Wayback Wednesday: Dynamic Season in NBA Live 10

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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA All-Star Weekend in NBA Live

Postby Andrew on Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:44 pm

February 15th, 2017: NBA All-Star Weekend in NBA Live

The 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend is almost upon us. While not everyone is a fan of the midseason classic, I've always enjoyed watching the pickup atmosphere of the Rising Stars game (in all its various formats), the drama of the Three-Point Shootout, the creativity of the Slam Dunk Contest, and the stars going head to head in the All-Star Game itself (though it's sadly no longer as competitive as it used to be). I know that I'm not alone in my enjoyment of the All-Star Weekend's main attractions, and for many years, a lot of us wished that those events were playable in basketball video games. Then, along came NBA Live 2005.

In featuring the All-Star Weekend, NBA Live 2005 boasted one of the most significant additions in the history of the series - not to mention basketball gaming in general - and the mode was a lot of fun to play back in the day. It's well worth reminiscing about, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Online Team Play in NBA Live 08

Postby Andrew on Wed Feb 22, 2017 7:17 pm

February 22nd, 2017: Online Team Play in NBA Live 08

As the years have gone by, the online experience has become more and more significant in basketball video games. I personally didn't have a lot of interest in online modes for many years; a slower connection didn't help matters, and for the most part, I was simply more interested in the offline experience. That's changed somewhat over the past couple of years, as I've come to enjoy regular games of 2K Pro-Am. However, there was another online mode that caught my attention almost a decade ago, and appropriately enough, it was the forerunner to the Pro-Am concept: Online Team Play in the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of NBA Live 08.

At the time, it was something of a groundbreaking addition for basketball video games, and a concept that both EA Sports and Visual Concepts should perhaps think about implementing once more. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Dynamic DNA in NBA Live 09

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:22 pm

March 1st, 2017: Dynamic DNA in NBA Live 09

Generally speaking, most of us want five-on-five basketball games to be realistic; "sim", as we usually put it. One of the key elements of delivering realism in NBA Live and NBA 2K is to ensure that the players resemble their real life counterparts, not just in appearance, but in the way that they play and perform. As the years have gone by, both games have introduced new ratings, tendencies, and other attributes that are intended to make the action on the virtual hardwood more closely resemble what we see during an NBA broadcast. While there's still room for improvement, basketball video games have also come a long way in that regard.

EA Sports took a big step towards making NBA Live more realistic with the implementation of Dynamic DNA in NBA Live 09. Not only was it an improvement in player AI and differentiation, it was also a step forward in terms of the official roster updates. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 99's 1998 Rosters

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 08, 2017 11:15 pm

March 8th, 2017: NBA Live 99's 1998 Rosters

The 1999 NBA season isn't considered a classic year for the league, but it's certainly interesting and significant in its own right. It was the first season in which games were cancelled due to a lockout, and indeed, the first time it appeared as though an entire season may be lost due to a labour dispute. It was also something of a transitional season following Michael Jordan's second retirement, with the defending champion Chicago Bulls being broken up, a lot of key players around the league moving on to new teams, and early signs of a new era beginning in the NBA.

In the midst of the turbulent offseason and prolonged labour dispute of 1998-99, EA Sports released NBA Live 99. Because of the lockout, the game couldn't ship with the Class of 1998 rookies, but out of the box, it did actually feature updated 1998 season rosters. It's an interesting and unusual situation, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Dream Team in NBA 2K13

Postby Andrew on Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:17 am

March 15th, 2017: The Dream Team in NBA 2K13

There have been several interesting (and heated) debates on the subject over the years, but for my money, the greatest squad of basketball players ever assembled was the 1992 United States men’s Olympic team, better known as the Dream Team. Featuring some of the greatest players to ever play the sport, the Dream Team breezed through the tournament, putting on a show as they won each game convincingly, never once calling a timeout. Their scrimmages are the stuff of legend, and it’s no surprise that they were enshrined into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame as a team in 2010.

