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NLSC Podcast #426: Variety & Options on The Virtual Hardwood

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From courtside of the virtual hardwood, it’s Episode #426 of the NLSC Podcast!

After an unscheduled break due to one of us being under the weather, we’re back on the air! We’ve been playing a variety of classic basketball games since our last show, particularly favourites from the late 90s and early 2000s. Notably, we’ve been playing them with some classic teams and legends roster mods, which is tempting us to get stuck into some retro modding. We also provide updates on our ongoing seasons, including Shawn Kemp highlights and an example of video games imitating life. On a less positive note, a couple of recent Tweets have reminded us that elitism and gatekeeping is alive and well within the basketball gaming community. Needless to say, we feel compelled to hit back against those attitudes. In this week’s mailbag, the community tells us their favourite games in the NBA Live series, and we share our thoughts on those titles.

To get involved with the mailbag or to provide any feedback on the show, hit us up in the comments, reach out on social media, or post here in the NLSC Forum! For more information on the NLSC Podcast including episode guides, check out this page in our Wiki. You can also find the show on our YouTube channel, along with the rest of our video content. As always, thanks for tuning in, and go get buckets!

Monday Tip-Off: Hey, That Meme Looks Familiar!

Monday Tip-Off: Hey, That Meme Looks Familiar!

We’re at midcourt, and the ball is about to go up…it’s Monday Tip-Off! Join me as I begin the week here at the NLSC with my opinions and commentary on basketball gaming topics, as well as tales of the fun I’ve been having on the virtual hardwood. This week, I’m tipping things off with some reflections on encountering a familiar image in a meme, and other moments of recognition.

It’s good advice to be careful about what you put out there on the internet. We’re not always as anonymous as we think, and poor behaviour can come back to haunt us. In general, it’s prudent to exercise caution in sharing personal information and even photos, as it can compromise one’s safety. It’s something to keep in mind when you’re a content creator, even in a niche community. Someone with an axe to grind may be petty enough to use it to directly harass you, or talk trash about you elsewhere online. I’ve encountered both during my time running the NLSC.

On a lighter note, when it comes to the content you create for one and all to see, you never know where it will end up. It’s both exciting and humbling when something gains traction, as my article on the Rising Cost of MyCAREER did last year, or when your work is referenced, as a WhatCulture video did with a post about NBA Elite 11. On the other hand, it’s funny when parts of your content end up being recycled, or shared outside of the original context. In particular, I’ve seen some of my screenshots show up in other articles, or on social media. And, speaking of the latter, there’s one familiar screenshot that has been used in a meme shared by several accounts.

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NLSC Greatest Performances: The Delonte West Deluge

NLSC Greatest Performances: The Delonte West Deluge

If you’re subscribed to the NLSC YouTube channel – and you absolutely should be! – then you may have seen that Dee4Three has tipped off a new video series: NLSC Greatest Performances! This series spotlights incredible performances on the virtual hardwood, and first up is Delonte West.

As you may recall, Delonte West had himself a night during our NBA Live 10 Tournament! In a series featuring LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, it was West who stepped up for Cavs4872 in the second half of Game 2 against QB1120 and the Lakers, scorching the nets for 39 points in just 12 minutes. Dee has compiled a highlight reel of Delonte’s scoring deluge, which came from a barrage of cold-blooded jumpers and fearless forays to the rim. Watch as West turns King James and the Black Mamba into mere spectators!

These epic performances by Virtual Hardwood Legends are as entertaining as putting up numbers with the all-time greats, and they stick in our minds for years to come. As this series continues, Dee will be spotlighting many incredible performances in basketball video games, new and old. From the superstars of the sport to Virtual Hardwood Legends to career mode avatars, stay tuned for a dazzling array of highlights in NLSC Greatest Performances!

NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week: May 14th, 2022

NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week

Get ready for more fantastic highlights from the basketball gaming community in the NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week, curated by Dee4Three! New and old games alike are featured in this celebration of spectacular moments on the virtual hardwood. To submit your clips, post them in this topic, or hit up Dee on Twitter.

