NBA 2K18

NLSC Podcast – Episode #204

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Episode #204 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Join Arcane and I as we discuss the NBA 2K18 Legend Edition cover reveal, give our initial impressions of NBA Playgrounds, and talk about the burnout and cynicism we sometimes feel when it comes to giving constructive feedback.

On this week’s show…

  • Shaquille O’Neal has been revealed as the cover player for the Legend Edition of NBA 2K18. We also know the release date and the pre-order bonuses. Does all that VC suggest another tough grind this year?
  • Charles Barkley has revealed what it will take for him to appear in NBA 2K18.
  • NBA Playgrounds has been released, and we have some initial impressions to share. One of us is a little more positive than the other.
  • Referring back to a Monday Tip-Off article from a few weeks ago, we discuss the burnout and cynicism that can arise after years of talking about improvements to basketball video games, and compiling feedback for developers.
  • It pains us to say it as long-time NBA fans, but we’re just not feeling this year’s Playoffs.
  • We wrap up Episode #204 of the NLSC Podcast with Our Week in Basketball Gaming, which included another brief but enjoyable session of 2K Pro-Am in NBA 2K17.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Sound off in the comments below, or here in the Forum. Also, if there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss on the next episode of the NLSC Podcast, feel free to hit us up in this thread.

Shaquille O’Neal Announced for Legend Edition of NBA 2K18

Shaquille O'Neal on the NBA 2K17 Legend Edition Gold Cover

2K Sports has announced that Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal will grace the cover of the Legend Edition of NBA 2K18. Shaq previously appeared on the covers of NBA 2K6 and NBA 2K7, and has remained in the game as a playable Legend following his retirement in 2011. He’s also had a presence in recent games as part of the pre-game, halftime, and post-game shows, alongside his NBA on TNT colleagues Ernie Johnson and Kenny Smith.

Just as they did with Kobe Bryant’s special editions of NBA 2K17, there will be a Legend Edition and Legend Edition Gold for NBA 2K18. Interestingly, the cover of the standard Legend Edition will feature Shaquille O’Neal on the Miami Heat, while the cover of the Legend Edition Gold (appropriately enough) features him on the Los Angeles Lakers. The cover player for the standard edition of NBA 2K18 is yet to be announced. You can check out shots of both Legend Edition covers below.

The release date and pre-order bonuses for all three editions have also been revealed. The Early Tip-Off Weekend is in effect again, giving gamers the opportunity to play the game on September 15th (four days ahead of the September 19th street date). Pre-order bonuses for the standard edition include 5,000 VC, 10 weekly MyTEAM packs, and MyPLAYER apparel. The Legend Edition includes 100,000 VC, Shaq Attaq shoes and other Shaq-themed apparel, 20 weekly MyTEAM packs, and some collectables. The Legend Edition Gold includes an additional 150,000 VC, more in-game apparel, another 20 weekly MyTEAM packs, and additional collectables. See below for the full breakdown.

Gamers can expect to pay $99.99 for the Legend Edition, and $149.99 for the Legend Edition Gold. A brief announcement trailer has been released, featuring Shaquille O’Neal at a press conference that gets hijacked by Kobe Bryant. Watch it below, or check it out here if you can’t see the embedded video.

We’ll continue to cover NBA 2K18 throughout the preview season, so stay tuned. In the meantime, feel free to leave your reactions and speculation in the comments section below, as well as join in the discussion here in the NLSC Forum.

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NLSC Podcast – Episode #203

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Episode #203 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Kenny and I are your hosts this week, and our conversation covers the latest NBA Playgrounds news, Beluba’s plans for NBA 2K’s shooting mechanics, NBA Live 18’s direction, and the latest from the 2017 NBA Playoffs.

