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 things that I miss when I go back and play older basketball video games.
Retro basketball gaming is awesome, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise! That isn’t to say that newer games aren’t great too, and I certainly sink hours into them as well. However, don’t let the naysayers tell you that all previous releases were inferior to their modern counterparts, and it’s only myopic nostalgia that allows you to enjoy them. Whether it’s the pervasive presence of recurrent revenue mechanics, a grind that feels more like tedious work than a fun and challenging journey, or a questionable design choice in the gameplay, newer is not always better.
By the same token however, it’s true that not everything was better in the “good old days”. Some ideas, or entire games, have aged poorly. We can also forget that even the classics have problems of their own. If nothing else, there are enhancements and additions in more recent basketball games that I miss when I go back and play old titles. Their absence doesn’t render those old games unplayable or unenjoyable, but you definitely do miss the fun and/or convenience that they added. Even if there’s an old approach that still has merit and would work fine, we’ve grown accustomed to a new way of doing things. Whatever the case, I miss these five things in old games.