With 2012 marking the 20th Anniversary of the Dream Team’s dominant showing in Barcelona, and Visual Concepts looking to expand the amount of historical content in NBA 2K13, adding the Dream Team was a no-brainer. Let’s take a look back…way back…
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Path to Greatness in NBA 2K14

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:41 pm

March 22nd, 2017: Path to Greatness in NBA 2K14

Being a launch title, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One version of NBA 2K14 was obviously the priority for Visual Concepts back in 2013. However, 2K did try to keep the prior gen version of the game relevant, by way of some new bonus content. Since adding features celebrating the cover player was in vogue, in NBA 2K14 we received LeBron: Path to Greatness, a story-driven challenge mode starring LeBron James. With two distinct storylines to follow and creative challenges along the way, it was certainly an interesting concept.

In fact, LeBron: Path to Greatness was arguably one of the most creative things that NBA 2K had done, prior to the implementation of the story-driven approach to MyCAREER on the current generation. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Hidden Content in NBA Live 2004

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 29, 2017 9:39 pm

March 29th, 2017: Hidden Content in NBA Live 2004

Dummied out content and unused assets are hardly uncommon in all genres of video games. It usually takes the form of levels, animations, gameplay functions, and other features that were scrapped due to time constraints, dissatisfaction, or a myriad of other reasons. While such content can often be restored or otherwise put to use by modders, it's not unusual for it to be in a mostly unfinished state. I've covered an example of this in a previous Wayback Wednesday article, specifically the hidden historical teams in NBA Live 08. Only the player data remained in players.dbf, and even then it was clear that it was a rough draft of a feature that was axed early on.

While I was working on an update for my 1996 season mod for NBA Live 2004, I was reminded that it was game that had a fair amount of usable hidden content. There are some interesting Easter eggs among that data, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: FIBA Teams in NBA Live 08

Postby Andrew on Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:17 pm

April 5th, 2017: FIBA Teams in NBA Live 08

Bonus teams and content are something that we arguably take for granted in basketball video games these days. Both NBA Live and NBA 2K used to feature Decade All-Star teams, and of course, 2K has boasted an impressive selection of historical teams in recent years. Euroleague teams have also been featured in NBA Jam: On Fire Edition, as well as the past few NBA 2K titles. However, the interest in bonus teams really picked up after a selection of national squads was added in NBA Live 08, along with a mode representing the FIBA World Championship (now the FIBA World Cup).

The FIBA teams were a popular choice for bonus content in a few NBA Live titles, and I'm sure that many gamers would like to see them return. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live's Classic Custom Teams

Postby Andrew on Wed Apr 12, 2017 10:22 pm

April 12th, 2017: NBA Live's Classic Custom Teams

If you asked me to name a popular Wishlist item regarding roster management in the past decade or so, custom teams would have to be at the top of the list. When it comes to NBA Live, we haven't had an in-built Create-a-Team function since NBA Live 2000. The option has also been absent from NBA 2K on the current generation, making it a more recent addition to the Wishlists sent in to Visual Concepts. Although you could argue that there are more pressing issues with both NBA Live and NBA 2K, it's something that still bugs basketball gamers as it's a feature that's fallen by the wayside, and one that could be found in very old titles.

Of course, the custom teams that could be found in the first few iterations of NBA Live were a little different to the functionality that we want to see return. They do have their own nostalgic charm of course, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live's Classic Custom Teams

Postby [Q] on Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:13 am

I remember using slammers and jammers for Vancouver and Toronto players and then stealers and blockers for new east and west all star teams
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live's Classic Custom Teams

Postby Andrew on Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:44 am

That's the old school spirit. (Y)
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The '91 Warriors & '02 Kings in NBA 2K12

Postby Andrew on Wed Apr 19, 2017 8:19 pm

April 19th, 2017: The '91 Warriors & '02 Kings in NBA 2K12

As I discussed in a previous Wayback Wednesday retrospective, the success of the Jordan Challenge in NBA 2K11 and the looming lockout in 2011 gave Visual Concepts plenty of incentive to expand upon the historical content in the game. The result of course was NBA's Greatest, which cut down on the specifics of the challenges (just win the games), but provided us with a larger roster of historical teams and NBA Legends. Deciding to take things one step further, 2K also provided basketball gamers with a couple of other historical teams to play with: the 1991 Golden State Warriors, and the 2002 Sacramento Kings.

