Games

NBA 2K20 Is Packed With Stupid Microtransactions

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NBA 2K20

The NBA 2K franchise has, for years now, been an outstanding basketball game beset on all sides by vicious microtransaction practices. If you’re looking for a 2019 update on this constant struggle, know that the base of NBA 2K20 is still low, it’s just not quite as rotten as it’s been for the last few years.

Almost the complete NBA 2K event is still built around VC. If you want to purchase new shoes, you need VC. If you want to open animations—including even the most basic dunk, otherwise you’re stuck doing lay-ups—you need VC. You pay VC to buy packs of virtual cards, the only way you can flesh out your team in the popular MyTeam multiplayer. You even use VC to improve your player’s stats in MyCareer, the franchise’ flagship singleplayer story mode.

There’s even a casino in the game, where the series’ twin pillars of trademark adoration and in-game gambling is not a secret, but celebrated.

There isn’t another AAA game on the market, sports or otherwise, that comes close to trying to nickel-and-dime its players like this. This is a $60 game that is inviting you to buy it, take it home then regularly pay more money to engage in its core game modes. It’s a console/PC game with the financial desire of a mobile gaming scam.

This is always the single grossest NBA 2K screenshot, but this wheel is actually dishing out free stuff

MyCareer has always been the place where 2K’s microtransactions have felt the most revolting and out of place, being a story-driven singleplayer game mode, an intrusion even EA never tried to make with its own cinematic sports campaigns.

Note that I’m in Australia, so these are Australian dollars, but still.

2K’s wants you to spend VC is still hiding everywhere under the surface, you’re not being begged to buy it at every menu screen like in some years. And more importantly, the game is now surprisingly liberal with the amount of currency it pans out in MyCareer, from both game wages and sponsorship agreements.

You’ll find that just a several games into your NBA career you’ll have such a constant flow of VC coming in that if you only want to scrape singleplayer and nothing else in 2K20, you can now do so without feeling like you have to pay for VC to give you a boost.

None of which overlooks the overall construction of the series, of course, nor does it speak to the rest of the game, which I’m going to search over the next few weeks. NBA 2K20 is still a very worst excesses in greedy pricing and microtransaction design.

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