Advantages Awesome gameplay, graphics and sound
Disadvantages Ideally need a joypad
I bought NHL2001 from 'GAME' as I had just played it on the playstation2 and was so blown away with how amazing it was, I just had to get it for my PC.I'm a sucker for most sports sims but I also know when a game does or doesn't make the grade.
When you start a new game on NHL, you see all the players of the home team making their way out down the corridor and on to the ice. The graphics are amazing at this point and you can see each players face quite clearly. I'm not sure but I think they are the sampled faces from the players in the actual NHL. (I know that the Flyers player 'Lindros' looks like him). As they get to the ice, the commentator in the stadium yells something like, 'LETS HEAR IT FOR THE PHILADELPHIA FLYERS!!!!' (or whatever team you are) and the crowd goes wild (which sounds so cool with a good 3D sound system). Then the fireworks go off and the players warm up. I have to say that the best thing is when you've created a player and scanned your own face in, then you see yourself skating around with the others and see your name on the back of the hockey jersey. I was sad enough to yell, "Hey! that's me skating around with Lindros!". (Yes I know it's only a game haha)I only got into hockey about a year ago so I'm still learning about it but this game just makes it all so enjoyable. It's definetly a game for 2 players rather than vs CPU because you can give each other a bit of banter as you're playing it. You can also play online I believe but I've not tried this part of the game yet.
The crowd react at different times in the game. For example, if you are the away team and you trip one of the home team players with your hockey stick. You immediately get boo'd and if you've gone far enough to injure the other player, you see a little camera view in the top right hand corner to show you the player rolling around in pain! Nice! haha.When the action stops, a medic will try not to fall on his ass and get across the ice to tend to the injured player. Each injury is different and makes the player react differently. If you got caught by the ref, you will have to spend time in the sin bin and you will see your player skate off and sometimes have a mini tantrum off the ice. Just before you get back to the action, you can see players getting a bit angry with each other as the game hots up. They might hook sticks and pull each other around or push each other before the ref gets the game going again.
My younger brother and I are currently resuming past squabbles by playing each other. We've both created a player on each side that has the same height & weight based on our actual stats. The funniest part of the game has to be the checking. The checking changes as well depending on your momentum, direction, weight and checking stats. Sometimes you can take out multiple players with one body check and send them flying! If players don't like being checked they will immediately start pushing and shoving each other and the commentators come out with great comments at this point like "hide your eyes children, these two are about to get into it!" or "what? a fight? in a hockey game? who would have thought?". The punch up itself is extremely straight forward in the controls and the fight is usually over very quickly. You'll have 'big hitters' on your team and they're usually the best at fighting.The commentators can be quite funny at times but most of the time they are spot on with what they say and definetly serve to make you feel like you're watching the game on TV!
If you do want to load your own photo in and create a new player, you will need a photo that's up close rather than a distant shot. Once you've selected your photo, you then need to define points on your face to tell the game where your eyes are, etc. so that it will add your face onto the new player properly. This might take some time to get the hang of and sometimes it's just better to use one of the default faces that comes with the game. (I'm just pleased to see my name out on the ice!) You can also select a name that the commentators will scream out if you score. There are tons of names to choose from so chances are, your Christian name will be there.The one negative thing with this game is that EA Sports don't seem to have any website material available to help you out (patches, etc). I haven't needed any patches but I always like to find out how well the product is supported after I've bought a game.
If you buy it... good luck! and GAME ONNNNNNN
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Everything a hockey fan could possibly want is packed in the triumphant NHL 2001. While 2001 is not tremendously different from previous editions...
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