The Friday Five: 5 Tips for Managing & Earning VC in MyCAREER

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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things a New NBA Jam Needs to Have

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:55 pm

January 12th: 5 Things a New NBA Jam Needs to Have

Tim Kitzrow's Tweet confirming that a deal for a new NBA Jam is "in the works" comes as promising news for those of us who love the long-running arcade basketball game series. While we shouldn't get ahead of ourselves until a new game is officially announced, it's good to hear that EA Sports apparently has interest in making further use of the trademark. The 2010 reboot was a solid and somewhat underrated game, maligned due to its association with NBA Elite 11. On Fire Edition meanwhile was one of the best, if not the best, arcade hoops titles released to date.

It's been over six years since OFE came out though, and while it was nice to get a new arcade game in the form of Saber Interactive's NBA Playgrounds, we need a Jam for the current generation. Hopefully a deal will get done and a new game will be in the pipeline, but if that happens, there are a few things it will need to have. The downside of NBA Playgrounds is that it's light on features, and in some respects, old school in a way that doesn't hold up. A new NBA Jam game needs to avoid those shortcomings, as well as some problems that have presented themselves over the course of its own lineage. Here are a few suggestions on how that could be achieved.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things a New NBA Jam Needs to Have

Postby [Q] on Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:03 am

I completely agree with needing subs. It adds a bit of strategy to the game, otherwise I'm just picking the 2 players that happen to be rated the best on the team.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things a New NBA Jam Needs to Have

Postby Andrew on Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:07 am

Exactly. I liked having a choice of players in Jam 2010 and OFE, obviously, but there was rarely an incentive to sub (and I don't recall the CPU ever doing so, either). Add some sort of injury or fatigue system, and you'll need to manage your duo well so that you've got them for the fourth quarter. It also means you get to play with more players, because at some point you'll likely have to...unless you're really good at avoiding being knocked down or conserving energy. That'd be hard to do and win, I'd imagine, but that right there could be another challenge.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Filmmakers Who Should Write MyCAREER Stories

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 19, 2018 10:55 pm

January 19th: 5 Filmmakers Who Should Write MyCAREER Stories

Ah, MyCAREER stories. While I've gone on record several times saying that I'm not a big fan of the concept, I also believe there's a way that they could be done better in future games. Basically, it comes down to having more story branching options, and perhaps even a couple of different starting points. A wider variety of dialogue options and meaningful choices would really enhance the role playing aspect of MyCAREER, as well as provide an opportunity for everyone to have a more unique experience. If there's going to be a story, let the gameplay drive it, and simply use the cutscenes and other elements as added flavour.

The underlying narrative and its characters should also be solid. In that respect, NBA 2K18's MyCAREER mode has been, to be blunt, a big disappointment. From the somewhat absurd background of DJ to the multitude of annoying and unlikeable characters (again, looking at you, B Fresh), this year's story has been grating. It's felt like a step backwards from NBA 2K17, which was written and directed by Creed's Aaron Covington. Bringing in a Hollywood screenwriter again might help in NBA 2K19 and beyond, but who should Visual Concepts work with? Just for fun, here are five filmmakers whose take on MyCAREER might be interesting to say the least.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things NBA Live 19 Needs To Have

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:58 pm

January 26th: 5 Things NBA Live 19 Needs To Have

Wishlist season is upon us, so we're currently collecting constructive feedback to send along to the development team at EA Tiburon! As always, one of our goals with the Wishlist is to prioritise our feedback, so that the team has a good idea of what we most want to see fixed, improved, and added in the next edition of NBA Live. I'm currently working on my list, and I encourage everyone to start posting their ideas as soon as possible. NBA Live 19 is already in pre-production, so the sooner we submit our Wishlist, the more likely it is to have a positive impact on this year's game.

