nba 2k14 review screenshot 2

“Still one of the best sports franchises around, but the next gen versions can’t get here soon enough.”

Pros

  • The Pro Stick is excellent
  • LeBron’s “Path to Greatness” is great – assuming you’re a LeBron fan
  • Possibly the best sports franchise around

Cons

  • Beyond the new mode and controls, very little else has changed
  • Graphics can still be an issue and are dated
  • If you don’t like LeBron, you may as well stick with NBA 2K13

There came a point while playing as the Heat in a 2014 NBA Finals matchup against the Houston Rockets that may have typified the entire NBA 2K franchise for me, even as I laughed at it. Pounding the boards next to James, Bosh, and Wade was the former number one draft pick, Mr. Glass himself, Greg Oden. As a Portland resident I was amused to see NBA 2K14 talk about how effective he had been for the Heat that year, despite being so brittle during his time as a Trailblazer that a stiff gust of wind could have cost him three games. But in some ways it also helps to explain why 2K Sports has been able to repeatedly deliver annual basketball games that feel fresh, even when they are not. …there may not be a lot of changes, but the few included make a big difference. Unlike many other pro sports that get annual video game releases, a single player can have a massive impact on a team in basketball. 2K14 predicts the Rockets to be a championship contender thanks to the addition of Dwight Howard, which is very possible in real life, and this is mostly unique to the sport. With the possible exception of a few elite players, adding single player in football or baseball may help, but it won’t radically transform a team like it will in basketball. A good trade or a high draft pick can turn a team from mediocre to contender – just look at the difference LeBron alone made to the Cavaliers. This is a philosophy that is somewhat shared by this year’s 2K Sports game: there may not be a lot of changes, but the few included make a big difference. Beyond the normal roster changes you’d expect of any annual sports game, and beyond the presentation tweaks like pre-game intros that most people skip through after seeing them a few times, the main additions to the game are found in the introduction of this year’s signature mode, starring cover athlete LeBron James, and the new “Pro Stick.” Of the two additions, the pro stick is the real difference maker. The Pro Stick system takes the right analog stick and turns it into an intuitive input for dribble movements and commands. Hold the stick in any direction while in possession of the ball and your player will jump up to shoot; let it go to release the shot, and timing is the difference between a swish and a brick. Start your move with a half circle or quarter circle for a spin move, or quickly shake it side to side for a stutter step that leads into a shot. There are dozens of movement options, and they string together like a series of combos in a fighting game. It adds a level of fluidity that not only gives you precise control, it offers a new way to play a basketball game. NBA-2K14-screenshot-3 Like adding an all-star to a team, the Pro Stick changes the makeup of the series without fundamentally altering it. It gives players more options, but doesn’t force them to use them. The old controls remain, with the face buttons still retaining the same functions as ever: hit a button to pass, another to shoot, one to jump, etc., etc. If you have played a basketball video game in the last few years, you can at least feel comfortable on a basic level. The Pro Stick is surprisingly easy to feel comfortable with (especially after running through the simple and comprehensive tutorial that explains the new options in bite-sized sections). It improves defense as well by allowing you to pressure opponents more than ever before by pressing the stick towards oponentes, and also combines with the trigger/shoulder button (depending on the system) that was previously mapped to the dribble modifier, to create new passes, including no look bullets and easier alley-oops. [The Pro Stick] offers a new way to play a basketball game. The other new addition is the “Path to Greatness” featuring LeBron James. Each year NBA 2K introduces a signature feature, and this year it puts you in the shoes of LeBron as he tries for a third consecutive title, and then a fourth, fifth, and sixth. The eventual goal is to beat Michael Jordan’s six championships, and you can do this in two ways. The first is to make Miami into a true dynasty, while the second is to leave South Beach for New York, and then back to LeBron’s original home with the Cleveland Cavaliers. In terms of actual gameplay, it plays out much like any standard team game in NBA 2K14, but the difference is the detail in the narrative. Throughout LeBron’s increasingly stellar fictional career, the commentators – Kevin Harlan, Clark Kellogg, and Steve Kerr, along with sideline reporter Doris Burke – craft a story, both about LeBron’s journey and that of his opponents. Teams like the aforementioned Rockets will have their season recapped during the game, with its players having their own highs and lows discussed. The remaining modes, including the Association and MyCareer, return, and both remain mostly unchanged. There are a few tweaks to things like free agency that is now based more around in-game market value than before, but it’s a minor change. MyCareer remains an addictive RPG-like mode and there are some new player attributes to pick up, but the presentation remains just as it has for years now. Even the questions you are asked by teams prior to being drafted are identical, as are your answers, including the voice tracks. The graphics are also beginning to show their age. They remain mostly unchanged and carry over some of the same issues from last year, including occasionally frightening and grotesque faces that will haunt your dreams, as well as clipping issues that will haunt your gameplay. When several players all go for a rebound at once, it isn’t uncommon to see bodies move in awkward ways and occasionally pass through each other. The character animations look fluid and crisp, however, if dated. The next gen versions can’t come soon enough.

