On September 27, 2010, the folks over at 2K Games held a developer call from 5pm – 6pm EST. Erick Boenisch, Producer of NBA 2K11 and Rob Jones, Gameplay Director of NBA 2k11 were at hand to answer questions about what we should expect next week when the game releases. After a few quick introductions, the session went underway.
The call started off pretty generic with very broad questions, and they were along the lines of ‘what makes this year’s edition so great?’ and ‘what are the biggest differences from its competition?’ The answers were as broad as the questions with highlights on the game’s animation and stating that NBA 2K11 is the complete package in terms of basketball video games. Soon after, the Michael Jordan questions came rolling in. The Jordan Challenge Mode is revealed to be 10 challenges that are all full 8-minute quarter games. Players will not be locked into playing as Jordan, but rather, as the entire Chicago Bulls. Players will be recreating the entire game.
Jones was then asked about the signature moves in NBA 2K11, and reveals that specially created animations were added to cater to Jordan’s unique style and tendencies. Boenisch then proudly announces that the classic teams will be fully integrated into the Franchise Mode. It was something that fans wanted and they got it. However, classic teams will not be allowed to be played online.
Taking a break from Jordan questions, questions about graphics and animations were brought up. It is estimated that about 2,500 – 3,500 new animations were added in this year’s edition, and I’m definitely not complaining. That is a whole lot of animations! When frame rate issues were then asked, Boenisch responded that NBA 2K11 will run at a smooth and steady frame rate no matter which camera is used during a game. Problem solved, folks.
The press conference feature was soon brought up, and it is explained to create the personality of your player. The answers you give determine the attitude and persona of your character in My Player Mode. You can either be a bitter ball hog or a gracious team player. It’s cool to hear that you have much more options outside of being a good player on the court. This year’s My Career Mode is not only about playing game after game. NBA 2K11‘s My Career Mode is also about the lifestyle and what happens between games.
When the topic of NBA Today was brought up, it is explained that there will be a full halftime show, much more dynamic commentary, and can even reference real life NBA scores when connected online. Franchise Mode is also explained to be much smarter this year. The game will recognize that teams need to be structured properly, just like in real life. This means no more teams with 9 useless point guards, and zero small forwards. It will also be much more engaging than just flipping through menus and stats. The Wii version is mentioned to be have the complete online experience, and speaking of Wii, PlayStation Move controls is fully integrated into the game. The entire game can be played with the PlayStation Move controls for PS3.
The call ends with miscellaneous questions and answers, a lot of which are given repetitious answers. Thank yous and a call for follow-up questions close out this developer call, and now it’s time for the waiting game. I look forward to seeing you all on the NBA 2K11 courts come October 5th.