To get the ball rolling, and to give you an idea of what I feel are the most pressing issues as we look ahead to NBA Live 19, I've decided to compile a list of the five things I believe the game needs to have. Opinions will certainly vary, which is why we have the Wishlist to get a good cross-section of what the community wants, but basically, I'd describe these as the five areas where significant improvements will help NBA Live take the next step. NBA Live 18 was a reasonably successful comeback for the series, but to stay on the right path and take the game to the next level, this is an overview of what I feel the development team should focus on.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things NBA 2K19 Needs To Have

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 02, 2018 5:25 pm

February 2nd: 5 Things NBA 2K19 Needs To Have

As I mentioned last week, Wishlist season is upon us. These days, we don't just collect feedback for NBA Live, but also the NBA 2K series as well. Our NBA 2K19 Wishlist topic is open for constructive feedback, which we'll be looking to pass along to the development team at Visual Concepts as soon as possible. As with NBA Live 19, NBA 2K19 is already in pre-production, so it's important that we get our Wishlist in as soon as possible, in order for it to have the best chance of making a positive impact on this year's game from 2K Sports.

While it's impossible to compile a comprehensive Wishlist in just five points, I do have some ideas about what I'd like the general areas of focus to be for NBA 2K19. I certainly don't pretend to speak for all basketball gamers - as I said last week, our Wishlist itself is intended to get a good cross-section of what the community wants - but having spent a considerable amount of time with NBA 2K18, and the series in general over the past six or seven years, I do believe that I have some suggestions that would benefit NBA 2K19. While the game is obviously wildly successful, I also feel that there's ample room for these technological and conceptual improvements.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things NBA 2K19 Needs To Have

Postby Daex on Fri Feb 02, 2018 9:11 pm

Hi Andrew. I have trouble understanding why are you jumping on a bandwagon with incorrect facts about Good release. The issue at hand is recognized widely among people who actually understand how the system works to be visual only. Good releases are NOT worse than slightly late/early. It is NOT beneficial to aim for slightly early/late to reach higher %. The confusion stems from the fact that "Good" releases are more or less "Excellent" releases that game decided you will miss. Detailed analysis is provided by 2k Labs, where this is proven by the fact when you have absolutely perfect timing every single time, number of "Good" shots that will go in is 0. If you in fact try to aim for slightly early/late, you will hit significantly less shots than if you were aiming for good/perfect.

I honestly don't see how can anyone who understands the mechanic think that there is something wrong with it. If there weren't such mechanic in place, theoretically you could learn Ben Wallace's release perfectly and shoot 100% from 3pt line with him. Game prevents this, by saying on some of your "Excellent" shots - "Sorry, you can't hit all your 3pt shots" and tells you "Good".

The problem is in perception and communication, I personally believe best resolution is to remove "Excellent" release altogether (or "Good" ones, it's all the same). If all "Excellent" shots were simply called "Good" too, you wouldn't notice this perceived "problem".

Now there's a separate argument to be had about competitive skill floor/ceiling versus simulation, but I don't think outside of deeply competitive modes such as this e-league thing (and maybe not even there) that we will ever see all perfectly timed shots going in again.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Things NBA 2K19 Needs To Have

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:34 pm

I do actually get the mechanics. I just don't think it's the best solution.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Worst Classic Teams in NBA 2K

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:02 pm

February 9th: 5 Worst Classic Teams in NBA 2K

Since being added as part of the Jordan Challenge back in NBA 2K11, classic teams have become a staple of the NBA 2K series. Although they aren't necessarily a focal point of the games, it's gotten to the point where they aren't thought of as being bonus content, but an essential feature. The selection of classic teams has grown from ten Chicago Bulls squads and their opponents to a variety of memorable teams from the 60s through to the modern era. Squads include champions, their Finals opponents, and an assortment of other teams of note. We now even have All-Time teams to play with.