Conclusion

It helps to already be a fan of LeBron if you’re going to get the most out of the Path to Greatness, but the mode does have a lot to offer – unless you despise the guy, in which case you are better off sticking with NBA 2K13 even with the new controls. The changes, while good, aren’t a major shift from last year’s also excellent edition. The next-gen versions should significantly help with the graphical issues, but it is time for some changes to the Association and MyCareer modes. That said, the series still offers one of the best sporting experiences around. This game was reviewed on a PlayStation 3 using a copy provided by 2K Games.

Highs

  • The Pro Stick is excellent
  • LeBron’s “Path to Greatness” is great – assuming you’re a LeBron fan
  • Possibly the best sports franchise around

Lows

  • Beyond the new mode and controls, very little else has changed
  • Graphics can still be an issue and are dated
  • If you don’t like LeBron, you may as well stick with NBA 2K13

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Download Article Download Article 2K Sports continues to entertain basketball fanatics around the world with NBA 2k14. This game still stays true to its predecessors in simulating pro basketball goodness with some additional modes and features that enhances the players’ experience.

Steps

    1. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 1 1 Learn the basics. It may seem simple enough to know how to move around the court but there are some things that you need to learn and unlearn in order to get used to NBA 2k14’s basic mechanics.
      • Majority of the main controls are untouched. The analog stick for consoles still controls your player’s movements and the same goes to the pass button and such.
      • One of the biggest game changer though is that the right analog stick now controls both dribbling and shooting for your player. This is quite hard to get used to at first since it all depends on how much pressure you put on the analog stick.
      • For consoles, the L2 button (left trigger) now manages how you pass the ball, some sort of a pass modifier. Remember, you can configure your controller setup to your preference. This applies to both consoles and PC format.
    2. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 2 2 Practice. Before you decide on completing a season or career, it is advisable for you to practice your basketball skills first just to make sure you are on top of your game when you go head to head with tough AI opponents.
      • The 2 player mode is one of the most effective mode to practice your basketball prowess. Simply start a quick game and you are off to the old exhibition mode between you and a friend. An AI team opponent team can also be arranged.
      • You might want to work on your outside shooting mostly since NBA 2K14 made it harder now for players to hit those nasty three pointers. Also, the AI of the opposing team’s players are now tweaked to make it harder for you to drive and simply shoot the ball into the basket.

