The Friday Five: 5 Unsolved Modding Mysteries (Part 2)

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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Landmark Basketball Games of the 2010s

Postby [Q] on Fri Dec 27, 2019 8:50 pm

NBA Jam OFE was definitely the most important arcade style game of the decade. I think several years from now, we'll look back at the debut of women in NBA Live as a very important moment of basketball gaming
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Landmark Basketball Games of the 2010s

Postby Andrew on Fri Dec 27, 2019 9:04 pm

Good point. NBA Live 18 was a landmark release in that regard.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Landmark Basketball Games of the 2010s

Postby sticky-fingers on Fri Dec 27, 2019 9:09 pm

2K11, yeah by far, it was the best sports game at it's release, and its still an amazing game to play.

I discovered NBA Jam OFE recently, with emulation. Game is fully playable at high res with RPC3 and yeah, its definitly a BIG arcade game.

I dont think Basket Ball classics desserves a place here because it cames at the end of the decade and could have been more. Really hope the devs will continue to polish their game or work on bbc 2.

Same goes for 2K13. I guess this game introduced VC and it was not a better game than 2K11, so no for me.

I'm happy you put 2K16 here. The release was pretty awful on PC, with lot of stuttering issue. But i think, overall, it's the best game we have on current gen.

Even if i dont have a console, i would have put NBA2K14 PS4/XB1 in this top 5. After the trailer, I was so disgusted that 2K didnt release the game on PC.

I would also add 2K18 in this top 5 for for the controversy it has generated. This game really put microtransanctions in an AAA game to another level, and despite the reactions, people still buy VC and we will continue to see this business model in the next decade.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Landmark Basketball Games of the 2010s

Postby Andrew on Fri Dec 27, 2019 9:30 pm

For me, the introduction of right stick dribbling makes NBA 2K13 stand out. In that regard, it's a big improvement on NBA 2K11 and NBA 2K12, and their clunky Isomotion dribbling controls. As I said, the fact that 2K adopted Live's dribbling controls and kept them to this day speaks for itself.

I can see where you're coming from on Basketball Classics, but I don't think the fact that it came late in the decade disqualifies it from consideration. As I said, at a time when the AAA games are struggling (NBA Live) or pushing hard on recurrent revenue mechanics (NBA 2K), the fact that it comes along and is just fun makes it an important release. It's also very different in that it's aiming to be retro with modern mechanics, which isn't unique to gaming as a whole, but is something we haven't really seen in basketball gaming because it's been all about the AAA releases. Anyway, that's my reasoning for considering it a landmark release.

I should also clarify that it's not intended to be a Top 5 list or any kind of definitive list. It's five games that I feel are landmark releases, for the reasons I've outlined. They're not the only landmark releases, just ones that stand out to me because of things they brought to the table. My aim is to always start a discussion with The Friday Five, not be the final word. :)

On that note though, I'd agree that for better or worse, NBA 2K18 is a landmark game in its own right. As you said, it was controversial and marked a point where 2K really started pressing their luck and testing the goodwill that they'd established.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Predictions That Were Way Off

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 03, 2020 4:04 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Predictions That Were Way Off

Here it is, the first Friday Five of 2020! It's been a while since I've covered a topic related to the real NBA rather than the virtual hardwood, so I thought that I'd tip off the year (and decade) with a change of pace. Don't worry, I've still got plenty of topics related to basketball video games that I'll be covering in my features, but this week, I'd like to talk about NBA predictions. After all, we're rapidly approaching the midway point of the 2020 season, and we're starting to get a clearer picture of the top teams and how they stack up against one another.

It's as good a time as any to start throwing out some midseason predictions, but keep in mind that there's a lot of basketball left to play. A lot can change very quickly in the NBA, and while we can make educated guesses in our picks, a seemingly likely outcome can be denied by a twist of fate. At the same time, some people - including supposed expert analysts - will make wild predictions. Some may be trying to get ahead of the curve by expecting the unexpected, while others are relying on sources that are less than reliable. Whatever the case may be, we've seen some bold and crazy predictions over the years, with these five examples turning out to be quite wrong.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 False Memories in Basketball Gaming (Part 2)

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 10, 2020 11:53 pm

The Friday Five: 5 False Memories in Basketball Gaming (Part 2)

A lot of people don't want the truth to get in the way of a good story. Many others simply don't have as good of a memory as they believe they do. Let's face it: most of us have remembered something incorrectly at one time, particularly when it comes to video games (basketball or otherwise). As I said in my previous Friday Five article on this topic, there are plenty of reasons for this: rumours and urban legends that just refuse to go away, fuzzy memories of games we haven't played for many years, or forgetting that something was the result of a mod and not in the game by default.