This week marks the one year anniversary of the reboot of the NLSC Top 10 Plays, and we have a great countdown to celebrate the occasion! From a long bomb in Double Dribble to a classic Jason Kidd behind-the-back pass in NBA 2K19 using the 1995 season mod, there’s plenty of flair on display. There’s also a very rare defensive highlight from NBA Live 2003, and yes, an assortment of jaw-dropping dunks! A big thank you to everyone who has gotten involved with the Top 10 over the past year. It’s not going anywhere, so please keep the highlights coming!

What was your favourite highlight this week? Sound off in the comments below, and once again, get in on the fun by sending us your best plays! Remember, as long as it’s a basketball game, it’s eligible for the countdown. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to us on YouTube for more basketball gaming videos.

The Friday Five: 5 Retro Teams I’d Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 13)

The Friday Five: 5 Retro Teams I'd Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 13)

Welcome to another edition of The Friday Five! Every Friday I cover a topic related to basketball gaming, either as a list of five items, or a Top 5 countdown. The topics for these lists and countdowns include everything from fun facts and recollections to commentary and critique. This week’s Five is part thirteen in a series discussing retro teams that I’d like to see added to NBA 2K.

This isn’t the first time I’ve revisited the topic of retro teams that I’d like to see in NBA 2K in back-to-back weeks. Although I do like to spread out sequel articles in the name of variety, sometimes I’ll stick with a topic if the next part is in the can, and it still feels relevant. Parts eight to eleven of this series came out in consecutive weeks back in 2019, and as I mentioned in part twelve, I’ve already shelved the topic for so long that I needed to take new screenshots from the latest game. Also, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to post the thirteenth instalment of the series on Friday the 13th!

With that being said, let’s get into the next five retro teams that I’d be in favour of the developers adding in future NBA 2K games. Actually, I’m cheating and suggesting six teams in a list of five, but you’ll see why when you get there. As I’ve previously noted, since 2K has ventured beyond the parameters of iconic teams, such as former champions, their opponents, and other perennial powerhouses, my lists have likewise explored some more unorthodox choices. My aim is to suggest teams that are fun to play with, historically significant in some way, and would allow for some handy new assets to be included for modding projects. I believe these five – uh, six – fit the bill.

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NBA Live 2003 Mod Releases: More Retro Jerseys

NBA Live 2003 Cover Art

The latest retro jersey updates by Tichmall can be found in today’s NBA Live 2003 mod releases. Pick them all up at the links below!

Tichmall
1995/1996 Seattle Supersonics Away Jersey
1996/1997 Charlotte Hornets Away Jersey
2009/2010 Portland Trail Blazers Alternate Jersey
1995/1996 Milwaukee Bucks Alternate Jersey
1997/1998 Golden State Warriors Home Jersey

Thanks to everyone who continues to contribute to our Downloads database! If you need help uploading files, be sure to check out this video tutorial. For more information about downloads, the modding community, and Mod Releases bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

Wayback Wednesday: The OMG Trailer for NBA 2K14

Wayback Wednesday: The OMG Trailer for NBA 2K14

This is Wayback Wednesday, your midweek blast from the past! From retrospectives of basketball games and their interesting features, to republished articles and looking at NBA history through the lens of the virtual hardwood, Wednesdays at the NLSC are for going back in time. This week, I’m taking a look back at the OMG Trailer for NBA 2K14.

Is there a more important and impactful trailer in the history of basketball gaming than the OMG Trailer, promoting NBA 2K14 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One? While there have been other fantastic trailers and promotional spots for basketball video games, you’d be hard-pressed to find one that turned as many heads, and that gamers still know by name. It boldly announced the arrival of a new generation, and made a statement that Visual Concepts were eager to make full use of the technology they now had at their disposal.

The OMG Trailer for NBA 2K14 is something you can still appreciate today. It still looks amazing almost a decade and entire console generation later. In a way, it’s even more impressive now that we know the game lived up to the hype; even if a few of us discovered that later than others! There’s more to the OMG Trailer for NBA 2K14 than just reflecting on how awesome it was, though. It’s had a lasting impact on the series and basketball gaming as a whole, but has also proven to be a hard act to follow. Let’s take a look back…way back…

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NBA Live 10 Fantasy Teams Showdown: ’06 Suns vs ’06 Nets

NBA Live 10 Fantasy Teams Showdown: '06 Suns vs '06 Nets

It’s time for another Fantasy Teams Showdown in NBA Live 10! Every so often, Dee4Three and I will jump into a game of NBA Live 10 using Parsec, and use the Fantasy Teams mode to create some fun matchups. These include makeshift retro squads, utilising the players who are available in the game’s rosters. This time, we had the 2006 New Jersey Nets (me) taking on the 2006 Phoenix Suns (Dee).