On this week’s show…

  • NBA Playgrounds has a confirmed release date of May 9th. Polygon’s preview provided us with some new info on the game, and we’re still very much looking forward to it.
  • Mike Wang (aka Beluba) posted an insight into his plans for shooting mechanics in future NBA 2K games, specifically his desire to wean gamers off automatic makes on Green releases. We give our thoughts on the matter.
  • Following on from this week’s Monday Tip-Off article, we discuss whether it would be a good idea for NBA Live 18 to take a more traditional approach, in order to capitalise on the dissatisfaction some gamers have with certain aspects of NBA 2K’s direction.
  • Our Week in Basketball Gaming includes a head-to-head showdown in MyTEAM, expanding collections, and a refreshingly enjoyable run in both 2K Pro-Am and MyPARK.
  • The 2017 NBA Playoffs roll on into the second round. LeBron reaches a milestone, prompting thoughts from the (alleged) resident bitter insecure hater. Also, Paul Pierce’s retirement, Tony Parker’s injury, Isaiah Thomas’ big night, and some predictions.
  • We wrap up Episode #203 of the NLSC Podcast with some quick thoughts on the new BIG3 league, which recently completed its draft.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Sound off in the comments below, or here in the Forum. Also, if there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss on the next episode of the NLSC Podcast, feel free to hit us up in this thread.

Monday Tip-Off: Got Next Gotta Go in MyPARK

Got Next in NBA 2K17's MyPARK

We’re at midcourt, and the ball is about to go up…it’s Monday Tip-Off! Start your week here at the NLSC with a feature that’s dedicated to opinions, commentary, and other fun stuff related to NBA Live, NBA 2K, and other basketball video games. This week, I’m tipping things off with my thoughts on the “Got Next” approach in MyPARK.

Along with the other members of NLSC THRILLHO, I’ve been finding 2K Pro-Am a little more frustrating than usual lately. The most recent patch opened up matchmaking across different tiers, which results in more games, but also frequently matches us up against Elite level teams who are more serious about online gaming, or have achieved that status through cheesy builds. We’ve still had some enjoyable games, but a few tough nights, combined with rising frustration with some of NBA 2K17’s issues, have encouraged us to head to MyPARK instead. After an enjoyable experience with Park After Dark #3, it’s something we’ll probably do more often.

Even though I generally prefer five-on-five gameplay with NBA rules, the streetball approach of MyPARK is a fun change of pace. I like the more casual atmosphere, and when there’s only three of us online, a three-on-three game without AI players of questionable skill level feels like a more streamlined experience. I find that I’m less frustrated, perhaps because even though I do want to win and we do compete, losses don’t seem to sting as much in shorter games. However, there is one frustrating element of MyPARK, and it’s something that’s always bothered me about the mode: Got Next. For me, Got Next gotta go.

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The Friday Five: 5 Ideas for MyCAREER Stories

The Friday Five

Welcome to this week’s edition of The Friday Five! The Friday Five is a feature that I post every Friday in which I give my thoughts on a topic that’s related to NBA Live, NBA 2K, and other basketball video games, as well as the real NBA, and other areas of interest to our community. The feature is presented as either a list of five items, or in the form of a Top 5 countdown. This week’s Five is a list of five story ideas for MyCAREER.

The story-driven approach to MyCAREER appears to be here to stay. Fortunately, as of NBA 2K17, it’s not quite as intrusive as it once was. In the absence of an option to skip the story altogether, keeping the narrative to the background is definitely for the best. It would also be preferable if the gameplay experience drives the story, rather than the other way around. In any event, there are some basketball gamers who do enjoy the story aspect of MyCAREER, and as such, I expect it’s something that Visual Concepts will double down on in future NBA 2K titles.

With that in mind, what kind of stories should MyCAREER try to tell? We’ve seen a rivalry with Jackson Ellis, an undrafted player battling for a place in the league, a Spike Lee joint, and the tale of a dynamic duo. I believe that the next step would be to introduce more than one story, preferably with branching plot points and impactful decisions that underscore the RPG aspect of MyCAREER. To that end, I have five ideas for stories that would provide gamers with a varied career mode experience, and more replay value than what is currently offered.

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NLSC Podcast – Episode #194

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Episode #194 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Join Arcane and I as we discuss this week’s news and events, including the newly announced NBA 2K eSports league, problems in 2K Pro-Am, and an unfortunate incident involving Charles Oakley.

