NBA Shootout 2004
With few games released on the Playstation anymore it's hard to take issue with too many things on the games that are released. It's especially challenging in the case of NBA Shootout 2004, as it will likely be the only Playstation NBA game released this year. One thing that can't be said however is that Sony doesn't support their products as NBA Shootout 2004 at least makes that clear. Unfortunately it is a carbon copy of last year's release with few new or noticeably upgraded features.
As with last year's release, the standard gameplay modes such as exhibition and season are included and meet general expectations. The available options fit in line with the depth expected from Playstation games but the main upgrade is the new roster list. Other then that, the absence of a career mode stands out but isn't unexpected either as Playstation games historically didn't include that option.
The other aspects of the game are adequate as well such as the controls that are responsive and simple. Shooting, dribbling, blocking, and passing all work well and create as smooth of an experience as you're going to find on this platform. The graphics and audio also fall into the same situation and are probably as good as they're going to get. The more famous faces for instance are semi recognizable for the most part even though they look like they were painted on.
As stated earlier, it's hard to be critical of something when it's a one of a kind. Although NBA Shootout 2004 doesn't offer much new from its previous release, if you're a basketball fan with only a Playstation, you'll find a solid game that will meet most realistic expectations. If you have last year's however, I'd save your money.
Download NBA Shootout 2004
Still looking to compete on the same level as EA's NBA Live and Sega's ESPN NBA Basketball series, 989 Sports NBA Shootout series has fallen significantly behind in the past. Although considerable improvements were made last year, they still weren't able to pose any serious threat to the major players. This is however a new year but unfortunately, similar results are to be found.
NBA Shootout 2004 puts forth a comparable effort as far as features are concerned. The online capability including USB headset support works as expected in addition to offering a number of small features such as leader boards and downloads. The career mode also has some standout features allowing you to take a player from small venues to the NBA. In addition, it'll give reason to keep playing for some time in an effort to achieve the different goals offered to unlock different options. Besides those and the more standard features, numerous other features such as create-a-dunk and create-a-player help to improve the game's potential.
Unfortunately, it's the execution of these features that separates NBA Shootout 2004 from its biggest competition. If you played either NBA Live 2004 for ESPN NBA Basketball 2004 its immediately clear those two games are polished and refined at a totally different level. NBA Shootout 2004 has some control issues that are frustrating such as trying to dribble around an opponent and running into their invisible force field and graphics that aren't terrible but aren't near the caliber of the other two. The commentary however is a brighter spot as Bill Walton and Ian Eagle pull off a remarkable call of the game but that alone can't make the difference.
NBA Shootout 2004 isn't a bad game by itself but when compared to the competition, it's never going to get off the bench. Although the online features may give some reason to standout, the gameplay and graphics falls flat keeping it from once again putting any heat on its competitors.