NHL '94 last edited by robertcallaghan on 04/27/20 07:37PM View full history


NHL 94 is a vertically-oriented ice hockey simulation based on the same game engine behind NHLPA 93. NHL 94 makes playable all NHL teams (active at the end of the 1993 season), complete with robust (though incomplete) player rosters, in addition to the East and West conference All-Star teams. Various player attributes (e.g. speed, aggression, shot) are ranked based on a 100 point system and affect the way players perform in the game.

New Features Introduced

These features were added from EA Sports's previous game NHLPA 93:

  • Goalie Control
  • Shootout Game
  • Penalty Shots
  • Bench and Board Checks
  • 3 or 4 Player Compatible with Adapter (5 players on SNES)
  • 1992-93 Player Ratings & Rosters
  • Variable Player Ratings when on Hot/Cold Streaks
  • Save Player Records for each player
  • Save User Standings and Records
  • One-times and Special Moves by Selected Players
  • New Player Stats
  • Flip Passes
  • Reverse-Angle Replay
  • Clear the zone while killing penalties
  • Automatic Line Changes (can manually change lines at play stoppage)
  • Tougher Computer Defense
  • Tougher Goalies
  • Computer Shooting Scoring Moves
  • Player and Team Cards
  • Player Profiles with 144 Player Pictures
  • Logan Organ Music matches Home Arena
  • Team logos at center ice
  • New crowd animations
  • No fighting or blood
  • Period Stats
  • More kinds of game stats
  • Two expansion teams (Anaheim and Florida)


NHL 94 has been lauded as one of the best sports games ever made. It iterated on the innovative NHLPA 93 engine, adding smoother sprite animation and a host of new gameplay mechanics. Perhaps the most important of the newly introduced gameplay features was the ability to perform a one-timer. (For the non-initiated, a one-timer is when the puck is passed to a player and the intended recipient shoots the puck immediately, without pause.) The one-timer proved to be one of the most accessible scoring options in the game. Scoring was also made easier by the inclusion of a more robust deke mechanic with NHL 94 (at least in the SNES version of the game). In addition, players were also able to save their user records.

NHL 94 also evolved from its predecessor by reducing the frequency of slap-shot goals scored through the goalie’s five-hole and stopping the ability to run into the goalie and have the puck the active player was carrying drift into the net. Perhaps the most conspicuous feature included in NHLPA 93 and omitted from NHL 94 was the ability to fight opponents. Fighting returned with NHL 95.

Game Modes

  • Regular Season
  • Playoffs
  • Best of Seven Playoffs
  • Shootout
  • Exhibition

NHL Teams & Rankings

The following is a chart of the 26 NHL teams featured in NHL 94 and their rankings, strengths and weaknesses. These stats appear in the manual and the Team Selection screen. For the All Star East and West teams their home arena is Madison Square Garden.

TeamOverall RatingHome AdvAway DisadvPower PlayPenalty Killing
Anaheim Mighty Ducks51LowLowInsignificantWeak
Boston Bruins76HighAverageStrongAverage
Buffalo Sabres73HighAverageNormalStrong
Calgary Flames75LowLowInsignificantStrong
Chicago Blackhawks78HighAverageNormalStrong
Dallas Stars67LowLowNormalStrong
Detroit Red Wings75LowLowStrongAverage
Edmonton Oilers67AverageHighInsignificantWeak
Florida Panthers52LowLowInsignificantWeak
Hartford Whalers66LowLowInsignificantWeak
Los Angeles Kings74AverageAverageNormalWeak
Montreal Canadiens73HighAverageNormalAverage
New Jersey Devils68AverageHighNormalAverage
New York Islanders66LowLowStrongAverage
New York Rangers74AverageAverageNormalAverage
Ottawa Senators55LowLowInsignificantWeak
Philadelphia Flyers69HighHighInsignificantWeak
Pittsburgh Penguins75HighAverageStrongStrong
Quebec Nordiques71LowLowStrongAverage
San Jose Sharks56AverageHighInsignificantWeak
St. Louis Blues69HighAverageStrongStrong
Tampa Bay Lightning56LowLowInsignificantWeak
Toronto Maple Leafs72AverageAverageStrongStrong
Vancouver Canucks71AverageAverageInsignificantWeak
Washington Capitals70AverageAverageStrongStrong
Winnipeg Jets72AverageAverageNormalAverage

Top Rated Players

Only 10 players had an overall rating of 90 or higher in NHL 94, they were the following:

