NBA Jam '99

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a game by Iguana
Genre: Sports
Platforms: Nintendo 64Nintendo 64, GameBoy Color
Editor Rating: 7.8/10, based on 7 reviews
User Rating: 6.0/10 - 2 votes
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See also: Sport Games, Sports Management Games, Basketball Video Games, NBA Video Games, NBA Jam Series
NBA Jam '99
NBA Jam '99
NBA Jam '99
NBA Jam '99

Unlike its N64 big brother, the GBC version of NBA Jam 99 is like the old-school versions of the game, featuring little or no realism and being proud of it. With its two-on-two gameplay (with two-player link support), crazy slams and jams and a choice of 29 authentic NBA squads (four stars from each team), it might be a nice addition to the system's growing library. Look for it from Taurus Games and Acclaim in February.

Download NBA Jam '99

Nintendo 64

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

Yet another basketball game! They keep coming thick and fast, don't they!

Here's a little list for you. NBA Courtside. NBA Hangtime. NBA Pro '98. NBA Live '99. Now, here's NBA Jam '99. Deepest joy resonates throughout the land as this cart is slipped into place, the N64's power switch is slid upwards and crowds gather around the screen as it warms up. What has it got in store for us? Our thumbs are twitching, sweat breaks out on our foreheads... our verdict? It's the same as usual. The same! The same! The same! Ahahahahaha, they're coming for us, hahahah!

Beyond A Joke?

Let us recap the finer details of basketball, in case you've been locked in solitary confinement for the past couple of years with nothing but an imaginary friend and a stained bed pan for company. Get ball. Run with ball. Put ball through hoop. Got it? Good! So then, where does this one break the mould and come storming home?

Thankfully, NBA Jam is incredibly sharp and the players are not only clearly distinguishable but are animated to such an extent we could clearly tell who was who by their facial animation. Now, that is smart! The players' movement doesn't reflect their pretty little bodies though, because it is slightly treacly. Despite moving in all the right places, they just don't do it quickly enough, which tends to detract any urgency to getting hold of that ball.

All the in-game menus are extremely accessible and avoid getting bogged down with pointless stats and multiple sub-menus. You simply access what you want, highlight it, then move on. Lo and behold, there's a quickstart option too. Praise Jordan!

Bouncy Bolls

The actual physics of the basketball are wonderful. Unlike some games where simply being in the scoring zones ensures the ball goes in, if you are even slightly off-target that baby will certainly punish you for your inaccuracy. Throw it too hard and it will react exactly as you would expect, bouncing all over the place and probably into the opposition's possession - which isn't a good thing. Their AI makes sure that if you do manage a basket it is well deserved, as they have a tendency to mark your men like flies around... well, you know. The system for communication between your own team is well designed, so learning to use the court and position your guys soon becomes second nature. Simply press the R button to call to one of your men, then pass to him.

As far as being an original entry into the basketball market goes, NBA Jam '99 is about as original as a packet of ready salted crisps. It neither outshines its rivals, nor is overshadowed by their quality. NBA Jam '99 is merely another entry that just happens to be slightly better than most of the other recent releases. It Is both well designed and well constructed though, so for a first time basketball game buyer, it might be worth a look.

2nd rating opinion

With so many basketball games on the scene it's difficult to get excited over another one. However, this one plays very well, looks nice and has some realistic action. If you're into basketball then you can't go far wrong. And if you're not... It's still worth a look!

Hoop Dreams

Due for release In the States In a matter of days, the first serious challenger to Kobe Bryant's crown as the N64's basketball king is Acclaim's impressive looking NBA Jam 99.

Unsurprisingly it's a huge advance in terms of presentation from Nintendo's playable-but-bare game. The players warm up and take practice shots while the announcers set the scene and introduce the teams, there is a greater variety of special moves and dunk animations, and the action is depicted with slinky hi-res graphics throughout. The sound extends beyond the usual squeak of plimsoll on varnish, helped by a chatty commentary team who might well be the John Motson and Big Ron of the American sports scene. Except we're fairly sure that Motty has never used the expression "rim rattling" in his professional career. Even the crowd get in on the action, taunting the opposition and counting down the last few seconds of every quarter.

