NLSC Podcast Episode #142 Mailbag Call

NLSC Podcast

Arcane and I will be recording Episode #142 of the NLSC Podcast tomorrow, so as usual, I wanted to put out one last call for any topic suggestions and mailbag questions for this week’s episode. We want to make sure that we’re discussing the topics that interest you, our listeners and fellow enthusiastic basketball gamers.

Once again, while we’ll at least consider any and all suggestions, we do ask that you keep them related to our core content. That means topics about basketball video games (primarily NBA Live and NBA 2K, though we obviously do branch out into NBA Street, NBA Jam, and other titles from time to time), real basketball (primarily the NBA), and other related interests.

Having said that…do you have any suggestions, either in the form of a question, or simply a topic that you’d like us to talk about? If so, hit us up in the comments below, or in this thread in the Forum. Alternatively, you can submit them via our Facebook or Twitter.

Please get your suggestions in ASAP! If you haven’t caught last week’s episode of the NLSC Podcast yet, you can tune in here. As always, a huge thanks to our regular listeners who have been submitting topics, and a warm welcome to our new listeners who have recently tuned in. We greatly appreciate the support!

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File Additions for NBA 2K14

NBA 2K14 Cover Art

Check out the latest file additions for NBA 2K14 PC, including a custom instrumental soundtrack, a PBA update, retro jerseys for the Grizzlies from their final year in Vancouver, updated current season rosters, and a retro arena for the Sacramento Kings. Please see below for all the download links.

NBA 2K14 All Instrumentals Soundtrack

PBA 2K14 Appdata Files

2000/01 Vancouver Grizzlies Uniforms

2KShiftLeader’s (Tha2KProphet) 2016 Roster (Updated to v5.5)

1998-1999 Arco Arena II in Sacramento (Fixed Final Version)

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Monday Tip-Off: Playing Old Basketball Video Games

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

Based on past polls, mod releases, and general discussion, a majority of basketball gamers move on to the latest game in the series they play, usually within a couple of months of its release, if not immediately. While retro gaming is a popular hobby, sports games generally aren’t an ideal genre for it. After all, most fans prefer to play with the latest rosters, and take advantage of the improvements and additions that are made year-to-year. As a result, sports games don’t move well in the second hand market, with lower trade-in prices owing to the annual releases, and less interest in playing them once they’re outdated.

Of course, sometimes we do go back and play older basketball games. I’m sure we all have some old favourites that we can dust off and nostalgically enjoy despite their age, and certain titles do become classics. Arcade-oriented basketball games such as NBA Jam and NBA Street also tend to age a little better, since they’re adopting a more casual and less realistic approach to the sport in the first place. However, some of the best sim-oriented titles in the past decade or so also hold up respectably well. As such, if you have a new roster patch or an old season save game, an older title might still hold a lot of appeal.

But then you’ve got basketball gamers who aren’t going back to older games; they haven’t stopped playing them in the first place. Whether it’s because they’re unable to upgrade, or don’t wish to upgrade, they shun the latest releases in favour of an older game. So, for this week’s Monday Tip-Off, I wanted to take a look at some of the reasons why we play old basketball video games.

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Road to the Playoffs: A Much Needed Inclusion for 2K PRO-AM

During the holiday period it was announced that there will be a Road to the Playoffs competition involving NBA 2K16’s PRO-AM mode; and this news came as a pleasant surprise to me. After the last few attempts I had to play the mode with my friends failed, due to the lack of matchups on the server, I was resigned to giving up on 2K PRO-AM altogether and focus on MyPARK in order to show off the talents of MyPLAYER. However, it is my hope that this announcement will drive more traffic to what I believe is a great mode. After all, the lack of participation in 2K PRO-AM was really the only thing that kept it from being better than MyPARK… at least in my opinion.