PlayerOverall RatingPositionTeam
Mario Lemieux100ForwardPittsburgh Penguins
Ray Bourque99DefenseBoston Bruins
Ed Belfour98GoaltenderChicago Blackhawks
Alexander Mogilny96ForwardBuffalo Sabres
Steve Yzerman95ForwardDetroit Red Wings
Patrick Roy94GoaltenderMontreal Canadiens
Adam Oates93ForwardBoston Bruins
Pat Lafontaine91ForwardBuffalo Sabres
Pavel Bure90ForwardVancouver Canucks
Teemu Selanne90ForwardWinnipeg Jets

Skater Attributes

The skaters (defensemen, forwards) have an overall rating that is comprised from the average of the following attributes:

  • Energy
  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Offensive Awareness
  • Defense Awareness
  • Shot Power
  • Shot Accuracy
  • Pass Accuracy
  • Stick Handling
  • Endurance
  • Aggressiveness
  • Checking

Goaltender Attributes

Like the skater attributes, the goaltenders have an overall rating comprised of the average of the following attributes:

  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Glove Hand
  • Defensive Awareness
  • Puck Control
  • Stick Right
  • Stick Left
  • Glove Right
  • Glove Left

Penalties in NHL 94

  • Holding - Illegally grabbing or pinning a player so he can't move.
  • Roughing - Unnecessary roughness or causing an injury.
  • Slashing - Deliberately hitting an opponent with the stick in an attempt to obstruct or intimidate him.
  • Cross Check - Lifting the stick off the ice with both hands and using it to check an opponent.
  • Tripping - Tripping the puck carrier, the referee has to believe there was no attempt to capture the puck.
  • Hooking - One player's attempt to "hold up" the other player with his stick.
  • Charging - Slamming into a player after two or more deliberate strides in his direction.
  • Interference - Called when a player interferes with the opposing goalie in the crease or on his way to the crease.

Game Bugs in Genesis/SNES Versions

  • Game freezes and error message appears, most likely occurs if the console is bumped while playing.
  • Skater can get a "boost of speed" after being checked into the boards.
  • Skater "freezes" on a one timer and gets stuck in the shooting position.
  • A player can pull off a "double shot" when missing the initial shot but then will shoot it on the second attempt, although no animation will occur for the 2nd shot.
  • When passing a puck directly at the goal it can occasionally go in as a goal and slide "underneath" the goalie.
  • Puck is shot out of the rink and floats from the crowd back into the rink.
  • An opponent's penalty shot can be cancelled if the player changes goalies before his skater can take the shot.
  • Occasionally on a one-timer goal, the person who passed on the one timer gets two assists for the goal.
  • In the Saturn CD Version the goalie can "fall apart into pieces" after being scored on.

Differences Between SNES and Genesis Versions

The Genesis and SNES versions of the game are mostly similar but differ in some ways. The main menu looks rather different from one version to the next, the SNES version adopting a much more basic design. There are also slight graphical differences during gameplay. Possibly the most significant difference is that the SNES version will not track players' statistics from one game to the next (for example, to see which player on a team is leading in goals scored during playoff mode).

Ron Barr's Quotes

  • Welcome to a sold out {insert arena], home of the [insert home team]
  • Hi I'm Ron Barr for EA Sports... and in goal tonight [goalie name] for [team] and [goalie name] for [opposing team]
  • For [team name], [player name] is on a hot streak, but [player name] is on a cold streak.
  • The [arena] crowd record is [number] db.
  • Hit the Start button to begin, Use the A and C to cycle through menus.
  • Lately [team name] has been playing well ... [team name] has been playing extremely well.


A version of NHL 94 was released on the PlayStation 2 version of NHL 06. It was based on the Sega Genesis version. However due to copyright, lacked the official NHL rosters of the time. There was also a European version of the game released as NHL Hockey 94.

Cover Athletes

Tomas Sandstrom of the Los Angeles Kings shooting against Andy Moog of the Boston Bruins.

PC Release System Requirements

  • Minimum CPU Class Required: 80396
  • Minimum OS Class Required: DOS 4.0 to 6.22
  • Minimum RAM Required: 2 MB
  • Media Type: 3.5 " Floppy Disk, CD-Rom
  • Minimum CD-Rom Speed Required: 1X
  • Video Modes Supported: VGA
  • Sound Devices Supported: Adlib, PC Speaker, Roland MT-32, Sound Blaster
  • Input Devices Supported: Gravis Gamepad, Joystick (Analog), Keyboard, Mouse

Critical Reception

Electronic Gaming Monthly gave the game scores of 9,8,8,8. Ed Semrad wrote, "... a must for any sports fan. EA is getting closer to making the ultimate hockey game". Mike Weigand wrote, "...Loads of new features have been added to NHL '94. Now there are four players with 2-on-2, or any combination you may like. Other new features include real players' stats from the previous season, including faces and streaks. They also have the new logos and each team's rink music. The level of detail, from the crowd scenes to the control is great".


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