Stinger Table Hockey iPhone game definitely scores

Mar 1, 2010
Games

The Stinger Table Hockey iPhone game ($1.99) does a remarkable job of recreating the feel of a real live table hockey game. Each of the players are on visible rails, and as the introductory tutorial explains, you basically only need to know two things for the entire game. You can run them into the puck, or you […]

The Stinger Table Hockey iPhone game ($1.99) does a remarkable job of recreating the feel of a real live table hockey game. Each of the players are on visible rails, and as the introductory tutorial explains, you basically only need to know two things for the entire game. You can run them into the puck, or you can spin your player in hopes of shooting the puck.

With controls as simple as that, it seems like Stinger Table Hockey would be a cinch to play, but it’s far from it. The lack of control in an era where every sports video game has captured the tiniest nuances of their sport in a button means that you’ll have to manage not to throw your phone against the wall when the puck is against the boards and the only thing you can manage to do is spin-shoot it across the ice.

You cannot dive for a puck here. Really, it’d be a miracle if you even managed to get off a crisp pass to one of your own teammates. It takes quite a bit of practice in order to pull off legitimate shots on goal, or even passes to teammates. Most of the time, the puck will ricochet from one corner to the next and you just have to hope your 3D stick men are in position to do something about it.

Practice does make perfect, however, and you’ll soon be left feeling you have about as much control as you would playing actual table hockey. Sure, that means that your goals are as much up to the bounces of the fates as anything else, but that’s what makes table hockey fun in the first place.

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Graphically, Stinger is a treat. The 3D players look great on the phone and the playing surface is more NHL arena than table hockey plastic. Though the crowd brings to mind the multi-colored blobs of PlayStation lore. 

There are plenty of ways to play, as well. You can use any of the 38 different international teams in either an exhibition match against the computer, or against a human opponent via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. You can even create your own team, editing their uniform colors and name.

If playing in games gets old, there are also a few skills competitions to practice basic game play elements. Being able to practice your shot by playing the “hardest shot” competition was a great idea.

If you enjoy video game hockey even a little bit, or you miss the classic feel of a tabletop hockey game, check this iPhone game immediately. It might take some getting used to, but you’ll find yourself coming back for more.

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Dan Kricke

Dan Kricke has been playing with electronics and writing about them for years. He loved his Sega Dreamcast and now the PlayStation 3. On the iPhone, he's a fan of sports apps and anything that offers new music.

 

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