Wayback Wednesday: The Charlotte Bobcats in NBA Live 2004

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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Multiseason Play in NBA Live 99

Postby Andrew on Thu Sep 28, 2017 12:47 pm

That's a good suggestion for some future content here, so I'll definitely consider some more multi-part series for Wayback Wednesday, and maybe some spinoff features. :)
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Franchise Mode in NBA Live 2000-2003

Postby Andrew on Wed Oct 04, 2017 11:44 pm

October 4th, 2017: Franchise Mode in NBA Live 2000-2003

With GM Mode, EA Sports had experimented with altering the traditional Season experience. The expanded Season mode in NBA Live 99, with its multiseason play and dynamic features, laid the foundation for an even deeper mode. Come NBA Live 2000, basketball gamers wouldn't have to wait any longer for a multiseason mode that replicated even more aspects of the real NBA season, including free agency and the rookie draft. Needless to say, it isn't as deep as its successors, but looking back, it's still impressive to see just how much EA were able to accomplish with that first iteration of Franchise Mode.

From NBA Live 2000 through NBA Live 2003, Franchise Mode was definitely the centrepiece of NBA Live's game modes, and the most popular. It was an extremely important development in basketball gaming, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Dynasty Mode in NBA Live

Postby Andrew on Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:06 pm

October 11th, 2017: Dynasty Mode in NBA Live

Franchise Mode was one of the best additions in the NBA Live series, delivering a multiseason experience that gamers had been wanting for some time. By NBA Live 2003 however, it was unfortunately getting stale. Despite a few noteworthy new features and AI enhancements, the experience hadn't become much deeper over the course of four years. Franchise gamers still enjoyed the mode and it remained popular, but there was also a certain amount of frustration, as we wanted to see more innovation. Fortunately, by the time NBA Live 2004 rolled around, EA Sports were ready to deliver.

The introduction of Dynasty Mode in NBA Live 2004 was part of an effort to rebrand Franchise Mode throughout all EA Sports titles, but thankfully, it turned out to be much more than a name change. It marked the introduction of a deeper mode that continued to evolve through the years, until it too fell on some rough times. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Association in NBA 2K

Postby Andrew on Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:56 pm

October 18th, 2017: The Association in NBA 2K

While NBA Live was offering multiseason management modes in the form of Franchise and Dynasty, NBA 2K was also providing basketball gamers with its own take on the franchise experience. The franchise modes in both games have had their ups and downs, but the 2K series has done a very commendable job from year to year, in many cases implementing features that have yet to be seen in EA's game. For those of us who were mostly playing NBA Live back in the day, we looked on in envy as 2K implemented several of those much-desired features in its modes.

As of now, NBA 2K has featured the deepest and most advanced franchise modes in basketball gaming. For many years, that franchise experience went by the name of The Association, and it admirably paved the way for MyLEAGUE and MyGM in recent games. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Michael Redd's What If in NBA Live 2003

Postby Andrew on Wed Oct 25, 2017 8:13 pm

October 25th, 2017: Michael Redd's What If in NBA Live 2003

There are a lot of reasons why it's fun to go back and play an old basketball video game. Even though our old favourites tend to be far surpassed by new titles, we can usually still find nostalgic enjoyment in the familiarity of the gameplay. It can be satisfying to dust off an old save file, and pick it up again for a while. Sometimes, it's interesting to just go through the rosters and be reminded of when a certain player was playing for a particular team. If you do that in NBA Live 2003 PC, you'll be reminded of when Michael Redd played for the Dallas Mavericks. Only, that never actually happened. Yet there he is, on the bench for the 2003 Mavs.

Did EA Sports mess up here? Was someone paying too much attention to those infamous Courtside Comedy cutscenes, and not enough to the default roster as it was being finalised? In truth, there's no error here; not at the time of the roster's creation, at any rate. Confused? Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Reconstructing Jordan's Bulls in NBA Live 2002

Postby Andrew on Wed Nov 01, 2017 10:09 pm

November 1st, 2017: Reconstructing Jordan's Bulls in NBA Live 2002

Even though it's definitely not the pinnacle of the series, NBA Live 2002 is a game that I find myself thinking about and returning to every now and again. As I've mentioned before, it's a game that I'm oddly nostalgic for, in large part because of a memorable Sacramento Kings Franchise that I finally gained closure on years later. Of course, I also had a less successful Franchise experience with the Utah Jazz, in which things got a little too wacky. As I previously remarked, if I wanted to shake things up and do something a little unusual, it might've been more fun to try to reconstruct Michael Jordan's championship-winning Chicago Bulls.

