This is The Tuesday Triple, where I attempt to break down random topics into three points, and maybe an “and one” if I need it. Similar to the established Friday Five by Andrew, the topics will be related to basketball video games and their communities as a whole.
When I was writing yesterday’s Dumb Monday I realized there are three different outcomes of NBA 2K15’s release on the PC platform. It could be a PlayStation 4/Xbox One port, a fully-featured PlayStation 3/Xbox 360 port, or the same watered-down port we have received year after year. Perfect for a Tuesday Triple right? So let’s get the hype train on the tracks and the speculation tinfoil hats on, I am going to try and predict how the community would react to each of these possible releases.
Free Throw – Same Old Port
This is the safe bet, NBA 2K15 was mistakenly priced by Amazon and GameStop, and 2K screwed up their marketing by including the preorder bonuses for PC. It wouldn’t be unheard of, as some sites promote the PC version of NBA 2K14 with MyTEAM and other removed features. If this did happen, it would probably be the same old situation with some mods and tools working from 2K14. Sure, maybe HAWK23 won’t port his Ultimate Base Roster project over if there isn’t much of a gameplay change from 2K14, but I think it would be the same stuff. New NCAA mod, Street mods, more modding breakthroughs, and probably more online issues.
Fadeaway – Fully Featured PS360 Port
This would be fun. Imagine getting VC, the highly addictive MyTEAM, actual online servers and features, and hell why not add in a friends list and custom arena sounds. We could get all of the gameplay and connectivity features we could ever want…but at what cost? VC is a money printing feature for 2K, do you think we’d be able to mod like we can now? Look at the console versions of 2K and how VC is quickly changed to an offline only SP. Does anyone need a reminder of what Crew Mode was first like with all the hacked players? That wouldn’t fly anymore. It is also worth noting that the console and mobile versions of NBA 2K games have their files lumped into a few huge container files, who knows what modding would be possible if that happened to PC and we couldn’t easily swap out thousands of iff files.
Halfcourt Prayer – Next Gen Port
So yes, the $60 preorder could mean next gen, which would bring on a whole new level of headaches. Thanks to Watch_Dogs and The Golf Club, I know that my computer can barely handle next gen ported games on PC. I have an i7-3770K, 8gigs of RAM, and a GTX 560 Ti. Not top of the line, but to be forced to run The Golf Club (something with limited graphic options and meant to run on a PS4 or PC equivalent) on less-than-high settings was a wake up call. Some RAM and a new video card should be all I need, but we have people in the forums asking to remove the crowds in NBA 2K14 because their rig can’t handle it.
Computer requirements aside, think of the modding too. It took a full year before we got anything worth using for NBA 2K9’s iff format, and even longer for Vlad to introduce us to his roster editor. It was an era of TexMod and basic hex editing, and some people stuck with NBA Live PC games because of the lack of modability. Sure, I think NBA 2K14 would have longer legs than NBA Live 08 had/has, but the assumptions that we would be able to customize NBA 2K15 next gen on PC on Day 1 are completely unfounded. Nevermind if its all in container files like current games, or protected in some way against mods to protect VC (depending whether or not if it would be fully featured or watered down).
And One – Nothing
And here we are, the depressing option. ‘We had development issues and decided to cancel NBA 2K15 on PC’ ‘It does not make fiscal sense to release on the PC platform due to past sale data’ ‘Someone made fun of Leftos’ beard so he deleted the PC database, sorry m8′. All equally plausible situations leading to the second downfall of PC basketball video gaming. I somehow doubt we would flock to FreeStyle Street Basketball, and I actually don’t know of any other PC basketball games that are currently released.
So we would probably do what Andrew and a select few have done for years, update old games. I have said time and time again that NBA 2K14 is the most customizable PC basketball game, ever. It is possible that the upcoming (still, ugh) iff editing update for RED MC could unlock menu editing, letting us bring back coach mode or Blacktop options from old games that are hopefully just menu locked out and not completely removed. Even still, we have audio, texture, model, and roster editors. We can pretty much do anything we want visually to the game, within reason. If this happens, we should be happy enough with NBA 2K14 until we convince NBA Live to return to PC.
Who knows? We will, in just less than 4 short months. Let me know what you think would happen in any of these 4 scenarios in the comments below.