With just a matter of days until NBA 2K12 arrives the details on the new Online Association mode have finally arrived. Online Association essentially takes the standard offline franchise mode to a multi-user environment allowing for the possibility of all teams being controlled while those that aren’t are handled by the CPU. Users can participate in up to three different Online Associations at a time.
There are a number of options available – from choosing a private or public league to the settings. Seasons can be designated with 14/29/58/82 games, quarter length, difficulty, and advancement pace are all adjustable. It does not appear that there are any sliders in Online Association as it has not been mentioned. Transactions can be handed through the console or on the website launching next week.
The idea behind the advancement period is one that will work for some people and not others. It reduces flexibility in how a league will move forward – automatically simming any uncompleted games when the timer runs out. That may provide motivation for owners or it could lead others to quit when they are unable to get their game/s in on time and find them simmed. While it will keep things moving along it also will prevent a league from speeding through more briskly. Better would have been an additional option for the commish to “delay” advancement or progress to the next stage early. The flex scheduling however is clearly beneficial in that it provides more opportunity to play games within the designated period especially if the league is user-heavy.
Trades require league approval – which has the potential to be annoying depending on the owners involved but could also help to prevent blatant cheating amongst teams. The off-season consists of the NBA Draft, rookie signing, and free agency. All of those events are considered to be ‘live’ and are intended for all owners to be present. Those who can’t appear will be able to set up lists in advance for the CPU to take over with. Continue reading NBA 2K12 Developer Insight #13- Online Association
Since 2K Sports has yet to discuss either Association mode or online play – and NBA 2K12 is set to release in less than a week – it’s no surprise that now details are starting to leak out from individuals who have obtained the game early.
It’s far from the most ideal way to collect information or check out gameplay videos especially since they all seem to be coming from cell phone cameras so far. This is the situation 2K created though by holding off so long (retailers don’t even have full feature lists to promote or educate with) as they lose control over how the info ends up coming out.
From these two videos below we can ascertain the following regarding NBA 2K12:
•Association mode looks to be largely unchanged at least as it relates to playing in the standard offline manner. We do know however that there will be Online Association for the first time ever which represents the big advancement this year. Users will be able to compete in the franchise against other users and/or CPU controlled teams. Outside of that the structure to how it will all work remains shrouded in mystery.
•The website nba2k.com will be launching (presumably next week coinciding with release) and will feature the ability to manage Online Associations – completing trades, managing rosters, and running drafts. The site will also house uploaded highlights, screenshots, and ‘My Player’ career mode progress/stats.
•There are no online leaderboards found within the game menus. Instead they will be located on the website.
•There are no online lobby rooms. Team-Up looks to be easier to organize however.
•There is still no ability to save playbooks for use online.
•’Crew’ mode online appears to have been removed. That would then suggest that the only way to play online w/ one’s My Player may be through the paid DLC that was discovered yesterday.
When the news was first reported that historic teams would not be available to play online in NBA 2K12 that was a big disappointment. Considering that rosters are largely the same as last year due to the lockout they would have provided some much needed variety and been the incentive to play online. 2K Sports didn’t really comment on the subject to explain why that was – but now it appears to be evident. The option will be available through paid downloadable content called “The Legends Showcase”.
The image above was tweeted out by someone with a copy of the game and it shows what is being included in the DLC. An outdoor environment in Times Square is the locale for what will be historic team match-ups online and special legend-based challenges. No word on how much the DLC will cost as of yet but it does look like it will be available on release day.
This represents a shift away from the company’s avoidance of holding content to release as DLC – something that was inevitable. This may very well provide value as an add-on but it may not have been the year to go this route considering many consumers don’t view the base product as desirable because of the ongoing lockout.