Given the popularity and reputation of those two teams, the announcement of their inclusion was greeted with enthusiasm. However, their presence in the game wasn't without controversy. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The '91 Warriors & '02 Kings in NBA 2K12

Postby Dee4Three on Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:53 am

Chris Webber allowed 2K to put him in the game as a commentator this year, was hoping they would also include the 00-01 or 01-02 Kings... I have them in my roster, but it would have nice for them to be in there as a base team, and I am sure the console losers would thoroughly enjoy them.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The '91 Warriors & '02 Kings in NBA 2K12

Postby Dee4Three on Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:02 am

And I just found this... legendary.

phpBB [video]
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The '91 Warriors & '02 Kings in NBA 2K12

Postby Andrew on Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:58 am

He does have a MyTEAM card, and Bibby is in the game via the college DLC, so it's a shame they didn't bring back the '02 Kings as well.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Referee in NBA Live 2000

Postby Andrew on Wed Apr 26, 2017 9:59 pm

April 26th, 2017: The Referee in NBA Live 2000

On this day in 1988, the NBA decided to add a third referee to officiating crews, a change that went into effect the following season. Referees are often unpopular figures in any sport, and the NBA has seen its fair share of officiating controversies over the years. Whether it's some of Joey Crawford's antics, free throw discrepancies, or other bewildering calls, I'm sure we can all name an incident involving a referee that makes our blood boil. The officiating in basketball video games tends to be more consistent - that's how it's programmed, after all - but until NBA Live 2000, EA's games lacked an actual referee on the sidelines.

It probably doesn't sound like a big deal now, as we obviously expect to see more than one referee on the sidelines of contemporary basketball video games. At the time however, it was a significant addition to the presentation in NBA Live. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Referee in NBA Live 2000

Postby Dee4Three on Thu Apr 27, 2017 12:59 am

The way the playoffs have gone, I'd like to see a 4th referee... or... no referees at all...

Call your own fouls, that would be entertaining.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: My NBA 2K13 MyCAREER

Postby Andrew on Wed May 03, 2017 11:03 pm

May 3rd, 2017: My NBA 2K13 MyCAREER

I've been playing basketball video games for more than two decades now. There are two main reasons that I remain a fan of the genre: I'm passionate about the sport, and I've had so many fun experiences with both sim and arcade basketball games over the years. I've previously compiled a list of some of my favourite experiences, one of them being my MyCAREER game in NBA 2K13 PC, in which I played for the Denver Nuggets. An enjoyably successful rookie season with some interesting twists and turns set the bar high for future games, and indeed, it hasn't been until this past year with NBA 2K17 that I've had a similarly great experience with MyCAREER.

It was the first time that I played MyCAREER almost exclusively, so NBA 2K13 stands as the game that really got me hooked on the mode, while developing a genuine interest in the single player career experience. Join me as I take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Mysterious 2K Insider

Postby Andrew on Wed May 10, 2017 6:36 pm

May 10th, 2017: The Mysterious 2K Insider

When I discussed some of the most memorable characters in basketball video games, it was pointed out to me that I'd forgotten about one of the most noteworthy individuals to appear in the NBA 2K series: the 2K Insider. A mysterious person behind the scenes and in the community, the 2K Insider - known only as "Sy" - was responsible for maintaining the rosters for NBA 2K. Within the games themselves, their avatar appeared as an advisor and mentor, providing basketball insights and offering up words of encouragement, as well as critique.

The 2K Insider hasn't been a part of the more recent NBA 2K games, as he no longer fits the tone of MyCAREER. 2K has also taken the approach of recognising all the developers, ensuring that we know who is responsible for different aspects of the games, and opening up the channels of communication for constructive feedback. The Insider was a notable figure that led to a fair amount of speculation though, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: ESPN Integration in NBA Live 07

Postby Andrew on Wed May 17, 2017 11:22 pm

May 17th, 2017: ESPN Integration in NBA Live 07

If I'm being completely honest, then I'll have to admit that for a variety of reasons, I'm not the biggest fan of ESPN's coverage of the NBA these days. They are obviously one of the league's biggest partners though, and through ABC, their presenters have the call for the NBA Finals. Their branding is instantly recognisable to basketball fans, and it makes sense that EA Sports would also want to partner with them to bring authentic television presentation to NBA Live. It's a relationship that began over a decade ago, with the implementation of ESPN Integration in NBA Live 07.

