The "NBA 2k is awful" Thread

I’ll make this as brief as possible.

Just got done playing 3 quarters of a Play Now Online game, before the BS became so intense I had to quit for my own sanity. This has made me realize I play 2 types of games nowadays. I play one where everything (mostly) works as it should and I’m reminded as to why I used to love 2k. That’s about 35% of the time.

The other 65% I’m watching my opponent hit 85% of his three pointers, sit in the paint for 7 seconds without a call, and my AI teammates doing whatever they can to sabotage the game. My point guard will switch off his guy, start guarding the center and just never return to his man allowing for a three, or I’ll be about to pass to a guy who’s open for three and he’ll inexplicably cut at the last second resulting in a turnover. I could write a novel of the problems I experience playing this once great franchise.

I think a lot of us are already hip to it… but I’m guessing the garbage I’m experiencing recently is due to an update? I did not think 2k22 was that bad from the jump… but good old 2k Sports has it right where they want it now. A frustrating mess that will swear me off of 2k for another 4-5 years.

I’m 59-27. I know what I’m doing. Should be 61-25 but there were at least 2 games in there with heavy HEAVY game scripting elements… one of which saw my opponent score 9 points in 30 seconds to tie the game up at the end of regulation… but now more and more I’m getting these blowout games where my team stops performing by the 3rd quarter and a 1 point deficit becomes a 24 point deficit by the 4th quarter.

I honestly don’t think half these results (win or lose) are legit. I think so much of it comes down to how 2k designed the game, the animations, the fouls they allow to be called and different “algorithms.” It sure seems like they bless one player before each game and allow them success, meanwhile screwing the other player. Some games my AI teammates are running around, getting open looks, knocking shots down, playing defense etc etc. Other games they literally do the exact opposite and my opponent’s AI teammates are doing everything right. Does everyone else experience this?


Have you been playing PNO all this time? How does recent play with 2K22 compare to late-cycle 2K21 or before? Did you feel like game dynamics changed over the cycle in prior cycles?

This year (2k22) has primarily been MyCareer (single player and some 3v3) and PNO.

The last 2k I bought for full price was 2k18. I played 2k21 on PS4 because it was either free or like $5…and there I primarily played PNO. When I had 2k18, I mostly played MyTeam which I think is where I grew to hate 2K. Prior to 2k18, I bought 2K for full price I’d say every year but one or two since 2k11, and would either play franchise or PNO.

2k22 recently vs late cycle 2k21? Hmm… I’d say very similar in terms of sometimes it plays great and is fun, sometimes it’s just plain awful. You really don’t know what you’re going to get. This year though, I’ve witnessed PNO looking very “MyTeam-like” in terms of unrealistic basketball and over abundant 3’s.

I’m assuming your last question has to do with prior years and iterations of the game? I’m curious about this myself. 2k11 was the game I would play all the time with friends, alone etc. It’s probably the reason I bought the next 5-6 or whatever 2k games. I don’t know if it’s just because 2k11 was their “refresh” if you will, therefore feeling fresh and new or that I was also 11 years younger… but there wasn’t a lot 2k could do wrong. I had games where I felt frustrated, but none of it ever felt like an algorithm or a mechanic to keep the game close or let your opponent back in the game. My roommate was better than me when we first moved in. I would play him all the time and eventually I got better (with multiple different teams) It really came down to limiting mistakes and knowing a players shot… which is essentially what 2K is (or should be)

Nowadays, I feel like my roommate would win one, I would win one, and it would just go on like that. It truly feels like the game blesses one player for the game and craps on the other. I’ve been on both sides of that fence. Honestly, I hate when the game is going 95% my way, because it just means my opponent will get frustrated and quit. Maybe it’s being used to the formula for so long and it’s showing its cracks… or maybe there is actually something going on with online sports games.

For the record, I don’t think The Show or Madden are any better. The Show and 2K have great foundations, but both SDS and 2K Sports are far more interested in pushing their micro transactions. I feel like that’s a huge reason the games coming out these days have that “rigged” feel to it. They want you to feel like your Ultimate Team is really good, and you only lost that game because you’re one good card away… so then you pay real money to get a pack of cards hoping to get a 98 overall who-cares… only to find out the next game is going to have the same issues.

What I’m coming to grips with is: I think sports games have jumped the shark. The constant updates to gameplay sounds good on paper, but then you’re getting a game whose settings are always getting jerked around and sometimes it plays amazing and other times it’s straight up garbage. It’s LOOOOOOOONG overdue to move sports games to a Warzone, Fortnite, Apex kind of formula. We don’t need a new NBA, MLB or NFL game for $70 every 365 days. They need to perfect the gameplay…LEAVE IT ALONE…give the game to us for free and then charge for all their arm sleeves, headbands, t-shirts, new rosters etc.

Also, simulation is great and all, but make that optional and a single player experience. I don’t want to play in a competitive format with inconsistent “refs” just because they exist in the real NBA. That’s literally one of the worst things about pro sports and you want to replicate it in a video game!? It’s a video game… leave the unnecessary outside quirks out of it. I don’t need ticky tack foul calls followed by a gang bang not being whistled. These are video games. They should be fun. The better player should win… ALWAYS.


