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July 24, 2005
NHL 06 - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
28/9/2005EA SportsEA Canada1-8$89.95

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He blocks the shot!
As the current generation slowly fades away gamers are asked a big question. Should they still buy games in the current generation or wait until the next generation arrives? Ask us, and the answer is simple. Towards the end of any consoles life the developers have learned to push a system to its absolute limits and create games often several times better then the first generation games on any new system. With that in mind it's clear to us that Electronic Arts look set to deliver possibly the greatest Ice Hockey game of all time with NHL 06 which is due out in a couple of months.

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Typical game viewpoint.
NHL 06 is the latest in EA's yearly sports updates and as with previous years we aren't just looking at roster changes, but a host of new options which should make this another stunning, and futhrer improved, title in the series. One of the big new additions to this game is the addition of the Skill Stick - a new method of shooting at goal. With a tap of the right analog stick, pick your spot and execute brilliant signature shots while controlling the location of each shot with the new in-net targets. A new "Realistic Puck Momentum" engine has been included meaning the pucks dangerous-hard shots can injure defensemen, shake up goalies in the crease, ripple the twine, or even knock water bottles off the net.

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It's a goal!
Movement on the ice is more intuitive than ever as you skate and deke using the left analog stick to move past opponents and make goalies bite and perform all-new incredible desperation saves. Player speed and size now has an effect on momentum and turning radius.

Create-A-Player in NHL 06 allows you tget in the game with the new analog facial sculpting controls. Add black eyes and scars tput fear in the eyes of your opponents. Create an NHL team in your hometown and build a dynasty, or edit any player in the league with an all-new player editor.

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A pre-rendered screen.
One area which is still to be confirmed is the inclusion of online gameplay in PAL territories. As many of you will be aware the online option in many Electronic Arts titles has in the past been dropped prior to release in PAL territories and as yet EA Australia still aren't sure if this will be included. Here's hoping.

Ice Hockey really does make a fantastic title. As well as the ability to enter fights the game looks fantastic and promises to build on the very strong titles of previous years. Expect NHL 06 to be released here in late September.