As always, the challenge is to find retro squads where we can fill all ten roster slots for a Fantasy Teams game. At the very least, we aim to have no less than seven or eight real players that were still available in NBA Live 10’s rosters. The 2006 Suns had ten players in the game, while the 2006 Nets still had nine. It produced a fun matchup filled with spectacular highlights, as Steve Nash, Amar’e Stoudemire, and Shawn Marion clashed with Jason Kidd, Vince Carter, and Richard Jefferson. Dee has compiled a highlight reel, which you can check out below!

You can find more of our NBA Live 10 Fantasy Teams Showdowns over on the NLSC YouTube channel! Got any suggestions for matchups you’d like to see? Check out this list of retro teams that can feasibly be created in NBA Live 10, and let us know! If you have any other suggestions, we can give them a try, too. For more information on how to use Parsec to play basketball video games head-to-head, check out this video tutorial.

NBA 2K17 Mod Releases: More Player Faces

NBA 2K17 Cover Art

You’ll find another great selection of player face and body model updates by Johnny in today’s mod releases for NBA 2K17. These player updates are intended for use with the previously-released PRO-J ReBorn current season roster update. Download all of today’s NBA 2K17 mod releases at the links below!

Johnny
Victor Oladipo Face
Carmelo Anthony Face
Andrew Wiggins Face
Gary Payton II Face
Draymond Green Face
Bradley Beal Face
Otto Porter Jr. Face
Chris Paul Body Model
DeMarcus Cousins Face & Body Model
Devin Booker Face & Body Model
Cam Johnson Face
Mikal Bridges Face

Thanks to everyone who continues to contribute to our Downloads database! If you need help uploading files, be sure to check out this video tutorial. For more information about downloads, the modding community, and Mod Releases bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

Monday Tip-Off: The Community, Or The Wrong Parts of It?

Monday Tip-Off: The Community, Or The Wrong Parts of It?

We’re at midcourt, and the ball is about to go up…it’s Monday Tip-Off! Join me as I begin the week here at the NLSC with my opinions and commentary on basketball gaming topics, as well as tales of the fun I’ve been having on the virtual hardwood. This week, I’m tipping things off with some thoughts on blaming the entire basketball gaming community for changes and additions that only a vocal minority asked for.

Even though everyone in the basketball gaming community shares a common passion, we’re not always on the same page. We’re divided along several lines: mode of choice, online or offline gaming, ideal controls and mechanics, how much realism the games should have, and so on. This makes it impossible for anyone to speak on behalf of the entire community, and no one person’s vision alone is right for basketball gaming. In turn, developers have many voices to listen to – some offering up conflicting feedback – and so are guaranteed to disappoint a contingent of the fanbase with certain choices.

While we collectively understand that, in our disappointment and indeed our outrage, it’s difficult to accept. When we’re disappointed and angry – whether it’s about video games or anything in life – we want to lay blame. We point the finger at developers, the suits, and even ourselves. In all three cases, that blame isn’t entirely misplaced. However, when it comes to blaming ourselves, we’re talking about a much larger group; a group that has less control than the other two, and is less likely to be wholly in agreement. As such, when we blame what we see as an undesirable aspect of NBA 2K on the community, we’re often pointing the finger at the wrong parts of it.

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NBA 2K14 Mod Releases: Updated Retro Faces

NBA 2K14 Cover Art

We have a couple of new mod releases for NBA 2K14 today, as IceCr has released new versions of his face updates for David Robinson and Andrew Bynum. Check them out at the links below!