Although ESPN branding is now very prominent in NBA Live, it was a few games before it truly took over. It was a gradual transition in some respects, but as the original fifteen year agreement between the companies demonstrated, they were both in it for the long haul. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Supreme Update Mod for NBA Live 07

Postby Andrew on Wed May 24, 2017 10:11 pm

May 24th, 2017: The Supreme Update Mod for NBA Live 07

Over the years, several amazing mods have been released in our community for both NBA Live and NBA 2K. Certain mods stand out as landmark releases though, delighting the community and inspiring other modders to produce great work of their own. Since it's the tenth anniversary of NBA Live 07, and today also marks the 38th birthday of cover player Tracy McGrady, I thought that I'd talk about one of the most significant mods made for the game: the Supreme Update Mod. Undoubtedly one of the best projects to come out of our community, it's about time that I profile it in a Wayback Wednesday feature.

It was one of the most comprehensive updates for a PC version of NBA Live, and a great example of teamwork and cooperation in the modding community, as well as technical innovation. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Be a Pro in NBA Live 09

Postby Andrew on Wed May 31, 2017 6:39 pm

May 31st, 2017: Be a Pro in NBA Live 09

When you think of early incarnations of single player career modes in basketball games, which titles come to mind? The Life in Sony's NBA series, or the debut of My Player in NBA 2K10, are probably the first two that you think of. However, right around the same time, NBA Live was starting to make some inroads on adding a single player mode of its own. Before Rising Star in NBA Live 14, before Become Legendary in the ill-fated NBA Elite 11, EA Sports were experimenting with career mode concepts in the form of Be a Pro, which only appeared in NBA Live 09.

Aside from being noteworthy as NBA Live's first attempt at implementing a single player career mode, Be a Pro is interesting to reflect upon as it differed greatly between the new gen and old gen versions of NBA Live 09, and not in the way you might expect. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Be a Pro in NBA Live 09

Postby [Q] on Thu Jun 01, 2017 1:45 am

So it was essentially a glorified player lock mode?
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Be a Pro in NBA Live 09

Postby Andrew on Thu Jun 01, 2017 10:26 am

Couldn't we say that of all single player career modes? :P

But yeah, on PS3/360 in particular, it was basically more of a concept/practice for Online Team Play. The PS2 version had tasks, XP, levelling up, and single season play. I guess it was inbuilt functionality for what a lot of gamers had been doing with player lock and Dynasty before that, but it was kind of the start of a single player career mode, an early take on it.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Shaquille O'Neal in NBA Live 2002

Postby Andrew on Wed Jun 07, 2017 5:04 pm

June 7th, 2017: Shaquille O'Neal in NBA Live 2002

If you grew up watching him play or you're at least familiar with your NBA history, you'll know that Shaquille O'Neal was one of the most dominant players in league history. Although he was a force to be reckoned with for over a decade, the most dominant stretch of his career came between 2000 and 2002, when he led the Los Angeles Lakers to three straight championships. Putting up huge numbers in the NBA Finals became a trend for Shaq, beginning on this day in 2000 when he scored 43 points in Game 1 against the Indiana Pacers, after scoring 46 points, 37 points, and 41 points in the opening games of the first three rounds.

As you might expect, Shaq was generally also a beast in NBA video games. He was particularly unstoppable in NBA Live 2002, especially in the hands of the unforgiving AI on higher difficulty levels. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Challenge in NBA Live

Postby Andrew on Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:03 pm

June 14th, 2017: Freestyle Challenge in NBA Live

EA Play 2017 introduced us to The One, the new single player career mode that is set to debut in NBA Live 18. The depth of game modes has been a problem for the NBA Live series since its reboot in 2013, but as I've discussed in various 20th Anniversary of NBA Live retrospectives and Wayback Wednesday articles, there was a time when EA were consistently doing some very innovative things with their basketball games. I've already talked about the much-missed All-Star Weekend mode that was introduced in NBA Live 2005, but the addition of the Slam Dunk Contest and Three-Point Shootout also led to the inclusion of another mode: Freestyle Challenge.

