Fight, er, Game On with NHL 2K9

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Although Electronic Arts recently let its unsolicited offer to buy up Take-Two Interactive expire, the two companies are reportedly in negotiations about some type of partnerships or acquisition. EA wants a slice of Take-Two franchises like Grand Theft Auto and BioShock and has promised to let the company keep spinning out its “edgy”—and often controversial—game titles.

While the prospect of EA snapping up take two may not worry some gamers, folks who like sports video games are wary of the deal—because 2K Sports is one of the only serious competitors with EA’s extensive line of sports titles. However, puck-followers will be pleased to know 2K Sports has just slapped out its NHL 2K9 hockey title for the Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, and PlayStation 2 and 3. Developed by the in-house studio Visual Concepts (which also builds other sports titles for 2K Games), the new edition brings a revamped in-game presentation, expanded superstar moves, brand-new player animations…and a completely revamped fighting engine that lets players get into…well, the true spirit of the game. The game also features custom Stanley Cup celebrations, six-on-six online game play, and “friendly” Zamboni competitions.

“With Visual Concepts developing the NHL 2K franchise for the first time, we’re very proud and excited to deliver to our 2K Sports fans a refreshingly fun and entertaining hockey experience with NHL 2K9,” said 2K’s senior VP of sports development Greg Thomas, in a statement. “As the only officially licensed NHL title for Wii, along with our pick-up-and-play controls and fresh new features, NHL 2K9 brings the fun back to hockey video games for fans of all ages.”

NHL 2K9 is rated E10+ by the ESRB, and a free demo is available for Xbox 360 and PS3 owners in the Xbox Live Marketplace and the PlayStation Network, respectively. The game is priced at $19.99 for the PS2, $46.99 for the Nintendo Wii, and $59.99 for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.


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