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Quick Look: NBA 2K20

Alex Navarro is a beautiful basketball boy who can alley oop with the best of them.

Sit back and enjoy as the Giant Bomb team takes an unedited look at the latest video games.

Sep. 12 2019

Cast: Vinny, Alex, Abby

Posted by: Abby

In This Episode:

NBA 2K20

87 Comments

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Baelrun

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Let’s ball!

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ironscimitar

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Bet it all on red!

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mcmax3000

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I'm excited to see the annual interruption of David Aldridge.

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bigwinnerx

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The barber is the dude from New Girl, right?

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bathala

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Here we go

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kennneth

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"Could Spud Webb Dunk?" - I've never been so angry.

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UnrealDP

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NBA alex looks like he barely survived a bee attack

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vikingdeath1

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That's a Game Face I know I can fall in love with.

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SchrodngrsFalco

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Vinny being skeptical of Spud Webb in the Dunk Contest is hilarious.

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matiaz_tapia

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that Dadlex needs to cut it with the red meat. He seems unhealthily flushed.

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MentokTheMindtaker

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Kinda surprised no one recognized Thomas Middleditch.

The idea of a nerdy sports agent is kinda funny;

considering sports agents are probably borderline socipaths...

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donchipotle

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The barber is Lamorne Morris from New Girl, by the way.

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Tiamatsword22

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New feature where they play NBA 2K until Vinny successfully pulls off an alley-oop

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AWKWARDL0SER

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The WNBA addition while nice still feels many steps behind what NBA Live 19 did, in general NBA Live 19 was an excellent single player basketball experience and has no real Michael transactions aside from a few clothing items you could buy but everything to upgrading your player to 95% of clothing was reasonable to earn and you can make a 7’3” female stretch 5! I know that’s a stupid thing to appreciate but dammit it meant a lot to me

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ice_queen

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Edited By ice_queen

that's one of the better looking game face alexes for sure, actually. i'm not sure if it really actually looks like him, but at least it's not a freakshow

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The_Nubster

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Edited By The_Nubster

it extremely matters what you stand for

Edit: Hey how does everyone feel about the tattoo thing that Alex brings up? I have a lot of tattoos and I've never really thought about it. I'll have to ask my artist next time I go in to get his stance on it as well.

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threeOCT

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Edited By threeOCT

Honestly, how has there not been some sort of series where Abby just makes herself in a bunch of character creators?

Also, does Desus and Mero tell you to suck their dicks from the back?

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CristianARG

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i hate that they call your character "Che"

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steveurkel

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40 years later he's back in the game

Lmao!

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bed

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my favorite NBA 2K running gag is how consistently grotesque Alex's myplayer looks year to year

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GoodEyeClosed

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Did Abby just confuse Spike Lee and Spike Jonze? Now I want to see Spike Lee direct a Bjork music video.

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KissTheDevil

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10 plus years of Giantbomb and they still can't turn on subtitles beforehand.

Keep up the good work.

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threeOCT

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In what Slam Dunk contest did they use a trampoline?

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OMGFather

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Hey, this casino game looks like it has a pretty good basketball mini-game in it.

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mems1224

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@cristianarg: it's not as bad as the year they called you Frequency Vibrations

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AWKWARDL0SER

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It really irks me 2K removed all Pride references in the WNBA, it’s legit all over the place on the court and other places and they can’t have not done so intentionally

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rapid

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Scanned 2K Alex Navaro is back!

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mb2814

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Edited By mb2814

Winston the Barber aka Prank Sinatra

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threeOCT

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Vinny yelling 'Alley Oop!' like he just learned the word.

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ice_queen

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i also appreciate that everyone in this game makes an effort to pronounce Toronto the way we actually say it. good on them :]

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UnInvincible

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Thanks, David!

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vinny

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@threeoct said:

In what Slam Dunk contest did they use a trampoline?

No Caption Provided

Clearly, the only one that matters!

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BBAlpert

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Thanks, David

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thefizz

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As a basketball fan I really liked these games early on in this generation. But they are lousy with microtransactions. Which made me stop purchasing them. 2K17 felt like the last one where you could turn a blind eye towards that stuff. And that was still difficult.

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Fake_Empire

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There's been 7 dunks in the history of the WNBA so it makes sense that it'd be difficult to do in the game.

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Chilez666

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Alex looks like Homer Simpson from 80's flashback when he had hair

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ZeroCrescent

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Frequency Vibrations vs. The President of Basketball vs. D.J. vs. A.I. vs. Che

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thefizz

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Nodima

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Around the mid-point of this Quick Look, when Alex is explaining how VC works its way into player stats, Vinny asks if that affects online play and Alex begins to explain that it's for cosmetics as well, they kind of talk excitedly around each other and then the conversation ends with "you can't use it in a 1-on-1 NBA situation" or however Alex phrased that. That is true, and for MyTEAM you can't directly purchase cards with VC the way you can with Stubs in MLB The Show's Diamond Dynasty.

