NBA 2K11 was an amazing game, so could 2K Sports keep pushing the envelope with the release of 2K12?
We’re all used to the yearly incremental improvements that get touted as must-have features that beg us to upgrade each time. Whether it’s slightly higher resolution graphics, more lifelike player animations and expressions, or – if we’re lucky – a new game mode, creators of yearly sports franchise games are past masters in getting us to part with our hard-earned cash.
Well, believe it or not, this year 2K Sports has done the near miraculous and produced a version that really does pull out all the stops. Yes, this year’s model is better in almost every respect than last year’s awesome offering! Below are two example that illustrate just how much has improved.
My Player Mode
The idea of getting yourself into the game and rising through the ranks to become an NBA all-time legend should be one of the great draws of this franchise. However, although showing signs of potential since its debut, the My Player mode has usually turned out to be one of the weakest areas of the game. That’s all changed this year.
This time around your player has a much better shot at quickly getting drafted. There’s also only one game before the draft to deal with, and that’s a much more intense, full-on experience. No more boring pick-up games with no crowds on hand to see your feeble efforts. Now you’re in the spotlight, with a full house on hand and a full commentary to boot. You also aren’t necessarily the weakest link on the team, either. Your stats are more on a par with your team-mates, allowing for a much better chance to impress. Ratings have been revised and you’ve now got a much better shot of seeing a decent grade right from the get-go.
The mode is way more fun, too. With the new goals and milestones being set, you’ve always got something new to aim for. Sponsorship deals and press interviews add to the immersion. Can you handle the ultimate challenge of getting into the NBA Hall of Fame?
NBA Greatest Mode
Two words sold many players on last year’s release: Michael Jordan. Getting through the series of challenges to unlock his career mode was high on the priority of most players. What could top playing as the greatest Bulls teams of all time? Well, how about being able to unlock 15 legendary players and the teams they led to glory? Want to play as Bill Russell and his mid-’60′s Celtics? How about Jerry West and the Lakers of the early ’70′s? John Stockton and Karl Malone’s Utah Jazz? Along with other household names like Larry Bird, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Isiah Thomas and Hakeem Olajuwon, all these and more can be unlocked in NBA 2K12.
Getting to play as any of these icons of the game is just plain cool. What makes the experience even better is the thought that’s gone into the presentation of the NBA Greatest mode. Not only do you get the historically accurate teams, but also their arenas and team uniforms are right down to the last detail. Each of the legends also has their own Signature moves, as you’d expect. What you might not expect – and it’ll blow you away when you first see it – is the way the presentation shifts to black and white for the older games of the ’60′s and ’70′s. Whoever came up with that idea needs to be made lead designer of the next installment of the game!