With every 2K PRO-AM game there’s a great sense of occasion. You’re playing for your team, in the uniforms you’ve designed, and if you’re playing at home, you’re playing on your court in front of your fans. The stadium aspect alone can give you bragging rights over your competitors, since you can have a full house or an empty stadium depending on your progress in MyCAREER. But the thing I love most about 2K PRO-AM is that it’s you and your friends against the world; the way basketball should be. Representing the different parks is fine, but it often feels like your wins are just a drop in the ocean when it comes to the overall result.

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File Additions for NBA Live 2003

It’s not often that we get any file additions for NBA Live 2003 these days, but we have had a new patch uploaded recently. Mirac has released a face update for Andre Drummond, which you can download at the link below.

Andre Drummond 2015/2016 Face

If you’re after some recent roster updates for NBA Live 2003, Murat (aka The Real Badger) released the NBA Live 15 project last year, which you can download here.

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File Additions for NBA 2K16

NBA 2K16 Cover Art

Here’s a round-up of the latest file additions for NBA 2K16! Today’s new files include a handful of player faces from around the league, and a couple of arena updates. Check them all out at the links below.

Kawhi Leonard Face
Derrick Rose Face
J.R. Smith Face

Damian Lillard Face
Jeremy Lin Face
Brandon Jennings Face

Manni Live
Golden State Warriors Oracle Arena HD Court V2

Boston Celtics TD Garden

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The Friday Five: Top 5 NBA Live Features I Want To See Return

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 basketball video games, the real NBA, or another area of interest to our community, either as a list of five items or in the form of a Top 5 countdown.

In recent episodes of the NLSC Podcast, Arcane and I have been discussing the future of NBA Live, particularly how it’s a case of “now or never” when it comes to certain features and improvements. Likewise, back in October of last year, I engaged in a little early Wishlist talk in The Friday Five, with a piece titled 5 Things NBA Live 17 Absolutely Has To Do. Suffice to say, we have some strong feelings about what we feel the series has to achieve with this year’s iteration, as do other members of the basketball gaming community.

Since it is just about time to start creating our official Wishlist threads, I thought I’d use this week’s Five to revisit the topic of what needs to be done with NBA Live. There’s obviously going to be some overlap with the previous discussions, as I haven’t changed my mind about what I believe are the most important areas that Live needs to improve in. That said, on this occasion, I’m focusing on five features that I’d like to see return, and prioritising them in the form of a Top 5 countdown. Without any further ado, let’s tip things off with number five.

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Intel RealSense Bringing Face Scanning to NBA 2K16 PC

NBA 2K16: Stephen Curry

In an interesting development, face scanning is coming to the PC version of NBA 2K for the first time, as NBA 2K16 now supports the use of Intel’s RealSense camera.

While it’s an exciting development on one hand, there’s also a major downside: the Intel RealSense camera is only available in select products, and cannot be purchased as a standalone peripheral. As such, unless you’re planning on buying a new laptop or all-in-one desktop featuring a RealSense camera, you won’t be able to scan your face into the PC version of NBA 2K16.

This basically confirms 2K’s earlier explanation that the lack of webcams with the necessary tech is the reason that face scanning has not been implemented in the PC version of NBA 2K until now. It’s a shame that the technology to do so is currently available in such a limited form (unless you’re in the market for a new PC), but hopefully this will open the door to other methods of face scanning for the PC version. EA Sports’ face scanning app for Android and iOS devices has yielded some excellent results in NBA Live 16, so I’d personally be in favour of 2K adopting a similar technology for all platforms in the future.

2K Sports has posted a video of Ronnie 2K demonstrating the tech, which you can check out below, or here over on their YouTube channel.

Your thoughts? Have your say in the comments below, and join in the discussion here in the NBA 2K16 section of the Forum. Thanks to joosegoose and TBM for the heads up on these developments.

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Week 7 Roster Update for NBA Live 16

NBA Live 16: Kyle Lowry

A new roster update has come through for NBA Live 16, featuring ratings adjustments and lineups that have been updated as of this week. This includes the addition of Elton Brand to the Philadelphia 76ers, and a few recently released players being moved to the free agent pool. Brand is the only newly added player in the Week 7 roster, but 78 updates to player accessories have been included.

