Hello, my name is Rory, and I am addicted to sports games. If you couldn’t tell from my review, I have a particular fondness for NBA 2K14. As we all prepare to start gorging ourselves on the best looking game ever made, it is important to note that we will all have to re-create our MyCareers. Since its release on October 1st, I have played the PS3 version religiously, reviewed it for two websites, and had to re-create several MyCareers due to each of my previous files getting corrupted at different career stages. This has allowed me to figure out what works and what doesn’t. So if you are looking to smash face on Friday, this is your guide.
Step 1: The Creation
In the past, the best way to create a monster was through the 3 pt specialist play style. This would allow a player to effectively play 4 positions (pg, sg, sf, and pf by creating a tall sf), each with the capability of leading the league from day one. Create the guy, use the Virtual Currency from the showcase game to do Larry Bird’s training camp, and you can go in with an 85 in 3pt shooting, which was enough to shoot the lights out in NBA 2K13. Thankfully, that is gone. 3 pointers are much harder to make in general, and the 3pt specialist play style only offers a base rating of 72. So what do we do? In short– Slashing.
2K14 features the revamped lay-up system. By moving both the right and left stick in different corresponding ways, you can pull off some sick euro-step garbage at the bucket. You also get a lot more fouls called when scoring near the gold in this year’s version. So we use these to our advantage and pick a slashing SG/SF. The SG option should be used for both SG and SF, as the game values speed and quickness more than anything else. So if you want to be a SF, create a slashing SG (around 6’6 215 lbs) and make sure whatever team you play for has a better SG than SF, so you will be inserted into the starting lineup at SF. If you want a Power Forward, go slashing SF and make him a little bigger (I find that 6’9 and 250+ works out). If you make him too small, his secondary position with be SG and you will have to start again. Once again, make sure whatever team you want to play for has a better SF than PF or it will not work. You can check this by checking your player’s info in the showcase game. If you want a center, I’d suggest going athletic PF and making him big, but I don’t have the center position down to a science yet.
Now that you have a position, it is time to tweak the signatures. As far as shots go, a quicker release is better, but it is mainly personal preference, especially as your slasher will literally take 2 or 3 jumpshots a game. The dribble moves are what really need adjusting. FOR ALL CREATED PLAYERS select iso crossover 6, behind back 4, spin 4, and hesitation 4. Why? Because as I said, the game values speed, and these are the fastest iso motions. Everything else is cosmetic and entirely up to you.
Step 2: The Showcase
Above: Your new MyCareer rival.
It is a lot more difficult to smash face and go number one in the showcase game, but it can be done. You basically just want to run pick and rolls with your player over and over again. Make sure you slam the turbo button and start heading for the basket right as the pick gets there: too early, and it is a moving screen, and too late, the screen will be useless. You should always be super aggressive on defense too, as the reward of a block or steal heavily outweighs the hit you take for a player racing by you and scoring. Push the break and destroy their souls.
Now, that is if you want to go high. It is entirely possible that you don’t. I should mention here that you should have your team picked out before creation. They should have a need at your position, and you should edit the roster. Now this is optional, but I highly suggest it. Teams don’t just play the 12 best players, they use the weird rotations that actual coaches use. This means a 60 ovr might play 12 minutes while a 76 isn’t even in the rotation. If this makes you angry, you should remove that 60 from the roster before starting the MyCareer. You should also edit the shot tendencies of the best shooters on each team. 2K tried to fix this, and it is better than previous versions, but awesome shooters still pass up open shots. I call this the ‘Ilyasova Problem,” after the Bucks’ big man who refuses to shoot 3′s despite an 86 3pt rating. You fix this by raising the shot tendencies in the proper sections on the Edit Player screen. You can also change some positions around and edit overall stats, but I find that to be cheap.
In order to go low, you have to tank the showcase. The quickest and easiest way is by fouling out once you have attained the level you are looking for. If you want to go 30th for example, you are going to want to score a bucket or 2 then intentionally foul out. If you want to go 18th, you may have to get to about 10 points and grab a few boards, then foul out. It takes some practice and it isn’t exact, but you save a lot of time by fouling out. If you don’t get the team you want, simply turn the game off and try again. Make sure you tank the interviews as well by saying mean/arrogant things (usually they are the triangle/y button options).
Step 3: The First Few Games
Above: Your first game pep talk (PS3 image)
Now that you are on a suitable team, it is time to get going. I suggest the dribbling drill for your 3 drills. All you need to do is dribble around the cones and use a spin move on the defender and you will get gold easily. Use your VC to up your lay-up and shot in traffic skills first. Lay-up should be at around 75-80 to start with, and you can leave shot in traffic at about 75. If you aren’t very good at free throws (like me), go ahead and level that up to 80 or so. You will be getting a ton of them. After you have those taken care of, go ahead and get your shot close up to 85 and your shot med up to the mid 70s. This will all be done over the course of your first few games. Avoid the legends training camps at first. Why? Because these will save you a ton of VC if you use them to get your skills from say, 87 to 90, as opposed to 67-70. The higher the skill, the higher the cost to upgrade it. You can probably also wait on the signature skills, but when you are ready, finisher comes first. It will make you an even more powerful force in the paint.
As for the actual game play, it is pretty simple. Just run the pick and roll to death. You can also probably take bench players in an isolation, especially if you are a SG playing SF. Your speed will be too much for them. If speed is so important, you may wonder why I don’t go Athletic? It is because Athletic players require a heavy investment in shot close and layup before they can finish, whereas the slasher does not. If you can’t finish, then getting by the opponent doesn’t matter. Eventually, you will find that the AI calls isolation plays for you. If you get by your man, and you should more times than not, just throw yourself at the basket using any of the lay-up moves. I would say 7 times out of 10 you will score or get fouled or both. Make sure that you talk to your GM after game 3 and ask for more playing time and more plays called for you. If you go to him before game 3, he will probably give you a negative response.
Step 4: Beyond
By game 5-8, you should be a starter. By game 12 or so, you will be getting 40+ minutes and you should have a shot at breaking your team’s scoring record every single night. If you play for a bad team, like the Jazz or 76ers, you will find that almost every offensive play is called for you. This allows for massive point totals (I think I had 40 in game 10 on my Jazz SG). You will also be getting tons of VC. I’d keep it flowing in to your core attributes: shot close, lay-up, free throw, shot med, and shot in traffic. Improvement in the ball handling skills goes a long way as well, as your player will have a ton of turnovers because of the poor base stats and the amount of iso you run. You should be able to get pretty good steal numbers with the low base amount. 2K cranked the amount of steals your player can get, so a lower stat isn’t a real problem there. Speed and quickness are always good, but they are very expensive. The Isiah Thomas camp will get you some extra quickness, so consider doing that as your first camp later on in the season. The Larry Bird camp will up your shooting, and John Stockton’s will crank your ball handling. Beyond that, they aren’t really important unless you are a PF.
DISCLAIMER: I am basing this solely off observations made from the PS3 version. I played on the highest difficulty. It is possible, though highly unlikely, that none of this will work in the next-gen versions of the game. If that happens, may God have mercy on all of our souls.
Let me know in the comments if this worked for you, or if you have any tweaks to make to the guide. Channel your inner MJ, and go forth!
GamesBeat 2014 — VentureBeat’s sixth annual event on disruption in the video game market — is coming up on Sept 15-16 in San Francisco. Purchase one of the first 50 tickets and save $400!