However, some of the classic teams are puzzling inclusions. That's not to say they're bad teams - it's not as though Visual Concepts have seen fit to include the 1973 76ers or 2012 Bobcats - but they lack the appeal of other retro squads. In the case of some classic teams, the specific season has been an odd choice, or the loss of likeness rights and subsequent removal of players has rendered them far less appealing. Whatever the case may be, these classic teams are prime candidates to be removed, or replaced with more interesting squads whose rosters may be more complete. Without any further ado, here are my picks for the five worst classic teams in NBA 2K.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Retro Teams I'd Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 2)

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:55 pm

February 16th: 5 Retro Teams I'd Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 2)

Since I talked about some of the worst classic teams to be included in NBA 2K in last week's Friday Five, it only makes sense to switch focus to some of the retro teams that I'd like to see in future games. There are quite a number of old teams that would be fun to play with in NBA 2K, and indeed, I posted five I was hoping to see added way back in August 2016. As it happened, a couple of the teams I mentioned have since made their way into the game (along with one from around the same era), so it seems that we should never say "never".

As such, this is part two of what will probably end up being a series of articles on the retro teams that I'd like to see added in future NBA 2K games. While some teams are sadly unlikely due to an inability to license specific players, I'm making my picks based on the assumption that Visual Concepts would be able to find a way to come to terms with them. After all, it's a list of teams I'd like to see in the game, not strictly a list of teams I think we feasibly could see. With that out of the way, and considering that I'd still like to see my previous suggestions added, let's take a look at five more retro teams that I'd like to see in NBA 2K's roster.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Underrated Basketball Video Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 23, 2018 9:40 pm

February 23rd: 5 Underrated Basketball Video Games

Underrated and overrated are tricky terms, often used very much subjectively. They suggest that the majority view is incorrect, which may certainly be the case, but can also indicate a strongly held minority view that isn't without its own bias. Basically, whenever the matter of something being overrated or underrated is discussed, we need to ask "by whom?" After all, if the consensus is that someone or something is in fact underrated or overrated, then technically, they cease to be either. Indeed, that's when someone or something that's underrated can become overrated, and vice versa.

Discussions about semantics aside, it's certainly possible to give too little credit and overlook, or to give too much credit and overhype. We're looking at the former today, with a list of five underrated basketball video games. Now, that's not to say that these titles haven't received any acclaim at all, or that they've never been popular. However, either due to certain controversies or other games that were released in the same era, they're not ranked or rated as highly as they perhaps should be; at least in my opinion. As always, keep in mind that this is intended to start the discussion, not stand as a definitive list. With that being said, let's get to the Five!
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Underrated Basketball Video Games

Postby [Q] on Sat Feb 24, 2018 4:01 am

I actually don't mind having recent classic teams unless if their roster is still largely intact today. Doing a 73-9 warriors team would be interesting but it's pretty similar to the current tram while we are far enough removed from say the 2013 grizzlies to where you can say oh yeah I remember when Tony Allen, Zach Randolph, and Rudy gay teamed up with gasol and conley
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Underrated Basketball Video Games

Postby Dee4Three on Sat Feb 24, 2018 4:22 am

I agree with Q about relatively recent classic teams as long as they are intact. However, it shouldn't take away from the appropriate teams that should be added from the past (Like them choosing the 84-85 76ers over the 82-83 76ers), and other odd choices. I'd rather them get the gameplay down, though.

Andrew, you should do an article on the Double Dribble reboot that came out for Sega Genesis. While it didn't have real players, the gameplay was pretty appealing. It lacked in modes as well. But, I actually enjoyed the game.

