NBA is Live! Boom Shaka Laka!

EA Sports is back baby with the game franchise that started it all, NBA LIVE. In recent years, it has taken a back seat to the juggernaut that is 2k because 2k seemed to understand the changing audience or could deliver on things that EA back in 2010 could not. After a series of delays and less than stellar products, not for the lack of trying, EA has emerged from the hole of mediocrity into something everyone should get excited about.


NBA Live is basketball video released on the PS4. This rendition focus on the journey of the one. The character is star player of the hype brothers. The one is college super star who had an injury and now must use the street leagues to build popularity. Once this is done, you move on to the NBA to prove your worth.

Best Things

Let’s just lay it out there: the game play, online and story mode, and player face scan are the best things about the game. It really felt as if NBA Live finally cashed in on those promises from previous games which let the fans down and move over to 2k. It was listed in a certain way but allow the time to venture the features in reverse.< br>

The face scan mode is the most accurate in comparison to 2k. On Live, the character even with the hair and beard, face looks as if i am looking in a mirror. As compared to 2k facial scan, my face seemed to given chipmunk cheeks. No matter how many times I did it over again, 2k still gave the character the mumps. The NBA Live version just seemed to easier and better. The process is one will just download the app, as the competitor. Once the app is downloaded, you will move your face slowly from side to side as instructed and then voila.

The Modes are truly addictive. After the player is created, you can play offline or online games to build points. This is different than earning VC because you actually have to play the game. If patience is lacking, then one can lose much money with the competitor, but if you enjoy actually building the “connection” with the character and building a certified superstar then the slow build is the way to do it.

Offline: If the story is first on the journey, then the player must get drafted. There is the summer league. This is where the low attributed character competes against the other rookies and first year players. Depending how well the character does here and the combine, will determine the character’s place in the draft. They all want to be top 10, right? There is also the different street ball leagues. The story told here is a basic tale of friendship and coming of age, but its a basketball game. Does it really need a story? Here, attributes points are earned and abilities. There is also a mode to compete against street ball legends to earn special EA crates. The crates is where the character gets his swag on the court. Once in the NBA, if the character is good and have made a name for himself then he could be traded or choose to stay with the team that drafted him. *I chose to go with the trade because the rockets, my favorite team, gave up Ariza for my character. It has also been my fantasy to play ball for the rockets.

Online: Online is a whole other beast. There is the live run that puts the character into a 5v5 game. Immediately, a cohesion must be formed to take down the appoints. With the possession of a headset, trash talking and communication can be had between teammates to solidify each win. There are challenges for special crates. Here, the character can compete against Rocket legends. One must have the PSN subscription to be able to play on line and get these updates.

WNBA: The inclusion of the Women’s League is very special. As a fan of the four time WNBA Champions, the Houston Comets, this was a very refreshing moment. The women are finally included. Although it is 20 years to late and my home town team is no more, it is a very positive step forward to promote the women as well.

Game Play: If the 1995 season of the NBA was about grit and toughness which was reflected in the game released on Super Nintendo, then today’s league, (2017), is about style, shake ‘n bakes, broken ankles and much more. The game play is smooth and the gravity of the game seems to be completely functional. The more intrigue fact is that the handles seem to be the promise that EA tried to deliver on in 2010. In 2010, the age of Steve Nash, his speed and crossovers were legendary in the league. EA tried to capitalize on this by making the controls a bit more complicated and involving the analog sticks. Maybe the math was wrong as the game seemed as a middle school boy slow dancing with a girl for the first time. This is when 2k took over with better game play. 2011 tried and I had the demo, but it never happened. In this one, there are the analogs. The left is used to control direction and the other is for the crossover animations. If the time is correct, ankles can be broken and angles can be formed. With that hesitation, an advantage for the character is formed to blow by the defender for an easy jam. It is easy to “master” although the phrase should be get used to. There are tutorials to help.

The road for these achievements are leaps and bounds above previous renditions. The Offline and Online game modes are astounding and addictive. I can’t stop playing online. Being a Rockets fan, the character is a great vicarious way to play along and against the stars of the NBA.

Awful Things

Now online, there is a lot of people crawling out their hate holes to talk about this game. It is far from perfect but the way critiques read have been far too generous to 2k while trying to slaughter NBA Live. Could be through the disappointments given to the fan base? Maybe it is the critics own bias opinions as being former fans of the games finally getting a chance to exact their revenge of the franchise they knew and loved? If those articles were read, then there is no need to rehash those ideas but possibly see where the game can expand.

There are no more Modes after Street and League. Yes, once you have left the street and playing the league, there is not much else to the game. You can play with the WNBA Teams but only against another person or computer. This has also left out the mode for women to join the front and play on the WNBA teams in “The One” mode. This is not really a mark against the game. Once upon a time, there were legends and they could be added and changed. (Thank you NBA live 96.) As the game is trying to move into a new age of game, it was truly a situation what can be left out, for now. This is a reimagining of the game that once had the NBA game play on lock. Below are some ideas to expand on the game. Some of the ideas could be “season pass” content to really expand the game. It is well known that those season passes create revenue for development of ideas.

Possible Future: The game play will be expanded to target women as well. There has been a large movement in women’s basketball. Possibly the street leagues will see a female start dunking or shooting jump shots along side the men. This would possible add a story line to “The One” and properly display the women’s league. Maybe add-on content will be developed for this or just may come to the next variation.

Possible Legend Teams: Add the legends team back into the game. Do not allow for attribute modification. I enjoyed playing the 94 rockets with The Dream. The legend Teams could possible be add on content.

Possible Addition: Really developed the Franchise mode to what is once was in NBA Live 2000. 2k really did this well in 2k12. Also, add the character made to free agents list or since he is the owner’s character, allow for franchise mode to draft the character. Since the owner of the character would drafting first, then why not? One should not have to remake the character all over again. In the story mode, maybe a person do not want to just control the character but the entire team.

2. A Lack of “My Park.” This is a criticism that I have read but it is unfair. If one wants to have an an open world to run around like “Half Life” (yes, took it back) or PS You (this dumb addition to ps3 to build your world) then play a game that specializes in that such as Red Dead, GTA etc. People purchase the game to play basketball and not play dolls. The legendary leagues and parks are good enough. Plus, it was awful to have that because one may have a low rating and not be able to play with a team because people are not choosing to play with your character, but with the Live set up, you need players and with a lobby they fall in.

3. Finally, just the lack of any of the modes presented in 2k. Live is trying to create a different experience. Some want GTA but for basketball while others just want to play the game. The game play is different. The controls are more fluid and can be altered with a flick up the stick. Although I enjoyed 2k, the experience created with Live is reminiscent of the time the SNES (Super Nintendo) controller was picked and I played all 82 game season with the Rockets but with better graphics.
4. For my own observation: Fix the issue with the jab step. It seems to have been fixed in the newest update but when in the three point stance, if the jab step is performed, the character would slide across the floor.

These were complaints and issues with Live. They are not seen as failures but areas of improvement. 2k in 2010 was far from perfect but they saw what Live was doing and created a different experience.


You haven't got it now...then go out and support EA baby

Overall: 4 Stars (4 / 5)

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Caliph Knight
Caliph Knight is Founder of Krusade Entertainment. Using this company to pursue music, he also began to travel and a long with Jamese Newkirk co-founded Crossfire. He has been writing for a few years while also producing Podcasts since 2014.
Caliph Knight

Caliph Knight

Caliph Knight is Founder of Krusade Entertainment. Using this company to pursue music, he also began to travel and a long with Jamese Newkirk co-founded Crossfire. He has been writing for a few years while also producing Podcasts since 2014.

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