Review by The Evolution

Reviewed: 06/17/01 | Updated: 07/16/01

When the fights in the game are the best part of the game, you've got a problem...

Well, the people at Konami had a chance to hit it big with hockey fans everywhere with a hockey title. They called this hockey title Blades of Steel, and when I first played it, I remember thinking that this game wasn't much. In fact, it left a lot to be desired from a NES hockey game. But, I'll save my bitterness for the rest of the review. Let's go.

Gameplay 4/10

Alright, the game is already lagging in this field. There's a fair amount of teams to choose from, however, it seems to not be enough. However it could be worse. Anyways, let's go on. When you begin a game, it looks like any other beginning to a hockey game. The two teams are skating on the ice, and then the game begins. From the get go, you might realize that this isn't a normal hockey game. See, to begin with, your goalie can not be automatically controlled, instead, it must be manually controlled, leaving the door open for your opponents to score at any time already. Another disappointing factor in this game is the difficulty level. The names for the levels of difficulty do not match the actual difficulty. This was a big letdown for me in reviewing this game, since a level of difficulty that's supposed to be easy should be easy, and not just as hard as the highest level of difficulty. With all this bashing, you people out there are probably wondering what made me give this section a 4. Well, simply, it's the fights. The fight system in this game is the first of its kind, and if you don't play this game for anything else, play it for the fights. They can be entertaining at times, but all fights come to an end at some point, and we return to the crappy gameplay that, by now, you are used to.

Control 7/10

The controls are easy enough, but it'd be great if the goalie would have been able to be automatically controlled, because it's too much of a hassle to have to control your players ALONG with your goalie. One mistake can cost you an entire game. That makes me kind of disappointed, since this game really seemed to have potential. Until, of course, you put it in your NES.

Audio/Video 5/10

This is another part of the game that I'm disappointed in. To begin with, the graphics seem a little choppy, even for the NES. I mean, I've seen better graphics in a sports game than this! The sounds are alright, but the crowd noise doesn't even sound real. Also, the sounds in this game can get annoying very quickly (as seems to be the norm for most NES games), so I recommend you mute your television and play some music or something. As for the graphics, they excel during fighting, since they actually seem somewhat real to life. Or, they are realistic enough in the sense that these graphics were created on a 8-bit system.

Replay Value 7/10

I think that the 2 player mode can be pretty fun if you want to get in some good ol' hockey fights with your friends, and maybe you can find some sort of enjoyment in the single player mode, because I'm having trouble doing so. However, the replay value for this game is alright.

To Buy Or To Rent?

Well, as is the case with most Nintendo games, they'd probably be hard to find in your local video store. However, this would probably be one of those games in a bargain bin at your Wal-Mart or something. If it's cheap, and you feel you'll get a kick out of it, pick it up and have at it. If the ability to rent NES games was still existent, I'd suggest that you rent it, especially if some friends are coming over and you want to have a fun weekend.

So, to recap:
Gameplay 4/10
Control 7/10
Audio/Video 5/10
Replay Value 7/10

Average: 5.75: Reviewer's Tilt: - .75

Overall Score 5/10

In the end, this game deserves this score. It's not an epic classic for the NES from Konami, but if you want a little multiplayer fun, this game might just be the game for you.

Rating:   2.5 - Playable

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