It's not too late to explore that idea, though. Just as I recreated my Kings Franchise to finish it off all these years later, I thought that it'd be fun to attempt to reconstruct the core of the Jordan-led Bulls teams. Not all of the key players from those squads are still active in NBA Live 2002, but more than a couple are available to acquire. Can it be done? Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Reconstructing Jordan's Bulls in NBA Live 2002

Postby Dee4Three on Fri Nov 03, 2017 1:28 am

You could have just tried to win with the Wizards, and pretend that the Wizards didn't take Brown didn't take Brown, instead taking Gasol. Also, his first year with the Wizards was disrupted by Jordan getting hurt. Always wondered what might have happened if he stayed healthy.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Reconstructing Jordan's Bulls in NBA Live 2002

Postby Andrew on Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:37 am

They were on course for the Playoffs. I don't think they'd have been contenders or anything, but they might've made a bit of noise.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 2003's Elusive Post Move

Postby Andrew on Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:45 pm

November 8th, 2017: NBA Live 2003's Elusive Post Move

There's a distinct satisfaction that comes with mastering advanced moves in basketball video games. Whether it's pulling off the Dream Shake, or performing a beautiful combination of dribbling moves that leaves a defender stumbling, developing superior skills on the sticks is supremely satisfying. Sometimes, however, there's that one move that you're just never able to perform. You've seen it in trailers and other people's gameplay footage, but for whatever reason, you just can't perform the move yourself. Alternatively, it may be a contextual animation that very rarely triggers, even when you appear to do everything correctly.

For me, my white whale of basketball gaming is a post move that can be seen in the introduction video of NBA Live 2003. Try as I might, I've never been able to perform it in all the years that I've had the game (which is to say, since late 2002). What is this elusive post move? Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Revisiting NBA Jam Tournament Edition

Postby Andrew on Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:28 pm

November 15th, 2017: Revisiting NBA Jam Tournament Edition

When you talk about titles that older basketball gamers are nostalgic for, NBA Jam will invariably be one of the most popular games to come up. It basically set the standard for what came to be known as arcade basketball games, with its over-the-top, high-flying dunks, relaxed approach to the rules of the sport, and simple gameplay. The original NBA Jam was a hit in arcades and with its home ports, appealing to basketball enthusiasts and more casual fans alike. It's since spawned sequels, spiritual successors, and more than a couple of imitators with varying degrees of quality.

The original game is considered a classic and for good reason, but personally, I've always preferred its sequel, NBA Jam Tournament Edition. It's a game I looked back at in the second ever Wayback Wednesday feature, around this time two years ago. Back then, I provided a few off-the-cuff thoughts on the game over some footage I'd been sitting on for a few years. I enjoyed doing that and it was a fun way to start getting into creating some video content, but I've always wanted to revisit NBA Jam Tournament Edition with a more fleshed out retrospective. That's what I'm doing today, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Dynamic Season in NBA Live 10

Postby Andrew on Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:37 pm

November 22nd, 2017: Dynamic Season in NBA Live 10

While I still consider the PC version of NBA Live 06 to be the last truly well-rounded instalment in the NBA Live series, NBA Live 10 has to be given its due. It holds up quite well, and EA Sports definitely should've continued to build on it rather than changing directions with NBA Elite 11. Had EA not elected to take that risk, the series might be in much better shape, and the landscape of basketball gaming would likely have been very different these past seven years. In addition to its mechanics and overall gameplay being very solid, NBA Live 10 also featured some innovative modes and concepts, including the one we're looking at today: Dynamic Season.