This week, I'm taking a look at five more examples of false memories in basketball gaming, while once again trying to get to the bottom of how those faulty recollections came about. Sometimes it's the aforementioned lapses in memory, or changes made by mods being remembered as default features. Other times, it's the result of technical limitations. Less benignly, it may be deliberate misinformation, or at the very least, exaggeration to make a point that results in the truth getting mixed up with hyperbole. Whatever the case may be, we're left with false memories of basketball games, and I've got five more examples that I'd like to debunk today.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 False Memories in Basketball Gaming (Part 2)

Postby RayRay_953 on Sat Jan 11, 2020 11:46 am

Great read! Something to add on about NBA Jam featuring the Mortal Kombat characters was that the 1.0 and 2.0 arcade revisions of Tournament Edition were the only versions they were present (along with some other secret characters like the Grim Reaper, Elviscious Tim Coman, and Kongo.) In addition, revisions 1 and 2 even included Charles Barkley on the Suns before he was taken out since version 3. Also to accommodate the MK characters, there's a code you can input which causes the players to "burn" when being shoved (a reference to Scorpion's Toasty Fatality) by someone who's on fire.

https://tcrf.net/NBA_Jam_Tournament_Edition_(Arcade)
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 False Memories in Basketball Gaming (Part 2)

Postby Andrew on Sat Jan 11, 2020 1:01 pm

Glad you enjoyed it! Some great info there, The Cutting Room Floor is a great resource.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Crazy Roster Mod Ideas

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 17, 2020 2:32 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Crazy Roster Mod Ideas

Even though I haven't been as active in the modding scene over the past few years, it's difficult to resist the lure. Modding is a creative hobby, and it's very satisfying to see a project come together, especially when it's a big roster mod. I'm still working on a 2020 season roster update for NBA 2K11 PC, and should have a status update out soon via new episode of "Making a Mod". Although it's a big project that has taken more time than I'd like, it's been great to get back into updating rosters, especially for a game that I haven't done anything with before.

While I'm focused on getting that project done, I can't help thinking of other fun, and often crazy ideas for roster mods. Comprehensive roster updates that enhance the sim experience are great and something I've always taken pride in, but there's room for a lot of creativity with custom rosters. There's a lot of appeal in creating and playing with classic teams, champions, legends, and other such rosters, but we can be more even more imaginative than that. Although my focus is on completing my current roster project for NBA 2K11, I may take a shot these crazy ideas at some point. I'd like to at least put the ideas out there, in case anyone else wants to run with them.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Reasons to Reactivate Old Servers

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 24, 2020 11:55 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Reasons to Reactivate Old Servers

As online modes and content have become more popular in basketball video games, it's become a much bigger deal when servers finally get shut down. Not only is online play rendered unavailable, but any single player experiences that relied on connected content also become inaccessible. Early on in this generation, online MyCAREER games were intended to become offline saves once the servers were shut down. This infamously didn't work properly for a lot of gamers in NBA 2K14, with many still being unable to access their saves once the servers were reactivated.

Since then, 2K has simply decided to follow the original plan of declaring that any online saves are "retired" once support for a game ends. It's understandable that 2K doesn't want to support games indefinitely, given the cost and resources involved. That doesn't stop gamers from expressing their desire to see the old servers switched back on though, and interestingly, Chris Manning has even publicly mentioned that he's advocated for such a thing to happen. Obviously there are a lot of reasons why it's unlikely, contrary to clickbait videos claiming LD2K "confirmed" it. Nevertheless, there are also reasons why it should at least be considered, and here are five of them.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Errors That Were Never Fixed

Postby Andrew on Fri Jan 31, 2020 10:01 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Errors That Were Never Fixed

Post-release support for basketball video games has come a long way. Official roster updates are now the norm, and while there are complaints about their quality, they at least add new content to the game, and update modes where custom rosters can't be used. We no longer have to petition the developers to create bug fixes, and it's much easier to provide feedback about errors that arise. Modern NBA Live and NBA 2K titles do have their problems, but we're more likely to see resolutions, as well as content updates that keep them fresh throughout the year.

This wasn't always the case, especially on consoles. Before the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 era, patches and updates were mostly a perk of PC releases. Even then, they weren't as plentiful or detailed as they are now. There were a lot of errors that we just had to put up with, as there was no way that they were going to be fixed until the next game came out; assuming they didn't become legacy issues, of course! Mind you, even when games did receive official patches, they would sometimes introduce new errors that were never followed up on with further fixes. Some of these errors were just cosmetic, some we could fix ourselves, but all were annoying in their own way.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Errors That Were Never Fixed

Postby [Q] on Sat Feb 01, 2020 3:13 am

I guess you could say Live 2001's "three team trading" was never actually that.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Errors That Were Never Fixed

