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Summer School: What Arcade Titles Could Learn from NBA Jam

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Old 07-17-2008, 01:29 PM   #1
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Summer School: What Arcade Titles Could Learn from NBA Jam

Ryan Spencer checks in today and offers up a bit of a summer school lesson for arcade sports game developers on what exactly constitutes a great arcade sports title. He uses the holy grail of arcade sports titles, NBA Jam, as his guide. Check out Spencer's article, Summer School: What Arcade Titles Could Learn from NBA Jam.

Quote:
"Perhaps no one is more in need of summertime schooling than makers of arcade sports video games. Recently, arcade publishers have been flunking test after test. Midway’s NBA Ballers: Chosen One was an absolute bomb (which is much different than being “Da Bomb”) and EA Sports’ NFL Tour was equally as bad."

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Old 07-17-2008, 01:56 PM   #2
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NBA Street wasn't too shabby of a series, keeping it pretty simple. But the game breaker, though innovative, I agree makes the game play very narrow after a while.

NFL Blitz 2000 and NHL Hitz 2002 were amazing games though...
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:25 PM   #3
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I think the KISS method is the biggest key. The abilty to pickup n play these types of games is crucial to attract a wide audience. If the game is too compolex it will turn casual gamers off. There are some games that I prefer to keep very simple.
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:27 PM   #4
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Re: Summer School: What Arcade Titles Could Learn from NBA Jam

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Originally Posted by distauma
NBA Street wasn't too shabby of a series, keeping it pretty simple. But the game breaker, though innovative, I agree makes the game play very narrow after a while.

NFL Blitz 2000 and NHL Hitz 2002 were amazing games though...
Blitz 2000 and Hitz 2002 are my next two favorite arcade sports games behind NBA Jam. Definitely had a lot of fun with those.
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:30 PM   #5
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Re: Summer School: What Arcade Titles Could Learn from NBA Jam

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Originally Posted by Complex
I think the KISS method is the biggest key. The abilty to pickup n play these types of games is crucial to attract a wide audience. If the game is too compolex it will turn casual gamers off. There are some games that I prefer to keep very simple.
You are absolutely right. Arcade games need to remember their roots: in video arcades, where players didn't have the time (or the quarters) necessary to figure out complex control schemes or game mechanics. Sim sports games have the "complex" market cornered anyway, so the focus should be on pick-up-and-playability.
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:58 PM   #6
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yeah the gamebreaker stuff is just out of control. all of those street games end up boiling down to who can get the most and that becomes the entire focus of playing.

IMO you should never have a game where you have to think to yourself "should I try and score here? or just keep hotdogging up around the center court line."
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Old 07-17-2008, 03:02 PM   #7
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Hitz 02 was extremely fun. Especially when you played with a friend on the same team. The game was just a blast. I don't really remember NBA Jam, but I do remember it being fun as well.
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Old 07-17-2008, 11:41 PM   #8
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The last arcade game I remember playing significantly is NBA Jam. Best arcade sports game ever. Good article, I agree 100%.
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