The 21st installment in the NBA 2K franchise finally dropped last weekend as thousands, if not millions, of gamers were able to get their hands on a copy of NBA 2K20.
While many were quick to provide their feedback on the gameplay and features, here at Raptors Uprising, we’ve been able to put together an informative Q & A game review on 2K20 thanks to an exclusive interview with three of the biggest names in the NBA 2K community.
YouTube star Agent 00 joined Raptors Uprising professionals Kenny Got Work and Sick x 973 to share their early thoughts on the 2K franchise’s newest video game.
Q: What’s new about 2K20 in particular compared to past years?
Kenny Got Work: The first thing that I noticed is the movement. You have to be more in control of your player. It’s harder to stop-and-go, and the dribble moves are much different than last year.
Sick x 973: There’s a lot more badges in 2K20. Defensively, there’s a lot more badges. Rebounding as well: instead of just having hustle-rebounder, there’s rebound-chaser which is essentially that. There’s box-out. There’s worm. So you get what I’m saying. The mechanics and whole movement system of the game is also different. Right now, they have the passing lanes very low, so you can’t get these crazy lunge-steals or crazy pass steal animations. So, the gameplay is really different right now. There’s going to be a lot to adjust to.
Agent 00: There’s a lot that’s new. There’s a lot that’s returned. The gameplay is completely different. It’s slower than it was last year. And simple things, as well, like in previous years you automatically unlocked the jump shot creator when you hit 75 overall. Now you have to play months of MyCareer before you unlock it — and even when you do, you can’t customize it because that’s a badge now. So I’m still learning the game, but I haven’t truly experienced what it’s like to play fully yet because I’m still in the process of getting my character all its badges.
Last day to go outside before NBA 2K20 releases…
— Agent (@CallMeAgent00) September 4, 2019
Q: What’s your favourite feature of NBA 2K20?
Kenny Got Work: I like the game. Right now, I’m locked in on the MyCareer and getting my player right. It feels similar, but I think they added a lot of things for the casual player — not the professional player. For instance, the 3v3 mode may be built towards the casual player.
Sick x 973: My favourite feature right now is the new 3v3 Pro-Am mode.
Agent 00: I’m a content creator, so for me, it’s the game chat. In 2K18, you couldn’t even talk to the other team, which sucked because it made it difficult to create content. In 2K19, you could talk your team and the other team but the audio quality was abysmal; I had amazing microphones connected to my PS4 and it still wasn’t clear, so I had to resort to PlayStation party chat. But then you can’t talk to the other people in the game, so it made it difficult for content. In 2K20, it’s way, way better. If you have a horrible mic, there’s nothing that’s going to save you. But if you have a good mic, it sounds crystal clear. So in terms of making videos, I’m super excited to just hop into game chat and not worry about having people’s ears bleeding when they end up watching my videos because the mic quality sucks.
Q: When building your MyPlayer, are you building more towards badges or attributes?
Kenny Got Work: Badges. The more badges you can get, the better your player is.
Sick x 973: I think badges are more important, but you need attributes as well. So I’d say that overall you’re building for both. For example, if you have a default 85 player and you have the badges, you’ll probably be better than the 95 overall without any badges.
Agent 00: Mostly badges. I already maxed out the attributes that matter like shooting and driving. I mean, it’ll help to get attributes because that could improve some of the interior defence or rebounding, but I have a stretch big so, for me, some of that stuff isn’t that vital; I’m going to suck at defence regardless because that was not what my build was built to do, but the badges are so incredibly important this year. For example, this year if you shoot an all-white release, it’s a lot more inconsistent if you don’t have the flexible release badge. I just found that out yesterday, so I kind of pivoted and that’s the badge I’m focusing on instead of range extender. But yeah, I’m entirely doing badges for the next couple of days playing MyCareer.
2k19 will go down as being just as good as 2k17 when its all said and done
— Jerry (@Sick_x_973) September 4, 2019
Q: What’s your favourite archetype build or position to use early on?
Kenny Got Work: Right now, I’m using an offensive threat at point guard, which is a playmaking shot-creator. It seems as though everybody else is using a playmaking slasher though. Most point guards are using the 6’5 playmaking slasher, which they can use to get to the rim and dunk. Me, though, I’m more of like a Hall of Fame limitless three-point shooter.