Another good one would be Dick Vitales Awesome Baby College Basketball, which took the camera view for NCAA Basketball ((From behind, with no crowd). It actually players pretty well for it's time.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Underrated Basketball Video Games

Postby Andrew on Sat Feb 24, 2018 9:52 am

That's the thing, though. There are still some players missing from those recent teams. I do get the reasons for adding them, but some just feel like filler.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Underrated Features in the NBA Live Series

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 02, 2018 10:47 pm

March 2nd: 5 Underrated Features in the NBA Live Series

As we compile our Wishlist for NBA Live 19, it's important that we focus on the big features and the most pressing issues with the game. The most significant fixes and improvements to the experience will come through the development team focusing on the key aspects of controls, strategy, AI, authenticity, options, functionality, and the game modes. In other words, the most desirable changes and additions will be to the core elements of the gameplay, and the game's biggest features. We don't want EA to focus on inconsequential details. For example, fluid, realistic gameplay and a deep Franchise mode make a difference; the colour of the menus does not.

However, sometimes the little things go a long way in enhancing the experience, and making NBA Live more fun. When compiling a Wishlist, it's crucial that we point out those features as well, and how they can get better. To that end, I've been thinking about some of the features in previous NBA Live games that kind of fly under the radar, and are perhaps somewhat underrated. They may not be the flashiest features, or absolutely essential to the core experience, but if nothing else, they're good ideas that I'd like to see return or retained in future NBA Live titles. Here are five such underrated features that the NBA Live series has had at one time or another.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Underrated Features in the NBA 2K Series

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 09, 2018 9:57 pm

March 9th: 5 Underrated Features in the NBA 2K Series

Following on from last week's column, which looked at five features of the NBA Live series that could be considered underrated, I'm now taking a look at NBA 2K. Visual Concepts' series of sim-oriented basketball video games has received a lot of praise over the past decade, and for good reason. The NBA 2K series has earned a lot of critical acclaim and sold millions of copies on the strength of its gameplay, deep game modes, and overall attention to detail. Even though we have our criticisms, NBA 2K has definitely had its strong points that are well-known and enthusiastically praised.

As I said last week, however, it's often the little things that really make the basketball gaming experience special. The big features are important and they're obviously what sell the games, but the smaller details often provide enhancements in many areas, be it greater accessibility or fun ways to play the game. At the same time, there are features that aren't necessarily small, but still somewhat overlooked, or just not given their due for how enjoyable, helpful, or innovative they are. With that being said, here are five of the more underrated features in the NBA 2K series. Hopefully, the ones that are absent from recent releases can be implemented again at some point.
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Re: The Friday Five: My Top 5 Favourite NBA 2K Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 16, 2018 8:11 pm

March 16th: My Top 5 Favourite NBA 2K Games

In the five years that I've been writing The Friday Five, I've covered a lot of topics. I'm always thinking of what to write about next, and when some topics come to mind, it occurs to me how I should've discussed them a long time ago. Such is the case with today's column, which is a countdown of my Top 5 favourite games in the NBA 2K series. I covered my Top 5 favourite games in the NBA Live series almost three years ago, so it's about time I compiled a similar list for NBA 2K. I've admittedly changed my mind a little in regards to my top NBA 2K games, while my list for NBA Live does remain the same as of now.

As always, I have to stress that this countdown is a list of personal Top 5 favourites. It isn't meant to be an unbiased, definitive list of the five best games in the series so far. These rankings are influenced by my own enjoyment and overall satisfaction with each release, not just an evaluation of their quality. It's a list that's intended to start the conversation, not end it. If you disagree, that's fine; it'll be interesting to compare notes in the comments section once I've finished having my say. Without any further ado, these are my Top 5 favourite games in the NBA 2K series, at least as of March 2018.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Reasons We Still Need Offline Content

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 23, 2018 8:49 pm

March 23rd: 5 Reasons We Still Need Offline Content

It's no secret that basketball video games have been placing more and more focus on their online experiences. Whether it's new content being pushed through for single and multiplayer challenges, head-to-head showdowns, or modes that allow you to team up with friends and take on other squads, online content has become a big part of basketball gaming. It's an area where NBA Live and NBA 2K will continue to expand and innovate, and with the popularity of online multiplayer gaming, as well as a desire for dynamic experiences, it's vital that both titles do just that.

