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Monday Tip-Off: Nostalgia in Basketball Gaming

Vince Carter dunks in NBA 2K11

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 a few thoughts on nostalgia in basketball gaming.

Nostalgia is a powerful thing. Deconstructing it as a concept is a little beyond a site dedicated to covering basketball video games but suffice to say, experts who know a lot more about psychology and sociology than I do have identified both positive and negative aspects of nostalgia. Nevertheless, I’d say that for most of us, it’s a healthy indulgence of our old favourites, whether it’s video games, television shows, films, music, sporting moments, or whatever. It’s often fun to reminisce, not to mention good fodder for discussion and debate.

Basketball games appeal to our nostalgia with retro content such as historical teams, but old hoops games themselves also hold a certain appeal. It’s fair to say that many of us are nostalgic for the titles we grew up playing; I know I am, which is why I enjoy producing my weekly Wayback Wednesday feature. We also hold up the best releases from yesteryear as a benchmark for new games, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. After all, we do want to see basketball games continue to improve, especially when it comes to the annual releases. However, it is possible to get caught up in nostalgia, judging new games unfairly and exaggerating the quality of older titles.

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NLSC Podcast – Episode #254

NLSC Podcast Logo

Episode #254 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Join Arcane and myself as we discuss the cover leak for the Standard Edition of NBA 2K19, the situation with NBA Playgrounds 2, and our plans for this year’s games. Our Week in Basketball Gaming also returns, along with some other fun topics.

On this week’s show…

  • It seems the NBA 2K19 Standard Edition cover has been leaked, with Giannis Antetokoumpo being the featured player. We discuss the choice, and the situation with the Early Tip-Off Weekend being exclusive to the 20th Anniversary Edition.
  • NBA Playgrounds 2 was indefinitely postponed a month ago, and we still haven’t heard anything further. Is there any big announcement that could feasibly make up for the lack of hype?
  • What are our plans for NBA Live 19 and NBA 2K19 when they’re released in September?
  • HAWK23 has made a welcome return to the community, and is currently looking at fixing up the links for the Ultimate Base Roster for NBA 2K12 and NBA 2K14 PC.
  • We reflect once again on our own history with modding, and why we don’t mod as much as we used to. We’re not shutting the door on the idea, though.
  • If an NBL 2K or NBL Live game were ever to be released, what would it be like? We have some fun with the idea.
  • We wrap up Episode #254 of the NLSC Podcast with a short discussion of the NBA Draft, and the (latest) Dwight Howard trade.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Got a mailbag question or topic suggestion for the next show? Sound off in the comments section below, or join in the discussion here in the Forum! For more information on the NLSC Podcast including episode guides, check out this page in our Wiki.

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File Additions for NBA 2K18

NBA 2K18 Cover Art

The latest file additions for NBA 2K18 PC include faces, the 2018 Draft Class, presentation and menu updates, and more. Download them all at the links below!

Rockmonts
Fictional NBA 2K19 Bootup Screen
NBA 2K19 Presentation
LeBron James Face (2018 NBA Finals)

Torogi
P.J. Brown Face
Terrance Ferguson Face & Model
Karl-Anthony Towns Face

Vincent of TeamRakker
Dew NBA 3x Replay Wipe
Smart Araneta Court
Prelude Spalding Basketball

Team Rakker 2K MODS
LeBron James Main Menu & Pause Screen

bluejaybrandon
Real 2018 Draft Class – Mod Pack

MonkeymanJSV
Brandon Paul 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 File Additions bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

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File Additions for NBA Live 2004

NBA Live 2004 Cover Art

Our modding community has already produced a few great 2018 season updates for NBA Live 2004 this year, and today we have another new release for one of the best games in the NBA Live series. Download a new current season shoe pack at the link below!

xshane
2018 Real Shoe Patch

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 File Additions bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

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

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 part five in a series of lists of retro teams that I’d like to see added to NBA 2K.

