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LeBron vs. Kobe: The NBA Finals We Didn’t Get

LeBron vs. Kobe: The NBA Finals We Didn't Get

In 2007, the NBA was buzzing about the possibility of LeBron James and Kobe Bryant teaming up, when the latter was demanding a trade from the Los Angeles Lakers. Of course, Kobe stuck around, the Lakers acquired Pau Gasol, and together they won two titles in three NBA Finals appearances. Unfortunately for fans who were hoping to see two of the league’s biggest stars clash, we never got to see LeBron vs. Kobe in the Finals.

Funnily enough, Kobe and LeBron have teamed up in my NBA 2K14 MyCAREER; a story that I’ll be getting to in a video next week. While capturing some footage for that feature, I decided to play out a LeBron vs. Kobe NBA Finals matchup in NBA Live 10. I opted to use Kobe and the Lakers, and it was a fun challenge to mount a comeback after LeBron and the Cavs stormed out to an early lead. Kobe was still at the top of his game in 2010, and while I obviously tried to share the ball around, it was tough not to just give it to the Mamba and demand everyone else get out of the way! Enjoy the highlights from this “What If” NBA Finals showdown.

Be sure to subscribe to the NLSC YouTube channel for more video content from Dee and I, and stay tuned for the next instalment in my NBA 2K14 MyCAREER Stories series!

NBA Live 10 Highlights: Nuggets vs Knicks

NBA Live 10 Highlights: Nuggets vs Knicks

As you may have heard Dee and I discuss in Episode #463 of the NLSC Podcast, we had a couple of fun Parsec sessions with NBA Live 10 and NBA Live 98 last week. I posted a bulletin with the NBA Live 98 reel over the weekend, but Dee has also put together highlights from our NBA Live 10 game.

Although we’ve connected several times to play head-to-head in NBA Live 10, it was our first time playing co-op. Many of our games these days are co-op, and it’s proven to be just as fun as squaring off against one another! In this game, we used the Denver Nuggets and faced the New York Knicks in NBA Live 10’s rendering of Madison Square Garden. We were able to connect on some exciting alley-oops, make spectacular forays to the hoop, and come up with some impressive defensive stops. NBA Live 10 highlights are a lot of fun, so check them out!

Once again, a reminder that we’re looking to produce even more video content this year, so be sure to subscribe to the NLSC YouTube channel! Dee and I have a huge variety of basketball games in our respective collections, so feel free to hit us up with any suggestions of what you’d like to see us play.

Monday Tip-Off: My Aversion to Mobile Basketball Gaming

Monday Tip-Off: My Aversion to Mobile Basketball Gaming

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 my thoughts on mobile basketball gaming, and why I’m not a fan of it myself.

NBA Live is not dead. I don’t say that because I believe that the series is poised to make a big comeback – though every so often, there are hints that it might be a slim possibility – but rather because the name does technically live on through NBA Live Mobile. I do actually have NBA Live Mobile installed on my phone, but it’s not part of my basketball gaming rotation. Although I’ve seen fit to continue installing it as I’ve upgraded to a couple of new phones over the years, I’ve barely touched it except to get screenshots.

The same goes for the mobile version of NBA Jam. I posted a brief but positive review of the Android release over a decade ago, but it hasn’t been a regular in my rotation either. As for the mobile versions of NBA 2K, I haven’t ever bothered to buy and play them. Indeed, since I gave up on getting the face scan to work, I no longer even install the companion app for the console/PC releases! I’m not here to bash mobile gaming, basketball or otherwise. I’m all for developers exploring different platforms, and if you enjoy those releases, more power to you! However, I do have an aversion to mobile basketball gaming, and frankly, I don’t think it’ll ever win me over.

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NLSC Podcast #463: Franchise Mode Gurus

NLSC Podcast Logo

From courtside of the virtual hardwood, it’s Episode #463 of the NLSC Podcast!

Following a co-op session of NBA Live 10, we may have to bring it back into the rotation! We also connected to play NBA Live 98 PC with an old NLSC roster, and note that despite improvements in its immediate successors, it holds up just as well. Meanwhile, following up on a basketball management game riddled with microtransactions, it’s clear that the developer has no interest in goodwill or constructive feedback. We’re also talking about franchise mode follies, including the phenomena of “rosteritis” and “tradeitis”. We note how franchise mode burnout is similar to modding fatigue, and share tips on how to have a successful franchise game. In this week’s mailbag, community members share the origin stories of how they became basketball fans and gamers.

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!