Dynamic Season was an effective way of implementing an idea that basketball gamers had wanted to see for some time, and it's something that EA Sports should definitely consider bringing back in future NBA Live games. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Dynamic Season in NBA Live 10

Postby [Q] on Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:09 am

I had always found dynamic season to be a bit strange for my liking. Like you said people liked playing along during the season but it allowed you to get your own results and your own version of the season. The problem is that once to play too far ahead and enough time has passed isn't there a big difference between your game and real life? Especially in the standings and playoff seeding

I personally never played the mode
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Dynamic Season in NBA Live 10

Postby Andrew on Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:28 am

[Q] wrote:The problem is that once to play too far ahead and enough time has passed isn't there a big difference between your game and real life? Especially in the standings and playoff seeding


That's the whole point, to create your own version of the 2010 season, mixing your own results with real NBA results. In other words, it's like playing a single season with the team or teams of your choice, and the results of the games you don't play are filled in for you. Only instead of the sim engine generating the results, they come from real NBA data. Using NBA Rewind, you could also go back and change results as well, to alter your version of the 2010 Season and Playoffs. It all gets merged together for custom standings, and ultimately, custom Playoffs brackets.

It wasn't about replicating all the results of the real season (though I suppose you could try to do that). Most likely, your influence would change things, perhaps drastically depending on how many games you played and replayed, and how many different teams you played/replayed games for. It was about playing your own 2010 season, but the rosters and ratings changed and updated according to real life (whereas they obviously don't in your usual season or franchise mode), and you could go back and replay games with data accurate as of that date.

So, for example, if you were playing with your favourite team and they made a couple of trades or a player got injured, you'd have to play with their new roster and current lineup moving forward. If you wanted to go back and play an earlier game you missed, the rosters from that point in time would be used (along with the Dynamic DNA data). It's kind of like the NBA Today feature in NBA 2K, except there was more of a mode around it, instead of just being exhibition games.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby Andrew on Wed Nov 29, 2017 10:22 pm

Latest Feature

November 29th, 2017: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

The rivalry between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Boston Celtics stretches back decades in NBA lore. It seems only fitting that as the latest chapter of their epic saga was drawing to a close in the late 1980s, Electronic Arts decided to name their new five-on-five basketball game after the rivalry that had produced so many memorable moments. A forerunner to the NBA Live series, Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs was EA's first real effort to make a sim-oriented NBA title. Over the years, it's rightfully come to be considered a classic, introducing many features that have since become staples of basketball gaming. Let's take a look back...way back...


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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby sticky-fingers on Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:15 pm

I played it on MegaDrive
it seems to be 100 years ago :crazyeyes: :roll: :cry:
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby Andrew on Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:07 am

Getting close to 30, at least. ;)
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby sticky-fingers on Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:09 am

at least :facepalm2:
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby dshay7 on Sat Dec 02, 2017 7:40 am

Man, I loved Lakers vs. Celtics!
I'm pretty old for a gamer...been playing basketball video games for about 35 years, starting with Dr. J vs Larry Bird on my dad's IBM Tandy 1000 PC. I loved that game. If you dunked just right, you could break the backboard. Then came along Jordan vs. Bird on PC, with far superior graphics. You could either go one on one and choose either MJ or Larry, or you could compete in the dunk contest or 3 point shoot out. That game was a blast! I vividly remember the dunk contest, and how well I thought they captured some of Jordan's dunks, especially for a game over 30 years old. At the time, it was pretty revolutionary.

Then in about 1989 I think, I got Lakers vs. Celtics and the NBA playoffs for PC. I spent that entire summer of '89 playing that game, and coming off a real-life Pistons Finals win in 89, they were a fun team to play with. Aside from Kareem and maybe Bird, all the players looked exactly the same, but it was really the first PC basketball game I remember playing that had legit 5 on 5 team play. I remember Dale Ellis being a killer from the 3 point line, and the pleasure you got any time one of your guys dunked on another player. The main thing that frustrated me about the game was the lack of stats, so I started tallying my stats on a notpad during gameplay. I'd pick a team, say the Lakers, and try to get a triple double with Magic. After every rebound, assist, score, etc, I'd pause the game and make a hash mark in my notebook for that player. Wasn't exactly condusive to the flow of the game, but it gave me the satisfaction of knowing what my stats were. Thank God we've come so far!

Thanks, Andrew, for bringing this game back to my mind.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby Andrew on Sat Dec 02, 2017 10:16 am

You're welcome, glad you enjoyed the retrospective!

