Menu
Home | Tag: gameplay

Tag Archives: gameplay

Monday Tip-Off: Who Put Basketball In This NBA Game?!?

Monday Tip-Off: Who Put Basketball In This NBA Game?!?

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 people who dismiss the importance of realistically depicting basketball in an NBA game.

A few years back, I wrote an article questioning whether basketball gamers were still simheads. It’s one of those topics that I always want to approach carefully, so as not to fall victim to the same gatekeeping nonsense that I despise. While some games are for the “strictly hardcore” crowd, most genres should be welcoming to everyone. That doesn’t mean they can’t have a learning curve and competitive play, but they should be accessible to newcomers, and fun for all. Furthermore, it’s vital that a game like NBA 2K is able to cater to different tastes, within reason.

However, we’ve reached the stage where prominent voices in the community – and their fanbases – are actively pushing back on the realistic depiction of basketball in an NBA game. As someone who has been playing hoops games for decades and seen the rise of NBA 2K and the fall of NBA Live owing to their respective abilities to deliver sim titles that are both fun and realistic, it’s dismaying to see some truly terrible takes receive the amount of support that they do. The notion that an NBA sim game doesn’t need to strive for any sort of realism or basketball strategy is absurd. It speaks to the downside of NBA 2K’s broadening popularity, and catering to a wider audience.

Read More »

Monday Tip-Off: How Many Patches Is Too Many?

Monday Tip-Off: How Many Patches Is Too Many?

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 a few thoughts on the amount of patches that modern basketball video games – primarily NBA 2K – tend to receive.

One of the interesting changes within the basketball gaming community is the general reaction to official patches. In the early days of the genre, when patches were only available for the PC releases, we were usually excited and grateful to get them. This of course can be ascribed to their rarity. It often took petitions and prompting from the community to get those title updates, usually accompanied by a laundry list of bugs and other issues. Even so, not every NBA Live, or other PC release for that matter, would receive an official patch.

While we’re still glad to see official patches and desire the fixes they potentially bring, it’s fair to say that there’s more cynicism and wariness surrounding those updates. It’s not unheard of for patches to break the game, either by introducing a new bug, or by making an undesirable change to the gameplay. It’s raised the question as to how many patches per year are ideal. Between their size on console and the possibility of unwanted changes, too many patches can potentially lead to inconsistent quality and cumbersome downloads. On the other hand, too few title updates can leave several issues unresolved. With that in mind, what is the ideal number of patches to receive?

Read More »

NLSC Podcast #444: Further NBA 2K23 Impressions & Gatekeeping Nonsense

NLSC Podcast Logo

From courtside of the virtual hardwood, it’s Episode #444 of the NLSC Podcast!

After a full week with NBA 2K23, what are our thoughts on both versions of the game? We’ve got further impressions to share – both positive and negative – about gameplay, MyNBA Eras, and MyTEAM. One of us headed to The Rec to check out the state of the online scene, and in what may come as a surprising development, we could be seeing the return of NLSC THRILLHO! The addition of Semi-Pro difficulty leads to a discussion of preferred settings, and their impact on first impressions. We also reflect on the interesting use of Legends in NBA ShootOut 2004, and respond to a particularly nasty and condescending Tweet about playing video games as an adult. In this week’s mailbag, our listeners share their thoughts on NBA 2K23 so far.

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!

The Friday Five: 5 Gameplay Mechanics You May Have Forgotten

The Friday Five: 5 Gameplay Mechanics You May Have Forgotten

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 gameplay mechanics that you may have forgotten, or not ever been aware of.

It would be wrong to say that basketball video games have tried absolutely every idea imaginable. There are still concepts that have yet to be implemented, or explored to their full potential. Developers have experimented with a multitude of ideas on the virtual hardwood though, from presentation and mode design to gameplay mechanics. While some ideas are better than others, we’ve seen that there are multiple ways to represent basketball in video game form, while striving for a fun and authentic experience. This was particularly apparent when we had several games on the market.

