Video Game Review: NBA 2K16

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MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) The Playstation Plus program is a great way to try out game that would normally not be on your radar. I’m not much of a sports gamer, so getting NBA 2K16 for free gave me a nice chance to step out of my comfort zone and try something new.

Not only do I not play sports games, but I also watch very little basketball and have very little knowledge of the game. While there are some tutorial videos and a practice mode, there wasn’t as robust of a training mode as I would have liked. After playing it for a while, I got a basic grasp on the many strategy options available as you’re playing. There are some neat ways to change things up on the fly, allowing you to adjust your game plan as you go. The controls themselves are tight, even if I don’t quite have the rhythm down for them yet.

From a technical standpoint, the game is outstanding. Even just in exhibition mode, each game you play is presented like a television broadcast. You get a preshow and half-time show with animated version of real people, super polished highlights and a constant commentary. They do a smart thing with the commentary and half-time show; the way that they are reacting to your play can give you hints on how you should be adjusting your strategies. This isn’t something new to the genre by any means, but it feels very refined in this game.

I didn’t really get a chance to try out season mode, I did jump into what I consider to be the most interesting addition: MyCareer mode. This allows you to create a player, and then follow his career from high school basketball player to NBA all-star. Not only does it follow this interesting path, but MyCareer mode is directed by filmmaker Spike Lee. There are fully acted cut scenes throughout that show you talking to friends from high school or college recruiters. It’s a wonderful way to give a game that can feel repetitive a sense of forward momentum.

While I don’t know if this is something I will return to frequently in the future, this is definitely a game for sports fans to check out. The shear wealth of options available will keep any basketball enthusiast coming back long after the season is over.

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