Archive for the ‘Video Games’ Category

There are many different ways to get ready for a basketball game. Some guys like loud music, some guys like silence. Some guys read “The Hunger Games,” some guys read “Who Moved My Cheese?” (Sometimes, this is the same guy.) Some guys drink six cups of coffee and some guys eat pizza.

Basically, if you can think of it, someone has probably tried it before a game. And that includes playing Angry Birds. From Dime Magazine:

Dime: What kind of stuff do you do pregame? Music, rituals, etc.
KM: Music-wise, I listen to a lot of Wale pregame. He gets me hyped. The Eleven One Eleven Theory, mixtapes. And last year in college I played Angry Birds before every game. Right now I’m really feeling Bejeweled.

Dime: How good at Angry Birds are you?
KM: You know it was frustrating. I could get three stars on almost every level, but literally for like two months, there were two parts of the game where I couldn’t get three stars, so I really just stopped playing because it was too frustrating.

Dime: How long would you play Angry Birds before games?
KM: Anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour.

Dime: How did Roy Williams feel about you sitting there playing Angry Birds for an hour?
KM: Well everybody pretty much did their own thing. I got my headphones on in my phone. He might think I’m reading inspirational quotes, and stuff, but everybody had their own way to get ready for the game and get to work.

Listening to Wale and his rapid fire sports references before a game I can totally understand. I’m pretty sure I even had “W.A.L.E.D.A.N.C.E.” on a pregame playlist at some point. I’m not exactly down with current Wale since he pretty much just yells over the beat in every song, but I get it. Sure.

The Angry Birds thing though, that is funny, especially since Kendall “Two Last Names” Marshall went to the trouble of putting in headphones and keeping things hidden from his college coach, like he was ashamed that he’s playing a silly iPhone game for an hour before hooping. Sure, it’s still Top 25 in the App Store after like a thousand internet years and there are probably a bunch of players Birdsing it in the locker room, but still. This is a grown man dominating a cell phone game for a pretty long time, all the while the sound of squealing pigs rings through his ears. Like Marshall says, everyone has their own way of getting ready for a game, but sneakily tossing various birds at wooden structures is a pretty funny one.

But now he’s on to Bejeweled, which I guess is a form of chasing jewelry. It’s all about the ring in the NBA, especially if you can stack a few in a row and make them explode.

Good news, fans of the Dream Team, Chicago Bulls, hyper versatile small forwards who redefined the possibilities of their position and video games that are maybe just a little bit too hard for a normal person who isn’t completely devoted to gaming — Scottie Pippen is going to be in NBA 2K13, along with the rest of the 1992 United States Olympic basketball team.

Want proof, skeptic? Fine. From 2K Sports’ Twitter feedski:

And then there were 12… Are you ready for the FULL ’92 Dream Team?

Yes.

Also, here’s more proof, courtesy of Scottie’s wife on Twitter, because of 2012:

Scottie is back – check him out on the @2KSports for #NBA2K13 Dream Team!

Good stuff. Now we can finally answer the age old question of whether or not the Dream Team can beat the Charlotte Bobcats, which is what I am pretty sure everyone on the internet has been asking for the past few months. I’m guessing yes, now that they have a lockdown perimeter defender to check Gerald Henderson.

Please leave your opinions in the comments.

Here’s something cool — the 1992 United States Olympic basketball team, commonly referred to as “The Dream Team” or “The Best Team Ever Assembled” or “You Know Who I’m Talking About,” will be a playable team in this year’s edition of the NBA 2K franchise.

Here’s something not quite as cool — in the picture you see above, which was tweeted today by 2K Sports, there is no Scottie Pippen. Christian Laettner is there, of course, and Clyde Drexler (?) is standing right in front, ahead of even Michael Jordan, but there is no Scottie Pippen.

Word on the street is that Pippen didn’t agree to a deal with 2K Sports, which therefore precludes him being in the game. Considering he was in last year’s iteration of the franchise, this is a huge bummer. Not only is Pippen one of the 50 greatest players of all-time and one of my favorite players to ever play for my favorite team, he was also a guy Chuck Daly considered integral to the Dream Team. Now how are we going to destroy virtual Toni Kukoc? (No, the 1992 Croatian Olympic basketball team is not in the game, weirdo.)

That bad part of the news aside, how great is this? The answer is very great, especially because this year’s Olympic team is also going to be in the game, which means we can finally answer the “who would win?” question once and for all with no debate from anyone because video games are the truest test of competition. Joking, of course, but that is definitely what everyone is going to do. Just like everyone is going to try to make Christian Laettner the leading scorer every time they play, because haha.

So yeah, no Scottie Pippen, but still really awesome. The game comes out October 2, which gives you just under a month to play as many games as possible before the NBA season starts. Can’t wait.

Maybe it’s just me, but I like learning things about coaches. With the internet and TV the way it is, we know so much about our favorite players because people ask them thousands of questions at a time. Like, we know that Dwight Howard’s favorite movie is “Finding Nemo,” but why in the world do we know that? I don’t know either, but we do.

Coaches though, they’re still kind of a mystery, mostly because they’re not asked nearly as many questions, and when they are, they don’t really care to answer them. That’s why it’s fun to learn new stuff about coaches, at least as far as I’m concerned.

For instance, did you know George Karl was really good at Donkey Kong? Me neither, but it’s true. From Sports Illustrated’s Zach Lowe, who interviewed new Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts, an ABA assistant under Karl:

SI.com: Was George close enough in age then that he could hang out with the players?

Stotts: Oh, yeah. We hung out at a bar, T.J.’s, all the time in Great Falls. We played a lot of Donkey Kong and Missile Command together at T.J.’s.