BUT, the eSports aspect of this game is directly built off of the character you build in MyCAREER, which is a character built with VC and you can pay to improve, either as Alex did (or would have if the game hadn't been provided by the publisher) via the pre-order bonuses or just purchasing bundles of VC after buying the game. All of the Park modes, online variations of MyPLAYER, use characters that you're meant to develop and upgrade via MyCAREER and other park modes; the VC pays for everything from clothing to dunk packages to player statistics. It's pretty explicitly a pay-to-win system.

All that aside, I won't go into my usual ranting about how both the NBA 2K series has fallen apart for old school Association mode fans like me, or how the press continuously fails to cover these games comprehensively by pretty much only concerning themselves with the offline, story-driven aspects of MyPLAYER. I'll just say that it was pretty hard to watch the first bit of that WNBA game, with everyone begging those players to dunk and alley oop, when likely none of them have the stats to do so (Zahui B. has a quote about being unable to dunk out there). It felt a lot like sitting in a bar in the mid-2000s and the sarcastic way NBA fans would consume the WNBA back then, except entirely earnest.

As a huge basketball fan, this was a weird one for me, since it wasn't as funny as usual and just felt very uninformative if not sometimes flat out wrong. I'm glad they had fun recording this though, maybe I'm just too disappointed by this series to see it for what it is anymore either.

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WulfBane

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@threeoct said:

Honestly, how has there not been some sort of series where Abby just makes herself in a bunch of character creators?

Yeah, this should totally be a Extra Life segment. I'd be on board. They did it last year with WWE.

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ghost_cat

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I'm not sure if you can make some sort of note like this with the wiki tools, but this is the first time a well-known luxury fashion designer has ever appeared in a video game (Fear of God).

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mems1224

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@nodima: while they haven't made drastic changes to the franchise mode I still think it's one of the best in sports games. It does suck though that it gets overlooked each year compared to the money making modes.

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Wheels1993

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@kissthedevil: it doesnt turn them off by default and i had to wait 30 mins to get to a menu to even turn them on.. chill out bud

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FunkMasterPope

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@threeoct: @threeoct: I think Vinny is thinking of some Globetrotters. As a non basketball fan I doubt he's ever watched the actual dunk contest which in his defense, does get a bit ridiculous

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ahifi

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I don't watch basketball, I don't know who David Aldridge is, but I do know that, once a year, I am reminded that David Aldridge is a man treated with the utmost contempt by his broadcast colleagues, Alex Navarro and Vincent Caravella.

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Nodima

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@mems1224: I just don't think the game plays like the game we watch on TV anymore, that's my primary issue over the lack of additions or nuances (or legacy bug fixes) to the League mode. The game feels like they're trying to squeeze modern basketball into a game that's still mostly designed for the mid-2000s era of ISO ball. I finally caved and bought 2K19 when it was on sale for $4 after the Finals and only needed a handful of games before I uninstalled it; the game just doesn't feel like it's emulating what I see on the court the way it did back in the grit & grind days of the 2000s.

It's why the MyCareer stuff has always been a no-sell for me also - how anyone can play that mode, or watch that mode, and feel like it represents basketball at all is insane to me.

I will say I'm not so sure I'd play the League mode much even if it were fixed at this point anyway; I fell hard for Diamond Dynasty three years ago to the point it got me back into reading about baseball again, and I listen to even more podcasts about baseball than I do basketball at this point even though I barely watch the sport. MyTEAM has a tremendous amount of potential to rope a guy like me into it, but it is the most disgusting display of greed and gluttony I can think of in gaming.

It's weird because Diamond Dynasty has emulated aspects of MyTEAM over the years, like Future and Monthly versions of players, but because it's baseball it doesn't feel as impactful as it does in basketball. There might be a 99 overall Ivan Rodriguez based on his his entire career out there but if I'm batting .300 for solid power with an 84 overall Benito Santiago based on his performance in the '85 NLCS, I don't feel the pressure to upgrade.

On the other hand, when you're struggling to penetrate defenses, finish dunks or get stops on defense with a 82 overall LeBron that's given no context like being based on his rookie year, with no live/2020 card to compare him against, on top of the game's challenges that reward the scummiest tactics of 2K Ranked Online matches from 15 years ago rather than actual basketball, and it just feels like MyTEAM is designed to exploit players like me, whereas Diamond Dynasty is built to celebrate the history of baseball.

So, there's that rant out of me one more time. I look forward to making it again next year!

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walters420

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Best 2k in a while don’t @ me