NHL 2K10 Review
The 2K hockey series celebrates its 10th anniversary this year with the release of NHL 2K10. After a decade of hockey video games, across a range of different consoles, 2K10 is currently the exclusive NHL hockey game for the Nintendo Wii.
The Wii has turned out to be a talented platform for sports games, especially ones that involve clubs and racquets, but hockey fans are still standing in line for a hockey title that can stand proud on the Wii console. As the only hockey game in town, can NHL 2K10 deliver the hockey experience Wii owners have been waiting for?
Video Game Summary
What I Loved About This Game
| This Game is Perfect For: |
| Hockey fans, Sports video game fans|
| Genre: |
| Number of Players: |
| Age Rating: |
| Online: |
| Yes |
| FUN Factor: |
| Nintendo Wii Explained Score: |
What does this Nintendo Wii reviews score mean? (opens in a new window)
| Game Summary: |
|NHL 2K10 provides hockey fans with arcade style hockey action through a ton of game modes, from exhibition matches to a multi-season franchise mode, offering hard core and armchair fans alike a taste of professional hockey action. |
NHL 2K10 on the Wii also integrates the Wii remote and nunchuck controllers in offline single player, multiplayer and deep online modes.
As a long distance hockey fan who really enjoys the game without knowing all of the technical aspects of the sport, I was excited to play NHL 2K10. 2K's version of the fastest game on earth offers hockey fans more of an arcade style hockey experience on the ice as opposed to a deep simulation of professional hockey.
Arcade style it might be, but nobody could ever accuse NHL 2K10 of being light on features. This year's title has loads of detailed game modes to play through from quick play exhibition matches, to multi-year franchises and a deep online mode that lets you play with up to 10 online players. In addition to these formal hockey modes are a series of mini-games including pond hockey, 2-on-2 hockey and skills events.
The game's single player modes are numerous and there's easily enough here to keep fans occupied for the next year. Quick Game is a quick play mode that lets you jump straight into a game either with friends or against the computer. Simply choose your teams, either NHL or international, and match venue and you're ready to go. The game uses your pre-set difficulty and period length settings to set up the game, so it really is quick and easy to jump right in.
Season Mode lets you play through a single NHL, International or Custom season with your favourite team, managing your roster, playing lines and player trades. Franchise mode is similar to Season mode but lets you play with your favourite team through multiple seasons, watching your squad of players mature and develop as you build up their skill, add players to cover weak areas, and send under-performers packing to other teams.
In both Season and Franchise modes you'll have the option of customising your league, shifting NHL teams across from their current divisions and creating a league structure that gives you the match-ups you want.
NHL 2K10's Franchise mode is where hard core hockey fans will find their home in the single player mode, offering a deep experience for those who know they can do a better job than the pros. Franchise mode lets you customise your league, choose the number of regular season games, select between a salary cap, team budget cap or no cap at all, and a trade override option that lets you force through trades to ensure you get your favourite players. Franchise mode gives you the full hockey club experience, handling both the on-ice and off-ice activities that come with being a professional hockey outfit.
For gamers less educated in the finer technicalities of ice hockey, the option to have your "Assistant" optimise your lines, run the draft picks, and select playing strategies will allow you to enjoy playing through the Franchise and Season modes without getting bogged down in the off-ice activities.
Online play is where NHL 2K10 goes to the next level, offering up a number of different game modes. You can go one-on-one with players from around the world, play with or against friends, or play on a team with up to nine other online players in the same game. The online mode also includes a great hockey club creator feature that lets you and your friends invent your own team, customise your own personal uniform and logo, and play together on a regular basis against other clubs in an online league format.
Online features are really deep and well presented in this year's game, and players will spend many, many hours playing against, and interacting with, hockey fans from around the world.
What I Didn't Love About This Game
Considering that hockey is one of the world's fastest games around, and that the 2K series offers up a more arcade version of the sport, I found the gameplay a little pedestrian (even after playing with the sliders). Having played a number of hockey games over the years and being a player that enjoys fast, break away action, I just couldn't seem to get it out of NHL 2K10. Player response feels slow, and team AI felt a little inconsistent to me, especially on offense.
In-game commentary has become such an integral part of sports video game presentation these days, and helps take sports games to a higher level when it's done well. The commentary in 2K10 just doesn't manage to create any tension on the ice, and is perhaps best described as competent without being inspired. The commentary in a game like FIFA Soccer 10 is a model for great in-game commentary that really helps to build the excitement that's being created by the game's fast-paced action.
NHL 2K10 offers a solid game of hockey, and it's great to see the series moving in the right direction for Wii-owning hockey fans.
The game offers solid enough gameplay, a load of game modes that will keep you fully occupied for the next 12 months, and a great online mode that brings hockey lovers together from around the world.
And for those Wii hockey fans waiting in line for a standout hockey game on the Nintendo Wii console, you'll be happy to know that that game is now very, very close.
NHL 2K10 is now available from Amazon, Amazon Canada, and Amazon.co.uk, with Free Super Saver Delivery and quick delivery times too.
NHL 2K10 and other great Wii games are available in the Game Reviews section.
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