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If you’ve been getting caught up in the excitement surrounding the recent release of NBA 2K16, you’re certainly not alone. With over 4 million units sold in its first few days of availability, NBA 2K16 has taken the gaming world by storm. What’s more, it seems to be living up to all the hype! Read on to learn about some of the game’s coolest features as well as details of the NBA Canada Series Fantasy Camp held at Rogers Arena on Sunday, October 4 (of which NBA 2K16 was the major sponsor).

NBA 2K16: The Phenomenon

The first thing you need to know about NBA 2K16 is that it is available on multiple platforms. If you’re a Playstation user, your options are as follows:

            * NBA 2K16 Tip-Off Edition (PS3)   

            * NBA 2K16 Tip-Off Edition (PS4)

For those that are rockin’ an Xbox, NBA 2K16 has got you covered as well:

            * NBA 2K16 Tip-Off Edition (Xbox One)                                         

            * NBA 2K16 Tip-Off Edition (Xbox 360)

Additionally, NBA 2K16’s cover art features 3 of the NBA’s top players: James Harden (Houston Rockets), Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors), & Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans). Individual copies of the game include a poster insert that can be folded so as to display whichever of the 3 stars you prefer:

                                               

2K’s goal in developing NBA 2K16 was to build upon earlier editions of the game with exciting new innovations that would combine to create the greatest NBA 2K edition to date. This meant teaming up with famed filmmaker Spike Lee, who was tasked with writing & directing an entirely new version of the MyCAREER experience for this year’s edition. Lee’s vision, entitled Livin’ Da Dream, allows you to #BeTheStory by taking your player clear through an entire NBA career.

One of the more mind-blowing aspects of Lee’s contribution is that your player’s career can begin as early as high school. How wild is that? It’s pretty obvious that Lee took his part in the game’s development very seriously and went all-out to provide unique and original back-story elements to NBA 2K16 gamers.

If you’ve not yet played the game yourself, it can be difficult to fully envision how some of this actually works. If you get the opportunity to give it a try, definitely don’t pass it up!

 

1.jpgLee’s contribution is just one element of what’s been called the most dynamic and realistic game play of any NBA 2K game to date. With more content and features than ever before, gamers are guaranteed an unparalleled playing experience with NBA 2K16. Among the awesome new features you can expect to find are smart, ultra-realistic player movements (generated by the new and innovative motion engine) as well as new ball and rim physics that contribute to the most authentic basketball experience imaginable (outside of taking to the actual hardwood).

The MyPARK feature allows you to create your own “street legacy” at any of the 3 newly enhanced parks and demonstrate your skills to the entire world through live-streaming of competitive events. You might even become a real legend in the virtual world!

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Even more fun (in my opinion) is the 2K Pro-Am mode, in which you can fully customize your team (uniform, logo & all) for a 5 on 5 tournament with friends (or foes) that is streamed live on NBA 2KTV. Have your friends control different players on your team and take on the world with this amazing ultra interactive feature.

In addition to the great features above are amazing graphics (from what I recently witnessed, it’s not unlike watching an actual NBA game on TV) and great commentary (from broadcasters Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith, & Shaquille O’Neal—who’s great on colour commentary by the way). You can even run your own NBA franchise if you like, and I’ve barely scratched the surface as far as NBA 2K16’s actual game play & features are concerned!

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Among NBA 2K16’s most unique attributes is its impressive musical soundtrack, which was composed by a team of 3 major (and genre-defining) collaborators. This renowned group, comprised of legendary rap, pop, & hip-hop producers DJ Premier, DJ Khaled, and DJ Mustard, has come together to develop the most extensive soundtrack in NBA 2K history. With 6 all new, exclusive tracks, NBA 2K16 is almost worthy of a purchase just based on its musical exploits alone.