Even with all the retro teams that are already in NBA 2K, I can’t stop thinking of new squads that would be fun to play with. As I’ve previously noted, some of the additions in recent years have opened the door to teams outside of previous champions, NBA Finalists, and perennial title contenders. There have been plenty of squads throughout the years that have been memorable for one reason or another, if only for a season or two. It’d be great to get them into future NBA 2K games, not only to play with, but also to boost the ranks of historical players in MyTEAM and the All-Time squads.

Once again, this is part five in an ongoing series of suggestions for new retro teams. I’d still like to see the teams I mentioned in parts 1, 2, 3, and 4 included at some point, but with another five squads coming to mind, it was time for another list. As always, please note that these suggestions assume that most of the significant players (if not all of them) can be licensed to appear in the game, since it would be rather pointless to add these retro teams otherwise. Some are probably more feasible than others, while a few have the advantage of several players already appearing in the game. With that being said, let’s get to the list!

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File Additions for NBA 2K11

NBA 2K11 Cover Art

We have some more great updates for an old classic today. The latest releases for NBA 2K11 PC include a new Decade All-Stars team add-on, and updates to some Draft Classes along with a couple of their accompanying face packs. Check them all out at the links below!

JuicyShaqMeat
Decade All-Stars
2011 Draft Class Cyberfaces (Updated to v1.1)
2017 Draft Class Cyberfaces (Updated to v1.1)
2011-2017 Draft Classes (Updated to v1.1)

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 File Additions bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

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Wayback Wednesday: 1-on-1 Courts in NBA Live 2003

MJ vs Kobe on the Urban Court (NBA Live 2003)

This is Wayback Wednesday, your midweek blast from the past! In this feature, we dig into the archives, look back at the history of basketball gaming, and indulge in some nostalgia. Check in every Wednesday for retrospectives and other features on older versions of NBA Live, NBA 2K, and old school basketball video games in general. You’ll also find old NLSC editorials re-published with added commentary, and other flashback content. This week, I’m taking a look back at the 1-on-1 courts that were available in NBA Live 2003.

When 1-on-1 mode was implemented in NBA Live 2000, the games took place on the same urban street court that was featured in Practice mode. This approach continued through NBA Live 2002, though EA Sports changed up the aesthetic of the courts a little in each game. Come NBA Live 2003, the decision was made to have Practice mode take place within a generic gym. While merely a cosmetic change without any added functionality, it was arguably a more suitable setting, giving the impression of a player shooting around in their team’s practice facility.

However, the urban blacktop wasn’t removed from the game. It was still the default option for 1-on-1 mode, maintaining the streetball atmosphere from previous titles. It wasn’t the only place gamers could go 1-on-1 in NBA Live 2003, though. It was also possible to select the aforementioned practice gym, as well as a court located by the beach. These courts definitely spiced up 1-on-1 mode, and allowed the art team to get very creative. Let’s take a look back…way back…

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File Additions for NBA 2K18

NBA 2K18 Cover Art

We’ve had a lot of file additions for NBA 2K18 PC over the past couple of days, including faces, courts, menu art, and more. Check out all of the latest releases at the links below!

Team Rakker 2K MODS
Black and White Spalding Ball
Rakker Court
LeBron James Main Menu & Pause Screen
Stephen Curry Main Menu & Pause Screen
Kyrie Irving Main Menu & Pause Screen

Torogi
DeMarcus Cousins Face & Body
Stephen Jackson Face
1962 Wilt Chamberlain Face
Alonzo Mourning Face
Enes Kanter Face
Jason Richardson Face
LeBron James Bootup & Menu Art (Updated to v2.0)

Eilrahc Drib
Elton Brand Chicago Bulls 2000 DNA
Glenn Robinson Milwaukee Bucks 2000 DNA
Michael Jordan Washington Wizards DNA

Manni Live
Phoenix Suns 50th Anniversary Court

big-shot-ROB
James Wiseman Face

Rockmonts
Custom Blacktop
Kevin Love Face (NBA Finals Look)

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 File Additions bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

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Monday Tip-Off: Matchmaking & Microtransactions

NLSC GrindTime in The Playground (NBA 2K18)

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 a few thoughts on two very important areas in NBA 2K19: matchmaking and microtransactions.