LOL, I hear you on all this. Played 2K in the early 2000’s and then came back to it with 2K15 and played way too much up through 2K20, I think. MyTeam was really engaging but it has come to really showcase the regularization of microtransactions. They’ve put in a path for grinding but the amount of time required is just crazy.

Bought 2K22 for PC thinking I might play MyLeague, but started one and got bored while playing my first game. Thought I might enjoy PNO, but your report is obviously pretty discouraging.

I’ve never had an issue with games feeling “rigged.” That’s a long debate that has been argued a million times. To me, there’s just too much cheesy play online. But that’s always been the case. I remember online 3-point spamming in the earliest online 2K editions. Shit, I remember it in totally offline living room play in multiple basketball games in the 1990’s.

1 Like

I appreciate that. That post went on a lot longer than I anticipated, was expecting a little blowback lol. MyTeam could be fun, but the insistence on putting cards like 3 point shooting Shaq out there really ruins it. What I honestly want from Ultimate Team modes probably wouldn’t appeal to most people, but I’d rather it just be one card per player. I don’t need a special edition Muggsy Bogues centered around a game where he had a block, so he gets an 85 block rating. Just give me one card per player, and make the ratings legit. I don’t want any 99 overall Anthony Bennetts, Adam Morrisons, Spencer Dinwiddies etc. Keep the created courts, uniforms, etc etc… just eliminate the cheesiness. Alas, it won’t happen. No money in that. At the very least, I’d appreciate a MyTeam mode that caps your team’s overall rating so you aren’t always playing a God Squad, or just no 3 point shooting cards of players who literally cannot shoot 3’s. If I want to play that style of basketball, I’ll play Hang Time, NBA Jam or NBA Street. Just hating how they’ve set up MyTeam my only option for 5 v 5 basketball is PNO, which is usually much less cheesy… but this year is starting to feel closer to MyTeam. (recently anyway)

And yeah, the “rigged” thing is a long debate. I just remember being much better at 2K or even The Show and now it feels like I’m getting worse? Those are the only 2 explanations I have. I’m getting worse at a game I’ve been playing since Iverson was on the cover or there’s a mechanic built into sports games now that “nerfs” or “buffs” players, designed to keep games close. People will either believe it or they won’t I suppose. I do know NBA Hangtime (and probably Jam for that matter) had that mechanic, which ensured a player never got blown out. At a certain point the team who’s up is going to miss every shot and the guy who’s losing will get on fire. That’s cool for an arcade game, but not for a “simulation” imo.

Cheesiness has always been around, for sure. That’s a universal video game thing. The button masher in fighting games being one of the original cheesers. When it comes to 3’s though… I just feel like that’s how people play basketball nowadays. Pickup ball feels like it’s 60% 3 point attempts, 40% everything else. Doesn’t surprise me most people just want to jack up 3’s.

PNO is what I’ve been playing exclusively for 2 years now. I just couldn’t take the MyTeam shenanigans anymore after 2k21 got so absurd to the point where it wasn’t even basketball anymore.

While PNO is the far & away better experience than myteam MTO, it is still not the same game as compared to 2k22 out of the box.

I’m talking about next gen 2k just so we’re clear, and it feels like it’s fallen victim to cheesers & whiners paradise and feels only slightly different than 2k21 did near the end.

3s go in at a laughable rate, paint scoring is atrocious so you’ll get blocked or miss a “heavily contested” layup after your guy takes 5 seconds to gather himself for a layup.

Point being is this: the almighty dollar rules above all else in the world of business. Real sim experience does not & will never equate to money for 2k when they can make this game as arcadey as they can for a better profit.



We are not the same. Except I do agree with your other points. Bring on the Fortnite style 2k update!

We need competition again, or at least revive NBA Street or something all the cheesers can enjoy.

I was playing another one of those “I should be up by 10 or 15, instead it’s tied” scenarios. Things like Alonzo Mourning being unable to block shots, make shots under the basket, Tim Hardaway falling victim to bump steals, teammate cpu committing fouls. It was unreal. In the 4th quarter though, the game decided it was time to cut me off altogether, going 3 minutes without scoring. I think he ended up winning by 13?

Horrible… just horrible. First time I’ve considered selling the game. My old love for 2K is preventing me from doing that just yet… plus I plan on restarting MyCareer which was decently enjoyable (unless a recent update put a stop to that) despite several glaring issues. But the way all of these multiplayer games are going, not just sports, I think it’s time to stick to single player… which I have been for the most part. Maybe, just maybe, the way to look at it is video game companies trying to push me away so I can focus my energy on something more productive.

You actually like the idea of a shot blocking Muggsy, three point assassin Shaq and posterizing Steph Curry? Maybe you just miss NBA Jam :man_shrugging:

1 Like

I do though. NBA Jam was the shit.

Doesn’t work for most modes, but I’m a sucker for overpowered Muggsy.

1 Like