Unfortunately, the focus on the online aspects of NBA Live and NBA 2K can leave the offline experience out in the cold. While some gamers may suggest that its time has past anyway, I don't think that's true. As much as NBA Live and NBA 2K need to follow the current trends and provide appealing online modes and content, the offline portion of the game should not be ignored. Offline single player modes and content still have their place in basketball video games, so it's important that they aren't ignored moving forward. If EA and 2K need to justify spending time on those areas, here are five reasons why we still need offline content.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Annoying Stats Bugs in Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:13 pm

March 30th: 5 Annoying Stats Bugs in Basketball Games

Stats in basketball video games are perhaps just as important as they are in the real NBA. Sure, we want to see life-like animations, realistic strategy, and play games that feel good on the sticks, but accurate scores and statistics are a major factor in having as much realism as possible in a sim-oriented title. Even if you're a gamer who takes a more casual approach to the accuracy of simulated and user-generated stats, chances are you're interested in the stat-tracking aspect of basketball games, especially if you enjoy putting up big numbers on the virtual hardwood.

Unfortunately for gamers who care about stats one way another - whether it's posting huge numbers every game, or enjoying a realistic style of gameplay with more true-to-life performances - various games have featured annoying bugs related to the in-game statistics. From undesirable sim engine results to errors with stat tracking and displays, these glitches have adversely affected some aspect of the numbers that are accumulated on the virtual hardwood. Be it a lack of accuracy or just a feeling of accomplishment that you feel cheated out of, here are five of the most annoying stats bugs that have been encountered in basketball video games.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Annoying Stats Bugs in Basketball Games

Postby Dee4Three on Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:14 am

The most annoying one for me is...

Up until 2K12, they didn't count rebounds off of blocks. In the NBA, that's always been the rule.

So if Anthony Davis gets a block, and the ball is picked up by Jrue Holiday, that's a rebound for Jrue because it's still recovering the ball off of an attempted shot.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Players Who Could Be On Multiple All-Time Teams

Postby Andrew on Fri Apr 06, 2018 9:26 pm

April 6th: 5 Players Who Could Be On Multiple All-Time Teams

Despite a couple of omissions, the All-Time squads were a very welcome addition in NBA 2K18. I'm hoping that those teams will remain in the game moving forward, as they provide an opportunity to play with a variety of retro players who don't have their own historical squads. I also hope that players such as Charles Barkley, Moses Malone, and Reggie Miller can be included at some point. Their omission has led to the inclusion of some less than ideal players on the All-Time teams, including a few active players who are certainly good, but lack the same historical significance.

It's not just the absence of a few big names that makes some of the active players on the All-Time teams stick out like a sore thumb, however. There are historical players already in the game that could feasibly appear on a couple of other All-Time squads, replacing active players who aren't stars of the same magnitude. While it could be argued that they didn't have as big of an impact with those teams, or that their stints were too short, some All-Time teams do include players who had a very short tenure with them. With that in mind, here are five players who are not currently on multiple All-Time teams, but I believe could and should be.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Unlucky Moments in Modding

Postby Andrew on Fri Apr 13, 2018 10:38 pm

April 13th: 5 Unlucky Moments in Modding

With apologies once again to anyone who suffers from paraskevidekatriaphobia, it's Friday the 13th today, which means it's time for another Friday Five column talking about unlucky moments! I've been writing the Friday Five for a few years now, and in that time, we've had more than a couple of Friday the 13ths. In previous columns, I've discussed my favourite number thirteens, unlucky moments in basketball games (as well as a few of my own examples in that regard), and unlucky moments from NBA history, including one that actually took place on the date in question.