Sick x 973: Centre. I’m using the glass-cleaning lockdown, which focuses on rebounding and defence. It’s also maxed out in the athletic department, so your standing dunk and your shot close is really high. That’s my favourite one right now, but I’m working on a shooting build also. I’m trying to get these badges though, and sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t, so I’m just waiting for the game to fix that so I can see which player I like more.
Agent 00: I have the stretch-big right now, but one of my friends from L.A. called me with a facilitating sharpshooter at small forward. At first, I was skeptical because it didn’t necessarily sound like it’d be usable just based off of the name, but he showed me the attributes and the badges, and based off what I see on paper, that looks like an incredible build for the people who want the 95 open-shot three, but also want the ability to play defence and to drive. It’s like the perfect all-around build, and it’s at the small forward spot, which a lot of people thought was going to be irrelevant when the game dropped, so there’s still a lot we have to figure out.
Q: What position do you think is going to be the most important in 2K20 and why?
Kenny Got Work: None. It’s going to take all five players. I don’t think there is a most important in 2K20, but if I had to pick, I’d say you always have to start with point guard. But it’ll definitely take all five players this year.
Sick x 973: I’d say that probably point guard and centre are going to be the most important in the game because the PG has the ball in his hands the majority of the game and has to make a lot of decisions and then the centre really has to protect the rim and rebound while ensuring they’re in the right position all the time. Those two players are probably the most involved in the game.
Agent 00: I would say probably big men again. Not much has changed in the shot-contest system, kind of like 19 and 18. If you have a taller player, you’ll get away with a lot.
Q: Defence or Offense: what’s going to be more important in 2K20?
Kenny Got Work: Defence, always. Defence wins championships.
Sick x 973: I can’t tell because no one has their badges yet! One game offense will look tough; one game defence will look tough. You can’t tell without the badges.
Agent 00: It depends. It depends on the badges. There’s that clamp badge which feels like it could be one of the most overpowered badges in the game. The pick dodger badge looks like it could be really useful because brick wall has taken a huge buff this year. I’m honestly the wrong person to ask for that because I have about five or six defensive upgrades that I’m holding off on. I’m waiting to see what the lockdowns do because the lockdowns are the ones that can figure out which defensive upgrades are the most important. After that, we’ll see.
Q: If you were able to, what sort of changes would you make to NBA 2K20?
Kenny Got Work: Right now, I’m having problems with my progression because I was playing the game and I noticed I was getting 0 points for two of my badges. I’m playing and trying to upgrade my badges, but the games aren’t counting towards them. So it’s like I’m playing for no reason. They definitely need to come out with a patch to fix that. The retail version is always different than later on when they begin to release patches, so it’s a little bit early to make a firm assessment.
Sick x 973: First of all, the badge progressions are way too slow. I don’t know when I’m actually going to be able to see the full capacity of the game because it takes forever to get the full capacity of the badges. There are some glitches with the game where it doesn’t give you progression points sometimes, and they need to fix that because sometimes you’re playing the game for nothing. I would also like to see the passing lanes boosted a little bit — if you’re right there you should get the steal. But overall, it’s okay.
Agent 00: Early on, I can’t tell if there are things in the game that I like or don’t like, like the game speed. A lot of people complain about game speed, but it might one of those things, where it’s like a new 2K, get used to it. Adapt and adjust. Or maybe they should upgrade it. I’m kind of split. Every person I talk to has a different take on it and my stretch big and super slow and sluggish. Ideally, I think it’d be more fun if that wasn’t the case, but see, I have that same mentality towards a lot of aspects of the game: I’m not sure. There’s a lot that’s promising about it. There’s also some things that’s disappointing about it like the fact that there’s no new neighbourhood this year. They just brought back the one from last year. But all-in-all, it’s early.
— Raptors Uprising GC (@RaptorsGC) September 6, 2019
Q: Finally, rate the game early on out of five stars.
Kenny Got Work: Right now, I’ll rate it three stars out five. I like the game; it’s cool. But right now, you get a three!
Sick x 973: I think it’s too early to give it stars, but just off the MyPlayer mode and building your player I’d give it two stars. Gameplay wise, I haven’t been able to play with the badges as yet, but I’d have to say four stars.
Agent 00: Naw, see that’s a setup! I can’t rate the game because I don’t even know what I think of the game yet! Give me a couple of weeks and I’ll probably have an answer for you.