Great point about the stats. My cousin and I used to do that with NBA Jam Tournament Edition on PC; it did display the halftime and full time stats, but we'd copy them down and keep records of how many somersault dunks we managed to perform. It was tough in earlier games like Lakers vs. Celtics, though. As you noted, you had to do all of that yourself! Fortunately, stat tracking has become a lot better in the years since.

I do actually want to cover Jordan vs. Bird at some point. It's on the list. :)
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby [Q] on Sat Dec 02, 2017 10:47 am

Speaking of stats, I do miss user stats which would be fun to compare amongst your online friends.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Lakers vs Celtics and the NBA Playoffs

Postby Andrew on Sat Dec 02, 2017 11:07 am

Agreed.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Replay Editing in NBA Live 09

Postby Andrew on Wed Dec 06, 2017 10:34 pm

December 6th, 2017: Replay Editing in NBA Live 09

Instant replay is nothing new in sports video games. Bulls vs Lakers, the sequel to Lakers vs Celtics, introduced the feature to EA's original basketball series. Since then it's become a staple of the genre, one that we've used to re-watch our finest (or most frustrating) moments on the virtual hardwood. Although subsequent games have introduced welcome features such as multiple camera angles, the ability to manually trigger cinematic replays, and even video exporting functionality, not many games have had extensive replay editing tools. EA's Michael Jordan in Flight was an early title that did, but since then, it's generally been a rarity.

When the ability to save replays returned in NBA Live 09, EA Sports took things a step further and included replay editing tools, as well as sharing functionality. With some of the other improvements in NBA Live 09, such as the implementation of Dynamic DNA, it's a feature that is arguably somewhat overlooked. It's well worth revisiting however, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Midweek Patch Report & Webmaster News

Postby Andrew on Wed Dec 13, 2017 9:33 pm

December 13th, 2017: Midweek Patch Report & Webmaster News

If you've been around the community for a long time or perhaps read some of my previous articles, you may know that I used to run a site called the NBA Live Domain before I took over the NLSC in August of 2001. It started out as a place for me to host my own patches for NBA Live, but after a while, I felt like branching out with feature articles and the like. I experimented with the odd opinion piece and even created a subsite dedicated to covering the real NBA, but the columns that stuck were the Midweek Patch Report, and Webmaster News.

Both were regular weekly columns that became fixtures of the NBA Live Domain until I closed the site in December 2001, in order to properly focus on updating and developing content for the NLSC. They were instrumental in my development as a content creator though, so join me today as I take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Kobe Bryant in NBA Courtside

Postby Andrew on Thu Dec 21, 2017 12:50 am

December 20th, 2017: Kobe Bryant in NBA Courtside

When Kobe Bryant played his final NBA game, I dedicated a Wayback Wednesday feature to his history in basketball video games. With his jersey retirement ceremony taking place this week, it seems only fitting that I look at one of those titles in more detail. Released for the Nintendo 64 in 1998, Kobe Bryant in NBA Courtside was the first of three Nintendo-exclusive games endorsed by the Black Mamba, and one of two titles that featured the rising star on the cover that season. I've mentioned it in several articles to date, so an in-depth retrospective is somewhat overdue.

An article didn't feel like quite enough to mark the occasion, and it's long been my intention to get into the habit of creating more video content for my weekly features. With that in mind, I've put together a video retrospective of Kobe Bryant in NBA Courtside, which you can watch below, or check out here over on our YouTube channel. Without any further ado, let's take a look back...way back...


phpBB [video]

https://youtu.be/svXQGvGTYe8
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Life in NBA 08

Postby Andrew on Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:58 pm

December 27th, 2017: The Life in NBA 08

Sony's NBA series was one of the last major competitors to the two big brands in sim-oriented basketball games, NBA Live and NBA 2K. The games are part of a lineage that includes the NBA ShootOut series, known as Total NBA in PAL regions. Being developed by divisions of Sony Computer Entertainment, the games were naturally exclusive to the PlayStation consoles, with the exception of NBA ShootOut 2000 which saw the series' lone PC release. Generally speaking, the games did receive some positive reviews, but over the years they were unable to best NBA Live or NBA 2K in terms of sales or overall quality.