Of course, some ideas were better than others. Contrary to what some basketball gamers, NBA Twitter, and Barney Stinson may claim, new isn’t always better. By the same token, nostalgic doesn’t necessarily mean good. Some ideas were good solutions at the time, but would be unsuitable now. We could argue that others are preferable to their modern equivalents, or could be updated for use in new games. It’s interesting to look back at the gameplay mechanics that were attempted, abandoned, or evolved into something else. We remember concepts such as Freestyle Superstars, the original Isomotion, and separate shoot buttons, but here are some that you may have forgotten.

Read More »

Monday Tip-Off: Hyped for NBA 2K23, But…

Monday Tip-Off: Hyped for NBA 2K23, But...

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 a few thoughts on how I’m getting hyped for NBA 2K23, but my optimism isn’t completely unbridled or unconditional.

Yes, I’ll admit it. Over the past few weeks, I’ve started getting hyped for NBA 2K23. That’s not to say that I don’t have my concerns, or that I’m uncritically accepting that everything I’ve read in the developer blogs will come to pass. I’ve been playing and covering basketball video games for too long to believe that everything will be just as good as advertised. Nevertheless, there are aspects of NBA 2K23 that look very good on paper, and so I’m getting hyped. Well, certainly more excited than I have been in a number of years, at any rate.

Honestly, that feels great! I love basketball and basketball video games, so I never want to feel negative about my hobby. Obviously, over the past twelve months or so, I’ve found great enjoyment in making old favourites (and a few new favourites) part of my gaming rotation once again. I don’t expect that to change, regardless of whether or not NBA 2K23 lives up to the hype. However, I absolutely want to be impressed and enraptured by new releases as well. After primarily using my PlayStation 5 to play a PlayStation 4 game for the better part of the last couple of years, I’m hyped by the distinct possibility that NBA 2K23 could end up monopolising my gaming time.

Read More »

The Friday Five: 5 Reasons NBA 2K14 MyCAREER Is Still A Blast

The Friday Five: 5 Reasons NBA 2K14 MyCAREER Is Still A Blast

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 reasons that playing NBA 2K14 MyCAREER remains a blast, and a retro gaming experience to consider.

Between my articles and commentary on the NLSC Podcast, it should be extremely obvious that I’ve developed quite a passion for MyCAREER in NBA 2K14! Not only has it been a blast to play, but it’s also been great to get positive feedback from the community when I’ve discussed it. Whether it’s been a comment on the articles or the podcast, or replies on Twitter, I love hearing that my fellow gamers have enjoyed my recaps and tidbits. It only encourages me to continue sharing stories about such a fun experience on the virtual hardwood.

This is the internet of course, which means that negativity is bound to seep in at some point; especially if someone is committing an atrocity such as enjoying something that you aren’t! To that point, there will be a few stray comments sneeringly asking why I or anyone else would still be playing NBA 2K14, MyCAREER or otherwise. Such a question is never asked in good faith, and I know I shouldn’t focus on such remarks. Nevertheless, whether you’re trying to downplay retro gaming, genuinely intrigued by someone playing an older game, or a retro gamer looking for a suggestion, this week’s Five is for you! NBA 2K14 MyCAREER is still a blast; here are five reasons why.

Read More »

Wayback Wednesday: 20 Years of Right Stick Dribbling

Wayback Wednesday: 20 Years of Right Stick Dribbling

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 reflecting on the 20th Anniversary of right stick dribbling becoming a standard aspect of controls in basketball video games.

There’s no doubt that the implementing dribbling controls on the right stick is one of the most important innovations in the history of the virtual hardwood. It’s not the only idea that has pushed the genre forward, but it has a case for being one of the best. Right stick dribbling is easy to take for granted now, as it’s become a mainstay of sim titles over the past twenty years. If you were playing basketball games when it made its debut however, you’ll remember what a big deal it was. And yes, as I am someone who remembers when it was a bold new idea, saying that does make me feel old!

Existential crises, bad knees, and yelling at clouds aside, the fact that we can now celebrate the twentieth anniversary of right stick dribbling mechanics speaks to what a great concept they’ve been. After all, we’ve seen a lot of gameplay ideas come and go, and control schemes that didn’t pan out. Right stick dribbling is a concept that was built to last, and basketball games are better for it. Let’s take a look back…way back…

Read More »

NLSC Podcast #438: NBA 2K23 Gameplay Blog, Bill Russell, & Classic Cam

NLSC Podcast Logo

From courtside of the virtual hardwood, it’s Episode #438 of the NLSC Podcast!