Postby Andrew on Sat Feb 01, 2020 11:23 am

I maintain that people just didn't know how to use it properly: https://www.nba-live.com/wayback-wednes ... live-2001/

The limitations did make it a bit cumbersome at times, though.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Times Gamers Ruined Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 07, 2020 9:55 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Times Gamers Ruined Basketball Games

This week's topic may seem unfair, even absurd. After all, we don't create basketball video games; we just play them. If there's a problem with a game, then that's on the developers, not us as consumers, right? Well, for the most part, yes. We're not the ones implementing microtransactions, grindy mechanics, or other undesirable ideas. We do arguably support them by continuing to buy the games and pumping money into recurrent revenue systems, but boycotts, as Jim Sterling has pointed out, aren't all that effective. Ultimately, we're not making design choices, or programming code.

However, we are making suggestions, and the loudest voices aren't always expressing the best ideas. Tribalism these days goes as deep as which mode you play, as well as a preference for online or offline gaming. Not all feedback has been to the benefit of NBA Live or NBA 2K. The way we choose to play the game and use the features and functions at our disposal has also had a negative effect. Whether it's through elitism and snobbery, or childishness and trolling, we've found more than a couple of ways to spoil the fun. I'm not saying that developers haven't messed up, but these are five examples of how we as gamers and consumers have ruined games for ourselves.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Times Gamers Ruined Basketball Games

Postby sticky-fingers on Fri Feb 07, 2020 11:22 pm

about #5, like i said on OS, 2K should definitly hire network coders.
In 2020, with 1gb fiber connections, this lack of quality and this input lag are inexcusable.
I used to play on (Sierra's) Grand Prix Legends, amazing racing simulation in early 2000's.
The game ran perfectly with a full grid ON a 56k cnx, despite it had (and still has) AMAZING physics.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Tips for NBA 2K20 MyTEAM

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 14, 2020 8:39 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Tips for NBA 2K20 MyTEAM

It's been my goal in NBA 2K20 to branch out from spending most of my time with MyCAREER and its connected online modes. I haven't really sunk my teeth into MyLEAGUE yet, but I have played a decent amount of MyTEAM, on PlayStation 4 and PC. My lineup isn't quite as impressive as it was in NBA 2K19, when a market crash allowed me to pick up Galaxy Opal cards at some ridiculously low prices, but I'm still liking the way my lineup is coming together. I've already got Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen on both platforms, which is immensely satisfying.

More to the point, I've been enjoying the mode. It's refreshing to control the whole team after years of player locked gameplay, and there's a good variety of submodes to keep me hooked on NBA 2K20 MyTEAM. In playing the mode, I've employed a few tactics to enjoy it to the fullest without having to spend any money to build my squad. So far it's a case of mission accomplished, so I thought that I'd share some tips in this week's Friday Five. It's by no means a comprehensive guide to fun and success in NBA 2K20 MyTEAM, but as always, these articles are meant to start the discussion, not be the final word. With that being said, here are five things to keep in mind!
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Worst Things in 5 of My Favourite Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Feb 21, 2020 10:59 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Worst Things in 5 of My Favourite Games

I've been playing basketball video games for many years now, and there are several titles that stand out as my favourites. I'm probably overdue to write an article where I rank them, either in Monday Tip-Off or as a multi-part Friday Five series. With over two decades' worth of games, the arcade and sim subgenres, and more than one series among my favourites, a Top 5 wouldn't be sufficient. I feel I'd end up making some very contrived selections in order to make the list of five as varied and interesting as possible, which wouldn't necessarily allow it to be completely accurate and honest.

Obviously, games become our favourites because of their strong points. The titles we love the most are the ones that offer the best combinations of quality gameplay, deep modes, and memorable features. They're the ones that we've spent hours upon hours with, creating many fond memories on the virtual hardwood. However, even the best games and the ones that rank as our personal favourites have their problems. It's rare that there isn't one thing that bugs us, one thing we can point to as being the worst aspect of a game that we otherwise hold dear. With that in mind, here are five of the worst things in five games that I'd rank among my personal all-time favourites.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Worst Things in 5 of My Favourite Games

Postby [Q] on Sat Feb 22, 2020 2:50 am

Psst there's a typo in the Primacy title
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Worst Things in 5 of My Favourite Games

Postby Andrew on Sat Feb 22, 2020 11:41 am

Thanks, fixed it up.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Ideas That Were Better In Theory

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 06, 2020 10:42 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Ideas That Were Better In Theory

Basketball video games - and sports games in general - are often accused of being little more than expensive annual roster updates. As my interview with former NBA Live programmer Rod Reddekopp revealed though, even in the early days, a lot of code had to be rewritten and updated every year. Unless there are significant and noticeable changes in the modes, graphics, or gameplay however, it's quite likely that we won't appreciate all that work. On top of that, each new game needs some kind of hook, a fancy selling point that can be promoted in previews and on the back cover.