A spinoff of the All-Star Weekend, Freestyle Challenge provided basketball gamers with something else to play in between the deeper game modes. It's a mode that doesn't get mentioned very often, but it was definitely an interesting concept, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Generated Rookie Names in NBA Live

Postby Andrew on Wed Jun 21, 2017 11:49 pm

June 21st, 2017: Generated Rookie Names in NBA Live

Now that the 2017 NBA Finals are in the books, everyone's attention has turned to free agency and this year's Draft. In a couple of days we'll find out where all the top prospects will end up, but with custom Draft Classes, basketball gamers have already been creating their own scenarios in NBA 2K17. Of course, without a custom Draft Class in place, the new rookie crop will be completely fictional, with generated names, ratings, and attributes. In the early days of franchise modes, fictional rookies with generated names were the only option, barring any editing of the DBF files for NBA Live on PC.

As a result, there were some very weird and wonderful results with the randomly generated rookie names in NBA Live, as well as a few Easter Eggs here and there. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 95 in NBA Live 06

Postby Andrew on Wed Jun 28, 2017 7:28 pm

June 28th, 2017: NBA Live 95 in NBA Live 06

Generally speaking, sim-oriented sports titles aren't what most people think of, or indeed reach for, when it comes to retro gaming. They don't always age well, mostly because they appeal to a demographic that wants to see more and more realism, as well as play with current season rosters. As such, they're not as popular among retro gamers, to play or collect. That being said, there is a contingent of basketball gamers who do enjoy playing and modding older titles, so it's certainly not unheard of. Finding a way to keep playing old favourites, or at least fire them up every once in a while, is something that people in our community do have an interest in.

When it came to the PlayStation 2 version of NBA Live 06, EA Sports made that a little easier by including an emulated version of NBA Live 95. It was a rather unusual example of bonus content, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 95 in NBA Live 06

Postby [Q] on Thu Jun 29, 2017 1:21 am

I had forgotten about this. I remember playing it once or twice, but it was hard to play without the actual names of the players on the teams.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 95 in NBA Live 06

Postby Andrew on Fri Jun 30, 2017 3:37 pm

Absolutely, it loses its appeal without the real players, to say nothing of only being able to play exhibition games. Best to dust off the original game if you want that retro experience.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: A Look Back at DSTATS in NBA Live

Postby Andrew on Wed Jul 05, 2017 8:24 pm

July 5th, 2017: A Look Back at DSTATS in NBA Live

For an enthusiastic franchise mode gamer, detail is paramount. On top of having a quality gameplay experience throughout the schedule, our enjoyment of a franchise mode is driven by the depth of the features, as well as the accuracy and realism of trades, free agency, and player performance. Simulated player stats that are wildly inaccurate can really detract from the franchise experience, especially during the first couple of seasons which are usually expected to somewhat resemble reality. The sim engine is an area where basketball games have greatly improved over the years, but in earlier NBA Live titles, realistic stats were achieved through the use of DSTATS.

DSTATS data provided the development team and modders alike with greater control over simulated player stats, but the approach also had a few noteworthy drawbacks. It's an outmoded concept, but one that's interesting to revisit, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Superstars in NBA Live 06

Postby Andrew on Thu Jul 13, 2017 3:15 am

July 12th, 2017: Freestyle Superstars in NBA Live 06

As basketball video games have improved along with gaming technology in general, our expectations have also grown. When it comes to aspects such as realism, advanced or flashy moves, signature styles, and player differentiation, the bar has been raised higher and higher. Signature moves were present in EA Sports' NBA Playoffs series, and skill levels were more defined beginning with the implementation of player ratings in NBA Live 95. However, star players still didn't quite stand out from the pack. Freestyle Superstars was arguably EA's first major effort to incorporate individual playing styles, and properly represent differing skill levels.

