NBA 2K13 wears the crown when it comes to the success of basketball games on both the consoles and the PC, it has fought off the competition and stands proud on the shelves bringing with it gameplay worthy of the highlight reel.
As a complete stranger to the world of basketball, picking up this game was a case of serendipity, a chance encounter whereby the outcome was spectacular to say the least. It has been the catalyst for a sporting obsession.
Straight out of the case and into the disk drive you can see that plenty of time and attention has been put into the production of this game. The backgrounds, menus and overall feel of the presentation are visually stunning as far as menus and backgrounds can be.
As for the in-play presentation, the attractiveness is reiterated with good rendering, lighting and general eye pleasing on-court appearance. There are definitely no faults in terms of the graphics on NBA 2K13, and they certainly compete with the more popular EA titles such as FIFA, Madden and NHL.
One thing that intrigued me was that it has been executively produced by American rapper Jay-Z, his influence is clear in the game through the artistic imagery in the menus and the choices of music in the soundtrack. This is not to say by any means that he has taken the game and made it a format whereby he can sell himself, if anything it has added unique touches and a different feel that put this NBA game a notch above the competitors.
In terms of opportunities this game brings with it three key game modes that strike me as the pillars of the title. These are the quick play option, the Association and 'My Career'.
As soon as you load up the game you are asked to formulate your own professional basketball player. The customisation options are fairly standard in terms of appearance and it isn't difficult to make an avatar of yourself or someone who looks completely different and is maybe a good few inches taller than you.
The wide array of customisation options even trickles down to your shot animations and play-styles and this opens up many doors in terms of how you want to evolve your professional basketball player into one of the NBA legends.
This will be your My Career player who gets better with each game by earning credits towards attributes. This means you can choose exactly how you want to play. This is a freedom that is always welcome in contemporary titles as players look for their choices effecting their game as opposed to more linear concepts.
If all the fine tuning of your player gets a bit too much you can also take on the other game modes, such as taking your favourite team to the top or just playing your friend in a quick one on one both online and offline.
My only gripe with NBA 2K13 is the clunky navigation of the menus that could be more clear cut, especially for the new players.
Worth every penny, a staple to your gaming diet if you are a basketball fan and certainly something worth trying if you haven't already. This game holds my undivided attention from the moment I switch it on to the moment I have to switch it off. With gameplay, presentation and production quality taken into account I give this game...