This week’s show opens with a tribute to the late, great Bill Russell, truly one of the most legendary figures in basketball history. As we catch up on what we’ve been playing recently – including another NBA 2K14 MyCAREER update – we discuss our fondness for Classic Cam, and our appreciation of its appearances in later games. We also reflect on NBA Showtime: NBA on NBC, and compare NBA Live 06 and NBA 2K6 on Xbox 360. On the heels of the First Look Trailer, the first developer blog of the preview season provided us with insights into gameplay in NBA 2K23, and we have plenty of thoughts to share! We also open up the mailbag to hear what the community thought of the blog.

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 2K23 Gameplay Enhancements Blog

Devin Booker in NBA 2K23

In the wake of the First Look Trailer, the first developer blog for NBA 2K23 is a deep dive into gameplay enhancements. According to the blog, the primary aim with gameplay this year was authenticity. Another key goal was achieving as much parity as possible between the Current Gen and Next Gen versions.

As you might expect, it’s a rather lengthy read! To that end, I’ve summarised the key information from the blog in point form below. As always however, I encourage you to read the blog in its entirety to get the full scoop on gameplay enhancements in NBA 2K23, including some of the specific changes to Badges. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments, as well as join in the discussion here in the Forum!

Read More »

NBA 2K23 First Look Trailer

NBA 2K23 First Look Trailer

The NBA 2K23 First Look Trailer has been released, giving us our first official glimpse of the game in action. All gameplay footage has been taken from the Next Gen (PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S) version of NBA 2K23. In case you missed it, the PC version has been confirmed to be a Current/Last Gen port once again.

As is always the case with these trailers, gameplay is featured in quick clips from cinematic angles. In addition to featuring active stars doing their thing, the trailer also spotlights some new reactions and celebrations, including Steph Curry’s “Go to Sleep” gesture. The Jabbawockeez will also be performing in NBA 2K23.

What are your thoughts on the NBA 2K23 First Look Trailer? Have your say in the comments below, as well as join in the discussion here in the Forum! As per the official NBA 2K Twitter, more details on gameplay will be coming next week. A previous Tweet outlined 2K’s plans for August, which include revealing details on the revamped Jordan Challenge, as well as MyNBA, MyTEAM, MyCAREER, The City, and more. We can always expect a very condensed preview season these days, but in any event, it should be in full swing next week.

Monday Tip-Off: How NBA 2K23 Would Win Me Over

Monday Tip-Off: How NBA 2K23 Would Win Me Over

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 an outline of how NBA 2K23 would win me over.

Let’s be clear about this. In the grand scheme of things, NBA 2K23 doesn’t need to win me over. I’m just one person, and I’m not one of their big name influencers. The game won’t need my stamp of approval in order to sell at least ten million copies. Furthermore, given that I am a collector and still a content creator, I’ll be contributing to those sales figures anyway. In that respect, you could argue that it makes me part of the problem, but hey, like I said, I’m just one person. In short, I acknowledge that whether or not NBA 2K23 wins me over, it will be a success by almost every metric.

That goes without saying, but that’s not the issue here. This isn’t about what NBA 2K23 must do to be successful, but what it would take to get someone who has greatly preferred to play NBA 2K14 over NBA 2K21 and NBA 2K22 to get hooked on a new game once again. It’s an uphill battle, because some of the changes I’d love to see will never happen, due to business reasons. I’m obviously also very enthusiastic about this retro kick with NBA 2K14. However, I do aim to approach every new game with an open mind, and a willingness to keep playing if I’m enjoying myself. To that end, with the right changes and improvements, I could definitely be won over by NBA 2K23.

Read More »

Wayback Wednesday: Why Being On Fire Was So Cool in NBA Jam

Wayback Wednesday: Why Being On Fire Was So Cool in NBA Jam

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 being On Fire in the NBA Jam series, and analysing why it’s such a great video game powerup.

