Tuesday, October 12, 2010

EA Sports NBA Jam | Review

Synopsis: Boomshakalaka! EA Sports bring back the phrase that will make almost any game reminiscent to playing the four player basketball arcade game, this time however, Wii gamers get the first chance to this secret filled sports title, while 360 and PS3 gamers have to wait until the non-descript holiday season. The new entry includes the classic 2 on 2 gameplay that the original sported in the nineties, but will also keep gameplay fresh with the addition of new characters, modes, and depth. With new game modes, comes the Wii control modes as well, whether you like gaming on the classic controller or taking advantage of the motion controls, you will take control of the current NBA roster to overcome challenges and to take on all the other teams. Will this throwback to an arcade classic, get its long overdue comeback or fall flat on the hardwood?

Praise: It is NBA Jam, need I say more? If I do have to, where do I start? There is a huge roster of current NBA stars along with a massive amount of unlockable characters, modes, and politicians. It is the same tried and true gameplay that is full of huge dunks, leveling shoves, and on fire three pointers. To say that I was skeptical about the lack of online multiplayer is an understatement, so when I got this, the first thing I did was have a couple friends over I played this with in the arcade and put it to work. Four hours later, the lack of multiplayer was forgotten and I was frantically playing the remix modes and campaign to see what else I can unlock. This is more difficult than the original, which I prefer as the original does not provide much of a challenge anymore and the unlockable content is where the replay value is at.

Gripes: In regards to controls, I was not so fond of the motion controls as getting whipped in the face by the cord when you shoot is less than fun, but when using the classic controller, it felt like I was a teenager again playing on the Genesis. It is fun without being able to play online multiplayer but this is a game where most of the fun comes from playing against friends, but unless you live in a frat house or have a bunch of roommates into basketball games, you will not get a lot of multiplayer games in. This is solely my opinion and I am sure many will disagree, but some of the bugs and glitches from the arcade or original would have been nice, especially in regards to being on fire, as it is a lot easier to lose your fire streak. Some challenges can be incredibly hard to the point where you play over and over waiting for the computer to make a mistake so you complete the challenge and move on to the next.

Overall, NBA Jam is a lot of fun, online or not. Knowing that online will be available on the 360 or PS3 versions, it would be hard to switch consoles and start over again after putting in the numerous hours on the Wii version to unlock all that’s available. However, don’t write off this version of the remake as once you start unlocking teams, characters, and modes, it will be hard to turn off, especially if the Wii is your main gaming console.

Mashbuttons.com gives EA Sports NBA Jam an 8 out of 10.

EA Sports NBA Jam is available now for the Nintendo Wii.

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