Impressions NBA Playgrounds

Available on PS4, XBONE, Nintendo Switch, and PC

Initial Thoughts
I have, to be honest, I never understood why the arcade sports games went away. I understand that there are fans that want their realism but sometimes you just feel the need to shoot an electrified three-pointer from half court. Yes, people NBA Playgrounds scratches that NBA Jam itch, well kind of, for the most part. The game is a 2 on 2 arcade game that uses complete ridiculousness to show gamers a good time. If you have played NBA Jam back in the 90's and even the most recent version that came out a few years ago then you know what to expect. The art style is a little weird but to me, it works in the context of the game. It gives the title a unique look. Something fresh and a little cartoony that really works when pulling off some of the crazy stunts that are in the game. As far as players in the game, each team has a selected number of roster spots and the way you unlock characters is by opening card packs. Leveling up gets you access to a new pack of cards. You may wind up getting Epic or Legendary players you may not, it all just depends. It should be noted that the developers will be adding more players for free in the future so that is a plus in my book.

There are also a lot of cool little extras that are packed into the game. For example, there are player bios for each player you unlock with their stats while they were active in the league (if they are retired of course). There are different modes to try out. The exhibition mode is basically your practice mode. I would encourage gamers to make sure that they spend some time in the exhibition mode because there is a learning curve on this game. I found that the control scheme can be a little frustrating at first but I did get used to it the more I played. Timing is important as well as figuring out what type of players best suit your playstyle. Personally, I play with a forward and a big man. I know some people with big men or just point guards. In that way, I think that the game has a fit for multiple different playstyles. Right now they aren't many courts available but those also will be expanded at a later date. To unlock those you have to win in Tournament mode. Don't be surprised if you lose a few games as this game is challenging, to say the least.

As for the soundtrack, I'm not impressed with it, to be honest. I kind of wish they had an option let you add your own soundtrack. I just am not feeling the music on this one. Some of it just doesn't mesh well in my opinion. Other than that, I am really enjoying myself. The game is fun to me and I have missed these types of games. Here's hoping that we can get some more arcade style sports games in the future.

What do you think of the game so far? Who do you like teaming together? Let me know in the comments below and as always thanks for reading.

Arcade GamePlay

Images via Switch Screenshare

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