Be it SNES or Sega Mega Drive – I love NHL 94. I just like it so much. In its time it was popular and appreciated ice hockey game. NHL 97 for SNES is very similar in many ways. I decided to pick this game and buy it because I liked NHL 94 so much and I hoped it would have a decent season mode.
I start to play this game. I am greeted with some title screens. There appears to be some kind of a menu. I decide to first play an exhibition game to find out how to play this game. Since I have so solid experience from NHL 94 I decide to try to play this in difficulty of Expert which is the toughest difficulty level out of three.
I picked Anaheim Mighty Ducks because I like to play with Selänne and Karyia. They are fast and good players also in overall. After three rounds I haven’t scored a goal. It seems that it is hard to make one. I seem to loose the puck all the time. I didn’t set fighting on but I guess I will have to test playing also with that setting on.
I finally loose the first game in overtime as computer scores the first, and last, goal of overtime. I decide to try to play a season. The menu is a bit confusing. I manage to create a new player and select a team. I also adjust the difficulty level to a bit lower setting.
This game feels a lot like NHL 94. There are many things done a bit differently althought. The graphics and sounds have been moulded a bit. There are fights which do not exist in NHL 94. Scoring a goal is more difficult or at least it is modified. This is all in all a good matter. I have played NHL 94 so much that it would simply be boring for me to keep scoring and winning games 10 to 0.
I have some tips for players of NHL 97. Don’t tackle a player that has a breakaway. If you do the opponent will almost every time get a penalty shot. It isn’t worth mking that risk. Just try to distract the player that has the puck without tackling. You can use pass button but the referee might consider that to be tackling also.
There is a sure way to score in NHL 94. You have to skate with your player that has the puck to the other corner of the ice and then start moving to the other side going on the front of the goal and goal keeper and then shoot the puck while moving from left-to-right or right-to-left depending on the point you started. This way, or at least the game thinks so, the goalie is put to a side-to-side movement and you will definitely score a goal this way.
However I didn’t get to try this. NHL 94 gets boring quickly if you use this method to score like 20 goals in every game. So that is the reason why I avoid using this way to score a goal. I have to play this more to find out more ways to score a goal. One sure way seems to be to get in a breakaway and then press several times left-right-left on the game pad or right-left-right depending once again how you start the combination of key presses.
You have to be careful when your goalie has the puck. Avoid passing the puck when you have the puck near the goal. Don’t pass the puck from another side to the other side so that it passes directly in front of the goal. If your opponent gets to intercept your pass and your goalie is positioned badly this might lead to your opponent to score a goal.
NHL 97 seems to be a different game if you compare it directly to NHL 94. It is a sequel after all. I played the SNES version. I also have a PC big box version which is of course completely different game since you get to run it on such a powerful platform. I am talking about the power of a PC compared to SNES. The PC version has 3D modeled graphics and the gameplay differs also a lot.
NHL 97 is a good hockey game. I think althought that it isn’t one for me to continue playing for a long time. There are better hockey games. Some nice ones are NHL 08 on PS2 and NHL 2000 on PS1. I think you should check them out in case you like ice hockey games. NHL 97 was a cheap one to buy for me. I got it for 15 euros. I ordered some other SNES games with the same order so that’s how it goes this time.