Of course, a big part of basketball gaming in our community is the hobby of modding, and it certainly has its unlucky moments as well. I've previously discussed one of my unluckiest moments in modding, but there are definitely more examples that I could name. I'm sure that a lot of modders have experienced at least one of these moments at one time or another, leading to them kicking themselves and cursing out their bad luck. If there's one upside to such unfortunate moments though, it's that they can be learning experiences, albeit very frustrating ones. Without any further ado, here are five unlucky moments in modding!
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Improvements Both NBA Live 19 & NBA 2K19 Need

Postby Andrew on Fri Apr 20, 2018 10:26 pm

April 20th: 5 Improvements Both NBA Live 19 & NBA 2K19 Need

The NBA Live 19 and NBA 2K19 Wishlists that we've submitted, in my opinion, comprehensively cover the most important suggestions for fixes, enhancements, and additions for both games. Each game has its own list of improvements that we're hoping to see added in the next release; for NBA Live 19, I would suggest that it comes down to further polish to gameplay and more depth to modes. NBA 2K19, on the other hand, needs a slight course correction after some missteps in NBA 2K18. With that being said, while the games have their own issues, there are currently some that are common to both series, and areas in which they can both improve.

Please note that I'm not suggesting that these are necessarily the most important issues that must be addressed in both NBA Live 19 and NBA 2K19. As I said, our Wishlists demonstrate that both games have a long laundry list of things that can be added or enhanced, and several are specific to one series or the other. Indeed, I've already discussed some of the specific things that NBA Live 19 and NBA 2K19 need to have in previous Friday Five columns. These are just areas where both games have some common problems and room for improvements, though the respective solutions may differ slightly. With that being said, let's get to the first item on the list.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Reasons Playoffs Mode is Essential

Postby Andrew on Fri Apr 27, 2018 9:49 pm

April 27th: 5 Reasons Playoffs Mode is Essential

The 2018 Playoffs are well underway, with one second round match-up already set and all other first round series currently on the brink of being decided. The race for the Larry O'Brien trophy is kicking into high gear, with most of us having fun either cheering on teams and players that we like, or cheering against the ones that we don't. I'm sure that quite a few gamers are replicating the excitement of the postseason on the virtual hardwood, having reached that point in modes like MyLEAGUE, MyGM, Franchise, or MyCAREER, or alternatively playing through a standalone tournament in Playoffs mode.

Of course, while it's long been a staple of NBA video games, the standalone Playoffs mode has been left out of several titles. Despite the Playoffs being the only mode of play in NBA Live's forerunner, the aptly titled NBA Playoffs series, it's been missing from several of EA Sports' subsequent hoops titles, including NBA Live 18. It was also dropped from a few games in the NBA 2K series, but fortunately it's currently available as an option in the MyGM/MyLEAGUE menu. While other modes may be more popular - and let's face it, bigger money earners - it's essential that a standalone Playoffs mode remains in NBA 2K, and returns in future NBA Live games.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Retro Teams I'd Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 3)

Postby Andrew on Fri May 04, 2018 9:35 pm

May 4th: 5 Retro Teams I'd Like To See in NBA 2K (Part 3)

With a large roster of retro teams already in NBA 2K, you'd think it might be tough to suggest new squads to include. A lot of the obvious teams are already in the game, as Visual Concepts has managed to license a lot of the great championship teams, their opponents, and other prominent and successful squads. It's getting to the point where they are adding some more unorthodox but still interesting teams to the game, which opens up the door for some potentially unusual suggestions. With that in mind, there are quite a few NBA Legends who could be celebrated with squads that would make fun and intriguing additions to the selection of retro teams in NBA 2K.

Please note that as per the title of this column, this is Part 3 in an ingoing series where I list the retro teams that I'd like to see in NBA 2K. While not all of the teams that I mentioned in Part 1 and Part 2 have been added to the game, I've already discussed them, and my desire to see them in NBA 2K still stands. I'm looking to discuss a new list of retro teams each time, so in no way do my latest picks cancel out the ones that I've previously mentioned. I'm also making these suggestions under the assumption that Visual Concepts will be able to license most (if not all) of the key players, though in many cases, they're already in the game. With that being said, let's get to the list!
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