|System: X360, PS3, Wii, PS2, PSP||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: EA Canda||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: EA||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 7, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-4||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Passing is done via IR point control, much like Pro Evolution Soccer or NHL 2K9. This would be just fine, if there werent such a problem with the IR in NBA Live 09. However, its consistently off. This wasnt just a problem with my sensor bar; I made sure by playing another game quickly, and it worked just fine.
Im completely unaware how a problem like this comes about or, more importantly, how it managed to find its way into the final product. Regardless, it looks sloppy and adversely affects the gameplay. It can be difficult to pull off passes because of the inaccuracy of the point-control.
Visually, NBA Live 09: All-Play is little better than last years Wii installation of the series. They visuals still look like theyre right off a PS2, and while character models generally look pretty good, the game can experience some graphical slowdown. The titles sound is not much better; the announcer is bland, boring, and forgettable, and theres no good music to be found in this package.
NBA Live 09: All-Play has a multiplayer mode, which I was initially excited about. However, when you consider how broken the basic gameplay mechanic is, its tough to have any fun playing online opponents. Assuming youre playing somebody who knows what theyre doing, youll take turns going back and forth with drives to the basket and constant, over-the-top alley-oops. Playing against live players who are mapping out their own strategy should be a lot of fun. Sadly, because of the near-broken nature of the game, its not enjoyable.
NBA Live 09: All-Play does have a lot of potential. Motion-based shooting, functioning IR control, upgraded visuals, and strategic gameplay would go a long way toward improving the title from what it is now to a fun, functioning game of basketball. Theres nothing to be had in this package for hardcore basketball fans or casual players. Im just hoping that EA can get their act together for next year, because Id love to see a great basketball game on the Wii.
CCC Freelance Writer