NHL Rivals 2004 Image

Mixed or average reviews - based on 39 Critics What's this?

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 19 Ratings

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  • Summary: NHL Rivals 2004 is a dramatic hockey simulation that immerses gamers into a realistic and exciting hockey experience. With more than 700 motion-captured animations, you can take one-timers, blast slap shots, and dish out the big body checks just like real NHL superstars. You also can settle your hockey grudge matches and create their own rivalries online with Xbox Live and XSN Sports. Control an NHL team on a quest to win the Stanley Cup, or take on your friends in a single game between two bitter rivals. Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 39
  2. Negative: 4 out of 39
  1. Impresses with smooth, realistic game play and rib-cage-crushing intensity.
  2. A good game with solid animation, and a terrific passing system. The game may not be one of the top scorers in the league, but it set up the goal scoring opportunity very well.
  3. While it doesn’t compare to "ESPN NHL Hockey" in terms of better control and game play Rivals makes up for it with the XSN sports community which you can use to create virtual leagues and better online capabilities.
  4. 70
    The control mechanics are intricate, though quick tic-tac-toe passes with the right stick, more in-depth faceoffs, and speedy line changes using the directional pad are nice features.
  5. Worryingly, opposing computer-controlled teams seem to have a habit of always scoring in the third quarter from a cheaply-taken goal - I would have put this down to my poor play but the problem has been reported elsewhere.
  6. The only major advantage that Rivals holds over the other Xbox hockey titles is XSN support, but even that can’t make up for the lackluster gameplay, absence of depth, and mediocre visuals.
  7. 16
    The physics are off, the referee makes questionable calls, the line changes are ridiculous, and the gameplay is too sluggish to be fun. [Jan 2004, p.63]

See all 39 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4