Archive for the ‘Product Reviews’ Category

Most hardcore hockey players who’ve spent their share of time scouring shops checking out the latest gear are aware of an undeniable truth: if you’re a sucker for gimmicks, you can spend endless dollars buying the latest game-improving “tools.”

Golf probably sits at number one in the “buy this and improve your _____!” market, but hockey has a quick fix for most things too.

Still, we all have to admit: holy shit do we hockey players go through a lot of sock tape, and that seems incredibly wasteful, both environmentally and financially. The only thing worse than being uber-wasteful is being the guy who using skate laces instead of tape. Or worse, uses cloth tape on his socks (likely opposite colour to socks), meaning he’s still being wasteful while looking like a complete duster.

Companies have tried and failed to get us to do the velcro straps and beyond, but I dunno, it just hasn’t taken.

Sock Trap took the latest kick at the can, and sent me some to review. I played Tuesday and Wednesday night this week, meaning HOLY HELL I’M TIRED TODAY. Also, I’m ready to offer my thoughts: Read the rest of this entry »

7 Reasons to Love NHL 13

The newest effort from EA Sports’ perennial sports game of the year candidate hockey franchise arrived earlier this week and I’ve nearly burned my eyeballs out playing it. This year’s title boasts a new skating engine, smarter goalies, GM Connected mode, and plethora of other enhancements.

Here’s seven reasons why you need to own this game.

True Performance Skating

NHL 13 features an all new physics based skating engine that attempts to simulate true to life explosiveness, momentum and top end speed. The result is slower gameplay, but a more realistic hockey experience. There’s a fine line between speed and control now, and even the highest rated players will display a decreased ability to hold the puck, pass and shoot at top speed. You’re also given the ability to skate backwards at anytime by holding LT (Xbox 360) or L2 (PS3), which can lead to some creative passing and behind the net plays.

There’s a moderate learning curve to mastering True Performance Skating, but it presents an unprecedented level of individual player control as a prize for the few frustrating hours you’ll spend to get the hang of it. Read the rest of this entry »

It's nicer than this one.

While my full-time job is writing here at Backhand Shelf, I do have a little side gig with Easton, so feel free to take this product review as you see fit. That said, have no doubt that I’ll give you the truth. I’ve reviewed Easton products before (there’s also a picture of my cat dressed like a dinosaur in that post), and haven’t been shy about knocking what I don’t like.

Plus, hey, there’s a perk - you get to see new products before they come out.

Read the rest of this entry »