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ESPN NHL Hockey

MobyRank MobyScore
PlayStation 2
89
2.3
Xbox
86
4.2

User Reviews

Superb hockey simulation - the best out there, but could use some polish and tweaks Xbox *Legion* (138)

Our Users Say

Platform Votes Score
PlayStation 2 2 2.3
Xbox 4 4.2
Combined MobyScore 6 3.6


The Press Says

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
97
PlayStation 2PSX Extreme
To sum it up, there is no hockey game available that can touch ESPN NHL in terms of realism. Will this year's three other titles hold up in comparison? That remains to be seen, but anyone who is a hockey fan would do well by spending their hard-earned cash on this title. Do yourself a favor and pick ESPN NHL Hockey up.
96
XboxNext Level Gaming
If you are a fan of hockey or even a sports fan in general, you owe it to yourself to pick up this game. It is by far, the best hockey game to date. Not only does the game excel in overall presentation, but it shines in each individual aspect of the game. Once you start playing, you will not want to put the game down. I had to force myself to quit playing just to write this review.
96
PlayStation 2Next Level Gaming
Sega has taken the ESPN license and ran with it this year in their sports titles. Gone is Sega Sports, and now we have ESPN VideoGames. The first game to be released under the new name was ESPN NFL Football. This game integrated the ESPN license beautifully in to the game, and it made the gamer feel like they were a part of the ESPN experience. Following on the heels of ESPN NFL Football, Sega has released ESPN NHL Hockey. Just as they did with their football title, they integrated the ESPN license fully.
96
PlayStation 2Netjak
It’s the most wonderful time of the year…. No, it’s not Christmas time already. It’s the beginning of hockey season, when the long three month stretch following the end of the Stanley Cup Finals is finally over, the players return to the ice, and the new hockey video games are released to hungry hockey fans everywhere. This hockey season is met with even more anticipation than usual, given that Sega promised a hockey game that would eclipse even its own superlative NHL 2K3, easily the best hockey game released for the 2002-2003 season. That game had the best gameplay of any modern hockey game, but lacked the presentation quality that made Electronic Arts’ NHL games so popular over the years.
95
PlayStation 2GameZone
With the new hockey season right around the corner, ESPN NHL Hockey is the first ice hockey title to be released before the other competition vie for your attention. For those gamers that don’t already know, the ESPN franchise is really the newest incarnation of the Sega Sports NHL 2K games but now with a more ESPN-styled presentation. The result is a game with plenty of hard-hitting hockey action with that authentic televised presentation that makes the game feel like you’re actually playing professional NHL hockey. How good is this game, you might ask? Let’s just say it’s the kind of game that will bring tears of joy to any sports fan’s eyes.
94
XboxDeaf Gamers
I can't claim to have played all the hockey games that have ever been made but after playing virtually all the EA NHL games, last years NHL 2K3 and this years NHL Rivals 2004, ESPN NHL Hockey stands head and shoulders above the lot. I'm not claiming the game's perfect but it's certainly not that far away and I certainly don't have any problem playing the game for hours on end. The game is so addictive that I'm becoming a nuisance hogging the TV when others in the house want to watch the TV. Essentially SEGA are set to have total domination when it comes to hockey games because not only are they shortly to release Eastside Hockey Manager (current working title) which has been developed by Sports Interactive, they now also have an equally stunning game in the shape of ESPN NHL Hockey. Hockey fans have never had it so good.
94
PlayStation 2Game Chronicles
