the artistry and psychology of gaming


NBA 2K12

NBA 2K12

In my country, Iran, a long time had passed since the end of the 6th generation of consoles and no one made any PS1 games anymore. However, it was still a very popular console and a large demographic still stuck to it. The retailers, eager to milk this not so bright demographic of gamers, had run out of PS1 games to sell and had to become creative. Their solution was to sell the older PS1 games with the cover of new games. So, Iran was maybe the only country in which Tekken 5 was “released” for PS1 as well. And now, I feel I have been the victim of a similar prank, this time by a gaming company. I think our folks at 2k Sports have repacked NBA 2K11 in a new cover (oh, they might have changed the start menu too!) and has released it as NBA 2k12.

What I’m saying is, if you have played 2k11 or you still have it there’s absolutely no reason to buy 2k12. The graphics is the same, neither better nor worse. The teams are exactly the same. The gameplay is exactly the same. Even the voice over commenter are the same- and by same I mean the exact same lines have been copied in this game. This is the most shameless example of copy/paste video game making I can think of. I know that the sports game are not much renowned for their originality and innovative sequels but this too much. This is over the line. This is crossing the line past the lazy video game making into fraud. It’s immoral to charge people for this game. It’s immoral because if they already have 2k11 you are selling them the same game twice. And people who have 2k11 are very likely to buy the second game as well.

Of course, what if you haven’t bought NBA2k11? In that case, buy this game. It’s perfect, as video game. You’ll love it even if you don’t like basketball or sports game. I know, because I don’t like any. The only players and teams I know I’ve first heard of in this game. And I hate sports games. This will be a great experience as a video game, not a basketball. The gameplay is challenging, tactical, and deep, and it will entertain you beyond words. All modes are entertaining and great, and you will see you’re spending hours and hours mastering the difficult techniques. Yes, the game is perfect. It deserves a 10/10 score. Yet, all of this won’t do as 2k11 was the same. It’s also addictive as hell.

Some small changes are of course there. 3D is supported for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions, motion controls is possible if you use the PSMove. NBA’s Greatest mode is a new mode which will enable you to take control of some of the most iconic players in NBA history and put them against other classic and modern-day teams to create NBA dream matchups. My Player mode has had small improvements and instead of being forced to play as Michael Jordan in Creating a Legend mode you can take control of any current NBA player and play out the rest of his career. Again, all of these changes are fine and dandy, but they don’t even amount to a new expansion pack. The game has changed exactly as much as when a game changes when you download a patch for it. And this is it. This game is at best a patch and no sequel.

I’m purposefully leaving this review very short, as I believe this much is all this game deserves. Go find a review of NBA 2k10 or NBA 2k11 online, because I’m not going to enumerate the merits of this game as if they are a feature of this game. The developers have put no real effort into making a complete game and therefore they don’t deserve a complete review.

My verdict? If you haven’t played NBA 2k11 this game is a must. If you have, avoid this game at all cost and buy candy with your money.

One Comment

  1. I love the anecdote in the first paragraph. I mean, it sucks that they did that, but it’s a perfect analogy. It is as I have suspected for years; they’re just repeatedly repackaging the same game. I’ve played a lot of sports games for the 16-bit consoles, and I couldn’t tell the difference between them, either. I think the worst part about this is that the ads for this have been more inescapable than for any other sports game I’ve ever seen. As for me, I think I’ll just stick with NBA Jam: Tournament Edition for now.

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