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    3. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 3 3 Play wisely. Since winning a ball game on NBA 2k14 is not as easy compared to its previous versions, keep in mind that you will have to strategize and play wisely to beat the opposing team.
      • Distribute the ball evenly among your players. Do not keep the ball in the hands of your superstar because eventually, opposing players will flock over your scorer and you won’t have any choice but to pass the ball. Make sure you have other threats aside from your star player.
      • Outside shooting is a must! More than inside scoring, long shots will be your best friend if you want to win in ball games. AI Defense has been raised in NBA 2k14 and scoring inside the paint will not be a walk in the park no more.
      • Different teams have different strengths and weaknesses — so bear that in mind. Something that works for Spurs might not work against Lakers. Just be sure to study how teams play and more so, learn from them.
      • Master player rotation to deepen your bench. Your superstars will eventually feel fatigue and will definitely require rest. This is the time that your sideliners should step up. Remember, you should not depend your team’s success on one or two players only because sometimes accidents happen and they might get fouled out or worse — get injured.
    4. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 4 4 Explore the modes. There are a few game types available in NBA 2K14 that you can play which offer different kinds of game modes to your liking. Some requires constant play through that actually simulates an actual whole NBA season.
      • Association mode is back and puts you in the shoe of a team’s general manager. You may not be battling it out on court but you are battling a different kind of challenge behind the sidelines. You will handle trades and other important aspects of handling a team such as choosing the best player for drafting.
      • MyCareer has always been a favorite among NBA 2k players. Why not? It is actually a game mode that allows you to create a player from a rookie to a superstar! This is the closest thing you’ll have to actually experiencing an actual NBA season as a bona fide NBA player.
      • A new addition to this game is the mode Lebron: Path to Greatness. Not all NBA 2K14 fans like this addition but it will surely appeal to those who adore Lebron James. This mode simply puts you in the role of Mr. James himself as he build his career towards championship dynasty. You can say it is somewhat like MyCareer mode but this time it is focused on you being Lebron himself.
      • Another mode that made a comeback is the Crew mode. This mode offers a more casual approach in playing NBA 2K14 for this allows half court action with 3 on 3 or 5 on 5 basketball matches. This mode is more fun with friends playing as your team mates.
    5. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 5 5 Use Euro league teams. It is quite impressive that NBA 2K14 acknowledges not only NBA teams but also teams outside the NBA realm. Sure enough, even if these Euroleague teams lack superstars, they can surely teach you a thing or two about the barebones of basketball skills. Mind you, some players from the Euroleague actually reaches the rank of 100 on offense!
    6. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 6 6 Use SmartPlay. This new feature allows you to conduct plays for your team in a very effective manner. Plays like pick and roll will be executed with ease with the use of this feature. Opposing teams also uses this feature so you should pay attention and learn from the plays they call.
    7. Image titled Play Like a Pro in NBA 2K14 Step 7 7 Access Features. Features in NBA 2K14 is vast and very rich in content. Everything in this section has something to do with stuff you can unlock or buy. Stuff like unlocking retro teams to shoes or even customizing color can be tweaked in this section.
      • This adds replayability to the game since there’s a lot of unlockables that can be shared via 2Kshare to complete your collection.

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  • QuestionHow do I get a three pointer every single time?Community Answer When your player is a 3 pointer, go to his position and on the circle, you should see a yellow bar. If it’s nearly full you will get a 3 point shot. Time the releasing of the button so you make the shot.

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Hello, my name is Rory, and I am addicted to sports games. If you couldn’t tell from my review, I have a particular fondness for NBA 2K14. As we all prepare to start gorging ourselves on the best looking game ever made, it is important to note that we will all have to re-create our MyCareers. nba2k14-next-gen-graphics-xavier-henry Check out this year’s NBA 2K15 guide here. Hello, my name is Rory, and I am addicted to sports games. If you couldn’t tell from my review, I have a particular fondness for NBA 2K14. As we all prepare to start gorging ourselves on the best looking game ever made, it is important to note that we will all have to re-create our MyCareers. Since its release on October 1st, I have played the PS3 version religiously, reviewed it for two websites, and had to re-create several MyCareers due to each of my previous files getting corrupted at different career stages. This has allowed me to figure out what works and what doesn’t. So if you are looking to smash face on Friday, this is your guide.

Step 1: The Creation

In the past, the best way to create a monster was through the 3 pt specialist play style. This would allow a player to effectively play 4 positions (pg, sg, sf, and pf by creating a tall sf), each with the capability of leading the league from day one. Create the guy, use the Virtual Currency from the showcase game to do Larry Bird’s training camp, and you can go in with an 85 in 3pt shooting, which was enough to shoot the lights out in NBA 2K13. Thankfully, that is gone. 3 pointers are much harder to make in general, and the 3pt specialist play style only offers a base rating of 72. So what do we do? In short– Slashing. 2K14 features the revamped lay-up system. By moving both the right and left stick in different corresponding ways, you can pull off some sick euro-step garbage at the bucket. You also get a lot more fouls called when scoring near the gold in this year’s version. So we use these to our advantage and pick a slashing SG/SF. The SG option should be used for both SG and SF, as the game values speed and quickness more than anything else. So if you want to be a SF, create a slashing SG (around 6’6 215 lbs) and make sure whatever team you play for has a better SG than SF, so you will be inserted into the starting lineup at SF. If you want a Power Forward, go slashing SF and make him a little bigger (I find that 6’9 and 250+ works out). If you make him too small, his secondary position with be SG and you will have to start again. Once again, make sure whatever team you want to play for has a better SF than PF or it will not work. You can check this by checking your player’s info in the showcase game. If you want a center, I’d suggest going athletic PF and making him big, but I don’t have the center position down to a science yet. Now that you have a position, it is time to tweak the signatures. As far as shots go, a quicker release is better, but it is mainly personal preference, especially as your slasher will literally take 2 or 3 jumpshots a game. The dribble moves are what really need adjusting. FOR ALL CREATED PLAYERS select iso crossover 6, behind back 4, spin 4, and hesitation 4. Why? Because as I said, the game values speed, and these are the fastest iso motions. Everything else is cosmetic and entirely up to you.