SEGA and Kush Games have taken the sport of hockey to the next level. ESPN NHL Hockey is a near-flawless gameplay experience that is marred only by a slightly deficient Franchise mode, but when you have a game that exudes this much quality in just about every other facet I’m more than happy to overlook it. Besides, what would they have to fix for next year’s inevitable sequel? Needless to say, if you aren’t already on your way to the store to pick up this outstanding game what are you waiting for? It doesn’t get any better than this.
94
XboxLawrence
If you can look past the lesser Franchise mode options, you will find a better NHL home with Sega's offering this year...and probably next year.
94
PlayStation 2Lawrence
If you can look past the lesser Franchise mode options, you will find a better NHL home with Sega's offering this year...and probably next year.
94
XboxGameZone
While hockey isn’t a sport for everyone, fans of hockey while eat this title up. Even fans of other sports will quickly acclimate themselves to hockey once they get a chance to play this game. On the other hand, if you require a little more action and satisfaction with some high scoring, this game probably isn’t for you.
93
XboxIGN
If you're reading this review, it's fairly likely that you're into hockey video games. Suffice it to say that you'll be plenty into this one. It's got everything a marquee sports title needs... except a more fleshed-out Franchise Mode. But we'll cut it some slack. After all, you'll be too busy making your own fun playing head-to-head, online and off. Again, SEGA's game delivers excitement, intensity and realism to the rink. Again, it's worthy of your well-earned dollars.
93
PlayStation 2IGN
Sometimes, we in the world of video game journalism are given to hyperbole. But in this case, it can't be overstated. ESPN NHL Hockey is the finest hockey video game we've ever played. This paragraph can stand for everything that follows. If you're a hockey fan, and you play video games, go buy the game. You will not be disappointed. If you enjoyed last year's effort (called NHL 2K3), you'll be pleased with the level to which Visual Concepts, Kush Games and ESPN Videogames (once called SEGA Sports) improved on their stellar season last year.
91
PlayStation 2Game Freaks 365
This game is the best hockey game on the market this year. It's the perfect example of hockey done right on a video game. Sega Sports did an excellent job with this game. The gameplay is superb, the graphics and sound are stunning and you can play it for months. This year's winner for best hockey game is ESPN NHL Hockey, hands down.
91
XboxGame Revolution
After all is said and done, ESPN NHL Hockey looks like another winner. The series continues to make improvements year after year to the delight of hockey fans everywhere. If they can just clean up the fighting and add some extra fire to the Franchise, we’ll definitely be seeing this series' A game.
91
PlayStation 2Game Revolution
This season, Sega comes back with the ESPN license for yet another round of hard hitting, in-de-face hockey. With ESPN NHL Hockey (essentially 2K4), they’ve trotted the Great Zamboni onto the ice and smoothed out a bunch of the bumps from last year’s game. The result is a highly polished ice-capade that shines so brightly, you’ll need a pair of shades to play.
90
Xbox4Players.de
Die Bande kracht, das Plexiglas splittert: EA wurde mit Schmackes auf Platz 2 gecheckt! Das sehr gute NHL 2004 hat dieses Jahr mit dem hervorragenden ESPN Hockey 2K4 seinen Meister gefunden. Sega hat sich gegenüber dem Vorjahr dermaßen verbessert, dass ich nach dem ersten Bully gar nicht mehr aus dem Staunen rauskam: Die Kulisse ist traumhaft, die Animationen sind erstklassig und das Spiel verlangt trotz aller adrenalinhaltiger Rasanz eine Mischung aus klugem Pass-Spiel, individuellen Dekes und gut getimter Defense. Und dank der fernsehreifen Präsentation, der verblüffend lebensechten Goalies und der fulminanten Checks gerät man sofort ins Schwärmen. Hinzu kommt eine grandiose Langzeitmotivation: Sega bietet mit dem Franchise-Modus, seinen innovativen Mini-Games und Herausforderungen, der ständig aktualisierten Rekordstatistiken, der freispielbaren Goodies und last but not least der Online-Unterstützung über Xbox Live! genug Anreize, um monatelang die Kufen zu wetzen.
90
PlayStation 24Players.de
