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ESPN NHL 2K5 Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics What's this?

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 14 Ratings

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  • Summary: ESPN NHL Hockey returns to the ice with the confidence of a seasoned veteran. Improved player control, an all-new fighting engine and lightning fast gameplay truly capture the feel and pace of NHL-caliber hockey. ESPN NHL 2005 features breakthrough new ways to play including online leagues, multi-player mini-games and a deeper franchise mode adding endless replay value to an already robust lineup. Deeper and more interactive than before, this season's Skybox features more than 150 unlockables, including more retro jerseys, remote outdoor locations and more. Execute sliding poke checks, swipe at loose pucks and more with new defensive stick controls that give you hands-on stick movement in a variety of defensive situations. With exclusive ESPN presentation players will experience all the on-ice action called by ESPN veteran commentators, Gary Thorne and Bill Clement. [Sega] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 25
  2. Negative: 0 out of 25
  1. Let me get it out in the open right away - ESPN NHL 2K5 may be the best hockey game you'll ever play. [Dec 2004, p.103]
  2. The default difficulties are done so well that you'll have to play a lot to even consider going into the slider screen.
  3. More than just a slight improvement over last year’s version. It’s my favorite version to date primarily due to the reduction of goalie ability. While the neutral zone play isn’t there like the past, overall the game plays better than ever.
  4. The multiplayer gameplay alone makes this a sports title worth owning.
  5. The actual hockey is a bit of a mixed bag in 2K5. It still controls beautifully (that "smoothness" we mentioned earlier), and the gameplay is again top-notch - once you tweak it that is. The default settings are pretty awful. [Oct 2004, p.31]
  6. Realistic, challenging and far from ugly, the development team have put in a good performance here. I can't help feeling that a little more could have been done to round the package off, but even without online play, the game is still a decent proposal for hockey fans.
  7. It seems to be, in the end, a victory of quantity over quality – the parts are decent enough, but not to the degree that we can strongly recommend it. If you’re a cheapskate or just fancy a bit of action on the ice, however, it could be worth a look.

See all 25 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 11
  2. Negative: 1 out of 11
  1. JamesC.
    Apr 21, 2005
    Way better than EA sports. you wont get much better. last years rosters a bit disappointing.
  2. H.H.
    Sep 6, 2004
  3. Tim
    Jan 11, 2005
    It could have better goal judging.
  4. AndreP.
    Sep 2, 2004
    Break free of the EA spell. ESPN NHL 2K5 is an AMAZING game. An at a fraction of the price of EA NHL 2005, you'll feel dumb if you don't give it a shot. Expand
  5. JordanH.
    Sep 9, 2004
    Put simply, the best NHL game i have ever played.
  6. BobP.
    Sep 6, 2004
    I'm not much of a sports fan, so the real draw for me was the game's $20 price tag. It's a bit much on the full sims side of sports but the graphics and gameplay tend to be on the better than I'd expected it to be for a $20 game. The weekest point is that the game still has last year's roster/stats. Expand
  7. JosephS.
    Sep 15, 2004
    I have had a lot of mixed comments regarding EA's and ESPN's NHL series. Fact of the matter is, despite the fact that ESPN does have a good hockey game, it does not come close to the realism that EA brings. Programming wise, it is evident that the team at EA Sports has put in more passion and hard work in their Hockey franchise. As for ESPN, I don't really have anything bad to say about their production team except for the fact that they lack the experience that EA brings to the game. But hey, you gotta start somewhere and the ESPN team definitely has the potential to be a worthy competitor. As for now though there is only one thing I can say...EA SPORTS, IT'S IN THE GAME!! Expand

See all 11 User Reviews