Cameplay is much less arcadey than NBA Courtside - it's fast and furious, but there are more controls and options to consider. Every button on the controller has a different function depending on whether you're attacking or defending, and extra tactical functions can be called up by double-tapping the C-buttons. A skills mode is included as a bonus game, where you can pick your favourite player and compete against your friends to see who can land the most free throws or three-pointers in one minute.

NBA Jam 99 isn't quite as easy to learn as Courtside, but we'd wager that any basketball fanatics out there will relish the challenge. It'll be up against some fierce competition though, in the form of NBA Live 99 and Fox Sports College Hoops.

People say:


This is quite a surprise. As much as I liked Kobe's NBA Courtside, I knew there had to be another N64 game that would satisfy my roundball needs. NBA Jam 99 is not perfect, but it's certainly the best simulation available on the N64 in my opinion. The Al of the computer is pretty good, maybe even better than Kobe's. Jam 99 has good player rotations and nice animations overall. Of course being that this is a Jam game, the dunks look and feel great. You can unleash the trademark monster jams in the "no rules" arcade mode, which is great when you just want to go nuts. The only downside is that you can't quite go as nuts as you'd like and the arcade mode retains too much of the game's sim aspects. If you wanted a direct follow-up in the tradition of the Jam series, you'll be disappointed. The sim modes are where the main action is, which is fine by me. If you've watched countless NBC basketball telecasts like myself, you'll either love or hate the commentary by Bill Walton (one of the two commentators available). He says some of the most idiotic comments ever heard in a telecast, but I love it. Jam 99 has a tendency to repeat phrases quite a bit, but so does Bill Walton in real life. Perfect! The season mode is great, and the CPU will give you a pretty good run in the harder difficulties.


NBA Jam 99 has a totally different vibe than Courtside or NBA Live 99 (the system's current best). To be fair it doesn't look that bad. The detail is nice and sharp, much better than most N64 games. The animation is pretty good as well. But, it certainly doesn't have the same level of gameplay as Live or Courtside. Single-player is OK, but not nearly as fun as the two-player )am Mode. Bottom line--lam 99 is a rent-first title.


I don't know what Sushi's smokin', but there's no way Jam 99 comes even close to topping Courtside or Live 99. (Then again, how many ninjas do you know who've got any skills on the court? Yeah, me neither...) jam 99 isn't bad by any means, but aside from its pretty hi-res graphics, it's a decidedly average fa-ball game that's a bit too slow for its own good. The Jam Mode feels nothing like the old Jam games, either. Disappointing.


NBA Jam 99 isn't very NBA Jam-like, is it? Acclaim and Iguana have toned down the arcade-style of play, making it nowhere near as intense as it used to be. It basically plays like a regular game with all penalties turned off. There's a simulation mode also, but it's not very solid either--fans of b-ball games probably won't like it. Overall, NBA Jam 99 has a nice-looking exterior but that's about it. I'm afraid, look elsewhere.

For its November debut, NBA Jam'99 is practicing hard, hoping to provide gamers with both an authentic sim and an old-fashioned five-on-five Jam where the action is fast and the scores super-high. Graphically, the game already looks slick as players smoothly shoot hooks and perform moves like the cross-over dribble and fade-away jumper.

Unfortunately, at this early point in development, the A.I. isn't yet up to the challenge. Defenders let you run by them on fast breaks, you can't see what's happening in the congested lane, and players lose control of the ball far too often. If these problems get fixed. Jam will be a contender. If not, it looks like NBA Live '99 will be this years N64 champ.

Acclaim Sports is revamping an old favorite in hopes of bringing b-ballers the most complete N64 hoops experience yet. But even though NBA Jam '99 sports slick graphics and cool arcade-style features, its occasionally sluggish action and frustrating control ruin the show.

Shut Up and Jam

Jam '99 steps in the gym with a respectable lineup of features and gameplay modes that'll appeal to any roundballer. Aside from the usual play modes and standard lineup of pro teams, players (minus The Man), and stadiums, hoop-heads can brush up on their free throws and compete in a three-point shootout in the Skills Contest or crash the hardwood in the raucous no-holds-barred Jam mode.

