Developer: Visual Basics
Capabilities: VMU Compatible, Jump Pack Compatible, VGA Box Compatible
Basketball action brought to you by Sega Sports. This is the first basketball game for the Dreamcast, and it really manages to show off its power. Will it live up to be a next generation basketball game, or just some crappy sim, rushed in for the start of the season? Lets get onto the review and find out.
NBA 2K actually captured the look of the game for once. All the player look real, they're not all polygonal like in Courtside, Live, and Shootout. All the players have there own textured faces, and the faces have animations like when a player gets injured or when they go for a dunk. And the player intros look awesome too. There are several different camera angles you can choose from too, you can get the televised experience with the cinematic angle, you can get the Tecmo feel with the horizontal angle, you can get the classic 16-bit Live series feel with the 3/4 angle, but the default uses the easiest to manage angle, which is the overhead vertical one. Oh, yeah did I mention how awesome the Action Replays are in this game?
The announcers sound great in this game! Once again Sega hired voice actors to record all there comments for commentary, and they never get old. The announcers do miscall some plays though. Right after my guy made a dunk, the announcer said, "That's his 7th rebound of the game." But these miscalls don't happen all that often in the game. All the sound effects are good too, and the background music is done nicely as well. I must say how much I love the player chatter during the game, I get out of the coaches whenever they say, Pace yourself, Pace yourself.
The only basketball games I liked use to be the Arcade type one's like Jam, Hangtime, etc., because all those other simulations never got the feel of a basketball game, but NBA 2K was the first sim I ever played that captured the feel of the game like you're actually in it. Game play is awesome, but not perfect. The free throws aren't the easiest to make, you got to hold the L and R triggers to center two arrows to perfectly make a basket, each NBA player has attributes on how well they make free throws and the higher the rating the easier it is to center the arrows, but the lower the rating, the more you'll be going insane to make free throws. Like I said before, the commentators miscall some plays, plus some of your teammates are as dumb as a rock and if they're wide open and under a basket and call for them to do an alley-oop they'll just move out of the way and the ball will go out of bounds, also sometimes guards stand out of bounds and if you pass them the ball it's an instant turnover. Well at least the user records and players 2,3, and 4 calling timeouts or making substitutions bugs aren't here like in NFL 2K.
Plays are easy to call, you just press your control stick during play and then just press a button to run a play. There's so much more you can do, you can create a player, create a team, adjust the NBA rules, and so much more. The game play main menu, is just like the one used in NFL 2K and the game play modes are almost identical as well, these are your modes you can choose from: Practice, Exhibition, Season, and Playoffs. It wouldve been nice if you could've did a dunk competition or 3-point shootout, but you couldn't.
There are some neat little bonuses in this game, like if you pay attention to your VMU during the game, it lets you know if one of your players is really low on energy, and does some cool animations for dunks, and 3-pointers. Practice mode is really useful, plus up to 4 players can play the game at once for an all out hoop party, plus theres as many stats than you can count for this game. And like I said before, I wouldve wished they included some challenge events like shootouts and all, and was very disappointed when there was no online play in this years game.
+: Mind blowing graphics, terrific commentary, easy to learn game engine
-: The free-throw system is rather hard to use, couple of nasty passing bugs
The Final Ratings Rundown
Game play: 9.1
Replay Value: 9.3
Rounded to fit GameFAQs score: 9
This is one of the best basketball sims ever! You must buy this game if you're a basketball fan and own a dreamcast! You'll go absolutely nuts over the game! Trust me, its that good!