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NHL 11

 

 

SCORE: 78

 

NHL 11 NHL 11 

 

If you enjoy sports video games then you know who EA Sports is. They are the monolith in the room because they have built some fantastic franchises over the years. Hockey fans will be very interested in NHL 11. There is a lot of hype surrounding NHL 11. Does it live up to it? I hope this review will answer that question for you. The catch phrase of this game is: "Any Moment Can Be A Wow Moment." That is quite a statement for any video game to make.

The animations and graphics in NHL 11 are extremely realistic. I noticed this when the game was teaching me how to fight. The faces, hair, and uniforms are getting very close to photo realistic. Did I mention fighting? Yes NHL 11 contains some fisticuffs. Smart players can do a lot to avoid that in NHL 11 though. I play my sports games very cleanly, and find the computer usually reciprocates. The little animations during breaks gave me the feel of actually being there.

I love the announcers in NHL 11. They are very entertaining, and helpful. Their level of emotion actually got me excited when I scored goals. It was like alright, we are going to win this game. The music reminds me of professional sporting events. I was not that into the music in the menu screens so I turned it off. Normally EA Sports has the option to turn off individual songs. 

After I finished the tutorial, there was this lengthy commercial of all the features in NHL 11. I thought it would never end. There are so many different modes, and things that can be done that it is mind boggling. You can play locally, or online. There are cards that can be used to build teams that include a ton of strategy. You can become a rookie player, and work your way to the top. There is an Ultimate Team Mode. The Playstation 3 version also  includes a Playable Demo of 3 on 3 NHL Arcade. If you like hockey, you will get your moneys worth out of NHL 11.

NHL 11 has a very smooth feel to it as you play. Passing, driving, and shooting are controlled masterfully. I loved taking shots at the goalie. It was even better when I scored. Here comes my one complaint about NHL 11. There are way too many face offs. The overwhelming majority of the time the goalie saved the puck, a face off came next. NHL 11 is just too quick to do the face offs. For me this slowed the flow of the game. I had one instance where I won the face off, passed it back, and that computer controlled character took a shot. The goalie grabbed it, and we were right back into another face off.

There is a lot of behind the scenes in NHL 11. Players can learn about managers, agents, and a career in the sport of hockey. There is also an emphasis on team work in this game. I have never been a fan of fighting in hockey because it never helped the sport. I was happy to see the officials quickly put aggressive players in the penalty box. Having to sit there a few times watching the game gets the message across. I can not even imagine what the minds over at EA Sports plan for next year.
-Frank

 

Graphics: 76%
Sound: 80%
Replay/Extras: 90%
Gameplay: 71%
Family Friendly Factor: 75%
System: Xbox 360/Playstation 3
Publisher: EA Sports
Rating: 'E10+' for Everyone 10+
{Mild Violence}

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