It was a concept that had its drawbacks, but I also believe that it was innovative and reasonably successful. Although the criticisms of Freestyle Superstars are fair, it's a little underrated in terms of being an important stepping stone in the progression of basketball video games. How so? Well, let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Superstars in NBA Live 06

Postby [Q] on Thu Jul 13, 2017 5:46 am

It was a step in the right direction, trying to differentiate players and the best players from normal ones. Obviously a precursor to 2k's badges
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Superstars in NBA Live 06

Postby Andrew on Thu Jul 13, 2017 10:20 am

I definitely think so, too. It's easy to focus on its shortcomings, the way in which it could be a bit too cheesy and arcade-like, but it served its purpose.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Creating a Legend in NBA 2K11

Postby Andrew on Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:26 pm

July 19th, 2017: Creating a Legend in NBA 2K11

NBA 2K11 remains a very highly regarded basketball video game, and for good reason. It was a milestone release in terms of its historical content, and for many gamers, its gameplay still holds up. I've talked about it a couple of times in previous Wayback Wednesday features, specifically discussing the inclusion of Michael Jordan, and my efforts to finally complete the Jordan Challenge. In passing, I've also mentioned the mode that could be unlocked either by completing the Jordan Challenge, or by punching in the code icanbe23; namely, MJ: Creating a Legend.

Notably different from the incarnations of Creating a Legend that appeared in subsequent NBA 2K games, it's a mode that a lot of gamers probably didn't spend too much time with. Indeed, some have probably forgotten about it, if they even realised it was in NBA 2K11 in the first place. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Tweaked Roster Updates

Postby Andrew on Wed Jul 26, 2017 10:41 pm

July 26th, 2017: Tweaked Roster Updates

One of the key elements of roster updates, be they official updates or community-made rosters, is tweaking player ratings for more realistic performance. Whether it's correcting the guesswork that's originally needed when assigning ratings for a rookie player, or accounting for a drastic change in performance compared to the previous season, adjusting player attributes is an important part of creating a desirable gameplay experience. In some cases, gamers have ended up making major adjustments to all players, in order to counteract gameplay quirks and try to inject a little more realism into the game. These were known as tweaked roster updates.

It's an outdated practice now, but many years ago, creating a tweaked version of a roster was considered a necessity if you wanted to try and enhance the experience for your fellow NBA Live gamers. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Freestyle Control in NBA Live 2003

Postby Andrew on Wed Aug 02, 2017 11:36 pm

August 2nd, 2017: Freestyle Control in NBA Live 2003

It's funny that it's taken me this long to do a Wayback Wednesday feature on Freestyle Control, especially since I talked about Freestyle Superstars just a few weeks ago. I did talk about it in my retrospective of NBA Live 2003, but being such an important development in terms of controls, it definitely deserves its own article. Although the name has changed a couple of times over the years, taking on monikers such as "Quick Strike Ballhandling" and "Quick Strike Ankle Breakers", the basic concept of Freestyle's right stick control has remained essentially the same. It's since gone back to its original name, and we'll be seeing more of it in NBA Live 18.

Freestyle Control changed the game, and for those of us playing on PC, it also meant picking up a dual analog gamepad to take full advantage of it. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA 2K12 Promotional Copy Opening

Postby Andrew on Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:52 pm

August 9th, 2017: NBA 2K12 Promotional Copy Opening

In recent years I've continued to expand my collection of basketball video games, not only buying the latest releases, but also picking up older games that I've found on eBay at an affordable price. Some of those games I've previously owned and sold, while others I've never owned or even played before. I've also bought different versions of games that I already own, in order to experience them on other platforms. While browsing eBay looking for deals, I found a sealed, promotional copy of NBA 2K12 for the Xbox 360. Intrigued as to what might be in the box - perhaps a code for the 2002 Sacramento Kings and 1991 Golden State Warriors? - I decided to pick it up.

Since I was going to have to tear open the seal anyway in order to check it out, I figured that I might as well make a sort of unboxing video feature out of it. For your entertainment, let's open up this sealed promotional copy of NBA 2K12 for Xbox 360, and take a look back...way back...


phpBB [video]
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA 2K12 Promotional Copy Opening

Postby [Q] on Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:07 pm

Andrew wrote:August 9th, 2017: NBA 2K12 Promotional Copy Opening


In recent years I've continued to expand my collection of basketball video games, not only buying the latest releases, but also picking up older games that I've found on eBay at an affordable price. Some of those games I've previously owned and sold, while others I've never owned or even played before. I've also bought different versions of games that I already own, in order to experience them on other platforms. While browsing eBay looking for deals, I found a sealed, promotional copy of NBA 2K12 for the Xbox 360. Intrigued as to what might be in the box - perhaps a code for the 2002 Sacramento Kings and 1991 Golden State Warriors? - I decided to pick it up.

