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NBA 2K10

 

 

SCORE: 89

 

NBA 2K10 NBA 2K10 

 

The annual debate of best simulation NBA basketball game has been a short conversation for most of the past decade. The NBA 2K series, from 2K Sports, has dominated the competition year in and year out and NBA 2K10 keeps that streak alive. Even with the improvement from other NBA games, 2K10 does enough to keep the title of Champion. 2K Sports touted a “raising of the bar for authenticity” with NBA 2K10, and they did not disappoint. NBA 2K10 provides the great gameplay we are accustomed to with the NBA 2K series, and also receives several new features.

The NBA 2K series has been known for superb gameplay, and NBA 2K10 is no different. The flow of the game and interaction of the players on the court has the feel of a real NBA game. Perhaps the first change gamers will notice is the improved turbo system. In previous basketball games, players could run up and down the court using the sprint or turbo button with little regard to fatigue. The new turbo system in NBA 2K10 forces the gamer to determine when it necessary to sprint up and down the court. Players have new turbo and stamina meters that influence their overall fatigue, based on how much turbo is used on the court. I was pleasantly surprised by the implementation of the new turbo system, as it worked better than anticipated. 2K integrated it in such a way that it not only fits into the already solid gameplay, but also improved the feel of the game.

NBA 2K10 is rich with fantastic animations and graphical presentations. The player models are some of the best in any sports game to date. I often found myself using the replay option to watch the stunning player animations over and over. Also enhanced this year is the crowd’s interaction with the flow of the game. It is noticeable the crowd responds more appropriately to the action on the court. This is a minor update, but one that does contribute to the authenticity of the NBA experience. One thing that did stand out to me was the cloth mechanics. During some close up and some sideline shots the jersey would look out of place and not properly worn by the player. While the jersey miscues were not overwhelming, it was a distraction when compared to the otherwise astonishing graphics.

Adding to the realistic presentation, Signature Play allows for the players to express the emotion of the moment within the game. You will see players grimace if an easy shot is missed, or get excited about a game-changing basket. It is now easier to manager the play calling system within the flow of the game. There are multiple play calling options, but be sure to watch the clock and the defense – you may run down the 24 clock or get caught sleeping and have the defense pick your pocket for an easy transition basket.

Making its debut in the 2K series this year is the new My Player game mode. My Player allows you to create a player and take them from a rookie trying to make a team to an NBA All-Star. The task is long and not for the faint of heart. There is such dept to My Player that you will be have to be committed to hours of gaming to see any return on your investment. For instance, after spending three and a half hours in my career I found myself having improved only 2 skill points (from 39 to 41) and not even making the Spurs after the Summer league. There is a lot to like about My Player, including the option of running drills between training camp games. This is a good foundation to build on next year. All in all, the new My Player mode will give those interested in true career simulation hours and hours of enjoyment.

Also new to NBA 2K10 is the NBA Today. This feature allows the game to be updated with real world matchups, news and stats via your internet connection. NBA Today keeps the commentary up to date and keeps the game in tune with what is happening in the NBA. Another new feature is Crews. Crews allows players to team up with their friends online for some fun NBA action. The created players from My Player or players from the NBA rosters can be used within the Crews games.

Kevin Harlan, Clark Kellogg and Sheryl Miller provide the commentary in NBA 2K10. It is very well done and they provide nice insight while keeping pace with the on the court action. The sound track is similar to a compilation album of hip-hop artists. Nothing stood out as being offensive, but there is the option of turning the music off if necessary.

I did notice a few instances where players’ arms would seemingly go through another player during cut-scenes of the bench. There were also moments of slowdown in the gameplay and cut-scenes. At times the slowdown can be frustrating. One game I played using the West All-Stars against the Bobcats, and the gameplay slowed down about half the time I went into the low post. These issues are not enough to render the game unplayable, but they do keep NBA2K10 from reaching it’s full potential. I look for 2K to address these issues in future releases of the franchise.

Both new comers and fans of the series will enjoy the realistic presentation 2K10 has to offer. This is a great game for families to play and enjoy together. Sports games like NBA 2K10 also provide parents the opportunity to discuss good sportsmanship and friendly competition. Using the My Player mode, gamers can practice patience and learn to work with teammates.  It is worth noting that between quarters and during timeouts cheerleaders are shown going on and off the court.

Overall, I believe NBA 2K10 brings enough to the court to keep the title for another year. However, as the competition gets tougher 2K will need to improve some of the minor issues that plague NBA 2K10 – and I am certain they will.
- Alan

 

Graphics: 89%
Sound: 88%
Replay/Extras: 90%
Gameplay: 89%
Family Friendly Factor: 90%
System: Xbox 360/PS3
Publisher: 2K Sports
Rating: 'E' for Everyone

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