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mcdowell31's Blog
Badges Have Grown On Me 
Posted on October 3, 2023 at 11:47 AM.
Initially, 2K badges and MyLeague (now MyNBA) did not go well together. The heavy-handed badges took much of the basketball strategy and nuance out of 2K because Attributes were deemphasized. Upon introduction, Mike Wang in an interview envisioned badges contributing mightily to, the game within the game, team-building. Early iterations left me cursing as the AI would lose its mind and realistic games were ruined by arcade-like badge-fests. In the early years, it made better sense to disable the badges to get natural basketball rather than superheroes flying around the court making impossible plays.

Somewhere around 2K20, I got on board when I accidentally started a season with badges intact and noticed that basketball nuance was improved rather than overpowered. In 2K23 and 2K24 the improvement continues: Badges are not automatic successes, which is refreshing for a sim-head.

Roster interpretation always leaves something to be desired as the solution to making any onscreen player competent is to give too much Speed, jack up other Attributes, and overload with badges. I am trying once again to complete a spreadsheet that will define players' realistic strengths, but flaws as well. I came across this website last winter:

It seems to set definite qualifications for badges as a starting point, leaving less to the eyeball test. There is usually a tendency to make favorite players better than they actually are with the eyeball test. This tendency can lead to bloated Attributes and badge distribution. Part of basketball nuance is learning how to use an onscreen player effectively as opposed to simply having that player overpowered and easy to use. However, stats can't explain everything and the eyeball test is useful occasionally.

Bravo 2K Development! A number of times in the last nine months I have exclaimed to the screen "We are playing basketball" upon seeing me and the AI doing the dance of natural basketball.

Now, if I could get the Player Lock camera (that exists in scrimmage mode) back in MyLeague games. It has been missing on Xbox Series X. I "discovered" this when I came to 2K6 from NBA Live. It is truly one of the best innovations in video game basketball history.
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