On this week’s show…

  • 2K Sports is partnering with the NBA for an official eSports league. It’s a cool concept, but will it ultimately benefit a majority of the userbase?
  • In Our Week in Basketball Gaming: We’ve had very little success getting matched up for games in 2K Pro-Am following Patch 1.10, though we did hit up MyPARK and a couple of Walk-On games. Also, Playoff success in MyCAREER, and the early stages of building a powerful MyTEAM squad.
  • New York Knicks legend Charles Oakley was thrown out of Madison Square Garden in controversial fashion. Seems most observers are on Oak’s side, and we find it hard to disagree there.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Sound off in the comments below, or here in the Forum. Also, if there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss on the next episode of the NLSC Podcast, feel free to hit us up in this thread.

NLSC Podcast – Episode #192

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Episode #192 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Join Arcane and I as we discuss the announcement that NBA 2K18 will be available on the Nintendo Switch, the latest rumours surrounding the next NBA Live release, and a couple of other news items from the past week.

On this week’s show…

  • Visual Concepts has announced that NBA 2K18 will be available on the Nintendo Switch. We discuss the Switch’s viability as a primary platform for basketball gaming.
  • Something is in the pipeline as far as the next NBA Live game is concerned. Following on from last week’s speculation, we talk about the as yet unannounced demo, “The Drive to NBA Live”, and what it could mean for the future of the NBA Live series.
  • Millertime2325 has released an excellent mod for the Super Nintendo version of NBA Jam Tournament Edition, NBA Jam 2K17. Play an old favourite with 2017 season rosters!
  • We originally decide not to talk about Our Week in Basketball Gaming – it’s been a bit of a tough one – but then we do anyway. NLSC THRILLHO reaches the Elite tier (then experiences some tough losses), and our MyCAREER games roll on.
  • Episode #192 of the NLSC Podcast wraps up with some fantastic news about the future of sleeved jerseys, now that Nike will be taking over.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Sound off in the comments below, or here in the Forum. Also, if there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss on the next episode of the NLSC Podcast, feel free to hit us up in this thread.

Monday Tip-Off: Would I Nintendo Switch?

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We’re at midcourt, and the ball is about to go up…it’s Monday Tip-Off! Start your week here at the NLSC with a feature that’s dedicated to opinions, commentary, and other fun stuff related to NBA Live, NBA 2K, and other basketball video games.

Last week, the gaming community learned more about the Nintendo Switch, which is scheduled for release worldwide on March 3rd, 2017. Of particular interest to those of us in the basketball gaming community, we learned that Visual Concepts will be releasing NBA 2K18 for the console in September this year. The announcement reflects the general increase in third party support that has been pledged for the Switch, after several developers abandoned the Wii U very quickly. As you may recall, NBA 2K13 was the first and only basketball game Visual Concepts released for the Wii U, and the last NBA 2K title released on the original Wii.

With the Nintendo Switch being a hybrid portable and home console, and gaining the support of third party developers, it’s certainly generating a lot of interest and discussion ahead of its launch. With the confirmation that NBA 2K18 will be released for the Switch, it might be a viable option for basketball gamers who haven’t yet invested in a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, and don’t have a suitable gaming PC. With that in mind, is the Nintendo Switch something that I’m personally interested in, either instead of or in addition to the gaming platforms that I currently own?

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Monday Tip-Off: Fixing NBA 2K’s MyPLAYER Archetypes

Choosing MyPLAYER Archetypes in NBA 2K17

We’re at midcourt, and the ball is about to go up…it’s Monday Tip-Off! Start your week here at the NLSC with a feature that’s dedicated to opinions, commentary, and other fun stuff related to NBA Live, NBA 2K, and other basketball video games.

When the concept of MyPLAYER Archetypes was first announced for NBA 2K17, it struck me as being a very good idea. It seemed like a great solution to the issue of gamers creating maxed out 7’3″ players, a practice that frequently upset the competitive balance in modes such as MyPARK and 2K Pro-Am. On top of injecting a little more realism into MyCAREER, MyPLAYER Archetypes seemed to be a logical answer to egregious min-maxing and gaming of the upgrade system in order to create overpowered players.

