NBA 2K3 Review (PS2)

NBA 2K3 is unparalleled, but not perfect.

Best Simulation
This is the finest basketball simulation game to date. Its good shooting, blocking and stealing percentages, the way players celebrate upon getting a dunk, small things like the way players react when they bump into another player during a pick, or when they're saving a loose ball going out of bounds - all these make this game the basketball simulation game. It does come with a few flaws though:

The Tie Score Bug
Bug Alert! It's possible to have a tie final score if you select the "Simulate to End" option. It usually surfaces if you play a weaker team against a much stronger team and choose the said option mid-game while the weaker team has a small lead (3-5 points).

How it happened: I started a season and played several games. I was in the middle of a game between the Celtics and the Lakers, when it seemed like would be difficult to beat the opponent. When I got a 5-point lead in the middle of the second quarter, I took the "Simulate to End" option, hoping that the AI would give the win to my team. But to my surprise, the closing score was a tie.

Some Nasty Stuff
a. Occassional choppiness - especially when camera passes through the light on the top of several arenas.
b. The playoffs mode does not allow you to customize the seeding. The seeds will still depend upon the simulation of a season.
c. Only a limited number of plays are available.
d. Sometimes, the ball goes haywire for no apparent reason at all.
d. Even when not tightly pressured, just having your man a few feet away from the opposing player receiving the inbound pass, the computer will commit a turnover since the receipient will be out of bounds

Still the Best in Its Class
These things are not meant to discourage you from playing the game. They are simply minor flaws that you could readily ignore. I can safely say that the benchmark for basketball simulation now goes to NBA2k3. No other game comes close.

Rating: Great [ 4/5 ]

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