|System: Xbox 360, PS3*, PC, PS4, Xbox One|
|Release: October 1, 2013|
|Players: 1-4 Online Multiplayer|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||ESRB|
It’s basically just one gigantic “what if” question framed as a campaign mode, and it works. It has a real sense of pacing and never feels like a grind. It doesn’t spend too much time outside of games, and the only real stipulation you need to fulfill to continue onward is to win. In a way, it feels more arcadey than anything else, and it’s a good feeling. It’s not necessarily the best single-player campaign we have seen out of the NBA 2K series, but it will certainly keep you playing till the end.
Unfortunately, the game isn’t without its issues. There is still something jarring about the animations of the players on the court. While moving, passing, and shooting, animations look fluid and realistic. However, when the camera zooms in after a shot to catch a player’s reaction, they seem to jitter a bit and move robotically at times. Wild passes and loose balls sometimes cause characters shake left and right as they decide what to do, or sometimes simply stand there without reacting at all.
Thankfully, the game compensates for these few minor graphical snafus in other areas. The cinematic presentation does a great job of making the game look like an actual TV broadcast. The announcers are absolutely astounding, calling each game enthusiastically and with great precision without sounding like they are just sound clips copy and pasted together. It’s easy for random passersby to mistake the game for a real broadcast, so long as the camera isn’t inadvertently focusing on the back of a player’s head or something.
Frankly, there’s not much more to say about NBA 2K14. Online play still works smoothly. Pick-up games are easy to set-up and proceed at a quick pace. The game satisfies everything that a casual basketball fan like me could want. Perhaps there is something more that the game is missing that a hardcore b-ball fanatic would catch, but for the life of me, I can’t see it. Simply put, NBA 2K14 is better than NBA 2K13, and worth buying even if you picked up last year’s release.
Angelo M. D’Argenio
Date: October 1, 2013