Nevertheless, the NBA series did boast some innovative features, some of which have since been adopted by NBA Live and NBA 2K in some form. A prime example is the mode known as The Life, a narrative-driven experience that predates the use of stories in MyCAREER by several years. The mode and the story changed from year to year, but in this article I'm primarily focusing on the PlayStation 2 version of NBA 08, as it's the game I have in my collection. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The EA Graphics Editor

Postby Andrew on Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:38 pm

January 3rd, 2018: The EA Graphics Editor

Although our modding community continues to produce excellent content for the most recent NBA 2K games, the process has become a little more difficult from NBA 2K15 onwards. While the decision to port the PlayStation 4/Xbox One version to the PC has allowed the platform to receive the best version of the current release, it has put a few limitations on what can be achieved through modding. At the very least, it's made the process a little tougher. This has led to people in the community expressing their frustration with the current state of modding.

I can certainly sympathise with that point of view, and I'd love to see future versions of NBA 2K be more modder-friendly. However, I also remember the early days of modding NBA Live on PC. I've talked about how difficult it could be in a previous Wayback Wednesday feature, though it's something that got better over time; not just because of changes to the games, but also thanks to the hard work and ingenuity of the people making the tools. Undoubtedly, one of the most impressive and important tools is the EA Graphics Editor. It's a modding tool that's served us well for a long time, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Street Hoop for Neo Geo

Postby Andrew on Wed Jan 10, 2018 9:51 pm

January 10th, 2018: Street Hoop for Neo Geo

Growing up in Australia in the 90s, I have to admit that I was completely ignorant of the Neo Geo. The Super Nintendo and SEGA Mega Drive (known as the Genesis in NTSC regions) were the popular consoles, and as it stood, I was a Nintendo fanboy. As such, it wasn't until years later than I learned about some of the other consoles that were also vying for a share of the market back then, or the library of games that were exclusive to those platforms. Those games included several basketball titles, such as the one we're looking at today: Street Hoop.

In the wake of NBA Jam's success, several developers tried to emulate its style with their own arcade basketball games. In 1994, Data East threw their hat into the ring with Street Hoop, released exclusively for the Neo Geo. How does it stand up against NBA Jam and other arcade hoops games? Thanks to the recent re-release on PS4, X1, and Switch, we can take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Favourite Secret Characters in NBA Jam

Postby Andrew on Wed Jan 17, 2018 11:42 pm

January 17th, 2018: Favourite Secret Characters in NBA Jam

January 14th marked the 25th Anniversary of NBA Jam, the game that truly set the tone in terms of the arcade basketball experience. In addition to celebrating its silver anniversary, NBA Jam has also been in the news as of late due to the possibility of a brand new game being released. Additionally, in a recent interview with Shack News, Tim Kitzrow confirmed that creator Mark Turmell still has the rare version of the game that includes Michael Jordan and Gary Payton. While there are several legal roadblocks that must be cleared, Turmell is investigating the possibility of releasing that rare treasure in celebration of the game's anniversary.

As a long-time fan of the series, I'd love to see a new NBA Jam game, as well as the release of the rare version of the original featuring MJ and The Glove. It's a situation we'll keep an eye on, but in the meantime, it's always fun to look back at the games that have already been released. I've posted a couple of retrospectives on NBA Jam Tournament Edition in previous Wayback Wednesday features, so this time I wanted to focus on a specific element of the original games: their secret characters. They're arguably as iconic as the high flying dunks, being on fire, and "Boomshakalaka!", so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Favourite Secret Characters in NBA Jam

Postby [Q] on Thu Jan 18, 2018 4:10 am

When I was a kid, I had looked up cheat codes at the local library for raiden and jax for the arcade. That was what we did pre-internet lol

I would say my favorite codes were for NBA players that I liked to play as. That allowed me to team them up with other players that I liked
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Favourite Secret Characters in NBA Jam

Postby Andrew on Thu Jan 18, 2018 11:00 am

I used to have a copy of Nintendo Magazine System (the Australian version of Nintendo Power) with a bunch of codes for the SNES version of NBA Jam TE. That's where my codes used to come from, pre-Internet!
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Favourite Secret Characters in NBA Jam

Postby [Q] on Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:35 pm

I never knew where I could find codes until one day I found the video game books at the back of the library. When I found books full of cheat codes, my mind was blown!
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Favourite Secret Characters in NBA Jam