Since I was going to have to tear open the seal anyway in order to check it out, I figured that I might as well make a sort of unboxing video feature out of it. For your entertainment, let's open up this sealed promotional copy of NBA 2K12 for Xbox 360, and take a look back...way back...


phpBB [video]

Pretty sure it's just a copy of the game meant for press and reviewers.

I was digging the NBA live 98 music in the video
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA 2K12 Promotional Copy Opening

Postby Andrew on Thu Aug 10, 2017 7:09 pm

I'd say so, too. It was cool to find it though, especially sealed.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 2004 Print Ad & Trailer

Postby Andrew on Thu Aug 17, 2017 12:13 am

August 16th, 2017: NBA Live 2004 Print Ad & Trailer

A few weeks ago, I was using the Wayback Machine at Archive.org to try and find a downloadable version of the official patch for NBA Live 2003. As I mentioned in a recent Friday Five feature, it's a file that's no longer available, and I was hoping that I could retrieve it via an archived copy of the game's official website. Unfortunately I didn't have any luck in that regard, but I did manage to find some old preview media for NBA Live 2004 and NBA Live 2005. Among them was a print ad featuring cover player Vince Carter, and a gameplay trailer.

NBA Live 2004 is definitely a classic, and I'm sure that long-time members of our community have many fond memories of it. Since we're also in the thick of the preview seasons for NBA Live 18 and NBA 2K18, I thought it'd be fun to take a look back at how games used to be promoted in the lead up to their release. With that in mind, let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Quick Pick Play in NBA Live 08

Postby Andrew on Wed Aug 23, 2017 11:54 pm

August 23rd, 2017: Quick Pick Play in NBA Live 08

Custom teams were once a staple of both NBA Live and NBA 2K, from the original four squads in NBA Live to the fully customisable teams in later games. Unfortunately, neither game currently features custom teams, at least in the traditional sense. NBA 2K has expansion team creation and team relocation and rebranding in MyLEAGUE and MyGM, but the old method of adding a new team to a roster is no longer available. NBA Live 2000 was the last Live to feature custom teams, and as such, they became a popular Wishlist item. In NBA Live 08 for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, EA Sports tried to grant that wish by way of a new mode: Quick Pick Play.

It's another mode that probably isn't too well-remembered, even among hardcore NBA Live gamers. However, like a lot of long-forgotten features in basketball video games, it's worth another glance all these years later. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Legends & Champs Rosters for NBA Live

Postby Andrew on Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:30 pm

August 30th, 2017: Legends & Champs Rosters for NBA Live

The announcement that NBA 2K18 will be receiving new historical content, not only in the form of additional classic teams but also All-Time squads, drew a lot of excitement from gamers who are also enthusiastic NBA history buffs. While there have been omissions and other issues, historical content is something that the 2K series has generally done a great job with since NBA 2K11. Of course, as more than a couple of people have pointed out here and on social media, All-Time Teams are not a completely original concept, as many fan-made rosters featuring such squads have been created in recent years.

However, the concept goes back a lot further than that. Rosters comprised of All-Time squads date all the way back to the early days of patching NBA Live on PC, as Lutz's Legends rosters demonstrate. For that matter, the concept of classic teams was also utilised by his Champs rosters. It's been a while and a lot of newer basketball gamers probably aren't aware of those influential mods, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 96 Complete Update

Postby Andrew on Thu Sep 07, 2017 12:04 am

September 6th, 2017: NBA Live 96 Complete Update

Maybe it's because it's been a while since I've worked on a major roster project, or perhaps it's talking about old mods in recent editions of Wayback Wednesday, but recently I've been feeling somewhat nostalgic about the days when I was more active in the modding community. I've talked about my 1996 season mod for NBA Live 2004 (which will be receiving further updates, thanks to Murat) and the NBA Live PC project for NBA Live 06 (which I'd love to update if I had the time), but this time I'm going back even further, to the Complete Update that I made for NBA Live 96.

