Like some snake that escaped from the jungle, NBA 2K18 suddenly appeared and bit us. The venom quickly spread throughout our blood, and we got addicted to the latest basketball simulation from 2K Sports. And when we say simulation, believe us that we mean it. This is not a game that you can pick up and play immediately. It’s incredibly realistic, and it will take some getting used to, especially if you haven’t played earlier releases. However, the journey is fascinating, and the game always leaves you wanting for more.
Who Needs Adrenaline Shots When You Have NBA 2K18?
If you love adrenaline and basketball, there is no need to leave your room. The challenge and variety that NBA 2K18 brings will keep you hooked for months. Perhaps the only moments during the game where you can relax is when you start an attack by getting the ball to the opponent’s half. And even that is only when it’s not the closing moments of the game and the rival team is not conducting a full court press. The game offers high intensity, and things become tricky already at the Professional difficulty level.
2K Sports puts maximum effort to bring us an authentic and realistic game. This year they overhauled the motion system. Instead of using pre-loaded animations, they are now dynamically created during a match. The game takes into account the movements a player makes, his position on the court and the fact if he has a ball or not.
An Incredible Package of Realism
After spending only a couple of minutes with NBA 2K18, you will notice that the game’s visual presentation is flawless. All players are faithful replicas of their real-life versions, and even the team jerseys are incredibly detailed. A total of three commentators are there during a match. One of them is on the sidelines interviewing the coaches and sharing all the juicy stuff that he noticed, while the remaining two are focused on the match itself.
Once again there is a post-game show featuring Shaquille O’Neal and the rest of the crew. Time-outs are can also be a vital part of the game as the coaches might give some tips that you can use. Add to that the pre-made interviews with basketball superstars, and you’ve got yourself a genuine NBA nirvana. Oh, did we mention that there are cheerleaders, too?
Roster and Game Modes
NBA 2K18 features all 30 teams from the American professional basketball league with complete rosters with real-names. Unlike the previous version, there are no Euroleague teams this year as the developers focused on the NBA. However, each side has an all-star version featuring the best players that played for that franchise throughout history. In fact, there is a total of 62 classic teams, which means that there is no chance that your favorite players were omitted.
As for the game modes, there is a standard set that all NBA fans expect. That includes the option to play an exhibition match immediately, an entire season or just the playoffs. You can also start a personalized career or head to the neighborhood park and play against other people online. However, there is one surprise inclusion that we need to mention.
MyGM: The Next Chapter
If there is a studio that knows it’s way around creating single-player campaigns for sports games, it’s 2K Sports. For NBA 2K18, they decided to surprise us with MyGM: The Next Chapter, a new mode in which you assume the role of a player that should have had an incredible career. Instead, an injury forces him to retire early, and he decides to become an NBA General Manager.
Shaping up your team the way you want includes taking care of the budget, game plans, trades, visiting press conferences and more. When the match time comes, you take the joystick into hands and lead your side to glory.
The new mode is an excellent addition and features an overhaul that the franchise mode needed. Plus it presents a complete innovation, considering that we haven’t seen a story-driven GM mode so far. The only downside might be the fact that dialogues in The Next Chapter are text-based. That is a shame because it would be more exciting if there were voiceover, not to mention that it’s sometimes hard to read through all those lines.
Run the Neighborhood
The developers made some changes to the personalized career mode, too. It now has, even more, depth, and it’s that complex that it can be a stand-alone open world release. Unlike previous versions, you can now both train and hit the gym, visit your barber, the local equipment stores…There are hundreds of available cut scenes with incredible details. Everything is even wackier than it was and living your NBA dream has never been this interesting.
Unfortunately, NBA 2K18 has one major problem that can significantly influence the gaming experience. The game is riddled with microtransactions and in-game purchases that can make your life easier. The most significant issue is that they can affect the progress in MyCareer mode, especially in the beginning. We won’t waste too much time on this problem, but you can read about it further at PCGameHaven.
The Best of the Best
2K Sports are dominating the basketball market for years now, and NBA 2K18 is no exception. Not only it’s the best b-ball game on all platforms, but it might be the best sports franchise ever created, going against other big titles like PES 2018 and FIFA18 That being said, this year’s version could have offered a bit more innovation. It seems that the developers know how to deliver just the amount of freshness needed to keep the series going while also leaving some things for the future.
NBA 2K18 is available on PC, PlayStation4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. The initial PC version was somewhat buggy, but that is something that the official patches and updates will improve over time. Regardless, this release remains a game that you just must try if you are a fan of basketball or NBA.