The NBA 2K
series are the most popular franchise of video games based on basketball. The series started life as the exclusive basketball title for the Sega Dreamcast
, but later appeared on other consoles starting with NBA 2K2
. It's since surpassed EA Sports's NBA Live
series, to the point, where NBA Elite
, a planned refresh of the Live
franchise was canned.
The NBA 2K series provides examples of:
- And Now For Something Completely Different: The "My Player" mode in recent titles, where you control nearly every aspect of your player's basketball career.
- Announcer Chatter: Which has been praised by fans as being downright realistic and actually pretty accurate to how commentary on any given NBA game would sound like. Unlike many sports games, 2K records their talent simultaneously in the same room, allowing a lot of way for the commentators to banter amongst each other instead of trading canned lines.
- Guest Player(s): NBA 2K12 features some of the game's biggest legends like Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Isiah Thomas, and even Jerry West (the player whose silhouette is represented in the NBA logo).
- Past 2K games also had legends in them, but only for exhibition use; 2K11 and 12 hit paydirt with modes specifically built around recreating historical matches between classic squads.
- Jedi Mind Trick: Invoked in the MyGM mode, where the GM can perform one on a free agent (with a cost to earned credits.
GM: This is EXACTLY the contract you're looking for. You won't be able to find a better deal with any other team.
Player: You are 100% correct. This is EXACTLY the contract I'm looking for and I accept your contract offer.
- Long Runner: The first game was released in November 1999, and it's still going very, very strong, even surpassing EA's long-running series of NBA games.
- Mission Pack Sequel: Though there are frequently plenty enough improvements with each passing game to make it more different than the previous year's edition.
- Permanent Elected Official / President for Life: Some editions have included a cutscene in career mode where the league champions travel to the White House to meet Barack Obama. These cutscenes remain unchanged even after the game chronology passes the point when Obama's term will expire.
- Shown Their Work: As stated before, the game has some impressively realistic commentary, which is a refresher from other sports games that has repetitive commentary. As well as the other work involved in the game such as the progress of your player reflected by their performance on court and what to improve on, 2K11 was downright eerie in the work put in, from Sirius playing to Jordan slapping powder in front of Jerry Krause to commentary that would have you fooled into thinking it's an actual broadcast. 2K14 takes this Up to Eleven, your created player's performance rated down to performance in interviews and online fan reaction is impressive, but where it gets to almost a Big Brother Is Watching level is through Kinect. It listens for play calling, picks, ect, however if you swear the Kinect and in turn the referee will hear and you will be called for a technical foul. Holy crap!
- Sports Game
- The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: The other negative in using bad language, in that after the technical is called you and your team slide in a big way and the opponents step up their game like it was game seven of the finals, fourth quarter, scores are tied. In other words the game makes you pay for the technical by ramping up the difficulty to insane levels.
- The Rookie Showcase has you trying to perform and impress the teams so you can get a high spot in the draft. There's just one problem: every other player on your team is so geeked up to do the same they become utter ball hogs, going against five on one odds and not allowing you a look on even if they have no chance of scoring. Your only hope is to dominate defensively as well as work on getting high numbers in points and assists. Thankfully being drafted means your team is much more focused on winning games rather than putting on a one man show, allowing you to play more to your strengths.