I’ve mentioned matchmaking and microtransactions in previous articles discussing what I feel must be done in future NBA 2K games, and with the preview season more or less underway, it’s time to revisit these issues. Both are aspects that the NBA 2K development team must handle carefully, to ensure that the experience provided by NBA 2K19 is as accessible and as enjoyable as it can be. If the wrong approach is taken, then this year’s game is going to suffer from the same problems as NBA 2K18, with similar backlash. 2K is overdue to show its fanbase some genuine goodwill.

I originally planned to discuss matchmaking and microtransactions separately, but the more I thought about it, the clearer it became that the two issues are closely linked. Their respective shortcomings in last year’s game combined to make its most popular online modes far less inviting and enjoyable than they should’ve been. The lack of in-depth matchmaking made the pay-to-win aspect of microtransactions a much larger issue. Likewise, the impact of microtransactions in NBA 2K18 made the lack of proper matchmaking all the more apparent and problematic. If handled better, they needn’t cause as many problems with the competitive balance in NBA 2K19.

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NLSC Podcast – Episode #253

NLSC Podcast Logo

Episode #253 of the NLSC Podcast is out now! Join Arcane and I as we react to the gameplay videos, impressions, and other tidbits of information about NBA Live 19 that have come out of EA Play 2018. We also touch on a rumour that’s making the rounds, and once again discuss some of our hopes for this year’s game from EA Sports.

On this week’s show…

  • Following EA Play 2018, the attendees have been sharing raw gameplay videos. They’ve provided us with an extended work-in-progress look at NBA Live 19, as have a few screenshots.
  • Although we’re not expecting to see too many deep dive developer blogs just yet, the devs at EA Play managed to drop some more tidbits through interviews with content creators.
  • Rumours are swirling of a PC release for NBA Live 19. We’d love to believe it, but given the listing on the official website, we’re not getting our hopes up just yet.
  • The developer blog regarding Franchise mode in Madden 19 has us feeling a little envious. We wrap up Episode #253 of the NLSC Podcast by reiterating a few thoughts on what we’d like to see in NBA Live 19.

Click Play to listen to the show!

Have some thoughts on the latest episode? Got a mailbag question or topic suggestion for the next show? Sound off in the comments section below, or join in the discussion here in the Forum! For more information on the NLSC Podcast including episode guides, check out this page in our Wiki.

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NBA Live 19 Gameplay Videos, Screenshots, & More Info

NBA Live 19: Dunking in The Streets

Over the past week, several NBA Live 19 gameplay videos have been posted in the wake of EA Play 2018. The footage comes courtesy of various influencers and content creators who were present at the event, and was recorded directly; no shaky over the shoulder leaked footage! Check out the videos embedded below for a first look at the gameplay, and commentary from EA Play attendees.

The prevailing attitude from gamers who got their hands on NBA Live 19 at EA Play is that it feels and plays a lot better than NBA Live 18. Improvements to transitional animations, as well as dunks and layups, are evident in the footage that’s been posted. However, it is also very encouraging to hear from dedicated basketball gamers that the experience on the sticks is greatly improved.

Attendees also had a chance to speak with various members of the development team, who passed along some additional information. As per Shopmaster’s chat with Connor Dougan, The Streets/LIVE Pro-Am will consist of the Pro-Am Tour, 3v3, and 5v5. There’ll be options to play with squads, as well as games with halves and four quarters. More information should be released in due course, but be sure to check out the interviews below for some extra tidbits.

Finally, a few work-in-progress screenshots featuring various players, among them Kevin Durant, James Harden, Kyrie Irving, and Ben Simmons, have been released. Check them out below along with all of the aforementioned videos. What are your thoughts on the latest previews and information about NBA Live 19? Have your say in the comments section below, and of course, feel free to join in the discussion taking place here in the NLSC Forum. Hats off to all of the EA Play 2018 attendees for representing the NBA Live community so well, and providing us with their previews and insight coming out of the event!

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File Additions for NBA 2K17

NBA 2K17 Cover Art

We have a few new file additions for NBA 2K17 PC today, including several converted player faces, and portraits for the upcoming Draft Class. Check out all of the latest releases at the links below!

