What in the hell did EA Sports do to this game?
NHL 2004 was close–as close as EA (with Blackbox at the helm) has ever been to providing a hockey game that actually plays somewhat like…hockey. Quite honestly the gameplay in 2004 I was pretty happy with, with some reservations. My big issue was that the franchise mode was totally useless.
So I fire up NHL 2005 and I’m greeted with Rockem Sockem Robots. The sliders will have to DRAMATICALLY change how it plays in order for me to get any fun out of this thing. There are more bone crunching, knock a player on his ass hits in one 5-minute game of NHL 2005 with the default settings than you’ll see in the NHL in one week. Any game that allows Cassels to smack the hell out of Sundin, sending him flying in mid air is Tecmo-Hockey. Once again, EA’s answer to good defense is to just body check a player to his knees.
Maybe with major slider tweaks it’ll be different, but the initial impression was total and complete crapola.