One of my favorite arcade games from the 90’s was NBA Jam. This arcade-style 2 v 2 basketball game recently got a reboot this past year on consoles, and has now a version has also made it’s way to the app store.
“BOOMSHAKALAKA!!! NBA JAM is ready to rock your iPhone or iPod touch with all the over-the-top, high-flying, 2-on-2 arcade basketball action just like you remember it – and like you’ve never seen before! So go to the hole. Go strong. Go for the monster jam. KABOOM!”
The first thing you will notice is how spectacular the visuals are. The game is optimized for Retina Displays; it looks and runs amazingly smooth. NBA Jam is the first game I have seen that uses photos of the actual player’s faces and places them on top of the body.
Their facial expressions also change during the game and are an entertaining addition. The sounds are also very well done; they even included the original announcers voice from the original game. Overall, presentation is top notch.
The game features a great training camp mode to teach you the games controls. You move the player via virtual stick, there is also a turbo button that increases run speed and enhances the other moves.
On offense you have pass button, which turns into a steal button on defense. The last button is for shooting on offense, and blocking a shot on defense. The games controls are excellent and are easy to pick-up even for the casual gamer.
The game features two modes; one is a Play Now option that will begin a start a simple exhibition game between your choice of teams/players. The Classic Campaign mode lets you select your favorite team and battle your way through all 29 other NBA teams as well as other hidden teams. Every team has at least 3 NBA players on their roster, some teams have more.
There are also Privileges that allow you to add things like bighead mode, 1 shot fire, camera hog, and unlimited turbo. However, most of these features must be unlocked. All these features make for an exciting single player experience.
The only thing this game is missing is a multiplayer mode. Either a local muliplayer mode or an online mode would be best.
NBA Jam is a great arcade-style basketball game. It’s visually stunning, easy to play, and the over-the-top gameplay is a blast. Even though it’s missing a multiplayer mode, I still recommend it for some exciting single player fun.