SI.com: Who was better?

Stotts: George was much better at Donkey Kong. His hand/eye coordination in that game was unbelievable.

So there you go — George Karl is apparently an ace Donkey Kong player. No Billy Mitchell or Steve Wiebe, I’m sure, but it’s still fun to imagine Karl hunched over an arcade game, gunning for a best score. Along with returning to the Nuggets after beating cancer and the time he coached a game while wearing a jersey over a white turtleneck, this is one of my favorite things to know about George Karl. If you ever see him out at a bar and have a spare quarter or two, buy him a game. He’ll love it.

Ever since he blew out his knee again, Baron Davis has had a lot of time on his hands. So he’s done what any normal person with millions of dollars and nothing to do for a few months would — make videos using a terrible British accent, start a video game company and help design a mobile video game that features himself, some fellow NBA players and the WNBA’s Candace Parker. Duh.

As you can see in the trailer — video games have trailers now, 2012 — Getting Buckets is sort of a “Sonic the Hedgehog” meets “Backyard Baseball” sidescroller, rather than some complicated simulation that would require the player to learn all kinds of moves that would make them good at video games. That’s intentional. From SLAM:

“There’s really no kind of fun, immediate game that you can play that involves your favorite athletes,” Davis says. “What Sean and I wanted to do was to really create a gaming app that would connect fans with athletes.”

Adds O’Brien [the game's designer]: “The first vision that Baron had was to create something accessible. He didn’t want to do a simulation game where there are a lot of controls that you have to try to master. He wanted casual fans to be able to pick up their iPhone or iPad or iPod Touch and just be able to play and interact with the athlete. And we really felt there was an opening in mobile gaming.”

Baron Davis preferring to do things the easy way, rather than put in all that silly practice? No way. That’s a huge surprise.

But really, it’s pretty easy to see this sort of game succeeding in the App Store. If “Angry Birds,” “Fruit Ninja” and “Rat on a Snowboard” can get mad downloads, you’d think a bunch of NBA players dribbling all over the place and jumping a lot would do just fine. As long as animated Baron and Steve Nash stay healthy, real-life Baron might have a hit on his hands.

I’m not sure what exactly “executive produced by” means when it’s talking about a rapper and a video game, but when Michael Jordan says it while it flashes on-screen, it must be true. As a fan of Jay-Z, the NBA and the 2K franchise who is very excited for the release of this game, please allow me some guesses as to what this will entail.

  • Memphis Bleek will be a hidden character.
  • All Brooklyn Nets attributes will be artificially increased by 6-12 percent, just because.
  • Damon Dash will be in the first half of the game, then fall off the face of the Earth once you get past game 41 of season mode.
  • If you try to play as DeShawn Stevenson, the game explodes.
  • Players drink Krug rose for championship celebrations.
  • Half the teams have Kanye West on the roster.
  • Every uniform in the game is all-black.
  • Soundtrack includes forgotten Roc-A-Fella artists Freeway, Beanie Sigel, Amil and Freekey Zekey because of an old promise to “hook them up.”
  • After you win the NBA championship in career mode, the game turns off and swears it’ll never come back. It turns on a few hours later and you have to act surprised.

Now, these might sound silly to you, but ask yourself if any of these ideas are any sillier than paying Jay-Z money to be an executive producer for a video game. Exactly. Feel free to add your own suggestions in the comments.

From the headline, you are probably thinking “Which one? They’ve acquired like a million of them this summer.” And you know, fair enough. But it’s not Brandon Roy, it’s not sometimes-two guard Chase Budinger and it’s not Andrei Kirilenko’s back tattoo, which could never play in the backcourt because its razor sharp talons would destroy the ball.

Nope, it’s Russian import Alexey Shved, and this guy loves compies and kitties, whose secret was spilled thanks to being a member of Russia’s Olympics team. From an interview by Prosports.ru, via a Google translation that I’ve cleaned up a bit:

“I’m a cat lover. Our family always had cats — Siamese first, then the cat of the same breed. And now I have a Bengal — same as the snow leopard, only little. Chica is the name. She wakes me every morning and evening. It’s so nice when you come tired, in a bad mood, and the cat settles on your knees. You have to stroke it and you somehow calm down. Not for nothing do they say that cats are treated. Play with it, scratch it — and somehow the problems are forgotten. ”

“I love computer games. From my childhood. I have all the boxes one by one. I can play five hours a day: I come at eight, I sit at my computer — and before one o’clock, did not even hear anything when I was treated. Previously played in WoW, and now again remembered the games that I ever played in my childhood. CounterStrike, strategies are different … In addition, there are always new games, improved graphics. Previously, it was all in boxes, and now you’re playing as if in a movie. Although, of course, the same is not such that I, as a child, was waiting for the release of new games. “

Did Alexey Shved just become your favorite player? That wouldn’t surprise me. Cats, computers and basketball are pretty much what the internet is all about these days.

Just look at how much that guy loves cats. So much, like a real life Dr. Evil with his lap-stroking, stress-relieving ways. Seems like a chill bro who has no allergies and just wants to relax with his cats when he gets home from a hard day of basketball. And when he doesn’t have a hard day of basketball, it’s all video games all the time. (I am guessing his cat is napping now or eating or something else that keeps it away from his computer keyboard, which is a huge concern when you have a kitty. Trust me.)

Pretty sweet deal — play basketball for a few hours, come home and pet your cat for a bit to chill out, then play video games for five hours, all while making millions of dollars for doing so. I can see why he’d want to come to the States. And once he finds out about all the kitten pictures on the internet, I can imagine he’ll want to stay.