Postby Andrew on Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:51 pm

I remember those books, too. Some came as bonuses with magazines, but there were a few that were published somewhat regularly, as new games came out.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Kobe Bryant's 81 Points in NBA Live 06

Postby Andrew on Wed Jan 24, 2018 8:43 pm

January 24th, 2018: Kobe Bryant's 81 Points in NBA Live 06

Monday marked the twelfth anniversary of Kobe Bryant's career high 81 point game against the Toronto Raptors. The Los Angeles Lakers legend's torching of Toronto put him in second place behind Wilt Chamberlain for the most points scored in a single NBA game. It was a spectacular feat, and I remember my jaw actually dropping when I checked the scores that day. Between Shaquille O'Neal's departure and the arrival of Pau Gasol, the Lakers languished in relative mediocrity in terms of the standings, but Kobe was putting up some numbers for the ages.

After his legendary 81 point game, NBA.com threw down a challenge for basketball gamers to try and replicate Kobe Bryant's performance in either NBA Live 06 or NBA 2K6. For this week's Wayback Wednesday, I decided that I'd dust off NBA Live 06 PC - one of my all-time favourite basketball games - and give it a shot myself, over a decade later. 81 points seems like something out of a video game, but just how easily can it be done on the virtual hardwood? Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Kobe Bryant's 81 Points in NBA Live 06

Postby [Q] on Thu Jan 25, 2018 3:33 am

Do you reckon that things would have been different if they weren't blowing them out?
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Kobe Bryant's 81 Points in NBA Live 06

Postby Andrew on Thu Jan 25, 2018 10:15 am

I think Kobe was going off no matter what in that one.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Full Court Press

Postby Andrew on Wed Jan 31, 2018 10:22 pm

January 31st, 2018: NBA Full Court Press

NBA Full Court Press is a game that I've wanted to talk about in detail for some time. I've mentioned it in passing in previous articles, but an in-depth retrospective is long overdue. Developed by Microsoft, the game is a forerunner to the NBA Inside Drive series, and was released in 1996 as a competitor to other sim-oriented titles such as EA Sports' NBA Live 97, and Sony Interactive's NBA ShootOut 97 (also known as Total NBA 97). During that era, a handful of developers were throwing their hat into the ring with NBA games, and most games had their own hook or feature that made them worth checking out.

Notably a PC exclusive release, NBA Full Court Press is a game with a certain amount of flair and a few concepts of merit, but one that comes up a little short as a sim title, even for its era. At the same time, it could still be enjoyable, and some of its better ideas and features wouldn't make their way into other NBA games for several years. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Full Court Press

Postby WithAuthority on Thu Feb 01, 2018 10:36 am

This blog gives me life
Collector & Trader of vintage NBA games, DVD, and memorabilia
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Full Court Press

Postby Andrew on Thu Feb 01, 2018 10:49 am

Glad you enjoy the throwback content!
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: The Forgotten NBA Jam

Postby Andrew on Wed Feb 07, 2018 9:06 pm

February 7th, 2018: The Forgotten NBA Jam

With NBA Jam celebrating its 25th Anniversary, there's been even more nostalgia than usual surrounding the classic series of basketball video games. For long-time basketball gamers, and for those who know their gaming history, the lineage of the series is well known. NBA Jam and NBA Jam Tournament Edition are hailed as classics, and rightfully so. NBA Hangtime - Midway's follow-up after Acclaim won the rights to the Jam name - is also a great game. Acclaim's titles, from Extreme to the sim-oriented releases, were generally lacklustre. The series was revived by EA Sports, with the 2010 reboot and subsequent On Fire Edition being quite successful.

Midway also produced spiritual successors in the form of NBA Showtime: NBA on NBC, and NBA Hoopz. However, between the five-on-five titles and the reboot by EA Sports, Acclaim released a game simply titled NBA Jam (identified as NBA Jam 2004 by the disc's digital label), which aimed to return to the series' roots of over-the-top arcade gameplay. It's become somewhat of a forgotten release, overshadowed by other titles that bear the NBA Jam name, but it has its good points and deserves a second look. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Simulating To Today in NBA 2K10

Postby Andrew on Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:52 pm

February 14th, 2018: Simulating To Today in NBA 2K10

It's fair to say that the 2010 season marked a turning point for the NBA. Crossing into a new decade, it saw Kobe Bryant win the last of his five titles with the Los Angeles Lakers, as well as the final clash between the Lakers and Boston Celtics to date. It was also the season before a free agent frenzy that included LeBron James' infamous "Decision", and several other big names changing teams. Whether or not you like the current trend of superstars joining forces via free agency to form "super teams", or some of the other changes over the past decade, it's been an eventful era.