TGsoGood
LaMelo Ball 2018 Version (With Haircut)

Dee4Three
2K18 to 2K17 Conversion Cyberface Pack

Worthy man
10 2018 Draft Rookie Portraits

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 File Additions bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

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The Friday Five: 5 Reasons Not to Ragequit

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 reasons why you shouldn’t ragequit when playing NBA Live or NBA 2K.

We’ve all been there. Whether it’s the CPU not playing fair, or an embarrassing deficit to an online opponent, we suddenly find ourselves wanting to ragequit a basketball video game. While it’s almost universally considered poor form to ragequit an online game you’re losing, it can be a healthy decision when you’re playing offline. It’s much better than breaking a controller (or anything else in the vicinity), and if you’re really not having any fun, you’re better off taking a break and trying again later. Generally speaking, it’s best not to try forcing yourself to endure unenjoyable experiences.

However, there are times when you should try to persevere. Beyond showing good sportsmanship in online play, there are incentives to gut out a game that isn’t going your way. You may be missing out on a potentially rewarding experience, as well as a few valuable lessons that may help you to improve your play on the virtual hardwood. No one likes to lose, and losing badly is a bitter pill to swallow, but strength in the face of adversity builds character; so does good sportsmanship, for that matter. Before you let your frustration get the better of you, here are five reasons not to ragequit when playing basketball video games.

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File Additions for NBA 2K18

NBA 2K18 Cover Art

We’ve got a bunch of NBA 2K18 mod releases to catch up on today. The latest file additions include face and body updates, ESPN scoreboards, and more. Please see below for all the download links.

Torogi
Jeremy Lin Face & Body
Jeremy Lin 2011-2012 Face
Klay Thompson Face
LeBron James Menu Art
Zach LaVine Face
Bradley Beal Face (Updated to v2.0)
Salah Mejri Face & Body (Updated to v2.0)
Stephen Curry Face & Body Model (NBA Finals Look) (Updated to v4.0)

Rockmonts
LeBron James Face (2018 NBA Finals)
Kevin Love Face (2018 NBA Finals)

MonkeymanJSV
Torrey Craig Face (With Tattoos)

Eilrahc Drib
Stephen Silas Assistant Coach Face
Monty Williams Assistant Coach Face
Mike Krzyzewski (Coach K) Face
Phil Jackson Coach Face (Young Version)

TwisT
Crowd Update (Updated to v2.0)

SexCurryBeats
New Chains for Playground (Updated to v2.0)

dirtydraw
ESPN Scoreboard (Regular Season/Playoffs/NBA Finals) (Updated to v2.6)

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 File Additions bulletins, please see this FAQ in our Wiki.

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Wayback Wednesday: The Dunk Contest in Basketball Games

Tens in the Dunk Contest (NBA Live 2005)

This is Wayback Wednesday, your midweek blast from the past! In this feature, we dig into the archives, look back at the history of basketball gaming, and indulge in some nostalgia. Check in every Wednesday for retrospectives and other features on older versions of NBA Live, NBA 2K, and old school basketball video games in general. You’ll also find old NLSC editorials re-published with added commentary, and other flashback content. This week, I’m taking a look back at the Slam Dunk Contest in basketball video games.

The Slam Dunk Contest is the main event of All-Star Saturday Night, and with the notable exception of the 1998 All-Star Weekend, it’s been a fixture of the festivities since 1984. Although not every contest has been better than the last – and indeed, some years have been downright disappointing – it’s still provided us with many memorable examples of spectacular aerial artistry. It only stands to reason that we want to take part in the dunk contest in basketball video games, and fortunately for us, several titles over the years have afforded us that opportunity.

Implemented in a variety of ways over the years, the dunk contest has proven to be a fun mini-game to jump into whenever it’s been available to play at any time. Along with the Three-Point Shootout, it’s also deepened the franchise and career experiences by representing the most prominent events of the All-Star Weekend. The main event of the NBA’s midseason classic has an interesting history when it comes to the virtual hardwood, so let’s take a look back…way back…

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