Die Bande kracht, das Plexiglas splittert: EA wurde mit Schmackes auf Platz 2 gecheckt! Das sehr gute NHL 2004 hat dieses Jahr mit dem hervorragenden ESPN Hockey 2K4 seinen Meister gefunden. Sega hat sich gegenüber dem Vorjahr dermaßen verbessert, dass ich nach dem ersten Bully gar nicht mehr aus dem Staunen rauskam: Die Kulisse ist traumhaft, die Animationen sind erstklassig und das Spiel verlangt trotz aller adrenalinhaltiger Rasanz eine Mischung aus klugem Pass-Spiel, individuellen Dekes und gut getimter Defense. Und dank der fernsehreifen Präsentation, der verblüffend lebensechten Goalies und der fulminanten Checks gerät man sofort ins Schwärmen. Hinzu kommt eine grandiose Langzeitmotivation: Sega bietet mit dem Franchise-Modus, seinen innovativen Mini-Games und Herausforderungen, der ständig aktualisierten Rekordstatistiken, der freispielbaren Goodies und last but not least der Online-Unterstützung über Xbox Live! genug Anreize, um monatelang die Kufen zu wetzen.
90
XboxAdrenaline Vault, The (AVault)
Having played EA’s NHL 2004, I must admit that Sega’s latest 2K offering edges out the competition in virtually every category, aside from the obvious inclusion of Xbox Live! components in the latter. The controls are perfect, the gameplay is paced just right and the ESPN brand sucks the player in like no other sports title can. Hockey fans with the resources (and desire) to purchase both releases shouldn’t hesitate, as they’re both superb offerings. However, if there can only be one, then ESPN NHL Hockey is it.
90
XboxX-Power
Dit brengt ons al weer bij de conclusie van dit spel. Ik kan gemakkelijk zeggen dat het de competitie zoals NHL Rivals met de grond gelijk maakt om daarna nog eens met een wals erover te gaan. Als je van plan bent een hockey game te kopen is dit degene die je moet aanschaffen. Het blinkt uit in alle aspecten van de game en je zal er uren zoet mee zijn.
90
Xboxallaboutgames.co.uk
ESPN NHL Hockey is packed full of depth, but is not too difficult to get used to, and is certainly worth investing the time getting involved in. It's the best hockey game around, and if you're the slightest interested in the sport, you should consider picking it up now.
90
XboxGameSpot
Though it's not impossible to find fault in ESPN NHL Hockey, you'd be hard-pressed to find enough faults to call this game anything but excellent. Its extremely well-crafted gameplay, host of new modes and unlockables, upgraded presentational aspects, and truly amazing commentary easily outdo any issues the game might suffer from. The sum of its parts add up to one of, if not, the finest hockey games ever created. If you're a fan of the sport of hockey, you owe it to yourself to add ESPN NHL Hockey to your collection, as it's simply too good to pass up.
90
PlayStation 2GameSpot
ESPN NHL Hockey is the latest addition in Sega Sports and Visual Concepts' critically-acclaimed NHL 2K series of games. Though they aren't known for releasing their sports titles in conjunction with actual pro seasons' opening days or in anticipation of a competitors sports title, Sega and Visual Concepts have managed to make ESPN NHL Hockey the first game out of the gate for the 2003-2004 NHL season by releasing it nearly a full month before the season-opener. While this might inspire the thought that perhaps the game might have been rushed or is unfinished in some fashion, this is definitely not the case. ESPN NHL Hockey is, in fact, a spectacular follow-up to last year's NHL 2K3, building upon all of the best aspects of that game and correcting the bulk of its flaws.
88
XboxGamesmania
Kanada - Japan 2 : 4. Was in der Realität sehr unwahrscheinlich ist, wäre wohl das korrekte Ergebnis, wenn die derzeit besten zwei Eishockeysimulationen auf dem Eis gegeneinander spielen würden. SEGA punktet gekonnt mit grandioser Präsentation, umfangreichen Spielmodi und starken Gameplay. Da kommt der so Erfolgsverwöhnte Gigant von EA nicht mehr hinterher auf dem Eis. Nur wenig trennt die NHL Serie von SEGA von der magischen 90er Punktegrenze. Dazu zählt leider auch ein Handbuch, dass mit 15 Seiten Steuerungsbeschreibung, bzw. -tipps deutlich zu dünn ausgefallen ist. Lustig: Die deutsche Übersetzung auf der Rückseite des Spiels: "Nimm Roenick nach unten!" ist da zu lesen. Wir schütteln den Kopf über diesen Schwachsinn und empfehlen den Übersetzern dieses Textes eine Live-Übertragung auf Premiere.
