Featured Gallery, Video Games / Aug 24, 2011 / 2:00 pm

Dime’s Definitive NBA 2K12 Preview

NBA 2K12

When I had a chance to preview NBA 2K12 this week, I honestly came in ready for a let down. NBA 2K11 was out of this world, plain and simple. Without question the best sports game of the year, and arguably the best video game of the year. But even though the hype for 2012 was there, I wasn’t quite buying into it. Oh, how I was wrong.

After playing 2K12 for a few minutes, it was obvious that there were some widespread changes once again. Although last year’s game physics were pretty awesome, posting up was a little too difficult, speed dribbling was a little too effective, and crossovers were a little too devastating against other users. Not anymore.

The post-up button has been switched to “Y” on the Xbox controller, so you don’t have to worry about randomly jump-stopping or speed bursting by accident. Crossovers are a little less herky-jerky and one-on-one moves are even more varied, allowing for smooth transitions and changes of player direction. Even cooler is the speed dribble, which, when employed, makes the player push the ball out in front of him. Just as in real life, a guy dribbling at full speed has very little change of direction abilities. Even more, you can chase a ball out of bounds and dive into the crowd or over the scorer’s table.

Smoother player movement isn’t the only in-game upgrade – your teammates actually move without the ball. Even if you don’t run a play, expect more screens, players demanding the ball in the post, etc. I’ve never been a guy to use organized plays, but sometimes I had to simply because going one-on-one on the higher difficulties is, well, difficult. Now you can have that true, innovative NBA feel where player creation and imagination fuels the action.

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  • http://www.dimemag.com panchitoooo

    i wonder if you pre-order the game will they hook you up with a legends jersey avatar like they did for 2k11. i missed out on that promo so im hoping to get it this time around.

  • JH

    I read that if you pre-order…you get a code to unlock TMC (& SACTOWN) right from the start. Not bad…but I like the idea of earning them. Call it the “carrot” which motivates me to run.

  • http://www.dimemag.com panchitoooo

    with all the athletic players in the league and the dunk contest gaining in popularity they should develop the dunk contest controls a little better and spend some time working on introducing it to online multiplayer modes. me and my buddies spent countless hours playing NBA Live just for the dunk contest part of it. im thinking my fantasy dunk contest lineup would look something like this:

    Dr J
    lil Nate
    and Dwight

  • nola

    honestly the most fun i had was creating a crew with my friends and playing every night against other crews. I really hope they improve the servers because i think the future of sports gaming is creating a team amongst your friends and creating your own player and then playing games against other teams.

    this is all similar to matchmaking in games like cod and halo. i dont understand why sports games don’t adopt the matchmaking process. we honestly played this every single night and endured the 5+ (sometimes up to 15) minute wait time to find a match because this part of the game was so much fun.

    any idea how the my crew games are?

  • http://www.dimemag.com Dylan Murphy

    I only had a chance to play an exhibition match and a few games in NBA’s Greatest mode, so I’m not sure about other stuff. Hopefully I’ll get the chance to test the rest out soon so I’ll be able to report back. I’m a big Xbox Live guy, so I understand where you’re coming from.

  • NTstateOFmind

    hey Dylan-
    quick question… so they did have the current rosters and players despite all this lockout BS ?

  • http://www.dimemag.com Dylan Murphy

    Everything was current as of the end of the season/draft, as far as I saw. I didn’t get a chance to poke around completely, but everything looked up to date.

  • jae

    I hope the retro teams have era specific moves because they weren’t doing hop steps and hesitation dribbles in the 60’s

  • http://www.geturweightup.com Chicagorilla

    Yeh this game is going to be crazy.

    The post moves they show Hakeem doing in the clip i saw was sick. They do need to improve the dribbling animations. Some of them were a little to much for guys like Steve Nash or Jason kidd. Those guys don’t do a whole bunch of fancy moves. That’s why its hard to recreate them in the game.

    I think they need to make it so guys who do too many moves will start to lose the ball or turn it over.

    NBA2k is one of the few games that hasn’t tried catering to the online community more than the offline guys. And i think that’s why they are successful. I actually don’t know anyone personally who plays online. Most of my friends are offline-franchise guys. That’s the thing that will keep 2k from putting out terrible games like EA does with Madden and NBA Live/Elite. Because playing vs the CPu is completely different than playing a human. So you would either cater to one and not the other, or put out two different games.

  • Sam


    Fifa hasn’t slipped in quality despite its reliable online experience. I think having a functional NBA Team-Up or Crew game would only enhance the experience and make the demand higher.

  • Butcher

    Hey Dylan,

    Did 2K Sports remove those 3-point lines from the 60’s and early 70’s arenas (actually you can see them in the trailer) before launching a game?

    You said you played as a 60’s Celtics so you would surely notice them.

  • http://www.geturweightup.com Chicagorilla


    On Operation sports they said that the 3pt line was removed and the shot clocks were changed.

    Soccer sucks and no one plays the game. So how can i even judge if the game plays realistic or not? lol. I forget that soccer even exist as a sport. Seriously.

    Also Basketball is one of the more difficult video games to make true to life because one person can change the game for an entire team without the help of his/her teammates. Football, baseball and hockey all rely heavily on their teammates. Basketball on the other hand… a guy like Jordan or Bird can keep you close and perhaps even when the game for you single-handily. Add that to the free flowing and creative nature of the game and that’s why its hard to duplicate it on a video game.

