And then, there were two … THE FINALS ARE HERE!
In a battle of 16-bit proportions, NHL ’94 and NHL ’95 will have one epic final battle to crown, once and for all, the greatest retro ice hockey video game EVER.
How did these two games get to the final dance?
NHL ’94, the unanimous favorite entering the tournament, certainly had the tougher road to the finals: After soundly defeating Face Off! in the first round, it met lifelong rival NHLPA ’93 in the quarterfinals … and crushed it. In the semifinals, ’94 toppled Blades of Steel, one of the greatest NES games ever (let alone hockey or a sports game), by a very slim margin.
NHL ’95 cruised to the big show: TV Sports Hockey and Mario Lemieux Hockey were trounced by the retro hockey giant. In the semis, NHL ’95 faced its stiffest competition to date, Ice Hockey (NES), but even that darling of so many retro gaming enthusiasts couldn’t muster up a fight against the ’95 juggernaut, which collected over 60% of the vote, stamping it into the final two.
So now two games in the same series — created by the same company, released in back-to-back years — put sticks to ice and pucks in the back of the net in hopes of becoming the champ.
WHICH ONE WILL BE CROWNED VIDEO GAME ROYALTY?
WHICH ONE SHALL BE VOTED THE GREATEST RETRO HOCKEY VIDEO GAME EVER?!?
MATCHUP: NHL ’94 vs. NHL ’95
Third Round: Beat Blades of Steel, 53%-47%;
Second Round: Beat NHLPA ’93, 77%-23%;
First Round: Beat Face Off!, 95%-5%
Third Round: Beat Ice Hockey (NES), 61%-39%;
Second Round: Beat Mario Lemieux Hockey, 90%-10%;
First Round: Beat TV Sports Hockey, 89%-11%