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Gretzky NHL 06 - PSP - Preview


Posted by: jkdmedia

I loved Gretzky NHL for the PSP.  Loved?  That sounds past-tense.  I still love it!  It had that great arcade feel but included simulation elements as well.  Due to its addictive level, I wouldn’t let myself play the game before doing something important.  Or at least I tried…

The new Gretzky game, which adds the expected “06” to the title, is just as addictive as the original.  Play mechanics are the same, the graphics might have been improved (if so, the differences are minimal), and I didn’t have any clipping during the demo.  This isn’t a finished version either.  Otherwise we’d be skipping the preview and doing a review.

Already the great stuff is in place – new stuff like 99 Time.  99 Time defines the amount of seconds you get with Wayne Gretzky.  When 99 Time is acquired, he becomes your player, your sixth player.  Six-on-five might not be the fairest way to win, but it’s a video game.  Does fairness for a computer-controlled opponent really matter?

Gretzky is acquired by performing well.  The game defines your performance by how you pass the puck, how strong your defensive skills are, etc.  An exact science for measuring what it takes to get 99 Time could not be determined.  Just play your best and it’ll happen.

Cooler than that news is what can happen next.  Players can unlock multiple Wayne Gretzkys by kicking major butt in the single-player modes.  Eventually, if you’re really, really good and invest a lot of time in the games, you could have an entire team of Wayne Gretzkys!  Then, if your enemies (I mean “opponents”) aren’t going nuts when they see that, drive ‘em up the wall by scoring 99 Time, adding a sixth Gretzky to your lineup!

No other changes or additions seem to have been made.  Multiplayer features are the same as last time around, ad hoc or infrastructure, for up to two players.

Look for the game to be released in September.  Hopefully there will be a hockey season to enjoy with the new game by the time it’s released.

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