Digital Media Concepts/NBA 2K

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NBA 2K is a basketball simulation video game series that is based on the National Basketball Association(NBA). The series started in 1999, and throughout the years, has received tons of support from sports/video game lovers. In fact, NBA 2K 20 has been listed in the top ten best selling video games of 2020 by multiple sources.[1][2]

2K sports

History of the Game[edit | edit source]

In 1999, video games were thriving. A company called ‘Sega’, creator of the Dream Cast, was releasing popular games like Sonic Adventure. They noticed the interest in sports games increasing when titles like NBA JAM and NBA LIVE began taking off. They set out to try something that they had never done before, which was releasing sports video games. On May 18, 1999, a deal was made for ‘Sega’ to acquire video game developer, Visual Concepts.[3] They were known at the time for being the developers of the Madden NFL Series. Later that year, on November 10, 1999, the first NBA2K game was released for the Dreamcast.[4] This received a lot of positive attention, and almost a year later, NBA 2K 1 was released on November 1,1999; however, this game was still only available for the Dreamcast.[5] They decided to expand the next year by releasing NBA 2K 2, on October 24, 2001, to other consoles like the Xbox and PlayStation 2.[6][7] In 2005, ‘Sega’ sold visual concepts to ‘Take-Two Interactive’, owners of the major publishing label ‘Rockstar’, and later named the sports label ‘2K sports’.[8] This was the beginning of the rise of one of the most popular video games of our time.

Game Modes[edit | edit source]

NBA 2k’s main menu consists of four game modes: play now, my team, my career, and my league.

Play Now:[edit | edit source]

Under this option, there are five things you can select to play: 2KU, quickplay, play WNBA, play now online, and blacktop. 2KU is a game mode for beginners that has three main parts to it: training game, freestyle, and scrimmage. In the training game, you practice basic skills like shooting. In the freestyle, you get to move a player around, with no one else on the court, to practice those basic skills that you learned. In the scrimmage, you’re put into a simulation game where you can practice the basic skills against the CPU. In addition to this, while you're playing scrimmage, tips pop up on the side of the screen to help you with your play. Quickplay and play WNBA are almost the same thing. In both modes, you choose what team you want to use and compete against the CPU or a friend in a full simulation basketball game. The only difference between the two is that in quickplay, you choose between NBA teams, and in play WNBA, you choose between Women’s National Basketball Association(WNBA) teams. Play now online is where you go to play a quick play game with other online players. Your wins and losses are tracked, and you are given a rank based on them. Finally, there’s blacktop. In blacktop, you choose up to five players from the NBA and put together a team for a streetball game.

My Team:[edit | edit source]

MY Team is probably one of the more complicated game modes in  NBA 2K. The main goal of this mode is to construct the best basketball roster possible, consisting of fifteen players(current or former). To do this, you must acquire the players’ cards in the game. There are two main ways to do this. The first way is through packs. You must purchase these packs using the game’s virtual currency(VC). Each pack that you purchase comes with five items; one of these items is a player card, and the other ones are things like shoes or jerseys for your team. The second way to acquire players is through the auction block. Since this game mode is online, people are allowed to put some of their players up for sale and sell them for VC. Once you have a team constructed, you can compete against other players’ teams or participate in weekly challenges to earn yourself some more VC.

My Career:[edit | edit source]

My Career has been voted as the most played game mode on NBA 2k. This mode allows you to create your own player and simulate an NBA career with him. You start off by choosing your player’s skill profile. You can choose between different skill profiles like a sharpshooter or a lockdown defender. Once you’re done with that, you move on to choosing your player’s physical profile. This means that you get to choose your player’s height, weight, and wingspan, which all affect your skill attributes. For example, when you raise your player’s weight, his speed decreases, and when you raise his wingspan, his shooting decreases. The last step in creating your player is changing their physical appearance. There are many facial feature options to choose from in the game; if you want your player to look as close to you as possible, you can elect to do a face scan. Now that your player has been created, your job is to upgrade his attributes with VC. You can do this by either playing the story mode or the neighborhood. A new story is written for every NBA 2K released. In NBA 2K21, the story mode takes you through high school, college, and all the way to the NBA with many cut scenes in between describing your player’s journey. The Neighborhood is where you can take your player to interact with other peoples’ players. You can ride bikes and skateboards to places like barbershops and clothing stores; you can even go to the park and team up with other players in a streetball game.