IceCr
David Robinson Face (Updated to v5.0)
Andrew Bynum Face (Updated to v2.0)

Thanks to everyone who continues to contribute to our Downloads database! If you need help uploading files, be sure to check out this video tutorial. For more information about downloads, the modding community, and Mod Releases bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week: May 7th, 2022

NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week

Get ready for more fantastic highlights from the basketball gaming community in the NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week, curated by Dee4Three! New and old games alike are featured in this celebration of spectacular moments on the virtual hardwood. To submit your clips, post them in this topic, or hit up Dee on Twitter.

Whether it’s real basketball or basketball video games, dunks will always stand alone as the supreme highlight of the sport. With that in mind, this week’s NLSC Top 10 Plays is dedicated to dunks, but slams aren’t the entire story. It’s the slick dribbling moves that set them up, the ambitious tricks with the ball once the player is in the air, and the posterised defenders that dared to attempt a block. The seven games featured in this week’s countdown stand as proof that no matter if it’s NBA Live 98 or NBA 2K22, virtual dunks never go out of style!

What was your favourite highlight this week? Sound off in the comments below, and once again, get in on the fun by sending us your best plays! Remember, as long as it’s a basketball game, it’s eligible for the countdown. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to us on YouTube for more basketball gaming videos.

The Friday Five: 5 Retro Teams I’d Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 12)

Welcome to another edition of The Friday Five! Every Friday I cover a topic related to basketball gaming, either as a list of five items, or a Top 5 countdown. The topics for these lists and countdowns include everything from fun facts and recollections to commentary and critique. This week’s Five is part twelve in a series discussing retro teams that I’d like to see added to NBA 2K.

This is one of my longest-running series of Friday Five articles, yet somehow, I haven’t posted a new instalment since 2019! It’s not that I haven’t had any ideas for retro teams that I’d like to see added to NBA 2K, either. In fact, I had ten further suggestions when I posted Part 11 in this series, all ready to be written about. I even had screenshots prepared for those articles. Indeed, the series has been on the shelf for so long while I discuss other topics here in The Friday Five, that it only felt right to get brand new screenshots using a newer game!

With that out of the way, what other retro teams could I possibly suggest that haven’t been mentioned already? Obviously I’ve covered a lot of ground so far, and a few of the teams I suggested in earlier instalments have actually been included since. I’m not claiming credit here, but since I was genuinely keen to see those retro teams be added to the games, I’m pleased that it happened! Once again, I’ve been delving into some unorthodox suggestions, since 2K already made the wise decision to expand beyond conventional choices of champions, their opponents, and other celebrated squads. Without any further ado, here are five more retro teams that’d I’d really like to see.

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NBA Live 2005 Mod Releases: Updated 2022 Season Rosters

NBA Live 2005 Cover Art

New mod releases for NBA Live 2005 are always welcome, especially a current roster update. Pick up the latest version of [KiDD]’s 2022 season roster, updated as of April 26th, at the link below!

[KiDD]
KiDD’s NBA 2021/2022 Roster Update (Updated to v1.2)

Thanks to everyone who continues to contribute to our Downloads database! If you need help uploading files, be sure to check out this video tutorial. For more information about downloads, the modding community, and Mod Releases bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

Wayback Wednesday: Single Season Players Who Were Starters

Wayback Wednesday: Single Season Players Who Were Starters

This is Wayback Wednesday, your midweek blast from the past! From retrospectives of basketball games and their interesting features, to republished articles and looking at NBA history through the lens of the virtual hardwood, Wednesdays at the NLSC are for going back in time. This week, I’m taking a look back at players who only played a single season in the NBA, but ended up being regular starters.

On top of the players that have just one appearance in the NBA – “cups of coffee“, as Basketball Reference labels them – there are many players who spent just a single season in the league. While this is still a tremendous accomplishment, it may be surprising, not to mention disappointing for seemingly promising prospects. Usually, these players only appeared in a handful of games, playing sparingly. You generally wouldn’t expect them to be starters, at least outside of a game or two when injuries opened up a rare opportunity.

Surprisingly, several single season players were starters for a respectable chunk of their only NBA campaigns. For the purposes of compiling the most interesting and relevant list – i.e. not just including anyone who played one season and started a few games – I’ve set the cut-off at starting in at least 20% of their appearances. That might still seem generous, but considering that most single season players have ridden the bench, it represents some regular forays into the starting five. Let’s take a look back…way back…

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