I maintain that it was a very good idea in theory, and something that should remain in future NBA 2K games. However, MyPLAYER Archetypes haven’t been quite as effective in preserving competitive balance as I would have hoped, as some gamers are still creating cheesy players. Conversely, in other ways they’re too restrictive, allowing for little variation between certain playing styles. Since we’re in the thick of Wishlist season, I thought that I’d throw out a few ideas that could possibly improve MyPLAYER Archetypes in NBA 2K18 and beyond.

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Monday Tip-Off: Fixing NBA 2K’s Grading Logic

We’re at midcourt, and the ball is about to go up…it’s Monday Tip-Off! Start your week here at the NLSC with a feature that’s dedicated to opinions, commentary, and other fun stuff related to NBA Live, NBA 2K, and other basketball video games.

Something that I’ve complained about on the Podcast, as well as in previous columns and most recently in this Forum thread, is the problematic nature of the grading logic in NBA 2K. Although there have been some subtle improvements in recent years, it’s extremely rare that I play a game of MyCAREER or 2K Pro-Am where I’m not hit with a deduction that leaves me grumbling, and wondering how the grading logic figures that I should be penalised. Even in situations where my grade should take a hit, there are deductions that seem needlessly harsh.

Of course, at a certain point you need to channel those complaints into something more constructive, namely suggestions and solutions. Since we’ve tipped off the NBA 2K18 Wishlist, it’s come time to start talking about some of the improvements and additions we want to see, and how we believe certain problems should be addressed. Since I’ve been playing a lot of 2K Pro-Am and MyCAREER in NBA 2K17, my issues with the grading logic sprang immediately when I was considering what I wanted to talk about this week. Without any further ado, here is an outline of how I feel the grading logic can be fixed in future NBA 2K releases.

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NLSC Podcast – Episode #184

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Episode #184 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Join Arcane and I as we discuss Patch 1.05 for NBA 2K17, offer up some more thoughts on what might be happening with NBA Live 17, and talk about a couple of other topics from the past week.

On this week’s show…

  • We’ve started the ball rolling on our NBA 2K18 Wishlist, and encourage everyone to get involved in posting some constructive feedback for the development team.
  • Off the top of our heads, what are some of the main issues we’d like to see addressed in NBA 2K18?
  • Patch 1.05 has been released for NBA 2K17, addressing several bugs and tuning a few elements of the game. Some fixes are working better than others, but at least the timeout glitch is gone from 2K Pro-Am.
  • New rosters are also coming through for NBA 2K17 again, and a recent update has added Steve Nash back to the 2003 Mavericks and 2005 Suns.
  • What do we make of the radio silence from EA Sports regarding NBA Live 17? What do we think is going to happen with the game, and what are our expectations?
  • In Our Week in Basketball Gaming: tough times and bratty kids in 2K Pro-Am, and a milestone achievement in MyCAREER.
  • We wrap up Episode #184 of the NLSC Podcast with some NBA talk, including Stephen Curry’s record-breaking thirteen three-pointers in a game, and Dwyane Wade’s first game against the Heat.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Sound off in the comments below, or here in the Forum. Also, if there’s a topic you’d like us to discuss on the next episode of the NLSC Podcast, feel free to hit us up in this thread.

NBA 2K18 Wishlist Thread Now Open

NBA 2K17: Paul George

Since NBA 2K17 has been out for close to a couple of months and received a few title updates, it’s fair to say that we have a pretty good idea of what it’s all about. While some issues will hopefully still be patched in the months to come, some fixes and additions will have to wait until next year. As such, we’ve opened up our official NBA 2K18 Wishlist thread in the Forum.

If you have any feedback you’d like to send along to the developers in terms of fixes, improvements, and additions that you’d like to see in NBA 2K18, be sure to post it in the thread. We do ask that you keep things civil and constructive, since profane insults and snarky remarks tend not to be helpful. There are plenty of other threads where you can express those sentiments, and we’d rather keep the Wishlist threads constructive. We also recommend being as detailed as possible, since suggestions like “better gameplay” don’t exactly convey what it is that you want to see improved.

In recent years, we have been a little late in starting our Wishlist threads, so we wanted to make sure that we’re on the ball and collecting feedback for the development team much earlier this year. The thread will obviously remain open well into next year, but since NBA 2K18 is already being developed, I’d once again recommend that you start posting your feedback ASAP.

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