My League:[edit | edit source]

My League is a mode in which you have the opportunity to control the whole NBA. You get to decide things like the number of teams playing and the number of games they will play. Once you know how you want your league to run, you can simulate through the season like you’re watching it on tv.

How Has NBA 2K Reacted to the Social Justice Movement:[edit | edit source]

Many companies have tried to do their part in spreading the message following the killing of George Floyd. 2K has been one of them. During Floyd's funeral on June 9, 2020, all online play was suspended on the game.[9] Later that week, 2K also began offering clothes with phrases from the 'Black Lives Matter' movement on them. Phrases include "Black Lives Matter", "I Can't Breather", and "Say Their Names". These clothes are available in the neighborhood for free. Players are also gathering together to start online marches in the neighborhood. 2K,as a company, has also offered a million dollars to black neighborhoods around the country.[10]

What’s In Store For the Future:[edit | edit source]

NBA 2K is not only a video game enjoyed by many people, but it has also become a career choice. First announced on February 9, 2017, the NBA 2K League has taken peoples’ love for the game to a whole new level.[11] Here is how officials described the league, "The NBA 2K League is a joint venture between the NBA and Take Two Interactive, publishers of NBA 2K. It is a professional esports league featuring the best 2K players in the world”.[12] This means that the NBA has partnered up with 2K to allow people to get paid for competing while representing their teams’ cities. However, not everyone can just become an NBA 2K League player. They must first be drafted onto one of the teams to get this life changing opportunity. With this league being on the rise, it's safe to say that 2K’s future is in good hands.

Cover Athletes[edit | edit source]

NBA 2K Cover Atletes
NBA 2K: Cover Athlete(s)
NBA 2k Allen Iverson
NBA 2k 1 Allen Iverson
NBA 2K 2 Allen Iverson
NBA 2K 3 Allen Iverson
Espn Basketball(2k4) Allen Iverson
Espn Basketball(2k5) Ben Wallace
NBA 2k6 Shaquille O'neal
NBA 2k7 Shaquille O’neal
NBA 2k8 Chris Paul
NBA 2k9 Kevin Garnett
NBA 2k10 Kobe Bryant
NBA 2k11 Michael Jordan
NBA 2k12 Michael Jordan/Larry Bird/Magic Johnson
NBA 2k13 Derrick Rose, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin
NBA 2k14 Lebron James
NBA 2k15 Kevin Durant
NBA 2k16 Stephen Curry, James Harden, Anthony Davis
NBA 2k17 Paul Goerge
NBA 2k18 Kyrie Irving
NBA 2k19 Giannis Antetokounmpo
NBA 2k20 Anthony Davis
NBA 2k21 Damian Lillard/ Zion Williamson



References[edit | edit source]

  1. Conklin, Audrey (2020-07-08). "Best-selling video games in the US". FOXBusiness. Retrieved 2020-10-04.
  2. "Top 10 Best-Selling Games of 2020 So Far Revealed". GAMING. Retrieved 2020-10-04.
  3. "Visual Concepts". Sega Wiki. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  4. tallisvale2 (2019-01-08). "The History and Evolution of the NBA 2K Franchise". Unreality Mag. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  5. Staff, TalkBasket (2020-09-14). "NBA 2K - The History and Evolution". TalkBasket.net. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  6. "NBA 2K2 International Releases". Giant Bomb. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  7. tallisvale2 (2019-01-08). "The History and Evolution of the NBA 2K Franchise". Unreality Mag. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  8. "SEGA Sells Visual Concepts Entertainment to Take-Two Interactive". www.businesswire.com. 2005-01-25. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  9. EDT, Christopher Groux On 6/5/20 at 10:08 AM (2020-06-05). "'NBA 2K20' players are hosting in-game Black Lives Matter protests right now". Newsweek. Retrieved 2020-10-14.
  10. EDT, Christopher Groux On 6/5/20 at 10:08 AM (2020-06-05). "'NBA 2K20' players are hosting in-game Black Lives Matter protests right now". Newsweek. Retrieved 2020-10-14.
  11. "Timeline of Key Dates in NBA 2K League History". NBA 2K League. Retrieved 2020-10-10.
  12. "Why the NBA 2K League will impact the future of sports - SHIFTER". SHIFTER Magazine. 2018-04-18. Retrieved 2020-10-10.