Home
Preview
NBA 2K16 Preview (PS4)

Wow.

That three-letter word sums up my quick trip to the 2K Hangar to get my hands on NBA 2K16.

Before I get into the nitty-gritty, this article will strictly be about on-court gameplay. MyCAREER information will be coming out on Monday, and you’ll find it here on Operation Sports. Also on Monday you will see some gameplay footage (at last!) from some of your favorite NBA teams.

Okay with that information out of the way, let's play basketball.

NBA 2K is in its third year of a new physics engine that debuted with the new generation of consoles. During this time, the graphics have improved drastically, but the gameplay has not necessarily always kept up. However, this year the team has potentially made a game that plays as pretty as it looks.

I was able to play three games, and came away with different impressions from each. Depending on the team you play as, you’re going to be in a completely separate basketball world. You won’t be able to use the Bucks the same way you use the Cavaliers. This should help keep the game fresh, and give you a true home-court advantage when playing with your go-to squad.

If you have any specific questions, follow and ask me on Twitter at @Dustin_Toms. If I have an answer, you’ll get one. (The same rules apply for the comments section of this article.)


Game 1: Atlanta Hawks (CPU) at Milwaukee Bucks (me)

I chose these two teams for two reasons. First, Scott O’Gallagher was hyping up his new defensive mechanics with the Bucks. Second, NEW UNIFORMS! (They both look fresh, by the way).

NBA 2K16 is the only sports game with authentic wingspans. Milwaukee is a long, lengthy team that stands at minimum 6-foot-6 in the starting lineup. Using the new defensive mechanics, which are listed in detail here in OG’s blog, the Bucks can use their team strengths to hang with any team in the NBA.

Just as you would imagine, they aren’t much of an offensive machine, but using the Greek Freak to handle Korver is a real thing. MCW’s size was a challenge for Teague. Jabari was matched up against Millsap, and Millsap won that battle nine times out of 10. Monroe, the Bucks’ newest addition, was rolling off a pick-and-pop for a mid-range game that Splitter couldn’t keep up with.

However, let’s look at the flip side.

Korver was a dream running off screens. He was still getting open once in a while to get a shot off. Teague’s speed was a challenge for MCW, something that really showed when Atlanta started running their sets. Millsap punished Jabari on the offensive side, but he had to try harder when Jabari had the ball in his hands. And Splitter was definitely winning the rebound battle against Monroe.

NBA 2K16 is a chess game. You need to use true basketball strategy to gain any advantage on your opponent before they do.

I ended up winning by seven with the Bucks. I controlled the game on the defensive end, which always gave me the cushion I needed. I was never too concerned about losing the game despite how close Atlanta was getting. I was in control.

Game 2: Cleveland Cavaliers (me) at Sacramento Kings (CPU)

I had to try out the King.

First of all, LeBron was hands down the best player on the court. His size, speed and athleticism truly show in the game. All credit goes to Mike Stauffer’s new Hall-of-Fame ratings scale (I don’t know if that’s the actual name, but I’m rolling with it). A quick example of the scale you ask? Dennis Rodman is the best offensive rebounder of all-time, so he is rated 99 in that category. Now you rate everyone compared to how well they stack up to Rodman. So yeah, the ratings will reflect a player’s true strengths and weaknesses on the court during the game.

Unlike the Bucks/Hawks game, this one was an offensive grinder. I was never able to pull away from Sacramento as Rudy Gay was catching fire, matching most of my successful possessions. But Gay’s ball dominance was showing, as Boogie wasn’t getting the touches he needed to make a huge impact. Boogie would score when he had the ball, but there were times he didn’t even get to touch the rock.

On defense, Sacramento was great in the paint with Boogie and Cauley-Stein doing what they’re expected to do: protect the rim. I was able to cancel out their strategy by keeping Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson in the game for a boost in offensive boards, but was losing out on the defensive end with Love’s deficiencies.

