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Noon Number for 7-19-2013: 20-03

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Another plea to bring back the true greatest hockey game, ever.

An absolute beast in NHL Hitz 20-03.
An absolute beast in NHL Hitz 20-03.
Jim McIsaac

So, we've brought back NHL 94. Again. They did it in 2006, and now they're doing a 20th anniversary edition, which is by all accounts, totally awesome. And that's great. As someone who was barely alive in the moment that NHL '94 came out, I don't fully get the experience. It's a good game, but if you miss the boat on nostalgia, you might never be able to get back on it. However, they didn't just bring a carbon copy (with different names) to the PS3. They pulled out all the stops, updating it to a game that has a classic feel, but could be released today, and with today's players. That's admittedly awesome, and something I'm very interested in playing.

I totally acknowledge the fact that this may just be my nostalgia, but on my pop-culture wish-list, only a vinyl re-issue of The Lonesome Crowded West by Modest Mouse is placed higher than a re-make of NHL Hitz 20-03.

For a complete breakdown on why NHL HItz 20-03 is super awesome, click here, where I wrote 1,000+ words on it. It's incredible, and as pick-up-and-playable as any sports game. Sadly, between work, and being accused of grand larceny in a fantasy trade, I won't get into re-hashing it in all it's majesty right now.

But while NHL '94 is good, and lauded, NHL Hitz 20-03 remains ignored by the mainstream media, probably some by most of the non-mainstream media, and thusly hasn't gotten the kind of buzz for a re-make it deserves.

And that's a shame, because it'd be so much fun to have Zdeno Chara use his HIT stat to knock over guys, to use Alex Ovechkin's 90+ SPD, SHT, and HIT, and, more relevant to us Minnesota Wild fans, a Wild team that would actually be good, and that you didn't have to spend massive amounts of time trading up to get.

It may never happen- and maybe the new NHL '94 is the closest we're going to get to it, and maybe it's even everything I love in NHL Hitz- but re-making an NHL Hitz game would bring back an easy, fun, arcade-style game to a market that's been missing one like it for quite some time, in an everlasting quest for authenticity and realism.