interesting challenge, especially when in League mode, and the controls are spot on, creating a game which is easy to learn but incredibly difficult to master--especially if you opt for the full NHL rule set with all penalties, off-sides and more switched on.The on-ice action is a fast and furious affair, doing a great job of capturing the feel of the real game but the only disappointment is the way the game engine can slow down when there are a number of players on the ice. A little experimentation revealed this was at its worst in "classic" mode with the default view being perfectly capable of chugging along all day. Fighting too proves to be a bit of a let down with only a punch and an uppercut available--to be honest after a couple of scraps it's irritating to the point of madness. NHL 2001 is, however, great fun for the armchair ice fan and a very rewarding experience for the true supporter and apart from the slowdown in certain game views this is a slick and very entertaining title and a worthy addition to the software library of any PS2 owner. --James Gordon
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