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NHL 14

 

 

SCORE: 69

NHL 14 

 

The focus of NHL 14 is the hitting. In fact the quick fighting, and monster knock downs are accentuated by the game's presentation and replays. To be fair so is scoring goals. But the violent aspect of hockey is really focused on in NHL 14 for the Xbox 360, and Playstation 3.

The higher levels of aggression are immediately noticeable in NHL 14. The Enforcer Engine uses technology from Fight Night so players can pummel one another in the face. The fight ends when one of the players gets knocked to the ice. Then both of them enjoy a short vacation in the penalty box.

Players exhibit the physical damage from the fighting on their faces. This can be a bloody lip, black eye, bruises, and more. The first couple of fights were interesting. After that the whole fighting was boring, and just slowed the game down.

EA Sports continues to do a wonderful job of making their games approachable by all skill sets in the family. There are multiple skill sets, difficulty settings, and game play styles in NHL 14. The coolest one in my opinion is NHL 94 Anniversary Mode. It takes a bit to get used to the different controls, but once I did I liked it better than the current system of shooting goals.

The physics in NHL 14 continue to be good. I am still learning all of the nuances of the different controls. Even at the level of a novice I was able to make intelligent moves away from defenders and score impressive goals. The announcers were very encouraging. Speaking of the announcers, I love how accurate they are in NHL 14. They have interesting comments, and will note when you do things like score four goals in a game in Live the Life Mode.

While you are living the life in NHL 14 you will be presented with questions. How you answer will improve certainly likeability aspects of your player. The same goes for Endorsements and Off Ice Events. These can help your likeability or hurt it. Think through your decisions before making them.

The online experience continues to develop and grow in NHL 14. The online seasons in the Hockey Ultimate Team Mode will interest families who enjoy competing with other players online. The online area is also where you can redeem your puck points and collect trading cards. Families earn puck points in almost everything they do in NHL 14. Play a game, and you earn some puck points. You do need an online account and Internet connection.

Maybe you want to relive some of the best moments of the 2012 - 2013 NHL season. NHL 14 lets you do that. Maybe you want to the General Manager of a team. Again NHL 14 lets you do that. Maybe you want to create your own league. NHL 14 lets you do that. The depth of NHL 14 includes a companion app. There is a lot to do and see in this sports game.

The music in NHL 14 is absolutely awful. I had to go into EA Trax and turn off every song but one. The songs made me cringe. Definitely not my musical style. I am thankful I was able to turn the songs off. NHL 14 is the most aggressive hockey simulation game I have ever played. I wish there was an option to tone that part down.
- Frank

 

Graphics: 60%
Sound: 75%
Replay/Extras: 85%
Gameplay: 65%
Family Friendly Factor: 60%

System: PS3/Xbox 360(tested)
Publisher: EA Sports
Rating: ‘E10+' - Everyone 10+
{Mild Violence}

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