NHL 2000 Review

Even hard-core hockey fans should avoid this title; it will start gathering dust on its first day of play.

NHL 2000 is an uninspired attempt at a portable hockey game. It seems that THQ got caught up in trying to jam-pack the cartridge with stats, options, and features, and it didn't spend enough time focusing on the gameplay. You can choose any of the 1999 NHL teams and compete in exhibition games, full seasons, race to the playoffs, or just enjoy competitive shootouts. You can edit your team lines, send players to the penalty box, and set a wide range of game options like two-line passes, icing, offsides, and the stringency of referees.

Where the title falls short is in actually playing a game of hockey. It's hard enough to follow the puck on the tiny screen, but the game is subject to flicker, often making the puck vanish completely. Controlling the skaters is an exercise in patience and frustration because they don't go where you want them to, and you'll often find yourself controlling the wrong teammate. The traditional "press B to switch to the player nearest the puck" scheme doesn't work well either, as unresponsive characters often just watch the puck sail by. The speed-burst feature is useless - the responding player will instantly sprint across almost the entire rink, burying any hope of subtlety in a spray of snow. The sounds are nearly nonexistent, and the musical score only plays when the game is paused. The AI leaves much to be desired, with the CPU goalie often twitching spasmodically for up to five seconds after making a save; because the goalie won't pass the puck to a teammate and the referee won't blow the whistle, players are forced to ram the goalie to get the action going again.

Although you have to give THQ credit for trying, NHL 2000 just doesn't work on the Game Boy. The developers should have spent more time tweaking and play testing it instead of laboriously transcribing the stats of the current NHL roster. Even hard-core hockey fans should avoid this title; it will start gathering dust on its first day of play.

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NHL 2000 More Info

  • First Released Aug 31, 1999
    • Game Boy Color
    • PC
    • PlayStation
    NHL 2000 is virtual hockey at its finest.
    Average Rating482 Rating(s)
    Please Sign In to rate NHL 2000
    Developed by:
    Tiertex Design Studios, EA Canada, EA Sports
    Published by:
    THQ, Electronic Arts, EA Sports, ak tronic
    Team-Based, Hockey, Simulation, Sports
    Content is generally suitable for all ages. May contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.
    Animated Violence