As it happened, it was also a turning point for NBA video games. NBA Live 10 was the last NBA Live game before the ill-fated rebrand to NBA Elite, making 2010 the final season to see two sim-oriented releases until NBA Live returned for the 2014 campaign. I thought it'd be fun to go back to one of those games and simulate through to the present, just to see how the sim engine would predict everything would turn out. NBA 2K10 is a game I haven't talked about all that much outside of one article, so it's the one I've settled on for this exercise. Let's take a look back...way back...and then bring it all back to the 2018 season.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Michael Jordan: Chaos in the Windy City

Postby Andrew on Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:10 pm

February 21st, 2018: Michael Jordan: Chaos in the Windy City

A few days ago, Michael Jordan celebrated his 55th birthday. As such, it seems only appropriate that this week's Wayback Wednesday takes a look back at a game starring His Airness. Given that he is my favourite player, and obviously a very prominent name in basketball, I've focused on Michael Jordan in more than a couple of previous Wayback Wednesday features, covering a variety of MJ-related gaming topics from his PC exclusive three-on-three game, to his inclusion in NBA 2K11 along with the Jordan Challenge. This time, I'm changing things up with a retrospective of a licensed platform game, namely Michael Jordan: Chaos in the Windy City.

Developed by Electronic Arts back when the company still had an agreement to use MJ's likeness, it's a quirky and interesting relic of its era. Chances are if you grew up playing video games in the 90s, you've heard of, played, rented, or owned this game at some point. We don't usually cover platformers here at the NLSC, but as it stars one of the most recognisable names in the history of basketball, it's worth talking about. Let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: College Slam

Postby Andrew on Wed Feb 28, 2018 9:34 pm

February 28th, 2018: College Slam

College Slam is a 1996 title that a lot of basketball gamers may not remember, if indeed they've ever heard of it. I personally wasn't aware of it until years later, since as is the case with all college basketball video games, it wasn't available in PAL regions. Essentially an NCAA version of NBA Jam, it was developed by Iguana Entertainment and published by Acclaim, the companies who brought NBA Jam to home consoles and PC. Unlike NBA Jam, it wasn't released in arcades, and never achieved the same level of popularity, largely due to its more limited release.

In many ways, College Slam is a re-skin of NBA Jam with NCAA licensing, but that is selling the game a little short. It did introduce a few new features that set it apart from its NBA licensed predecessor, and make it an interesting game to revisit. If the 2003 release from Acclaim is the forgotten NBA Jam, then College Slam is surely the forgotten spin-off. It's another game worth remembering however, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Investigating NBA Jam TE's Ratings

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:26 pm

March 7th, 2018: Investigating NBA Jam TE's Ratings

While playing College Slam for last week's Wayback Wednesday feature, I noticed something interesting about the individual player ratings. Since the generic players can be edited, there is a cap on their ratings to prevent you from maxing them out at nine in each category. Interestingly, the cap varies from player to player, which basically ensures that at least one player stands out as the star of the team with better all around ratings or high ratings in a few categories, while other players are capped at a lower amount of ratings points, establishing a hierarchy and balancing the squads.

