Game Name: Brett Hull Hockey '95
Developers: Radical Entertainment (SNES, Genesis), Accolade (DOS)
Release Date: January 1995
Platforms: SNES, Sega Genesis, MS-DOS
I saw this game loaded on my Retropie and I decided to try it. I was never a big fan of the series back in the day, but I do not think I ever gave it a fair chance.
In case that you do not know who Brett Hull is, he is a very big hockey player back in the day. In fact he is the player that came the closest to beating Wayne Gretzky's single season goal record (92 goals) with 89. He was quite a big deal back then. Like most players, he slowed down towards the end of his career but he was a big name back when he was with the Saint-Louis Blues.
Accolade is known for their Hardball baseball games. In fact, Al Michaels, voices both these games. Hardball 4 is one of my favourite baseball games back in the 90's. It was fun to play and always brought the spirit of baseball to the home console or PC. Let us see how this game is after all of these years.
The game is a typical hockey game. The gameplay is vertical and not horizontal like some other games at the time. This started being popular around NHL Hockey on PC. Some other games had a hybrid. It was not vertical or horizontal. It was at a 30 or 40 degree angle. Those games were kind of odd.
The controls are ok in terms of button distribution. There is a button to hit, poke, pass and shoot. However, where I feel the controls fail is with the D-Pad. I know that they were going for realism but it seems that my players have a hard time to turn. Even sometimes the puck is right beside my stick and the players just goes on a completely different direction and then the opposing team gets the puck. It is frustrating to play the game.
Due to this, the game is not the easiest to pick up and play. It takes some getting used to. The passing is difficult to manage as it always passes to the person nearest to you and not to whom you would want the puck to go to.
The stats are what you would expect from a game from this era. EA was doing something differently. I did like however how the playoff tree is presented. It seemed very professional. EA for example, the graphics looked more cartoony.
The modes are Regular Season which you can play part of full 82 games schedule. You can play playoffs with 3, 5 or best of 7 games. Although this is cool, why the hell are the passwords so long. Seriously, I am happy that the password thing is not relevant anymore as this was annoying.
Brett Hull Hockey '95 - Sample Gameplay
I tried to play it a few times and even tried a playoff run and I had a hard time getting into it. It is not the fact that I can barely win a game, but more of the controls which are very difficult to play with.
The graphics for the players and ice are not that great. In fact, often it is difficult to realize that you do not have the puck anymore. due to the circle around the active player is not always clear. At least in ESPN Hockey Night and EA NHL Hockey, the play and puck was easy to follow.
I must admit the voiceover by Al Michaels is pretty solid for back then. He actually names the players. Yes it sounds pre-recorded but back then this was very good. Nowadays we are spoiled with the announcing.
Would I recommend it? I do not think that I would. There are better games out there that are more fun. if you have it somewhere, check it out for yourself but I would not spend money on this unless you are completing your collection.
Rating: 5 Stanley Cups out of 10
Have you played this game? Do you like it or not. Let me know below.
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