Kyrie’s shot looked good, and he was the most explosive guard on the court. Rondo did a good job containing him though, holding him to just a few points.

I was underwhelmed with the rebounding battle in this one, as I easily doubled up the Kings despite facing Boogie. With Love, Thompson and Mozgov constantly in the game, all of the boards were mine. This was the only reason I was able to squeak out the two-point win. But that road atmosphere was tough.



 

Game 3: Memphis Grizzlies (CPU) vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (me)

Time for my obligatory you-heard-it-here-first comment. The Memphis Grizzlies are going to be one of the top teams used online this year.

With all of the focus that has been put into defense, of course the Grizzlies are going to see some love. They completely blanketed KD all night, holding him to six points. I just could not get open. Even KD’s quick/high release (which does look much better) was not doing me any good with all the hands in my face. When KD was able to get past Barnes and the double teams, Z-Bo was there to size him up and shut down his driving lane. The strength and body size alone was too much to handle. I forced a few shots to try and draw the foul, but nothing was working. I was forced to try a different strategy.

I had to switch my focus on offense to Westbrook. It felt like KD was hurt all over again. Westbrook was running in circles, using his signature size-ups to wreak havoc. His explosiveness was showing through as well. But with KD out of the picture, someone needed to step up…Kyle Singler! Singler was knocking down open shots when he was rolling off screens. It was nice to see what the blogs were talking about (role players stepping up on any given night).

But despite my best efforts, Memphis had a hold on me the entire game. OKC’s lack of wings coupled with Memphis’ ball movement kept me off my game. Z-Bo (his body scan is massive, just like it should be) bullied his way through the defense all night. Gasol held it down against Kanter, Ibaka, Adams. Conley was Maestro of the Year. True team basketball was OKC’s doom.

Bullet Points

There are always fun nuggets that are put into the game that just don’t have a great way to be included in the preview itself. Some of these I’m sure are mentioned in the dev blogs, but there’s just so much to keep track of at this point that I accept I'll be overlapping here and there. Here are some bullet points on NBA 2K16:

• Starting lineups are announced for both teams
Greg Anthony is the third commentator, replacing Steve Kerr
• All 12 historic teams have been announced
Kenny "The Jet" Smith is joining Shaq and Ernie
• TONS of updated player hairstyles
• New quick-substitution controls using just the right stick
• Improved NBA dancer routines
• Between-quarter player/coach interviews (what you see on TV broadcasts)
• Halftime show is better, but nothing that will make you watch each time
• Freelance motion offense is a thing of beauty
• Hedge defending is improved
• Each defender has his own mindset based on player tendencies/attributes
• Improved on-ball behavior
• Foot planting was completely redone
• Added anticipation to hesitations
• Full body scan, including legs, for players
• Zig-zag/base-line cheese looks like it’s gone
Read through my Twitter timeline for more quick-hitters


 

I’ll leave you with a quote from Mike Wang (@Beluba) that shows just how much these guys care about this game.

“Everything feels like it's right there, and it's working on your fingertips. Offense and defense -- it's a song, a relationship. That's what we’re most proud of. Two people who know the sticks can have an epic battle without being forced into a canned animation.”


NBA 2K16 Videos
Member Comments
# 61 LorenzoDC @ 09/11/15 02:01 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikelopedia
Great write up Dustin, thank you.

-DeMarcus Cousins was 3rd in the league in usage rate at 34.1%.
-Rudy Gay was tied for 17th in the league at 27%.

I just don't get why people are saying it's realistic that Boogie didn't touch the ball...
I'm fearful that that box score of the game Dustin played looked like this:
Rudy Gay 17 for 26
DeMarcus Cousins 6 for 9

As always I wish we'd hear less about meaningless overall ratings and more about TENDENCIES which drive everything that you see happen.
Da Czar and OG kept bringing up the AI asking the question, "Who are you, who am I?" Do you think that they are talking about ratings??? Hopefully tendencies are on point.
I've had the same concern, and have been asking about it for others with access to ask (to no avail).

I did however ask Stauffer in the chat of last week's SimHangout about tendencies. I don't have the exact response, but he did say tendencies (I'm paraphrasing from memory) got an overhaul or at least consistent attention to go with attributes to provide game balance and realism. I was also asking about draft classes and this is what he was saying.

It's not a very deep response, and the chat room was busy, but this at least is what I can report 2k claims, as far as it goes.
 
# 62 49UNCFan @ 09/11/15 02:04 PM
How is the blocking system? Are shot blockers feared now cpu and user?
 
# 63 2_headedmonster @ 09/11/15 02:05 PM
What was the difficulty level?
 
# 64 The 24th Letter @ 09/11/15 02:07 PM
I thought Czar & Scott's blogs talked heavily about tendencies and how players behave.....did I misunderstand?

Rudy has had games with more attempts than Boogie....can't freak out too much about a sentence yet...

Maybe Dustin can elaborate...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
# 65 23 @ 09/11/15 02:10 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by The 24th Letter
I thought Czar & Scott's blogs talked heavily about tendencies and how players behave.....did I misunderstand?

Rudy has had games with more attempts than Boogie....can't freak out too much about a sentence yet...

Maybe Dustin can elaborate...


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I honestly don't think that one game and not knowing the conditions isn't enough to tell us anything.

I'm actually getting tired of the write ups and stuff partially because I just wanna play.

Partially because im really NOT a fan of the hold everything til the last possible second marketing to hype them....because im not 8 years old and I like to know what im buying with as much research as possible including seeing it.

Most of what we see in things like this will have vagueness in it, just like the non information those guys were tweeting yesterday

Yall drooling over Dustin's review while im still basking in the "D Rose is fast as heck" tweets
 
# 66 Vni @ 09/11/15 02:17 PM
D ROSE IS FIRE tbh
 
# 67 2_headedmonster @ 09/11/15 02:30 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by 23
You can't stress test online until everyone gets on first.

I mean these guys are primarily letting us know what the core game is like which is most important.

Sports games don't test servers like shooters do
I'd agree, they surely dont.

But a simple :

" After months of planning our cyber-scientists have successfully hacked into the infastructure of the online servers of both Call of Duty and Madden. Using classified techniques we were able to document and replicate their code without their knowledge...until now. So to avoid prosecution we will be safely providing you online access to 2k16 via off-shore, underground proxy servers the likes of which Kick *** Torrents have never seen."

Pretty basic, i don't think that's asking to much
 
# 68 reptilexcq @ 09/11/15 02:36 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by The 24th Letter
What are you waiting to hear about online.?

For them to say that "it's better"?

Technical jargon?

We all want the servers to improve...but I don't quite get what news you want as of right now....the real test will be when the game is here....


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Well...to start off, they can tell us what step have they taken to improve the servers. The last time i heard from them is how they dedicated 2 engineers to tackle the online gaming...which did nothing to improve the lag. Thats all i want to hear...what have they done to try to improve the servers. Its a legitimate concern because online gaming in 2k15 is terrible.
 
# 69 ViolenceFight @ 09/11/15 02:49 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by reptilexcq
Well...to start off, they can tell us what step have they taken to improve the servers. The last time i heard from them is how they dedicated 2 engineers to tackle the online gaming...which did nothing to improve the lag. Thats all i want to hear...what have they done to try to improve the servers. Its a legitimate concern because online gaming in 2k15 is terrible.
The problem is that even saying that phrase you want to hear is a bad idea.

If they come out and say the servers were heavily worked on, and should provide more stable gameplay....and then day one they crash or lag, then they have a storm cloud of bs on social media. Everyone and their mom will be posting the quote, saying 2k lied. Or 2k doesn't care about servers. Ect.

They made that mistake last year. I don't blame them for not wanting to make it again
 
# 70 stlpimpmonsta @ 09/11/15 02:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by The 24th Letter
Gay shoots 16 shots a game to Boogies 18 so
we will just have to see if it's a consistent thing....

I just want to know if Gay is still God status lol


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Rudy Gay, Anthony Randolph and Andre Igudola will always be 2k gods to me


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
# 71 2_headedmonster @ 09/11/15 02:52 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ViolenceFight
The problem is that even saying that phrase you want to hear is a bad idea.

If they come out and say the servers were heavily worked on, and should provide more stable gameplay....and then day one they crash or lag, then they have a storm cloud of bs on social media. Everyone and their mom will be posting the quote, saying 2k lied. Or 2k doesn't care about servers. Ect.

They made that mistake last year. I don't blame them for not wanting to make it again
Couldnt that apply to any aspect of the game? Yet they still promise improvement across the board...
 
# 72 ataman5 @ 09/11/15 02:54 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stlpimpmonsta
Rudy Gay, Anthony Randolph and Andre Igudola will always be 2k gods to me


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
You may also add Terrence Williams and Marshon Brooks...
 
# 73 WTF @ 09/11/15 02:55 PM
Friggin Ty Lawson is my Kryptonite. The dude literally uses every cheese tactic in the book to have insane games every time.
 
# 74 reptilexcq @ 09/11/15 02:56 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ViolenceFight
The problem is that even saying that phrase you want to hear is a bad idea.

If they come out and say the servers were heavily worked on, and should provide more stable gameplay....and then day one they crash or lag, then they have a storm cloud of bs on social media. Everyone and their mom will be posting the quote, saying 2k lied. Or 2k doesn't care about servers. Ect.

They made that mistake last year. I don't blame them for not wanting to make it again
If that is true and it's still lagging, i wouldn't say they are lying. I would say whatever they are doing is inadequate.
 
# 75 LorenzoDC @ 09/11/15 03:04 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2_headedmonster
Couldnt that apply to any aspect of the game? Yet they still promise improvement across the board...
Well, the server infrastructure is probably the thing they are least able to test and simulate, relative to the other stuff.

Still, there's no excuse for their year on year failure here. Just because there are no perfect go live tests, there are simulation processes that can come close. They should have the authentication and handshaking technology interfacing with the new consoles pretty much worked out by year 3, too. Cloud technology is no longer new. They just don't invest enough in server side assets, asset management, redundancy and failover every year.

I mean, they should.

I mean, Ronnie should.

Cause it's all his fault.
 
# 76 23 @ 09/11/15 03:04 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2_headedmonster
I'd agree, they surely dont.

But a simple :

" After months of planning our cyber-scientists have successfully hacked into the infastructure of the online servers of both Call of Duty and Madden. Using classified techniques we were able to document and replicate their code without their knowledge...until now. So to avoid prosecution we will be safely providing you online access to 2k16 via off-shore, underground proxy servers the likes of which Kick *** Torrents have never seen."

Pretty basic, i don't think that's asking to much
Im sure networking is VERY basic

Even though I don't bother with online it def. should be working even if they have to get kinks out first at some point

but then again it aint always as bad as SOME claim either
 
# 77 ASUBoy93 @ 09/11/15 03:08 PM
Man, great write up. I want to play this game right now. My hype is crazy right now.
 
# 78 Cabish @ 09/11/15 03:17 PM
Once youll have reached the desired point in nba2k,can youll try to bring this realism and attention to detail to an mbl2k,nhl2k,top spin2k,ncaa football or basketball game..sorely miss 2k with a full catalog of games.
 
# 79 iceberg760 @ 09/11/15 03:19 PM
Ditto my Dude...Ditto....

Quote:
Originally Posted by QNo
 
# 80 DBMcGee3 @ 09/11/15 03:26 PM
Please, for the love of God, tell me they've fixed the post-game highlights this year.
 


Post A Comment
Only OS members can post comments
Please login or register to post a comment.