Lebron NBA2K14 Which team should I be? (part 1)
Most people who play THE game (NBA2K14 – you know that already, I hope, or you’re reading the wrong blog!) will already know which team(s) they might want to land on in My Career. But, I’ll touch on the most obvious tips in the world:
- Pick a team which is weak in the position you want to play at (otherwise you’ll be sat behind a star player waiting forever for that coveted starting role!).
- If you want to land straight on a (real life) title chasing team you want to play badly in the the Rookie Showcase (getting fouled out by deliberately fouling is a shortcut through the process and a good way to get interviewed by the bottom 3 teams), although OKC have a pick at 12 if you’re a SG or C (their weaker positions), and don’t want to “tank” your way into a bad draft pick.
- Personally I’d recommend getting picked by the 76ers just to hear the Santa quote!).
Of course, this post isn’t about My Career mode, it’s about Association Mode. So, with My Career out-of-the-way (something I will return to at a later date), this feature will lay out a few challenges for you to try in association mode. If you’re anything like me you’ll want to try a few different teams over the course of the year (until NBA2K15!), and just want to find a reason to play as any given team, hopefully this series of posts should give you some ideas (there will also be a summary at the end). This may be something I revisit later as the players and teams change over the year (both in the NBA and reflected in NBA2K).
So, who to pick? Some teams (Nets, Bulls, Heat, Thunder) are full of talent and easily capable of winning the title, they are top loaded with talent in the starting positions and well into Luxury Tax with very little (or none; in the case of the Nets) room for bringing in new players. Some are stuck with a lot of 1 star backup players, most of whom you’ll probably want to trade up (although many are worth keeping; there’s an idea for a future article!). There is an added “disadvantage” (if you can call playing as a title contending team a disadvantage!) in that your draft picks are practically worthless, adding little currency to package up with the bad player(s) in your squad. If you’ve only ever played as a top-tier team you’ll probably be amazed at some of the high-value talent you can acquire by packaging up some players and a 1st round pick.
NBA2K14 Start Screen
The real fun is to be had in either teams “oozing” talent (to borrow an in-game phrase), taking over (or creating!) a rebuilding team, taking over a team with a lot of cap space (currently or in the next offseason), or taking over a team full of tradable assets so you can build YOUR dream team. I’m going to present a case for 5 teams, all presented for a different reason, and a challenge packaged with each. The challenges are all-non specific (they all involve eventually building a title-winning squad, with certain conditions attached, but no time frame is in place. This isn’t something you should rush into to “beat”; that’s easy! These will be challenges that will hopefully allow you to enjoy association mode over a period of time, at a pace you choose. You can play every game, or sim them all. You can set the sliders to your liking (although the more “realistic” you play the game the more fun you’ll have. Anyone can dial down to Pro and Casual mode and win the title with pretty much any team in the game. They say that the best way to win in chess is to play a better opponent, and that is how these should be approached. Dial up the difficulty/sliders until you are winning some and losing a realistic-ish amount for the level/grade of your team. It will improve your gameplay, and should make you better in online games).But those top teams are boring (although one or two may feature in a future post). Everybody plays as those teams! You go online and you can guarantee you’ll see the same 3 or 4 teams for the entire year. When you do finally match up with someone who isn’t playing as one of the top teams you almost feel guilty for bringing Miami Heat to a knife fight (to turn a phrase), although (returning to Association Mode) it should be said; there is a different type of difficulty in playing as a top team without any cap space. You might find winning the title is easy for a season or two, but maintaining that superiority, without cheating your way into the high lottery picks or making totally unrealistic trades every season whilst also trying to keep some control over spending is a challenge in itself! Especially if you have a team with aging stars (Nets, Spurs). It can actually be harder in the long-term than taking one of the lowest ranked teams and building through free-agency and trading up draftees.
I’m presuming you’ve already played through some Association Mode with your favourite team and made an impossible team featuring Rose, Harden, KD, Lebron, Howard (or some impossible concoction of players) already. If not, why not?. Get it out of your system! I’m going to be very presumptuous in these challenge sections and tell you how should be playing the game (and that doesn’t include playing the game engine! There is a fine line, but I think you’ll know the difference! Ask yourself, is this something that a real GM does? Is this a trade that would happen in the NBA? Is this team winning (roughly) the amount of games you’d expect them to win during the season? If the answer is no, you’re playing the against the game, instead of playing the game).
Association Mode is perhaps the greatest mode in any sports game, simply because of the depth and the variety of play. It will let you build your fantasy dream team in a couple of seasons (even without a fantasy draft or forced trades turned on) if you figure out the flaws in the game engine. What we are aiming for is something that resembles reality in these challenges. Realism (and fun!) is the aim. Try to approach these challenges differently than you would do with playing a normal game of Association Mode. Trust me, you’ll have more fun….