System: Nintendo 64
Publisher & Developer: Midway
Genre: Sports (Basketball)
Capabilities: Controller Pak Compatible
Review Written: April 10, 2002
NBA Hangtime is a port of the arcade game of the same name. This game keeps true to the classic NBA Jam formula. Its a two on two basketball game, with shortened quarters, and almost no rules involved at all. I was a big fan of the SNES version of the game, and never got a chance to play the N64 version of the game. So I hope this version can be just as stunning as the SNES version I played to death.
Everything here looks much better than the SNES version, and nearly comes off as a perfect port. All the players are much bigger than its SNES counterparts, where they all have huge bodies, and the uniforms look more crisp. The audience and players on the sidelines also are animated, where in the SNES version they just stood still. All the moves such as the double dunks, blocks, and shoves have the perfect amount of animation, and come off looking as they do in the arcade game. The presentation is represented much like the arcade version where you notice little things like timers on team select menus and creating your players. The game has photos of all the NBA players, which are displayed at the team select menus. The game also manages to design each players face just right so it resembles the real thing. The only drawback to the graphics is that these are pretty much from the 16-bit generation, but with a little more polish to them.
The game combines music from the dance and rap genres to give you some great tunes to listen too while you play the game. Also at halftime, a Hangtime Rap song plays while you look at stats and make substitutions. These tunes are all right, and more than what I expected from your average arcade basketball game. The announcer has a weird, garbled, tone to his voice. But he says way more stuff than the one from the SNES version. All the sound effects are right on the notch also with all dribbles, and bounces sounding the way they should.
Controls are pretty simple, your shoulder buttons act as turbo. A passes, and B shoots. By doing certain button combinations you can do certain moves like head fakes, shoves, and new double dunks. As usual, if you dont like the default settings, you can customize them to your liking.
The game only has a few modes of play. The first is the traditional, Beat all 29 NBA teams to become grand champion mode. After each round of play is the Hangtime trivia challenge, where a random question is displayed, and if you answer correctly you get two points. Once you get 100 points, you get an extra ten attribute points to add on to created players. That is another new feature in Hangtime, where you can create a player by choosing a uniform, head, and nickname for the announcer to call him by. The game keeps track of all the stats for him. After every few games you win, you get a few extra attribute points to add on to his attributes like strength, speed, stealing, and so on.
The game can be played from one to four players. So invite over all your friends to play this game. I enjoy creating players, and although its not as advanced as the ones found in the current basketball games like Live or Courtside, its good enough for these kind of games. And just like previous Jam type games, this one is loaded with codes for hidden characters, power ups, and hidden courts.
+: Better graphics and sound than the SNES version, Create-a-Player feature, lots of codes
-: Game isnt a hit with simulation fans, simple 2D game may not be a great highlight for an N64 game
The Final Ratings Rundown
Game play: 8.4
Replay Value: 7.6
Rounded to fit GameFAQs Score: 8
NBA Hangtime is another great arcade game. Itd be the last 2D arcade basketball game from Midway. It debuted a 3D engine a couple of years later with NBA Showtime, and later NBA Hoopz. Though simulation fans might not be fond of this game, people who want to get together for a quick fifteen minute game will. For some damn reason, I like this game better than Showtime and Hoopz. If youre a big fan of arcade sports games, than you might want to give this one a try if you can still find it.
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