“He’s On Fire!” The iconic call from the legendary Tim Kitzrow echoes in the minds of all basketball gamers who’ve played NBA Jam. In fact, thanks to the game having such an impact on basketball and pop culture, people who have never played a single NBA Jam title are undoubtedly still aware of it! Being On Fire in an NBA Jam game is to arcade basketball gaming what Mario’s super mushrooms are to platformers. It’s not just a core aspect of the series’ identity, but something that its imitators have tried to replicate and put their own spin on, to varying degrees of success.

I’ve discussed the NBA Jam series several times in Wayback Wednesday features. This includes retrospectives of the original game, Tournament Edition (twice, in fact), and the overlooked 2003 release from Acclaim. I’ve investigated its unusual ratings, and reflected on other notable facts about various games in the NBA Jam lineage. However, apart from obligatory mentions when covering gameplay mechanics in my retrospectives, I’ve yet to dedicate an entire feature to being On Fire in NBA Jam. If I can talk about Kevin Edwards having the wrong portrait, I should definitely cover the game’s iconic powerup in-depth! To that end, let’s take a look back…way back…

Read More »

NLSC Podcast #433: A 10, But They Spoiled the NBA 2K23 Cover

NLSC Podcast Logo

From courtside of the virtual hardwood, it’s Episode #433 of the NLSC Podcast!

The official Electronic Arts and WWE Games Twitter accounts made bewildering gaffes this past week, and like many of our fellow gamers, we’re unimpressed. Obsidian, meanwhile, displayed an attitude that we’d like to see more often. Elsewhere, NBA insider Shams Charania apparently leaked the NBA 2K23 cover player, and we have some thoughts on 2K’s choice. Since the NBA 2K23 preview season is almost upon us, we also reflect on NBA 2K22, summing up our final thoughts on the game, and giving it a rating out of ten. After reminiscing about a satisfying session of NBA Jam: On Fire Edition, we open up the mailbag to discuss who should be the five best-rated players in NBA 2K23.

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: The Habit Basketball Gamers Can’t Break

Monday Tip-Off: The Habit Basketball Gamers Can't Break

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 a look at the habit that most basketball gamers struggle to break.

By now, many of the basic concepts and mechanics in basketball video games are well-established. That familiarity allows experienced virtual hardwood gamers to get acclimated with new titles swiftly, and in turn, enjoy them sooner. To that point, when there are major changes to an aspect of the core mechanics, it’s far more likely that the initial impressions will be negative, or at least mixed. Sometimes this is because the changes that have been implemented failed to improve upon the previous concepts. Other times, it reveals our inflexibility regarding certain habits.

There’s one habit in particular that I believe most of us have trouble breaking. It’s not entirely our fault, of course. Basketball video games encourage us to make habitual use of this mechanic. It represents a core aspect of playing the sport, and allows us to perform advanced moves. We’ve always had to be careful about how we use it, as its short-term benefits are balanced by finite availability and long-term drawbacks. As sim games in particular have become even more realistic and sophisticated, overuse of this mechanic has been exposed as a bad habit. I am of course referring to sprinting – or turbo, as it’s also been called – and our tendency to constantly move at top speed.

Read More »

NBA 2K22 Patch 1.12 Out Now

NBA 2K22 Patch 1.12 Out Now

Patch 1.12 is out now for both the Next Gen and Current Gen versions of NBA 2K22. As always, it should come through automatically as long as you’re online. If it doesn’t, try checking for new updates manually, or restarting your console. The patch should also be out soon on PC.

In addition to likeness updates on Current Gen and fixes for both versions, the patch updates NBA 2K22 for Season 7 in MyTEAM and MyCAREER, tipping off this Friday. Fixes include some rare gameplay bugs, a problematic animation transition on Next Gen, and errors with a Trophy/Achievement not unlocking.

Please see below for the full release notes for NBA 2K22 Patch 1.12. Additionally, you can find an update history for Next Gen and Current Gen over in our Wiki. Feel free to share any thoughts in the comments, as well as take the discussion to our NBA 2K22 Forum.

Read More »