As a result of their strong play as of late, five players on the way up in this week’s roster are Kyle Lowry (+3 to 89), Patrick Beverley (+2 to 81), Kawhi Leonard (+2 to 92), Jimmy Butler (+2 to 91), and Draymond Green (+2 to 90). Five players on the way down are Tim Duncan (-2 to 84), LeBron James (-1 to 91), Marc Gasol (-1 to 84) Kobe Bryant (-1 to 80), and Zach Randolph (-1 to 79). Kobe and Randolph had been two of the highest rated players at their position upon the release of NBA Live 16, with ratings of 89 and 90 respectively.

Stephen Curry remains the highest rated player in the active rosters, at 95 overall. Cover player Russell Westbrook is right behind him at 94 overall, with Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant, and Chris Paul tied for third at 92 overall. Jimmy Butler, LeBron James, and DeAndre Jordan are rated 91 overall, while Draymond Green and Tony Parker currently sit at 90 overall. The number of 90+ overall players has essentially been cut in half since the release of NBA Live 16, which in most cases has brought players’ ratings back to a more reasonable and less overpowered level.

For a full breakdown of all the updates in the latest roster, check out this spreadsheet. If you have any thoughts on the NBA Live 16 rosters, or feedback that you’d like to share with the development team, feel free to join in the discussion here in the Forum.

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NLSC Podcast – Episode #141

NLSC Podcast Logo

It’s Thursday, so it’s time for another episode of the NLSC Podcast! In Episode #141, Arcane and I discuss the future of NBA Live and NBA 2K, NBA Jam trivia, and the latest NBA news and results as we find ourselves at the midway point of the 2016 season.

On this week’s show…

  • Has EA Sports done enough to create interest in NBA Live 17, or will the plug be pulled? Do they need to be doing more with NBA Live 16 to drum up interest for this year’s game?
  • What’s holding EA back from releasing a game that can compete with 2K?
  • We discuss some of the issues with animations in both NBA Live 16 and NBA 2K16.
  • With the NBA All-Star festivities not too far away, we reminisce about All-Star Weekend in NBA Live. Do we want EA to bring it back? You can probably guess our answer to that one!
  • Fox Sports Australia recently posted some NBA Jam trivia, which we quickly recap and reflect upon.
  • Which mode do we prefer in NBA 2K: MyLEAGUE, or MyGM?
  • Moving on to this week’s NBA discussion, we mention a couple of notes from the past week, and run through a few midseason surprises and disappointments.
  • The second returns for this year’s All-Star balloting have been released. The likely starters are becoming clearer, so we talk about some candidates for the reserves.
  • Which Chicago Bulls player is most likely to be traded: Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose, Taj Gibson, or Jimmy Butler?
  • We revisit the question of which number the Los Angeles Lakers should retire for Kobe Bryant.
  • Should Kevin Garnett receive a similar send-off to Kobe?
  • In this week’s Bold Predictions for Next Week: Andrew still isn’t on the scoreboard. Will his latest prediction break the drought?
  • We wrap up Episode #141 of the NLSC Podcast by naming the team we’d buy if we won this week’s big Powerball jackpot.

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.

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File Additions for NBA 2K13

We’ve got one new file addition for NBA 2K13 PC today, as PatTheHead has released a new version (v3.2) of his retro season roster pack. You can check it out at the link below!

1946/47 to 1984/85 NBA Seasons (Updated to v3.2)

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Wayback Wednesday: Replay Professional Basketball

Replay Professional Basketball Main Menu

Welcome to Wayback Wednesday, your midweek blast from the past! This is a feature where we look back on yesteryear, dig into the archives, indulge in some nostalgia, and in some cases, wonder just what we were thinking. Check in every Wednesday for features and retrospectives on old basketball video games, old NLSC editorials published as-is with added commentary, and other flashback content.

