NBA is A-OK, X-Men is A-Z boredom

NBA fans, rejoice: This game is 100 percent labor-dispute free. I jest, but with little end in sight to the NBA lockout, this is the only chance hoops fans will get to play updated professional basketball in the near term.

Array

Array

NBA 2K12

Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, PC, PSP

Genre: Sports; Publisher: 2K Sports

ESRB Rating: E, for Everyone

Grade: 4 stars (out of 5)

NBA fans, rejoice: This game is 100 percent labor-dispute free.

I jest, but with little end in sight to the NBA lockout, this is the only chance hoops fans will get to play updated professional basketball in the near term. Since little change can be made to the present-day NBA action (the lockout means no rookies are allowed, only alterations to cosmetic things like uniforms and arenas), NBA 2K12 wisely placed much of the emphasis on past legends of the game.

Last year’s effort was all about reliving Michael Jordan’s career games, and now that roster has expanded to include more than a dozen former stars such as Larry Bird, Julius Erving, Jerry West and Bill Russell. These classic games have all the fine details and trademarks of their respective eras, including short shorts, no three-point lines and even grainy black-and-white camera styles or the hues from the ‘70s and ‘80s televisions.

If the presentation alone doesn’t impress you, the gameplay will. Most of it is a carryover from last year’s already successful game, but a few animation tweaks make the movement and flow more realistic. The AI can still be smarter than it should be (opposing players sure know how to intercept a pass with their backs turned), but for the most part it’s solid.

The My Player and My Association modes have been made more engaging as well. So I’ll continue to ignore talk of collective bargaining, salary caps and profit sharing and instead focus on what this release delivers that real-life can’t: a good game of basketball.

X-Men: Destiny

Platforms: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii

Genre: Role-playing

Publisher: Activision

ESRB Rating: T, for Teen

Grade: 1.5 stars

The biggest threat to mutant existence isn’t Apocalypse, Bastion or Dark Phoenix. No, it’s games like X-Men: Destiny that portend a grim future where no one cares about these characters because they are moronic and boring.

In Destiny you pick one of three unknown mutant characters and “choose” which side of the mutant war you wish to join — the fractured X-Men (Professor X is dead in this storyline) or Magneto’s Brotherhood of Mutants. This begins a series of poorly meted-out decisions that have little-to-no impact on the gameplay and send you toward a place called Nowhere Fun.

Others have tried variations on games like this with better success (DC Universe Online), and it’s a shame to have a franchise like the X-Men represented so poorly.

Follow Chris Campbell at twitter.com/campbler or email him at game_on_games@mac.com.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Dow Chemicals employees volunteered for a day earlier this month at the latest Habitat for Humanity Red Deer Region's Blackfalds project. Photo contributed
Habitat for Humanity Red Deer announces federal funding for Blackfalds build project

Habitat for Humanity Red Deer’s build project in Blackfalds will get some… Continue reading

City of Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer (Advocate file photo).
Red Deer mayor urges that mask wearing in public indoor places start immediately

We must protect hospital capacity and each other, says Tara Veer

Lynne McConnell, a Red Deer single mom who runs a delivery company, is left without a car for her business after her vehicle was stolen twice in about 48 hours. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff
Masks were made mandatory in any workplace setting across Alberta as the premier introduced sweeping measures to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. (Photo by Paul Cowley/ Advocate Staff)
Kenney declares state of public health emergency as COVID-19 cases rise

High schools shift to online learning, businesses face new restrictions

A
Red Deer Games Foundation adjusts grant program due to COVID-19 pandemic

The Red Deer Games Foundation announced Wednesday that it will allow athletes… Continue reading

In this undated photo issued by the University of Oxford, a volunteer is administered the coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University, in Oxford, England. Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca said Monday Nov. 23, 2020, that late-stage trials showed its coronavirus vaccine was up to 90% effective, giving public health officials hope they may soon have access to a vaccine that is cheaper and easier to distribute than some of its rivals. (University of Oxford/John Cairns via AP)
POLL: When a COVID-19 vaccine is available, will you get the shot?

When a COVID-19 vaccine is available, will you get the shot?… Continue reading

The tournament was cancelled because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. (Image courtesy of WHL)
2020 WHL Cup cancelled

A tournament featuring the top under 16 male hockey prospects in Western… Continue reading

TORONTO, ON - DECEMBER, 7  - Susan Delacourt
Logo headshots of Toronto Star staff shot in Star studio.
December 7, 2015
Opinion: Don’t blame Trump for vaccine wait

Canadians will be getting COVID-19 vaccinations after Americans, Justin Trudeau has admitted,… Continue reading

QMJHL Roundup: Armada down Olympiques to extend win streak to seven games

QMJHL Roundup: Armada down Olympiques to extend win streak to seven games

Nashville SC ends Toronto FC’s season with stunning 1-0 extra time upset

Nashville SC ends Toronto FC’s season with stunning 1-0 extra time upset

Juve, Barça, Chelsea, Sevilla advance in Champions League

Juve, Barça, Chelsea, Sevilla advance in Champions League

Toronto Raptors guard Fred VanVleet (23) brings the ball up court against Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) during the first half of NBA basketball action in Toronto on January 28, 2020. The Raptors officially annoucned that VanVleet has agreed to a multi-year contract with the team. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Raptors guard Fred VanVleet says contract negotiations were “easy”

Raptors guard Fred VanVleet says contract negotiations were “easy”

Most Read