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Video, Video Games / Jul 25, 2012 / 12:30 pm

Dime TV: NBA Baller Beats – Where Handles & Music Collide

At the LA Sports Club In New York, TNT’s Kenny Smith unveiled NBA Baller Beats (produced by Majesco Entertainment), a new video game on Kinect for Xbox 360 that’s essentially Guitar Hero with a basketball. The game itself is relatively simple: As a song plays on your Xbox, different basketball moves flash across the screen for you to perform: right-handed dribble, left-handed dribble, crossover, behind the back, through the legs, shot fake, pass fake, etc. As the music blares, you must perform these moves with the rhythm of the song. Get off beat and you lose points.

I had an opportunity to try out the game, thinking it would be a breeze – I’ve always thought I can handle the ball well. But NBA Baller Beats requires an extra level of control – performing a through-the-legs dribble followed by a double behind-the-back isn’t too difficult on your own. But throw in the rhythm of the song, so your dribbles must be perfectly time, and everything is thrown in flux. I had a hard time believing that a video game could improve my handles, but its true. It forces you to control the basketball, and not let it control you.

As you can imagine, I wasn’t exactly an expert when I started playing. Yes, I did improve, but it only reaffirmed what I already knew – I have no left hand. I did record video of others playing, including one NBA Baller Beats expert who played on the highest level. He messed up a few times, but otherwise displayed some pretty nifty dribbling. Check it out:

What do you think?

Follow Dylan on Twitter at @DylanTMurphy.

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