If you're familiar with the classic two-on-two slamfest, then you know what to expect: No rules and no fouls, just straight up smash-mouth hoops. But unlike in the Jam of old, you field a team of five guys, not two, and there isn't an option to turn on those outrageous hot spots that gave you more than two points for a bucket. There are, however, some crazy dunks goin' on, including high-flying somersault rim-shakers and between-the-legs Kobe Bryant-style slams.

Three-Point Brick

Unfortunately, like QB Club '99 before it, Jam's excellent hi-res graphics can't mask its shoddy gameplay. At times, Jam plays exceptionally well as players move to the right spots on the court to set up for an open jumper or a monster slam. At other times, however, players wander the court looking like they got lost on their way to the concession stand. Not only is this aggravating, but it totally slows down the pace of the game.

Jam also suffers from less-than-adequate control. While it does provide icon passing and an easy-to-use alley-oop command, the controls are sometimes slow to react when you want to switch players on defense. And when you're on offense, players tend to walk after receiving a pass instead of sprinting to the hole, giving the defense a chance to drop back and snuff the play.

Houston, We Have a Problem

Acclaim Sports is making great graphical strides, and Jam '99 really close to being an excellent game. Yet, when it comes down to it, gamers are looking for more than just excellent hi-res graphics and awesome animations-- gameplay is the key, and this game isn't up to championship speed. Stick with Live '99--its fast game-play and wealth of features slam this Jam.


  • Jam's alley-oop Is easy to use and very effective. When you have a man chBlin' down low, simultaneously press right-C twice to slam home an easy deuce.
  • When playing in Jam mode, knock the baH carrier off hb feet by simultaneously hitting the Z-trigger and the B-butt on.
  • If you have a scoring threat like Reggie Hiller, use a screen to free him up for a three.
  • When you pkk the opposition's pocket, look to pass to your power forward streaking up court Easy money.
  • The Skils Contest is an excellent place to practice your free throws.


Jam '99 sports excellent hi-res graphics and killer dunk animations. The only hitch is that the game slows down when a gang of players is trying to snatch a loose ball.


The in-game effects are very solid and unobtrusive, while jam's two-man commentary from Bill Walton and Kevin Harlan, although very repetitive, keeps pace with the action.


The control is a big downer: Defensive switches are sluggish, and the players tend to walk instead of run when they receive a pass.

Fun Factor

The Jam mode makes for a good time if you want no-holds-barred arcade action, but Jam '99s control and game speed hamper the sim experience. Live '99 definitely offers the best NBA action on the Nintendo 64.

Don't let the name fool you. NBA Jam '99 is a slammin' new five-on-five shootout that's ready to compete with Kobe Bryant's Courtside for Nintendo bailers' playing time.

Burning Bourn the Nets

NBA Jam '99 dribbles onto the N64 with just about ever)' feature basketball fans could want. The game sports all 29 NBA teams, ever)' player (except Jordan, of course), and all the authentic courts and arenas. Play options include sim modes like Season, Custom Season. Exhibition, Playoff, and Three-Point Shoot Out. Plus, there's an old-fashioned five-on-five Jam game where players jump out the gym, catch on fire, and shove opponents to the ground in an arcade-style scoring spree. Jam '99 also includes a Classic games mode (like Quarterback Club's) in which you are given scenarios from memorable basketball games of yesteryear and attempt to change the past. Other highlights inelude trades, drafts, free agents, injuries, and the salary caps; the ability to create players and teams; and players who not only play to their actual abilities, but also possess signature moves like Iverson's cross-over dribble and Pippen's finger roll.

In Your Face

Jam's graphics heat up the hardwood with the coolest, most detailed-looking players seen so far in a Nintendo 64 hoops game. The superstar player models feature realistic skin textures and recognizable faces of all your favorite bailers. Keith Van Horn. Stephon Marbury. and Juwan Howard were motion-captured to bring all the flashy moves, shots, and shakes of the NBA to life--and the moves already look fantastic. In-game slat updates include color player photos; all the plays in the game are drawn out in a chalk-board-like options screen, which helps you know exactly what spots on the floor to run to; and the two-man announcer team features Kevin Harlan and Bill Walton. The only thing holding Jam back from swiping the championship is the current NBA lockout, which will probably not only stall the start of the new season, but also delay Jam's release date because Acclaim will want to have the most current team rosters.

Snapshots and Media

Nintendo 64/N64 Screenshots

GameBoy Color Screenshots

See Also

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