Step 2: The Showcase

Above: Your new MyCareer rival. It is a lot more difficult to smash face and go number one in the showcase game, but it can be done. You basically just want to run pick and rolls with your player over and over again. Make sure you slam the turbo button and start heading for the basket right as the pick gets there: too early, and it is a moving screen, and too late, the screen will be useless. You should always be super aggressive on defense too, as the reward of a block or steal heavily outweighs the hit you take for a player racing by you and scoring. Push the break and destroy their souls. Now, that is if you want to go high. It is entirely possible that you don’t. I should mention here that you should have your team picked out before creation. They should have a need at your position, and you should edit the roster. Now this is optional, but I highly suggest it. Teams don’t just play the 12 best players, they use the weird rotations that actual coaches use. This means a 60 ovr might play 12 minutes while a 76 isn’t even in the rotation. If this makes you angry, you should remove that 60 from the roster before starting the MyCareer. You should also edit the shot tendencies of the best shooters on each team. 2K tried to fix this, and it is better than previous versions, but awesome shooters still pass up open shots. I call this the ‘Ilyasova Problem,” after the Bucks’ big man who refuses to shoot 3’s despite an 86 3pt rating. You fix this by raising the shot tendencies in the proper sections on the Edit Player screen. You can also change some positions around and edit overall stats, but I find that to be cheap. In order to go low, you have to tank the showcase. The quickest and easiest way is by fouling out once you have attained the level you are looking for. If you want to go 30th for example, you are going to want to score a bucket or 2 then intentionally foul out. If you want to go 18th, you may have to get to about 10 points and grab a few boards, then foul out. It takes some practice and it isn’t exact, but you save a lot of time by fouling out. If you don’t get the team you want, simply turn the game off and try again. Make sure you tank the interviews as well by saying mean/arrogant things (usually they are the triangle/y button options).

Step 3: The First Few Games

Above: Your first game pep talk (PS3 image) Now that you are on a suitable team, it is time to get going. I suggest the dribbling drill for your 3 drills. All you need to do is dribble around the cones and use a spin move on the defender and you will get gold easily. Use your VC to up your lay-up and shot in traffic skills first. Lay-up should be at around 75-80 to start with, and you can leave shot in traffic at about 75. If you aren’t very good at free throws (like me), go ahead and level that up to 80 or so. You will be getting a ton of them. After you have those taken care of, go ahead and get your shot close up to 85 and your shot med up to the mid 70s. This will all be done over the course of your first few games. Avoid the legends training camps at first. Why? Because these will save you a ton of VC if you use them to get your skills from say, 87 to 90, as opposed to 67-70. The higher the skill, the higher the cost to upgrade it. You can probably also wait on the signature skills, but when you are ready, finisher comes first. It will make you an even more powerful force in the paint. As for the actual game play, it is pretty simple. Just run the pick and roll to death. You can also probably take bench players in an isolation, especially if you are a SG playing SF. Your speed will be too much for them. If speed is so important, you may wonder why I don’t go Athletic? It is because Athletic players require a heavy investment in shot close and layup before they can finish, whereas the slasher does not. If you can’t finish, then getting by the opponent doesn’t matter. Eventually, you will find that the AI calls isolation plays for you. If you get by your man, and you should more times than not, just throw yourself at the basket using any of the lay-up moves. I would say 7 times out of 10 you will score or get fouled or both. Make sure that you talk to your GM after game 3 and ask for more playing time and more plays called for you. If you go to him before game 3, he will probably give you a negative response.

