NHL 2K11 :: Wii Game Review
2K Sports once again focuses on the Wii, but will MotionPlus controlled dekeing rule the day or should we hold out for EA's reponse?
Hockey season is almost here, so bring on the hockey games! NHL 2K11 is a Wii exclusive game that uses the MotionPlus accessory. This alone makes the game ten times better than 2K10, but unfortunately the motion detection is still touch and go at times.
One Man Show
The biggest and best feature in NHL 2K11 is the one-to-one dekeing and it is super satisfying when it works. Hold down on the D-pad and swing the wiimote from side to side to deke get around your opponents like a pro and shoot at the goal. You can also do other tricks like carrying the puck on your stick and juggling it into the air.
You will need to carry most of the slack however, as the AI still hasn't improved much. You can basically just circle around the net to pull off defensemen and the goalie and score into an open net. One-timers still work, but can fall victim to poor motion detection. Nothing is more frustrating that missing a shot at a wide open net because the wiimote didn't detect your swing.
Circling around the net works in online play as well and many players use it for cheap goals. Online play has some great features, including WiiSpeak use and TeamUp mode, which is a literal 5 on 5 game with 10 players connecting online. Unfortunately, online play suffers from a lot of lag.
For local play, you also have some fun modes like mini-rink, pond hockey, and Road to the Cup, which is a new mode this year. Road to the Cup is great for your casual friends and features a bunch of mini-games instead of straight up hockey.
Overall, NHL 2K11 is much better than last year's Wii hockey game. The graphics are some of the best you'll see on the Wii and most players look like they do in real life. Stick to the Classic controller to avoid frustration or wait a couple of weeks for EA's NHL 11, which is coming to the XBox and PS3 and looks very promising.
ESRB Rating: E 10+