A disappointing riff on mobile hockey.
With the decision to bring NHL 2K to mobile devices everywhere, 2K shocked everyone looking for additional releases on their favorite consoles. But such is life, and with those changes brought about an interesting new mobile hockey game. Unfortunately, it's not exactly the rejuvenating shot of energy the brand needs in order to make a comeback. In short, it needs some work.
NHL 2K is impressive when you collect its several modes of play, including My Career, Quick Game, Multiplayer, Free Skate PRactice, and more. When you consider some of these aren't even available on the latest NHL 15 via EA, they're awe-inspiring. Additionally, there are slick and simple interfaces to navigate between, with gorgeous artwork, jerseys, and more that look as though they could have been torn straight from its console brethren.
There are plenty of opportunities to play with others as well, and as far as mobile sports games go, there's a lot to do. The real question is whether or not you're going to want to stick around to do any of it.
Unfortunately, NHL 2K is objectively not that great of a hockey game. It's a bizarre mishmash of mechanics that simply don't work that well with another. Puck physics are especially strange, and when you combine that with the fact that you don't have tactile controls to help you from keeping centered and on top of the action, it makes for some very frustrating gameplay. You can use a specific control scheme that allows you to swap to "one touch" to simplify things, but all it ends up doing is making things even more frustrating.
The game has the audacity to look disappointing as well, with visuals that aren't even on par with other titles from the same year. Obviously it's going to look much different from a game you'd pay $60 and upward for, but with the advancements in the mobile scene these days you'd assume the players would look leagues better than what NHL 2K has to offer. Additionally, the textures are absolutely horrid. We've seen much better.
It's very clear, unfortunately, that NHL 2K is a free offering, as you get what you pay for in this situation. If you were hoping for the next installment in a franchise that doesn't appear to be coming back to consoles in quite some time, you're going to be sadly disappointed.