Thinking back to some of the unusual ratings that I've noticed in the original NBA Jam games, I began to wonder if a similar approach had been taken in those titles, and whether it could account for some of the ratings that seemed too high or too low. I fired up the PC version of NBA Jam Tournament Edition to make a few calculations and comparisons, and what I discovered was quite interesting. There does seem to be a method to the ratings, and I'm not sure if it's ever really been explored, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Investigating NBA Jam TE's Ratings

Postby [Q] on Sun Mar 11, 2018 4:06 am

Very interesting findings. You mentioned Payton specifically, and I was a big fan of his but I had always felt his ratings were a bit low. I guess it makes sense to balance out Kemp's insane ratings and schrempf's above average ratings
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Investigating NBA Jam TE's Ratings

Postby Andrew on Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:28 am

I definitely feel like it isn't a coincidence, after seeing the ratings limits in College Hoops. It really does seem like they were trying to balance things out in previous NBA Jam titles, leading to quotas and some players being underrated or overrated when they were placed in the wrong tier, or there weren't enough high tiers to go around.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Slam 'N Jam PC Retrospective

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 14, 2018 5:29 pm

March 14th, 2018: Slam 'N Jam PC Retrospective

Back in the 90s, there were quite a few basketball video games that only licensed the name and likeness of a lone NBA star. Games like Michael Jordan in Flight, Barkley Shut Up & Jam, and David Robinson's Supreme Court, all featured their namesake player alongside fictional teammates and opponents. In 1995, Crystal Dynamics (the developer responsible for Gex and Tomb Raider) and Left Field Productions (makers of Kobe Bryant in NBA Courtside) released a couple of games with the name Slam 'N Jam. The first game, Slam 'N Jam '95, featured only fictional players. It was followed by a sequel in 1996, titled Slam 'N' Jam '96 Featuring Magic & Kareem.

As the title would imply, the sequel licensed the names and likenesses of both Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. While the original game had been exclusive to the 3DO, the sequel was released for the original PlayStation and SEGA Saturn. It was also ported to the PC, simply under the title of Slam 'N Jam. That's the version I'm focusing on today, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: Jordan vs Bird: One on One Retrospective

Postby Andrew on Wed Mar 21, 2018 7:47 pm

March 21st, 2018: Jordan vs Bird: One on One Retrospective

In my retrospective of Lakers vs Celtics last year, I took a look back at one of the most famous forerunners to EA Sports' NBA Live series. Although it was the first game in the NBA Playoffs series, and the oldest game in EA's lineage of five-on-five titles, Lakers vs Celtics was not the developer's first foray onto the virtual hardwood. That distinction belongs to the 1983 Apple II release commonly referred to as One on One, and alternatively as One on One: Dr. J vs. Larry Bird, or Dr. J and Larry Bird Go One on One. Featuring Julius Erving and Larry Bird going head to head in a one-on-one match-up, it was one of Electronic Arts' early successes.

The game would pave the way for a 1988 release titled Jordan vs Bird: One on One. This time, Larry Bird was pitted against Dr. J's heir apparent, Michael Jordan. Not only did it build on the success of its predecessor by featuring more modes of play, it also enjoyed a wider release, coming out on the PC, Nintendo Entertainment System, SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive, Commodore 64, and Game Boy. We'll be focusing on the PC version for MS-DOS today, so let's take a look back...way back...
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 2003’s Settings Myth

Postby Andrew on Thu Mar 29, 2018 12:07 am

March 28th, 2018: NBA Live 2003’s Settings Myth

As I noted in my retrospective of NBA Live 2003, while the game was a landmark title in terms of introducing right stick dribbling controls, it came up short as far as the level of realism was concerned. Needless to say, despite our disappointment with that aspect of the gameplay, we did our best as a community to find ways of enhancing the experience. The most common was making mass tweaks to the ratings in order to alter the gameplay, but this had undesirable side effects in Franchise mode, especially when it came time for the game to generate a new class of fictional rookies.

Not long after NBA Live 2003’s release, a claim was made that a bug in the game’s settings was responsible for the lack of realism in the gameplay. This naturally led to a lot of excitement, with gamers enthusiastically trying out the suggested workaround, hoping that it would lead to a more desirable sim-oriented experience. Although the suggestion was quickly proven to be a myth, that didn’t stop gamers from insisting otherwise. It’s an interesting situation to reflect upon after all these years, so let’s take a look back…way back…
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 2003’s Settings Myth

Postby dwayne2005 on Fri Mar 30, 2018 4:33 am

The EA Sports NCAA 2003 PS2 game had realism sliders. I remember reading a post here enquiring about the missing sliders the poster was sure the game had. He was probably thinking of the NCAA one.
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Re: Wayback Wednesday: NBA Live 2003’s Settings Myth

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:48 am

And fortunately, they were added the following year in NBA Live 2004.
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