From our point of view, we want basketball games to keep getting better and add new content, and that means exploring new ideas. Whether it's a change to the controls or a new gameplay mechanic, improved presentation and details, a new or enhanced mode, or additional historical content, we always want to see freshness and innovation. Our Wishlists show that we have plenty of ideas of our own that we'd like to see added in future games, and developers also have their own roadmap. The problem is that not all ideas pan out, no matter how creative and promising they once seemed. Ideas like the ones I'm talking about today were good in theory, but not in execution.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Terribly Named Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 13, 2020 9:51 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Terribly Named Basketball Games

Since nothing is classier or more cultured than Shakespeare, I'll pull a quote from one of The Bard's most famous works, Romeo and Juliet: "What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." This famous quotation, often paraphrased as "a rose by any other name would smell as sweet", is a metaphor which illustrates that a name doesn't affect the nature or quality of the thing that it belongs to. Just like the idiom "Don't judge a book by its cover", it reminds us that superficial details aren't everything, and that we shouldn't make snap judgements based on them.

Of course, as The Simpsons once argued, roses wouldn't be nearly as alluring if they were called stench blossoms or crap weed, and candy would likely be off-putting if it were called scum drops. The point is that while names aren't always indicative or as important as we make them out to be, they do play a role in our initial impression of whatever it is they're attached to. Even when we get past those impressions, a bad name can still stand out as an unfortunate attribute of an otherwise appealing thing. That goes for basketball video games, and there have been some terribly named ones over the years. Here are five examples that stand out to me.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Terribly Named Basketball Games

Postby [Q] on Sat Mar 14, 2020 7:55 am

Fox Sports was actually the biggest network for regional NBA broadcasts at the time so it makes sense they would try to duplicate the branding for a game.

I always thought NBA Hoopz (the 3 on 3 successor to Showtime) was an awkward name, especially with the Z in there to be "cool" or "hip" but I think that was the best they could do without the NBC license. It would have been hard to live up to the Showtime name anyways

I thought Double Dribble was a weird name considering it's a violation. It would be like calling a game NBA Goaltending or something

TECMO was always annoying because they called every sport game TECMO so it was kind of confusing
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Terribly Named Basketball Games

Postby Andrew on Sat Mar 14, 2020 1:36 pm

Good points all around. Fox Sports NBA Basketball 2000 might've been better if it was just Fox Sports NBA 2000. The "Basketball" was a bit redundant. In hindsight, Double Dribble is oddly named given that it's a violation, as you said.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Most Satisfying Mods to Make

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 20, 2020 11:08 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Most Satisfying Mods to Make

Although the NBA season is on hold and March Madness has been cancelled, March Modness is still underway! We're celebrating modding throughout the month of March with new releases, a spotlight on modding, and of course a giveaway as a means of saying thank you to our modding community. There's still time to enter that giveaway, so if you're interested, be sure to check out this post for details. The prize is a copy of either this year's NBA 2K or NBA Live, though from the looks of things, it'll probably be a Steam key for NBA 2K21 for the winner!

Of course, that doesn't mean we can't celebrate NBA Live modding, and release some new mods for old favourites. In fact, I've done just that, releasing fixed versions of my Hangar and NBA Elite 11 practice courts. There are a few other mods I'd like to finish and release this month, and I'm working towards getting that done. After all, modding can be a lot of fun, and it's hard to resist the lure of the hobby. Most of us have a type of mod that we specialise in; updates that we find the most satisfying to make. I've been able to branch out with a few different types of mods over the years, and looking back, these five are the kind of updates I've found the most satisfaction in creating.
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Re: The Friday Five: 5 Unfortunate Barriers in Modding

Postby Andrew on Fri Mar 27, 2020 3:38 pm

The Friday Five: 5 Unfortunate Barriers in Modding

Sometimes it seems as though we can do anything when it comes to modding the PC versions of NBA 2K, and back in the day, NBA Live. The fantastic projects that we've seen are the result of hard work, experimentation, and perseverance in the face of barriers that seemingly stood in the way. Either by developing new tools or nifty workarounds, we've been able to do things that once seemed impossible. This has only contributed to the feeling of being able to accomplish just about anything we can imagine with the mods that we make for basketball video games.

However, there are indeed limitations and barriers that make modding difficult, or in the worst case scenario, impossible. It's been our goal in the modding community to find a way around these barriers, but in some cases, we've had to admit defeat. If nothing else, we've had to accept that certain ideas can't come to fruition exactly how we envisioned them. It's always frustrating when a game is so modder-friendly in some respects, but so limited in what we can do in another area. Once again, it obviously hasn't prevented some amazing mods from being made, but nevertheless, here are five unfortunate barriers that we've encountered while modding.
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