Review by coffee7729
"The best basketball sim ever gets even better."
When I picked up my copy of NBA 2K7 for $20, I was ready to play. I put in the disk and started an Association (a.k.a. franchise) mode with my favorite team, the Detroit Pistons. I immediately went to my season opener game against the Milwaukee Bucks. Now let me remind you I had never played 2K7 before, but played 2K6. Now, the first thing I noticed that disappointed me a little was the presentation. It was the exact same pre-game routine as NBA 2K6. It isn't bad by any means, it's just the exact same as 2K6. I was expecting something a little different pre-game. You get a view of the arena, the Toyota Matchup of the game, and the starting lineups screen before the game. So then it was time for the tip-off, and my game experience began.
As real as it gets. A lot of new animations and defensive tweaks have been added to the game. One of my main strategies for NBA 2K6 was stand at the top of the 3-point line with my guard, call a high post man up, and press circle to lead him to the basket with a lob pass and a slam dunk. That doesn't work in 2K7, which is a lot more realistic. You can still lead players with passes, but it's toned down a lot since last year. The computer also plays a lot better break-away defense. Basically if you don't have the numbers, you're alot better just pulling it back and setting up the offense. One huge improvement in animations is the player shots. I took a 3 with Prince, and he had the exact same ugly jump shot as he does in real life. The shot animations for stars in 2K7 are the exact same as the players' real life counterparts. Another thing 2K sports added to the game this year was the ability to adjust game settings without pausing. Pressing left on the D-Pad will bring up a team tendencies screen, where you can adjust sliders to tell your team to do a wide variety of things that include going for offensive rebounds vs. getting back to play D, or the aggressiveness of defense, as well as many other elements of gameplay. Pressing down on the pad will allow you to make quick subs on the go. Scroll down to the player you want to sub out and choose the player you want to replace him, and he'll come in the next dead ball. Finally, pressing right on the D-Pad brings up the playcall screen. This allows you to choose whether to full court press or not on defense, and which offense to run at half court. I found the D-Pad feature to be very useful.
You don't need to look any further than NBA 2K7 to have one of the best graphical experiences the PS2 has to offer. Player faces and models are incredibly realistic, and their clothing even moves. You can even see sweat on the player later in the game. Arenas are also amazing. The net makes an amazing wavy motion on made shots. Lights reflect off the floor, and the fans all make individual movements. The cream of the crop graphics make the game pleasant and enjoyable.
Kevin Harlan and Kenny Smith return to bring you the commentary. Really no new commentary lines are added on, but it's still good. On the court sounds are clean, too. You can hear shoes squeak, players collide and fall, and even the net makes a cool swish sound. The 2K beats this year are good too, with performers like E40 topping the list.
If this is your first time playing the 2K basketball games, the controls could be overwhelming at first, because they are a lot different from other basketball games. If you have played NBA 2K6, you know exactly what you're getting into because the controls are the same. R1 is turbo, and crossovers and such are controlled by the direction you push the left joystick in. To do a spin move you spin the joystick 360 degrees. Really a lot different from NBA Live, but still good.
OFF-COURT FEATURES: 9/10
The Crib allows you to purchase rewards with VIP points you earn in-game. You can deck out a fancy looking house with team banners and merchandise, even bobbleheads and air-hockey games. The Association mode returns and is better than ever, with 3-team trading and progressive fatigue, where players become fatigued not only in game, but also throughout the course of the season. You can also edit your team's offensive and defensive playbooks in The Association mode.
If you buy or have bought this game, it's probably because you like basketball. And if you like basketball, this game will last you a long time.
Now that the game is down to $20, it's a great buy. Even the casual NBA fan will enjoy the game. It takes everything including gameplay, graphics, and realism, and gives you one thing in return; one heck of a basketball game.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 01/16/07
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