I’ve been playing 2K10 now for a couple of weeks on the PS3, so thought I’d put up a bit of a review to add to the numerous you can find on the web. This won’t be so much the intricate details of the game, but my personal thoughts on the newest edition of a game I’ve played since about 2004. I’ll try and relate it to how a game is played in real life, as I like my sports games to be realistic. Quite a few of the guys on the team are playing it right now too and we have a good chat about the game most days.
First thing I did was run an exhibition game to get a feel of the gameplay (note – I am playing against the computer in that described here, not against another human). There are quite a few differences compared to 2K9. The most noticeable and that which I find quite difficult, is the change of the isomotion button to L2. Using the R2 trigger previously allowed you sprint with the ball and then do an isomotion move in fluent motion. However, now if you were to sprint you would need to either keep R2 + L2 held down to do one of those moves, or more realistically, release R2 and then press L2 to do a move. This particularly drastically reduces the efficiency on the fast break and allows defenders to stop you one-on-one or chase you down and prevent the break. If I am not really understanding this, or if there is an efficient way of isomotion, please leave a comment!
The next thing is in terms of the AI. There is much more help defense and helping off the weak side this year. For instance, if you are posting up and backing down, defenders on the weak side will get off their man and play more on the split line. This allows you to skip the ball to open guys who can then shoot the three. I guess this adds a bit more realism to the game, but there are times that you just don’t want that help, especially if you have the post covered with a good defender – it just gives up the open look. I guess you can tweak these settings in coaching or something, but I haven’t looked into that yet.
Also, with the defenders coming off their men, everyone seems to crash the boards. It is very noticeable that if the offence comes up with a rebound, all of the defenders have come in for the board, leaving the offence to kick it out for an open three. Again, some realistic game play there, but it happens far too often.
Don’t get me wrong, the game looks and plays REAL. The presentation looks as if you were watching it on TV, with great little additions like seeing who your team is playing next and previous day’s results. The commentary is also really refreshing and not too repetitive. The NBA today feature is also great. It allows you to see which teams are playing today and puts the match-ups there on the home screen so you can play them.
The fluidity of dunks, lay-ups and alley-oops are fantastic and according to the manual, there are now more dunks that you can do with the shot stick. There are probably a little too many alley-oops thrown by the AI from all types of angles that can really get frustrating.
MY PLAYER – This is a really fun (possibly addictive) addition to the game. Similar to FIFA’s Be A Pro, it allows you to create a player and take him through summer league, NBA camp and D-League, before making it to the NBA. All the while, improving your player’s ratings. Things don’t happen quickly, but at a rate that WILL require the hours to make your player better. I’ve finally made the NBA with the Knicks at an overall player rating of 50 after quite a few hours on the PS3. I see on the global ratings, that some players have their rating in the 70’s. I can’t imagine how much they must have played the game.
The menu system has also changed to what I can only describe as something like a phone keypad/boxes system, with you having to point the joystick to the box you want and confirm. Not sure if I like it or not yet, am still figuring out where everything is and all the submenus.
Overall, the game has made improvements over 2K9 and looks fantastic. From all reports if you are a bball gaming fan, this is still the one to get. After playing the NBA Live 10 demo, I still think 2K10 trumps it even though Live have made some improvements. You’d be able to play this until next year’s comes around.
I’m also playing FIFA10 at the moment, and I’ll put up my thoughts on that soon. It’s a busy time of year for Bball and Football gamers.