Even though it's obviously been far surpassed by the numerous games that have followed it, the PC version of NBA Live 96 remains one of my all-time favourite basketball games. Indeed, it was for that very reason that I was still making updates for it as late as 2001, even though it was already becoming something of a relic. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 98 & 08 Trivia

Postby Andrew on Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:29 pm

September 13th, 2017: NBA Live 98 & 08 Trivia

NBA Live's hiatus officially ends this week with the release of NBA Live 18. From playing the demo and reading a couple of the early reviews, I would have to say that the game definitely still has room for improvement, but has also made some pleasing strides since its reboot in 2013. I'm quite looking forward to playing NBA Live 18, but the title does make me reflect on how long I've been a part of the community. Before I took over the NLSC, I remember visiting it and checking out the news when NBA Live 98 was the upcoming game. By the time the preview season for NBA Live 08 rolled around, I was covering it myself here on the NLSC.

Since NBA Live 18 will be out in a couple of days, I thought it might be fun to look back at the previous two NBA Live games that were set in a season ending in eight. I've already posted an in-depth retrospective of NBA Live 98, and one is in the pipeline for NBA Live 08 as well, but these are some quick trivia notes about both games that I hope you will enjoy. With that being said, let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 98 & 08 Trivia

Postby Andrew on Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:14 am

September 20th, 2017: GM Mode in NBA Live 98

Although I've gravitated towards MyCAREER and 2K Pro-Am in recent years, I've traditionally been a franchise gamer. For those of us who remember playing basketball games with a single season mode, the ability to play multiple seasons while managing our roster through the Draft, free agency, and salary cap-restricted trades was something that we eagerly wanted to see. As basketball gaming approached the turn of the millennium, the demand for an in-depth, multi-season mode - what we would now refer to as a franchise mode - was steadily rising. Although we've come to see fantastic franchise modes, it's been a long road to get to that point.

Since I'm looking to get back into some franchise gaming this year, it seems as good a time as any to tip off a multi-part feature I've been wanting to do for some time: a look back at the history and evolution of franchise modes. First up is NBA Live 98's GM Mode. While not strictly an in-depth franchise mode, it stands as one of the forerunners to the concept. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Multiseason Play in NBA Live 99

Postby Andrew on Wed Sep 27, 2017 8:48 pm

September 27th, 2017: Multiseason Play in NBA Live 99

NBA Live 98's GM Mode was an interesting first step in changing up the approach to Season play, but it wasn't quite what basketball gamers had wanted. It laid the groundwork for a variety of exciting new features however, and it was clear that gamers and EA Sports alike were committed to the idea of a deeper experience. A fully-fledged multiseason mode was once again something that gamers expressed their interest in through the NLSC's NBA Live 99 Wishlist, submitted to the NBA Live development team at EA Canada on December 10th, 1997.

It would be another year before a few of those wishes were granted, but NBA Live 99 did take the next step by implementing multiseason play in its Season mode. Lacking many of the key elements of later franchise modes, but also introducing several important features as well, it's arguably somewhat of a forgotten milestone on the road to the deep multiseason experience that we wanted to see in basketball video games. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Multiseason Play in NBA Live 99

Postby WithAuthority on Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:15 am

Fascinating. Great knowledge. Have you ever thought of writing a book about the history of NBA Live, or video game basketball even? I believe you could do it.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Multiseason Play in NBA Live 99

Postby Andrew on Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:32 am

Thanks, glad you enjoyed it! It'd be fun to write a book like that, but I'm not sure there'd be much of a market for it. I'm probably best sticking to articles and videos.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Multiseason Play in NBA Live 99

Postby WithAuthority on Thu Sep 28, 2017 12:36 pm

Andrew wrote:Thanks, glad you enjoyed it! It'd be fun to write a book like that, but I'm not sure there'd be much of a market for it. I'm probably best sticking to articles and videos.


Hey not necessarily. Video game books definitely have a market. I've read a few good ones. And theres never been anything like it. Even if its just a blog, id be interested to read one from you where it tracks the rivalry between NBA Live and 2K, and the ups and downs of both series over the years. :D
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