NBA 2K21 is almost upon us and once again the fine folks at Visual Concepts are all set to deliver another solid iteration of their premier basketball simulator. This year, NBA 2K21 will be having a whole host of exciting new changes and additions to the game from the revamped shot stick, to the exciting new My Career as well as the brand new Neighborhood, My Beach!
GG Network was able to participate in a virtual Q&A with Visual Concepts and 2K as they took us through the various new changes as well as their methodology in making them happen.
First off, Pro Stick has gotten a completely new rework. Instead of holding down the stick and releasing at the top of the player’s jump, players are going to have to manually align the aim reticle with the target once shooting is triggered to get a perfect release. Also depending on your coverage or where you take the shot, the target will be at different points in the shot meter. This frees up the stick to be able to do more dribble moves and combo different moves together easily.
Mike Wang, Gameplay Director at Visual Concepts, stated the new Pro Stick is an improvement from its previous iteration in NBA 2K17 and is a welcome change that emphasizes the importance of player skill.
“We found [before in 2K17] that people found it easy to kind of groove the stick and find out where the point was and again get that perfect release. So we had to tone it back until it basically wasn’t worth anything. In 2K21, the big difference is that the aim point is dynamic so the skill matters.”
Perhaps the thing that I’m most excited about every year is the new My Career, which is always really well done in terms of production and storytelling. This year’s My Career is called The Long Shadow which features the story of Junior, the son of an exceptional basketball player looking to find his own path to greatness. Junior’s journey begins in college where players can play for one of the 10 collegiate ball clubs fully licensed by 2k21. From there he’ll encounter a cast of characters from his College coach played by Djimon Hounsou, cover athletes Damian Lillard and Zion Williamson as well as many others on his way to being a legend in the League.
Finally, the new neighborhood 2K Beach will be the new hub for your custom My Players. 2K Beach will have many of the familiar and fan-favorite features of the old neighborhood such as the house SWAG’s, The REC, NBA Store, and more but will be dressed up with a brand new flavor and atmosphere of the bustling southern California beaches.
Chien Yu, Director of Product Development weighed in on the best parts of 2K Beach:
“2K Beach is inspired by the local beach communities here in southern California. The team was really motivated to capture the look and feel of our beaches. We’re very excited by what we built. 2K beach is bright and colorful and in this CoVid world that we’ve all been living in, it’s been really refreshing for the team and I to be able to be outdoors and play park games, ProAm games and event games in the sun.”
The Q & A portion of the press conference also addressed some burning question from the press some of the most notable and exciting were:
Will NBA 2K21 reflect the current state of the NBA i.e. The Bubble, Virtual Audiences, and the shortened season.
Eric Boenisch (Executive Producer): “We made 2K21 to take players back to the NBA arenas and capture that atmosphere and that immersion. But obviously, if things change (and continue), we always adapt to be as authentic as we can be. “
With huge strides in including the WNBA in 2K21, are there any plans in expanding the WNBA such as creating your own MyPlayer?
Eric Boenisch: I will have to answer with a “Stay Tuned for that answer”
How do you feel about players using NBA 2K to show solidarity with current social issues such as Black Lives Matter?
Eric Boenisch: “Obviously, we stand against social injustice. Honestly, we’re very happy to see that players inside NBA 2k have a way to respectfully express their views and that’s just something we here at 2k are very proud.”
NBA 2K21 will be available worldwide on PlayStation® 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch™, Windows PC and Google Stadia on September 4, 2020 and is available for pre-order today! NBA 2K21 will also be available on PlayStation®5 and Xbox Series X as a launch title this holiday. Look for more details on https://nba.2k.com/.
Look out for our review coming soon!
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