Metascore
85

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Given how far this franchise has come, however, I've no doubt that the team behind NHL will keep this series out in front of the curve from now on. [Oct 2003, p.138]
  2. Everything that has been revamped makes me look forward to next year's version and see if they can bring it all together.
  3. With graphical enhancements and improved controls over last year's edition of the NHL franchise, EA Sports manages to keep the hits coming.
  4. A hockey game at its most realistic, therefore making for a game that’s both fast-paced and hard-hitting...just the way we hockey fans love our hockey.
  5. 88
    Mimics the real thing more than ever and therefore the joys of the sport are found in big hits, near misses and brilliant scoring opportunities that barely miss lighting the lamp. If you can get over the fact that scoring is going to be reserved only for those that deserve it.
  6. 88
    Expanded fight controls include grappling, punch selection and the ability to pull off the gloves whenever rink rage overcomes you. [Oct 2003, p.37]
  7. This is almost certainly the best release in the history of the NHL series and one of the most authentic action-oriented sports games currently on the market.
  8. Not to be outdone, EA Sports has upped the ante with NHL 2004 and it truly has left me speechless. What am I so excited about? One word - Dynasty Mode... For hockey fans, this is a no brainer. [Sept 2003, p.88]
User Score
6.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 30 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 26
  2. Negative: 9 out of 26
  1. Jul 30, 2014
    10
    The most fun arcade hockey game ever created. Ahead of its time in terms of commentary and features in dynasty mode. Controlling the ticketThe most fun arcade hockey game ever created. Ahead of its time in terms of commentary and features in dynasty mode. Controlling the ticket prices, salary caps, staff and contracts was present in this game and led the way with the improvements for future games. The soundtrack was also killer and the game was presented in a way that was easy on the eye. Of course the game has not aged particularly well, but this game is still fun to go back to and take on a friend. Full Review »
  2. Wingsfan
    Jul 14, 2004
    8
    I think this is EA's best game yet, Realistic Skating, new Dynasty mode, and improved graphics, however it has its bad things, such asI think this is EA's best game yet, Realistic Skating, new Dynasty mode, and improved graphics, however it has its bad things, such as signing free agents easily by just making offers, takes the other teams out of the competition, thus I give it an 810. Full Review »
  3. MikeQ.
    May 1, 2004
    10
    The controls take some getting used to, but once you master checking and deking with the right thumbstick, you'll never again be able to The controls take some getting used to, but once you master checking and deking with the right thumbstick, you'll never again be able to play any other hockey game. Full Review »