NBA Live 98 Highlights: Bulls vs Jazz

NBA Live 98 Highlights: Bulls vs Jazz

This past week, Dee and I connected on Parsec to play NBA Live 98 – a standout game in the series – and as always, our session produced some fun highlights. Dee has put together a reel of those moments, and uploaded them for the community to enjoy.

As you can see, we took control of the Chicago Bulls in a co-op showdown against the Utah Jazz. It was a highly competitive game that saw us make a furious rally to force overtime. In case you’re wondering about the presence of Michael Jordan in these NBA Live 98 highlights, we were playing with the 1998 season roster update created by our founders, Lutz and Tim. That mod is still available here in our Downloads database, for anyone who would like to use it in their own retro gaming sessions!

We’ve said it several times on the NLSC Podcast, but connecting to play over Parsec has been an absolute joy, and we expect it to be a large part of another fun year of basketball gaming in 2023. Dee has been spearheading the initiative to share gameplay highlights for the past couple of years – from reels to the weekly Top 10 Plays – and there’ll be a lot of fun coming your way throughout the year. To that point, please subscribe to the NLSC YouTube channel, and feel free to hit us up with any suggestions of games that you’d like to see us play!

NLSC Top 10 Plays of the Week: February 4th, 2023

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.

It’s a new month for the NLSC Top 10 Plays, but as always, we have some old favourites to go along with great moments from NBA 2K23! Hoops for NES is making its first appearance in the countdown, courtesy of a couple of clutch plays in a one-on-one clash. There are some fantastic poster dunks, including one that pays tribute to the 1992 first round series between the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat, and one from the NBA Live 2001 Legends with LeBron James in NBA 2K14. You’ll also find ankle breakers, breathtaking layups, and other spectacular plays as the community once again comes through with the goods!

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 90s Classics That Needed Today’s Official Updates

The Friday Five: 5 90s Classics That Needed Today's Official Updates

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 a list of five 90s classics that needed the official updates that today’s basketball games receive.

Official updates for basketball video games are something we’re both wary of, and take for granted. After all, they can break aspects of a game while trying to fix others, and leave a title in a worse state than it was before. On the bright side, over the years we’ve seen official updates make fixes that would’ve once had to wait until the next game came out. For all the controversy that comes with day one patches, they have had their benefits. This wasn’t possible before consoles had hard drives, and even PC patches were rare and small back in the day. Many 90s classics stand as proof of this.

The fact that I’m referring to these basketball games as 90s classics should indicate that I still think very highly of them. Even without official updates, these were some of the best hoops titles of the decade, and still have replay value today. However, whether it’s a quality-of-life fix, a gameplay tweak, or updated rosters, these games definitely would’ve benefited from the official updates that are now commonplace. Obviously, the modding community was able to step up in some cases, but there are some fixes that only the developers can make. Again, it’s not my intention to dump on these 90s classics, but as far as receiving useful fixes, they sadly came along too early.

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NBA 2K23 Mod Releases: Wipes & Rosters

NBA 2K23 Cover Art

In today’s NBA 2K23 mod releases, we have a new pack of TNT and NBA wipes from bongo88, and the latest demo version of PCBasket from Shuajota. Check them both out at the links below!

bongo88
Wipes – TNT & NBA (2K23 iff – 3 Warps)

Shuajota
PCBasket 2K23 Roster Demo (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.

Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Air in NBA Live

Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Air in NBA Live

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 Freestyle Air in NBA Live.

The entire history of basketball video games provides us with countless examples of developers striving for deeper controls. From the addition of sprint and steal buttons, to right stick dribbling and advanced shot types, the games have evolved to give us more and more control over the action. In the early to mid 2000s in particular though, we saw major additions and frequent changes as developers attempted to implement mechanics that were long-term solutions, or could pave the way for them. Dual analog gamepads becoming the standard peripheral also freed up buttons for new functions.

When NBA Live 2003 introduced us to right stick dribbling with Freestyle Control, it was indeed a revolution. The ability to perform specific moves on cue instead of just having to hope for the best with our press of a generic dribble moves button changed basketball gaming forever. However, while it was vital that we had more control over fundamentals such as dribbling, stealing, and stance, we also needed to direct the action when we left the virtual hardwood, and that’s where Freestyle Air comes in. Let’s take a look back…way back…

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NBA Live 2003 Mod Releases: Sonics Jerseys & Court

NBA Live 2003 Cover Art

We’ve got some exciting new mod releases for NBA Live 2003 today, as Zumoto has uploaded 2023-style jerseys for the Seattle SuperSonics, along with an updated court. Download them all at the links below!

