NHL 96 was the first EA Sports game to feature Virtual Stadium technology, which resulted in a 3D feel and multiple camera angles. The NHL license ensures that real teams and players of the era are included, with a full league and playoff system. Many game options can be toggled - the infamous fighting is option, as are the penalties and offsides. The control system makes it possible to execute one-touch passes, and several special trick moves to quickly advance the ball. As a bonus feature, it included 'Hockey Card' profiles of every player on CD, and interviews with the stars of the game.
- "NHL Hockey 96" -- DOS in-game title
- "NHL Hockey" -- US budget release title
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Big John WV
- Computer Gaming World
- June 1996 (Issue #143) – Sports Game of the Year (Readers' Vote)
- Game Players
- 1995 (Vol. 8, No. 13) - Best Genesis Game of the Year
- GameStar (Germany)
- Issue 12/1999 - #18 in the "100 Most Important PC Games of the Nineties" ranking
- PC Player (Germany)
- Issue 01/1996 - Best Sports Game in 1995