NBA 2K19 – Review

September and October are hard months for gamers, so many new titles are released whether they’re new chapters in a story or a sequel or in sports sims just a revamp from the last release. I reside in London and Basketball isn’t a sport that is the main focus for me and for quite a lot of the population in London just in my opinion. So when NBA games are released some people look at them and think meh… when is FIFA out?

Not me, I’ve been a fan of Basketball games for a few years now, dating back to NBA 2K13, don’t get me wrong I hate watching a game but don’t mind trying to throw a few threes on a court in real life.

2K has always put out a storming game per year whether it’s in the NBA franchise or the WWE franchise they have a real focus on you the player.

2K have excelled in recent years by putting out absolutely stunning career modes with great longevity for single players, last year they introduced the Neighbourhood where your character can roam around, play career games, buy things etc. it worked…at the start, I didn’t like it, it felt over the top. Well, the neighborhood is back and is bigger but in my opinion less impactful. Everything is now spaced out in a square and in the middle, you have the courts to play pick up games. Then there are the cages where you have jump pads in the floor to launch you in the air to block or dunk on someone…it’s truly hilarious but also hard to time at times…plus all other players just hog the ball and play their own game. This is something I’ve found in 2K19 where other online players don’t know the basis of defense and teamwork. They just foul themselves out of the game trying to get the ball for a moment of glory.

The main story arc in 2K19 is following the path of A.I. he goes undrafted in the NBA Draft and is forced to play in China to revamp his career. After a visit from the NBA All-Stars team, his name is recognised and it’s only a matter of time before he is back stateside but it doesn’t pan out as you’d think. But I’ll leave that for you to uncover. The story is filled with famous actors like Anthony Mackie (Falcon from Avengers) Aldis Hodge (MC Ren in Straight Outta Compton) and my favorite Haley Joel Osment (Sixth Sense) & Michael Rapaport (Deep Blue Sea) there are many names in this career mode but I felt the story arc ended very quickly. Once you complete the prelude that’s it, then you play for an NBA team and you go from there. Yes, there are cutscenes when you have sponsors and interviews but nothing relating to a story.

The gameplay was very robotic to me, the shooting mechanics felt stiff and the ball movement was sluggish which is unlike an NBA 2K game, the visuals and feel of the game are stunning and when you’re in a game you feel like you’re actually there but apart from that there is a lot of 2K18 just remodeled and polished slightly. If you ask me I feel 2K18 was a better game. The game is constantly having server issues, the MyTeam is poorly produced compared to other games that use a similar feature. I just feel the game is poor this year and 2K need to look at the product and release it without bugs which in this day and age is hard but the amount of traffic I’ve seen on twitter and have had personal experience with over the last three years of playing these games their games are infested with bugs and they need to sort it before they lose fans.

Apart from the flaws that follow the gameplay mechanics, there are some plus sides to it, 2K has added a feature called Takeover where you can build up momentum from scoring points, collecting steals and just general overall good performance and once it is maxed out your perks are in overdrive until the meter dies down. You gain more fans from doing more of what your player is driven to, so you may have a sharpshooter and the more 3pt conversions you complete the more your takeover meter will rack up and give you better perks when you activate it. Just be warned if you miss a shot before you activate it goes. This is only the case when it is filled up mind. You can also benefit from better gameplay physics in the offense and defense with various strategies from your coaches. This was always in the game but is more effective in 2K19.

The build for your player to get to the converted 99 overall is a journey many don’t come back from it is a real challenge and is one of the best things about these games, yes you can buy VC and stack your players stats up but they’re capped and only upgraded when you reach 100% in the cap breaker which is harder the higher you go. You earn points for you cap breaker in games by pulling off moves for the badges that are associated to your player so like paint shots (scoring points in the key) for a Centre or 3pt conversions from a Small Forward. NBA 2k19 is a game that rewards players on their skill level, the better you are the better experience you’re going to have. If you’re new to the game, unfortunately, you can adjust the difficulty of the game to an easier option in Career mode Pro is the default setting and there is nothing lower than that so newbies get practicing.

The Neighbourhood is filled with other things to do like events that take place, some like 3v3 tournaments, quizzes, and even dodgeball, I haven’t been fortunate to take part in one yet but I saw dodgeball played and it looked hilarious, 30 players running freely across the neighborhood with golden basketball trying to hit one another. Of course each of these events hold rewards for the winner in VC which you can spend on your player or by buying packs in MyTeam. I haven’t been a fan of MyTeam since they launched it although there is one feature I like and that is the ability to buy boxes of card packs instead of the individual ones. Other games could take notice of that…just saying.

NBA 2K19 – Review
Just Saying...
All in all NBA 2K19  is a good game but it just doesn’t live up to the expectation of its predecessor and for me, I always think if it isn’t broken don’t fix it.
Slam Dunked!
Amazing Visuals and Real Game Feel
Story mode is believable
Takeover is a blessing
Boxed Out!!
Gameplay feels clunky and abnormal
Online could be better
MyTeam is crap

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