AllHipHop Staff

Developer/Publisher: 2K SportsPlatform: XBOX 360

Players: 1 - 10 (Online)Release Date: 10/6/09

Rating: A-

In the world of gaming, few releases fill the calendar with a yearlong hype until it hits the street. From role playing, first person shooters, sandbox adventure to driving; every genre has that one franchise title that commands every gamer’s attention. When it comes to basketball, the NBA 2K series is tops.

For the last couple of seasons 2K has reigned king with little contest. Now celebrating its tenth anniversary, 2K Sports upgrades its core gameplay in an attempt of absolute dominance. While NBA 2K10 comes close to perfection, it is hampered by some nagging problems that hold it back from true greatness.

What has previously kept 2K atop the totem pole is its on court experience and this year’s installment doesn’t disappoint. First off the graphics are exceptional. The player models are realistic with ballers looking like the splitting image of their real life counterparts.

Even smaller details like visible sweat stains on jerseys and tattoo accuracy are covered. Superstar signatures are also nicely represented here from Shaquille’s awkward free throw launch to Lebron James’ pre-game talcum powder handclap shower.

Sonically the game is well rounded with chants of MVP bound to be heard when a star player has a great night. The beautiful presentation is heightened with what could be the best play by play in any sports title thus far.

Announcers Kevin Harlan and Clark Kellogg adjust their commentary depending on how your season unfolds. So if your team stunk it up the previous night, you’ll hear about it in your next game.

After the ball is tipped you get a true look at how impressive this game plays. The action is fluid from jump shot form to guys swimming around picks. Offensively this series has been pumped up with the addition of more plays and on the fly coaching. Previous complaints of an arcade feel have been addressed with the addition of a stamina bar; quelling any rampant abuse of fast breaks sprints.

A new feature that is sure to take engross the gaming community is the My Player mode. My Player lets users create their own baller to any specifications. After building a player, you join the NBA summer league in hopes of getting picked up by a team. If not you get shipped to the development league where you can grow your player’s skills while waiting for that call from your agent. It’s not an easy mode but very rewarding once you really start to excel.

Unfortunately unacceptable technical issues do arise throughout regular gameplay. While the informational pop-up menus detailing up to date season stats add great depth to the game, they sometimes take way too long to disappear making it difficult to navigate throughout the court. Framerate also plays culprit with some noticeable slowdown during some high traffic breaks. Furthermore, the A.I. presents some wacky computer behavior with a great deal of backcourt violations, and bad time clock management.

All things considered though 2K10 is still impressive. This simulation presents the closest basketball experience without lacing up your hi-tops.

NBA 2K10 Trailer: