The Game Plan: NBA 2k11


This week on The Game Plan I will be highlighting one of the best sports video games ever: NBA 2K11. This game has also been regarded by many as the best basketball game. The different features of this game are plenty and exciting. This generation of 2K put a lot of focus on Michael Jordan; He was the cover athlete for that year. There is even a feature where you get to play as Michael Jordan, and tackle all the challenges he faced in the NBA. The “Be a Legend” mode was the first of its kind and “Blacktop” features all the players you could ever want, including a bunch of celebrities. Lastly, the graphics were way ahead of their time, and the soundtrack stands as one of the best of any sports game out there.

The “Be a Legend” of NBA 2K11 was one of the first of its kind, and had gamers playing for hours trying to get their player to be a legend. What makes this feature so fun is that it was the first time the game started to follow more of a story. It starts off with you playing in the NBA combine scrimmages against real soon-to-be rookies. From there, players are drafted, based on combine performance. Next comes the summer league. From there, players receive a contract and get to start making themselves a legend. What makes this feature so great, is that it feels much closer to “real life” than the other features. You’ll get things like contracts and endorsements, as well as participate in interviews that can affect the way your team and fans view you as a player. The ability to watch your player progress and turn into the superstar of your team is one of the main reasons this feature is so rewarding.

The “Jordan Challenge” mode feature is another feature that is a good mix of fun and challenge. In this mode, you get to play through Michael Jordan’s historic games, such as his championship games, his flu game, and even his first game back after returning to the sport from a year playing minor league baseball. The Michael Jordan player in this is one of the best designed players in the whole 2K series. He looks exactly like Michael Jordan. For a game that puts so much focus on Michael Jordan, they lived up to the hype they created. The game has so many little details about Michael Jordan: From things like the shoes and accessories he wears, to his shot, even his pregame rituals.

Another enjoyable feature is “franchise” mode. This allows players to pick a team and play multiple seasons with their current roster, or do a fantasy draft. You can adjust a lot of the settings to customize the game to your liking. You can also trade and sign free agents to create a team to play with, if you don’t do a fantasy draft. Along with this feature, there is a situation mode that allows you to create a ‘late game situation’ to get the chance to win a game, starting out down in any amount of points you want, or you can try to preserve the win.

The last feature is of the more fun ones, and has stuck around for all the new titles since its initial debut in 2K11. This feature is Blacktop. In Blacktop, players can choose any NBA athlete, past legend players, and certain celebrities, such as Drake and Snoop Dogg. You can choose to play 5 vs 5 or 1 vs 1. Games are played to 21. When you score a 2 pointer it counts as 1 point, and when you make a 3 pointer it counts for 2. This feature is a fantastic mix of an arcade game and a realistic basketball video game.

Lastly, the soundtrack on this game is one of the best of the genre. It has the perfect mix of songs: some familiar and popular songs, and some not many people have heard. The soundtrack fits with the basketball aspect well. Some of the well-known artists featured are Snoop Dogg, Drake, and Big Boi from OutKast. Even Ron Artest, who was a current NBA player at the time, recorded a song featured on the soundtrack.

NBA 2K11 is one of the all-around best basketball video games ever created. This is because its range of gameplay features, such as Jordan Challenge, Be a Legend, Blacktop, and Franchise modes. The graphics and soundtrack add those little details that make sports video games fun. NBA 2K11 truly is one of the most fun sports games to play.