EA, Just Accept the L

Posted: November 25, 2013 in Gaming
Tags: , , , ,

Electronic Arts (better known as EA) has quite the storied franchise. EA Sports, in particular, has been in the lives of millions of gamers for decades. Many of us grew up on John Madden Football, NHL, and Bulls vs Blazers. The latter title, which evolved into the more commonly known NBA Live series, is actually why I am here today. NBA Live will always hold a special place in the hearts and minds of those who played it in the past. I have a friend who, til this very day, keeps an SNES and a copy of NBA Live ‘95 on deck in case anyone wants to attempt to beat his undefeated Golden State Warriors. The mark of true greatness, however, is knowing when it’s time to hang it up. EA, NBA Live, that time has come.

Back in 1999, while everyone was getting ready for the “end of the world,” some upstart sports company called 2K dropped NBA 2K. At the time, I was playing Live and had little concern for anyone trying to copy the greatness that was EA’s basketball masterpiece. A couple of years later, I heard the mumblings of rebellion among my peers: “Yo, this 2K game is ill. Live is kinda wack now.” What!?! Blasphemy!! How could anything be better than ANYTHING EA Sports releases!?! I, of course, ignored this and went on playing season after season and franchise after franchise of NBA Live. That is until one fateful year. It was about halfway through the 2005 NBA season when I decided, “Hey, that 2K game is pretty cheap now, let me check it out,” and everything changed.  I was blown away by literally every aspect of the game. The fluidity of the players, the graphics, the gameplay, the television broadcast presentation, it all came together so beautifully, so effortlessly. I wept. I felt that I had not only been lying to myself but also to everyone who ever asked me which game was better. I had sold myself short since 1999 by not buying 2K. I was now awake and would never close my eyes to the truth again (which I said in my Chris Jericho voice).

From that point on, or at least it seemed this way to me, everyone I knew and didn’t know made the switch to NBA 2K. So much so that EA Sports stopped making NBA Live. It hurt to know that I had my part in its demise, but if they wanted to continue to make basketball games, they would have to step their game up. It was their own fault for allowing themselves to become so complacent. And with that, all was quiet on the basketball front.

Until now. Until EA decided to jump back in (four years later) with a new NBA Live game for current and next-gen consoles. Well you know what EA, you can’t. Stand down EA, DAMMIT I SAID STAND DOWN!! You lost. I know you guys are not used to taking L’s, but 2K handed you a major one. They just make a better game. Point blank, period. What makes matters worse is you bastards hype up the game after ALL this time, then give people a sub-par title. Did anyone tell you the world kept turning without you? EA picked up EXACTLY where it left off with robotic movements, plastic looking players and public access television presentation. When 2K attempted to get back into football after a three year absence, it too tried to just rehash what worked at the time, and it didn’t work, at all. All-Pro Football 2K8 was a re-skinned version of NFL 2K5, but at least 2K tried to repackage a game that worked. EA, you lazy pricks, repackaged a gameplay style and presentation that ran you out of the basketball. Oh how the mighty have fallen.

You spit on your own legacy with NBA Live ‘14, EA, and you should just calmly sit the entire fuck down for that. Redirect that money and make sure when you lose the NFL license—because you will—someone else doesn’t come along and knock you out of that box as well. You might win some—hell, in your case you might when most—but dammit, you definitely just lost this one.

Don’t just take my word for it. Gamespot was nice enough to put it side by side for us. *Caution, this is going to get ugly*


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