While there have been a few basketball management/text sim games released over the years, they’ve never matched the popularity of the prominent gameplay-based titles, such as NBA Live, NBA 2K, and NBA Jam. A few of them are still around, including some that are free to play online, but they don’t command nearly as much attention as the games that actually feature on-court action. It’s only natural: most people want a fully interactive experience, with franchise and career modes, and online head-to-head play against their fellow basketball gamers.

And yet, there’s a contingent of basketball enthusiasts who would be content to sit back and watch a virtual representation of the sport, adopting more of a coaching or management role. As such, the prospect of an NBA licensed management sim is brought up every once in a while. I’ve never had much interest in that subgenre myself, as I’d prefer to be in control of the action, but I’ve dabbled with a sim game before. That game was 1991’s Replay Professional Basketball, created for DOS by Thomas R. Mink, and it’s the subject of this week’s Wayback Wednesday!

Let’s take a look back…way back…

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NLSC Podcast Episode #141 Mailbag Call

NLSC Podcast

Arcane and I are set to record Episode #141 of the NLSC Podcast tomorrow, and once again, we’re after your topic suggestions and mailbag questions. Let us know what you’d like us to discuss on this week’s show – whether it’s in the form of a question, or just a subject that interests you – and we’ll add it to the docket.

As usual, while we will consider any and all suggestions, we do ask that you keep them related to our core content: basketball video games (in particular NBA Live and NBA 2K), basketball, and the NBA. We don’t mind branching out into other topics from time to time when they’re relevant to our community, but we do prefer to mostly stick to stuff that’s along the lines of our coverage, and related interests.

How can you submit your suggestions? Post them in the comments below, or over in this thread in the NLSC Forum. On social media, you can hit us up on our Facebook page, as well as Twitter.

Post your suggestions ASAP, and feel free to hit us up each and every week with your feedback. If you haven’t caught Episode #140 of the NLSC Podcast yet, tune in here. My apologies for some of the audio issues in last week’s show, we’ve received some helpful feedback on that and will do our best to improve the quality of the NLSC Podcast in future episodes. As always, a huge thanks to our regular listeners for tuning in!

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File Additions for NBA 2K14

NBA 2K14 Cover Art

Here are the latest new and updated modding releases for NBA 2K14 PC! Today’s file additions include a new version of Tha2KProphet’s current seasonroster update, two face updates for rookie Karl-Anthony Towns by big-shot-ROB, a gamedata mod by Medevenx, and updated Denver Nuggets jerseys by Pepis. Check them all out at the links below!

Karl-Anthony Towns Face (2 Versions)

Med’s NBA 2K14 Gamedata

2016 Denver Nuggets Uniforms

2KShiftLeader’s (Tha2KProphet) 2016 Roster (Updated to v5.4)

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Monday Tip-Off: A Look at Basketball Video Game Story Threads

Ben Gordon dunks in NBA Live 06's Dynasty Mode

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

If you’ve browsed the NLSC Forum, chances are you’ve noticed our Basketball Video Game Stories section. It’s a place where you can entertain your fellow basketball gamers with ongoing coverage of your exploits in NBA Live and NBA 2K, whether you’re playing through the franchise or single player career modes. Over the years, we’ve had some very creative and popular story threads, many of which are now enshrined in our two Story Hall of Fame subsections, so that we can easily go back and enjoy them all over again.

However, story threads have somewhat fallen out of fashion. While we still have gamers posting in the Basketball Video Game Stories section – and we certainly encourage everyone to make use of it, if they feel so inclined – it sadly seems that we’re past the heyday of the story thread. There are a few reasons for this, which I thought I’d explore in today’s Monday Tip-Off, in addition to shining a spotlight on the section and the practice of maintaining story threads in general.

So, what are story threads all about, what was so enthralling about them, and why are they kind of becoming a thing of the past?

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