    So when 2K puts the effort into making it more real, there are tons of gamers (usually the online guys) who are born and bred cheesers. Who look at the realness of the game as a challenge to their cheesing skills.
    The online madden videos are some of the most disgusting gaming in the history of video games. I don’t want or need 2k joining that group.

  • Ben

    All I want to know is are they still going to have the Jordan mode, and shoes to make? That’s wjhat I enjoyed the most on 2k11

  • Ben

    All I want to know is are they still going to have the Jordan mode, and shoes to make? That’s what I enjoyed the most on 2k11

  • Thomas

    “Dirk’s classic one-legged fadeaway” FINALLY!! THAAAAAAAAAAAAANK YOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUU (stewie voice)

  • Jer Boi

    @Chicagogorilla Why wouldn’t you play online? The best way to see f your any good is playing against other people. You can eventually figure out a computer and the CPU isn’t as smart as a real person. I love the offline stuff too but there’s no replay value if there isn’t An online mode and the people that play online I think know how to make the game better more than offline players. It’s why I played 2k10 almost every day until 2k11 and I’ve played 2k11 almost every day and will until 2k12 comes out

  • http://ballmovement.tumblr.com Ball Movement

    So psyched about the Shaq and Penny Magic. Guess I just have to fire up an old Blue Chips DVD until the game comes out.

  • Knicksfan84

    How’s franchise mode and My Player…. any changes?

  • Johnny

    Is it easier to get pass the defender or is it the same

  • Dj aleyo

    U should b able to get technical fouls, shaq break the back board and unlock snapbacks

  • Dave

    Something I didn’t like about 2K11 was the fact that you couldn’t finish contact lay-ups. Even with great finsihers like Lebron,Melo,etc. Have they fixed this?

  • http://www.dimemag.com Dylan Murphy

    @butcher the three point lines were removed. It was pretty cool.

    @Knicksfan84 – I didn’t get a chance to test out Association or My Player, so I can’t report on that.

    @Johnny – The physics of the game are different, so I wouldn’t say it’s more or less difficult…just different.

  • Lou


    I just bought a code for the Jordan avatar jersey through ebay yesterday. I paid $3.50 for it and it was sent via email the same day. The seller had 10 available if you are interested.

    Also this is for everyone so this article mentioned that the 08 Celtics are in the game is that true?

  • Lou

    @Dylan Murphy

    you mentioned that we can play as the 08 Celtics?

  • http://www.salespider.com/rss/classified_rss.php Terry Ratchett

    Looks incredible, can’t wait for this game

  • http://twolvesblog.com R-BEEZY


    The shots in the Gamescon video just looked herky jerky. I’m just hoping that it was due to the shaky camera and everything, how do the shots feel? I also wanna know if they dumped or changed the “blacktop” mode. Hopefully added an all-star weekend?

  • Goldhand

    @Dylan Murphy

    Will they also have some teams from 2000 like Raptors with Vince and T-mac ?

  • http://www.dimemag.com Dylan Murphy

    Hey guys,

    I’ll do my best to answer all of your questions if I get a chance to play the game again. I didn’t get to explore too much outside of playing a few exhibition games, so there’s still a lot I didn’t see. But based on what I did experience, 2K12 is sick. The game physics alone take it to another level.

  • Chris

    When the speed dribble is implemented with Derrick Rose, is it true to his speed with the ball and getting to the rim and athletic abitlity to finish?


    @ Chicagorilla LOL Soccer is the most popular sport in the world… by far. FIFA 11 was the fastest selling sports game ever. FIFA sells more than Madden… it obliterates NBA 2K in sales.

    Typical American arrogance that North America=The World. I don’t hold it against you though, its what you’ve been spoon fed your entire life.

    Now back to the subject at hand. NBA 2K11 was the best game released last year easily… the game was a masterpiece. If 2K12 is better… oh my… I’ma have ZERO life this autumn.

    One thing I didn’t think about before; if the lockout isn’t resolved. Will the free agent pool be full of this year’s free agents? Or will they be on their current teams?

  • http://www.geturweightup.com Chicagorilla


    look chill out with that “typical american” blah blah blah.

    In the US, soccer is the least played sport. Int he black community we don’t even play soccer in gym during high school. Most of the high schools in the hood don’t even have soccer teams and never will.

    So in AMERICA, no one gives a $h!t about the FiFa game. Not anyone i’m around.

    Frankly, it’s getting a little annoying and Stalker-ish for you to follow me from thread to thread popping shit, trying to win a argument/debate vs me. Get it together son, you’re better than that.

  • http://www.geturweightup.com Chicagorilla

    @Jer Boi

    I just tried playing online in 2k11. One of the worst experiences i’ve ever had playing the damn game! and the worst part is i won the game. This car basically tried cheesing his way to the basket every single time with his my player 6’7 pg. He used every cheese move he could think of.

    So i figured that was just dumb luck, so i played another game. Same shit different toilet. The next guy cheesed his way to a 10pt win. out of the 65pts or so his team had. 50pts was scored in the paint. And he used Russell Westbrook to do it. Vs my Spurs team.

    If you think that shit is cool, then it’s whatever. To each his own. But the last thing 2k needs to do is to start selling out and catering to online guys like this. Making the game online cheese proof will damage the offline play vs the CPU. Eliminating things like “hop step” and “Spin dunking” because online guys abuse it, will screw the guys who use it for fun.

    The Sliders will fix whatever gripes online players have and they should leave it that way.