Zumoto
Seattle SuperSonics 2022-2023 Classic Jerseys
Seattle SuperSonics 2022-2023 Current Jerseys
Seattle SuperSonics 2022-2023 Court

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 Podcast #462: NBA Live 09 PS2 & Algorithm Blues

NLSC Podcast Logo

From courtside of the virtual hardwood, it’s Episode #462 of the NLSC Podcast!

As promised on last week’s show, this week we’re discussing some of the problems with the influencer movement, as well as our frustrations with algorithms. Before we get into that though, we’re taking a deep dive into NBA Live 09 for PlayStation 2. For all its faults, this rather overlooked game (at least in our community) did have some strong points! We also recap our recent sessions with NBA 2K Playgrounds 2 and NBA 2K19, and provide some updates on a couple of our modding projects for NBA 2K. In this week’s mailbag, we asked the community how many hours per week they spend on the virtual hardwood; or, for that matter, modding games.

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: Mods For Free? No, Money Down!

Monday Tip-Off: Mods For Free? No, Money Down!

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 frank thoughts on how we’ve gone from a community that champions free mods to too many people charging money for them.

This is an extremely ticklish subject to put it mildly. It’s not my intention to step on any toes, yet that seems inevitable by broaching this matter. However, it’s an issue that has been building within the community for years. From the time that the NLSC was founded, we were dedicated to providing mods – or patches, as they used to be called – 100% free of charge. As we expanded into other content, none of that was put behind a paywall either. The general philosophy is that we were a site for basketball gamers, by basketball gamers, and non-profit.

Of course, times have changed as far as online content creation is concerned. What was once a hobby or creative outlet can now be monetised, and even turned into a career. Although more traditional media still looks down on YouTube, Twitch, and other online platforms – as evidenced by the Saturday Night Live sketch that was a swing-and-a-miss swipe at the Try Guys – hardworking and creative people have been very successful with online content. With that in mind, it’s understandable that video game modders would also look to cash in. It’s anti-community at best and dangerous at worst though, with some highly undesirable possibilities looming on the horizon.

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NBA 2K22 Tools Re-Uploaded

NBA 2K22 Cover Art

One of the reasons that we’re always encouraging our community to make use of our upload facilities whenever possible is that we want to preserve mods and resources alike. Files often end up disappearing for a variety of reasons, so it’s always a relief when something can be salvaged. To that end, TGsoGood has re-uploaded Looyh’s NBA 2K22 Tools, a comprehensive and essential modding utility. If you need it, it’s available at the link below!

Looyh
NBA 2K22 Tools

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: January 28th, 2023

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.

We’re still over a month away from March Modness, but it’s never too early to see mods being showcased in the NLSC Top 10 Plays! To that point, this week’s countdown includes highlights from KingJMASE’s Elite Street League, and His Airness defying gravity in Hokupguy’s Jordan Challenge rosters. The NBA Live 2001 Legends are also doing their thing (in NBA Live 2002 on this occasion), Dee and I provided some high-flying antics from our NBA Jam: On Fire Edition Road Trip, and other regular contributors have been putting on a show on the virtual hardwood. Enough teasers; check out what’s on tap this week!

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.

NBA 2K19 & NBA Live 09 Highlights

NBA 2K19 & NBA Live 09 Highlights

Two games from two different companies, released ten years apart! Dee has uploaded highlights of NBA 2K19 PC and NBA Live 09 for PlayStation 2 to the NLSC YouTube channel, and while those titles differ greatly in depth and quality, both reels represent a fun time on the virtual hardwood.

In the NBA 2K19 highlights, Dee and his brother are playing a co-op MyLEAGUE with an All-Time Fantasy Draft roster, using early 90s Orlando Magic branding. Dee is player locked to Shaq, and puts the Diesel to great use when getting the ball down low. The result is a very satisfying comeback victory against a similarly stacked Celtics squad, filled with spectacular plays.

The second video features Dee and I connecting on Parsec to revisit the PS2 version of NBA Live 09. As I’ve discussed before, it was a rather rough release, indicative of how that version was an afterthought by that point. It can still be fun despite its flaws, especially in a matchup of the 80s All-Stars and 70s All-Stars.

Check out both videos below! As always, I encourage you to subscribe to the NLSC YouTube channel if you haven’t already, as there’ll be plenty more basketball gaming content throughout 2023. Once again, feel free to hit us up with any suggestions of games that you’d like to see us play!

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