One of the latest games in the best basketball sim series there is. Download NBA 2K17 for Xbox 360, see all the new animations, try expanded customization options and feel the immersion you have never experienced before.
Quite some time has passed since the original release, but graphics still are very impressive. Those who’ve seen the previous games might object that improvements are slight and can prove hard to notice – but it seems to be a common issue with 2K series as a whole. The product is just so refined already that every year brings a brush or two that depend more on the development of graphics tech in general. Suffice to say, it just looks and runs very smoothly.
All in all, basketball sims don’t seem to be a very competitive niche of sports simulators. There is nothing even remotely comparable to the age-long battle between PES and FIFA here. The other well-known game series, NBA Live by EA Sports, hasn’t seen much success lately. But that doesn’t mean that NBA 2K17 developers just sit on their laurels – the game is really good, and it gets better with every passing year.
One example is just overall improvement of game realism. Some animations feel a bit monotonous or a little too fast, but immersion definitely got better. The difference in players’ weight is much more obvious now, and that alone adds much to the realistic feeling of the gameplay. Customization is one step forward too: now you can scan your own face with My NBA 2K17 app and immediately start a career.
Career mode was cut down – now you start your way up as a college player that has to earn his entry to NBA and start a professional career. The game became less dramatic than 2K16 but concentrated more on showing the player’s everyday training routine. Other modes like MyGM or MyTeam allow to create and manage entire teams or even leagues – but the MyCareer mode alone is literally months of top-grade gameplay.
The controls in NBA 2K17 were somewhat tweaked. The right analogue stick is handier now, allowing you to make chains of dribbling moves with ease. You can also use it for jump shots – of course, standard buttons work as well. But still, the whole system isn’t perfect yet and could be a bit more intuitive, especially for those who are new to basketball sims as a class. NBA Live could really teach NBA 2K17 a trick or two here.
Replay Value: 4
Despite all its immersive features, hardly anyone would want to start the career mode all over again right after the last one. Still, the game’s replay value is pretty high – especially with all that modes and characters. New players can find NBA 2K17 a bit repetitive and too long, and that’s what lowers chances of them replaying it.
The truth is, any kind of NBA 2K17 review is bound to be directed towards casual players who are not familiar with basketball in general. True fans will love it anyway for its unparalleled feeling of authenticity and careful reconstruction of the experience of being a real NBA player. Still, it can be recommended for just about anyone who enjoys top-grade sports simulators with a lot of options and modes to discover.
- Graphics 4.5
- Gameplay 5
- Controls 4
- Replay Value 4
Improved graphics and animations;
Authentic feeling of real basketball;
No radical improvements;
May be a bit complicated for new players.