The complete soundtrack features multiple themed playlists, 3 unique lists from each of the 3 contributing producers, and 1 master playlist that features the soundtrack’s entire 50 song lineup. Many genres besides pop, hip-hop, and rap are also present, including rock, alternative, electronic, Top 40 (from the 1970’s straight through to today), and even a selection of original instrumental tracks that each of the producers individually created for the set. Different music can be selected at different points in the game, such as listening to the instrumental pieces while in the MyPLAYER & MyGM modes. All up, this game is absolute cutting edge in its musical score. There’s sure to be something here for every individual fan, no matter what your generation or personal musical preference.

Of course, this goes for the game as a whole as well. There’s really something for everyone here, and I have no doubt that, to date, this is the absolute coolest basketball video game ever produced! If you’ve been itching to get one, I certainly don’t blame you.

Canada Series Fantasy Camp Presented by NBA 2K16

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Sunday’s Fantasy Camp event at Rogers Arena in Vancouver was a monumental experience! It began with registration at 11:15AM for the first 2 groups of attendees (one of which consisted of several representatives from Best Buy Canada). Once everyone arrived, VIP Passes were handed out and the 2 groups were led to their respective dressing rooms to prepare for the experience. Little was known (by me at least) of what was to come, but arrival in the backstage lounge (that served as the male dressing room) revealed some serious swag (shown at right). We were asked to immediately change into the full basketball kit that was provided and prepare for a full-on game of b-ball on the regulation NBA court at noon sharp. Not being much of a basketball player myself (watching is a whole lot easier!), this was somewhat intimidating, but also super exciting. 

BBBB.jpgAs we hit the court, we realized that our opposition was not yet present. This gave us a much needed 10-15 minutes of warm-up time before meeting our Coach—Toronto Raptors broadcaster Jack Armstrong. We also had NBA legend and former Raptor Muggsy Bogues on hand to lend moral support (though he joined in on the court as well when it became quite clear that our side desperately needed at least his level of assistance if we were to avoid total basketball annihilation).

With Muggsy.jpgThe game itself was a fast-paced, occasionally physical, and largely messy affair. Things didn’t exactly go well for Coach Armstrong’s squad, but his only concern was that everyone was having fun. In this regard, the game was an enormous success! It went on for quite some time, with, thankfully, nobody keeping score. Even so, the outcome was obvious—even with Muggsy’s brief assistance.

I guess our group just wasn’t destined for victory, but nobody seemed to mind very much. Afterwards, significant time was spent catching our breath and laughing & taking photos with Muggsy. I have to say, both Jack Armstrong and Muggsy Bogues are extremely friendly and gracious gentlemen, and meeting them was as much of a personal thrill as it was a great deal of fun! I’d like to say a special thank you to both for truly making everyone’s day.

Jam.jpgAs for the Raptors / Clippers game, I think it’s fair to say that the Raptors dominated play—particularly in the third quarter when they really started to stretch out their lead. For me and the rest of the Fantasy Camp crew, having great seats meant enjoying excellent sight lines for everything that took place (such as the major jam in the photo at left). Unfortunately, my camera phone isn’t quite fast enough to catch all of the action without a bit of a blur. These guys are world class athletes after all, and they move FAST!

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Make the final: Raptors 94 – Clippers 73! It may not have been enough for the Raptors to capture the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy as the NBA’s top team—at least not yet. But the Raptors are looking pretty strong this season, and it’ll be nice to see them not only back in the playoffs in 2016, but going considerably further than they ever have before. The Championship Trophy (shown at right) was displayed, albeit in near total darkness, at the post-game reception in the Captain’s Room at Rogers Arena. Ok, I exaggerate, it wasn’t quite that dark in there. I hope you’ve enjoyed this brief recap of the NBA Canada Series Fantasy Camp Presented by NBA 2K16 at Rogers Arena this past Sunday. GO Raptors! And GO everyone else to order your copy of the best and most realistic basketball video game of all time: NBA 2K16!

Until we meet again, have an amazing & enjoyable week everyone!