88
PlayStation 2Gamesmania
Kanada - Japan 2 : 4. Was in der Realität sehr unwahrscheinlich ist, wäre wohl das korrekte Ergebnis, wenn die derzeit besten zwei Eishockeysimulationen auf dem Eis gegeneinander spielen würden. SEGA punktet gekonnt mit grandioser Präsentation, umfangreichen Spielmodi und starken Gameplay. Da kommt der so Erfolgsverwöhnte Gigant von EA nicht mehr hinterher auf dem Eis. Nur wenig trennt die NHL Serie von SEGA von der magischen 90er Punktegrenze. Dazu zählt leider auch ein Handbuch, dass mit 15 Seiten Steuerungsbeschreibung, bzw. -tipps deutlich zu dünn ausgefallen ist. Lustig: Die deutsche Übersetzung auf der Rückseite des Spiels: "Nimm Roenick nach unten!" ist da zu lesen. Wir schütteln den Kopf über diesen Schwachsinn und empfehlen den Übersetzern dieses Textes eine Live-Übertragung auf Premiere.
80
XboxJeuxvideo.com
Saluons la performance de Sega qui nous surprend chaque fois un peu plus avec la série des NHL 2K, renommée pour l'occasion en ESPN NHL Hockey. Sega nous offre ici une véritable simulation qui étonne par sa richesse de jeu et sa marge de progression. Les parties sont réalistes et gagnent en intérêt au fil du temps et de la pratique, là où certains concurrents donnent tout d'entrée de jeu et s'essoufflent très rapidement.
80
PlayStation 2Jeuxvideo.com
Saluons la performance de Sega qui nous surprend chaque fois un peu plus avec la série des NHL 2K, renommée pour l'occasion en ESPN NHL Hockey. Sega nous offre ici une véritable simulation qui étonne par sa richesse de jeu et sa marge de progression. Les parties sont réalistes et gagnent en intérêt au fil du temps et de la pratique, là où certains concurrents donnent tout d'entrée de jeu et s'essoufflent très rapidement.
80
XboxGamePro (US)
When the whistle blows, the rink has three solid teams from which to choose. ESPN NHL will score biggest with hardcore fans who dig its technical feel and realism, even though EA’s new passing and skating schemes are one of the year’s coolest innovations. Hitz is its polar opposite, focusing on the joy of hockey’s rougher side and scoring goals hand over fist, while EA’s game nicely occupies the middle ground. But if you’re passionate and knowledgeable about the sport, ESPN NHL is a first-round pick you won’t regret making.
80
PlayStation 2GamePro (US)
In recent seasons, Sega's 2K series swept to the forefront as the 'game to get' for hockey purists. Along with a freshly minted name, this year's edition comes with some fun mini-games, sharper graphics, and an impressive use of the ESPN license. But at its core, ESPN NHL Hockey 2K4 still remains focused on what it has delivered so beautifully over the past few years: challenging, highly realistic action.
75
PlayStation 2The Video Game Critic
The TV-style presentation is nice, but all the fancy graphics sometimes disrupt the flow of the game. The announcers keep up with the action well enough, but rarely say anything interesting. I like ESPN Hockey. Purists may nit-pick, but casual gamers with enjoy the nonstop action.
65
PlayStation 2Digital Entertainment News (den)
Overall the ESPN franchise offers a lot to hockey fans, and the gameplay, while actually not all that different from last year's version, is enjoyable and fast paced. However, if I were Midway, I would be extremely interested in why my game ended up with SEGA’s name on the license... Guess we’ll have to see if NHL Hitz Pro ends up looking like EA, oh wait, it did…
65
XboxDigital Entertainment News (den)
Overall the ESPN franchise offers a lot to hockey fans, and the gameplay, while actually not all that different from last year's version, is enjoyable and fast paced. However, if I were Midway, I would be extremely interested in why my game ended up with SEGA’s name on the license... Guess we’ll have to see if NHL Hitz Pro ends up looking like EA, oh wait, it did…
50
XboxSuper Play
Tänk att en enda miss från utvecklarna kan sänka vad som annars hade varit ett riktigt mästerverk. Det gör ont i mig, för jag hade också gärna sett att Electronic Arts hade fått lite sund konkurrens.