Step 4: Beyond

By game 5-8, you should be a starter. By game 12 or so, you will be getting 40+ minutes and you should have a shot at breaking your team’s scoring record every single night. If you play for a bad team, like the Jazz or 76ers, you will find that almost every offensive play is called for you. This allows for massive point totals (I think I had 40 in game 10 on my Jazz SG). You will also be getting tons of VC. I’d keep it flowing in to your core attributes: shot close, lay-up, free throw, shot med, and shot in traffic. Improvement in the ball handling skills goes a long way as well, as your player will have a ton of turnovers because of the poor base stats and the amount of iso you run. You should be able to get pretty good steal numbers with the low base amount. 2K cranked the amount of steals your player can get, so a lower stat isn’t a real problem there. Speed and quickness are always good, but they are very expensive. The Isiah Thomas camp will get you some extra quickness, so consider doing that as your first camp later on in the season. The Larry Bird camp will up your shooting, and John Stockton’s will crank your ball handling. Beyond that, they aren’t really important unless you are a PF. DISCLAIMER: I am basing this solely off observations made from the PS3 version. I played on the highest difficulty. It is possible, though highly unlikely, that none of this will work in the next-gen versions of the game. If that happens, may God have mercy on all of our souls. Let me know in the comments if this worked for you, or if you have any tweaks to make to the guide. Channel your inner MJ, and go forth! The negatives; — Character creation. The upgrade in graphics included scanning all of the players heads to make them look as real as possible (think L.A Noir), unfortunately this means that for your created character to look decent and not stick out too much, they couldn’t let you create someone from scratch. Instead, what you are given is a selection of 30 preset heads, you can alter the hair and hair colour but you cannot change any other facial features (such as the size of the nose, cheek bones, etc). You can however change their wingspan, muscle definition, height, weight etc, you can also really give your guy a unique feel with the VAST selection of choices when it comes to moves like crossovers and fadeaways etc. — Small gameplay nuisances. Players with exceptional ball handling (Irving, Curry, Kobe, Rose etc) occasionally fumbling the ball and knocking it off their own feet, happens a little too often for my liking. It’s still too easy to spam the steal button in an online game to knock the ball out of an opponents hand. — Every time they patch something, they seem to break something else (if you’re a fan of the franchise, you will be accustomed to this by now), there are small glitches which can be annoying such as never entering free agency in career mode and small graphic issues which wouldn’t really be noticeable if the game didn’t look as good as it does, because it’s such a beautiful game, every little flaw stands out like a sore thumb. After the recent patch, my audio stutters and cuts out, this only happens very briefly though (fraction of a second) but it can be annoying if commentators are cut off mid-sentence etc. — Difficulty. There are two parts to this, first of all, if you haven’t played a basketball game before or are not familiar with the sport, you will find that there is a STEEP learning curve. In career mode you will be brutally punished for the smallest mistakes. The other side of it is the difficulty settings, the higher the difficulty, the dumber your team mates becomes. That’s literally the difference, usually the opposing A.I would get smarter, instead, they just make more shots and your team mates suddenly become below average defenders and position themselves poorly on offense and even stop boxing out on occasions. — You cannot sim games in career mode. There are 82 games in a regular NBA season, plus the playoffs. Depending on what quarter length you choose (I go with 10 minutes), that’s roughly 3280 minutes (54 hours) spent in-game, throw in stoppages and the cut scenes, the firs season of your career could take just under 60 hours to complete. It’s like a full blown RPG. — MyTeam (the NBA2K equivalent of Fifas ultimate team) no longer allows you to buy players outright (using VC) to improve your team, everything is now done through packs and it’s pot luck as to who you get in the pack. So don’t go planning your starting five just yet. — Micro-transactions. These are completely optional, but at the rate that you earn VC (virtual currency), it will take you a very long time to level up your career mode player/character. 2K definitely «nudge» you in the direction of buying virtual currency with real world money to upgrade your character quicker. The problem is, everything uses VC. If you want to play MyGM (think manager mode on Fifa) then it costs VC to upgrade your managers skills and attributes, you have to spend VC to upgrade attributes which then unlock abilities which you have to buy with VC and then every time you want to use those abilities you have to spend VC to use them. It is a tedious process. My advice; get the smart phone app, you can net two or three thousand VC from the «pick and win» and «mystery envelope» things alone. Also, follow Ronnie2k on twitter for»locker codes» which usually unlock VC.


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