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Matt Keller
19 May, 2007

NBA 2K7 Review

PS3 Review | Can you forgive Shaq for Kazaam?
Everybody loves ports. We love them even more when they’re six months late with barely any visible difference and we have to review them on our hard-earned weekends. Okay, NBA 2K7 for the PlayStation 3 isn’t necessarily a late port per se – it did come out around the same time as the Xbox 360 versions in North America, but we crazy PAL region folk get to endure lengthy waits for no intelligible reason (well, international intellectual property rights management issues, but we’ll save that rant for another day).

There’s one important thing to note about NBA 2K7 before we get stuck into the finer details of the port: it’s easily one of the best basketball games in years. The gameplay is really spot on, the AI is fantastic and the game sports excellent visual and aural presentation. The PlayStation 3 version does not really change any of the above points for the worse – there’s really no reason to worry about this version of the game unless the PlayStation 3 is the only console you own, thus making any major comparisons between versions moot.

You're not allowed out until you apologise for Shaq Fu.

You're not allowed out until you apologise for Shaq Fu.
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NBA 2K7 is jam packed with content – quick play mode, 24/7, the Association, tournament play and online modes ensure that there’s enough game to keep hoop fans interested for many months. The Association is your typical franchise mode, but offers plenty of depth for those interested in playing lengthy seasons, trading players and building their favourite NBA team into a '90s Bulls-esque dynasty. 24/7 is something of a story mode where the player creates a baller for a typical rags-to-riches story. After running into Shaquille O’Neal on a street court (while he’s getting some much needed free throw practice) and defeating him in a challenge, your player gets to compete in tournaments across the globe. For a secondary mode, it seems just as good as some of those games that focus on this type of scenario (NBA Street: Homecourt), but some hilarious voice acting and silly plotlines will see that most players stick to the real game.

The game’s online component is quite robust, offering a variety of play modes from a simple one on one street game to a full season for up to 30 players. Solid net code makes the game fully playable, and the player feedback system is a great idea which if used correctly should stop those fools who like to quit 30 seconds before the end of a match when they’re getting their butts handed to them.

For those who played NBA 2K6, the on court play in the 2007 game has not changed that much, but it has been tweaked significantly, resulting in a much tighter play experience. The flow of play is very smooth, thanks largely to some clever control decisions – shooting can now be done via the right analogue stick, while tricky moves such as spins and cross dribbling are handled by a combination of R2 and the left analogue stick. Of course, the player’s skills come into play when executing isomotion techniques – you won’t have Shaq dribbling between his legs or executing spin moves with any sort of finesse. The emulation of real players' skills and techniques continues with the signature animations – it’s not something that a casual player will notice, but will be appreciated by more hardcore NBA fans. The PlayStation 3 version of the game features a few more signature moves than the Xbox 360 release, but it’s really a superficial difference.

Where NBA 2K7 differs from reality - nobody likes the Clippers.

Where NBA 2K7 differs from reality - nobody likes the Clippers.
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Probably the only major difference between the two next generation versions of NBA 2K7 is in the way free throws are handled. The PlayStation 3’s SIXAXIS motion detection is used in place of the analogue sticks for free throws – simply pull the pad back towards you, and move it forward in a smooth and timely motion, and you’ll get the bucket (even with Shaq). It’s not a really important feature, but it does make those shots from the line a little more tolerable.

NBA 2K7 is still impressive on a technical level on the PlayStation 3, but there's a slight drop in quality on the texturing of the players, the load times are longer and the frame rate is not fixed to 60 frames per second. On the other hand, there’s support for 1080p resolution for those with the requisite set. The quality of the digital recreation of the players tends to reflect that player’s popularity, so Shaq, Yao and Kobe tend to look a lot more realistic than your typical benchwarmer.

The animation is still sensational, particularly when it comes to transitions between moves. Kenny Harlan and Kenny Smith provide the commentary services, with Craig Sager on the sideline; play-by-play isn’t really up to scratch though, with very little in the way of play analysis, and a distinct lack of variety. The soundtrack is quite good on the other hand - Planet Rock by Afrika Bambaataa & Soul Sonic Force is the title track, with some other quality tunes such as Lyrics to Go by A Tribe Called Quest making an appearance. The weird thing is that 70% of the tracks featured in the game are actually switched off by default in the options menu, which makes the soundtrack seem repetitive if you don’t fix it.

While slightly inferior to the Xbox 360 version on a technical level, the PlayStation 3 version of NBA 2K7 is still a fantastic basketball game – so if you’re a PlayStation 3 owner in need of a hoops fix, this is the way to go. The depth of play modes, quality of gameplay and robust online options should have any basketball fan entertained for months.
The Score
Still the best basketball game on shelves, but slightly less polished than its Xbox 360 equivalent. 8
Looking to buy this game right now? PALGN recommends www.Play-Asia.com.

Related NBA 2K7 Content

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18 Oct, 2006 Pay to upload replays.
Australian Gaming Bargains - 10/05/07
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5 Comments
6 years ago
If this is a review of the PS3 port of the game then you might want to put it in the PS3 section and not the XBOX 360 section.
6 years ago
It looks the same as 360..

Im getting a PS3 in 2 months and really want this game.. cant decide which platform though..anyway NBA2K8 will probably be out then lol.
6 years ago
I got the US version of this on PS3 and it's awesome. Took a few games to get used to the gameplay as it is a lot different to the PS2 version of NBA 2K7. I will be playing this all the way until 2K8 comes out and online mode is simply awesome... too addictive.
6 years ago
This is my most played game on the 360.

I still find it really hard to score, but perhaps this is to do with the realism.

Fantastic game, my two gripes are that 90% of the player's faces are terrible and the ridiculous menu system which uses the right trigger to bring up menus.
6 years ago
Are there any Xbox 360/Playstation 3 ports that are actually better on PS3?

A lot of the recent reviews have mentioned that the 360 version is superior...
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| More
  Pre-order or buy:
    PALGN recommends: www.Play-Asia.com

Australian Release Date:
  Out Now
European Release Date:
  Out Now
Publisher:
  2K Sports
Developer:
  Visual Concepts
Players:
  1-4

Extra:
SIXAXIS control
Online play

Read more...
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