‘NBA2K21’ goes full MMO with next-gen The City mode
Between photo-realistic graphics and a new WNBA mode, basketball fans have a lot to look forward to when it comes to the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S versions of NBA 2K21. And you can add The City, an expanded online hub world, to the list of next-generation specific features.
The City builds on The Neighborhood gameplay mode that’s been a hallmark of the franchise over the last couple of years. Series developer Visual Concepts is creating what essentially sounds like an MMORPG. When you first visit The City, you’ll start in “Rookieville.” It’s exactly what it sounds like: a tutorial area where you’ll need to complete several tasks before the rest of the online world opens up to you. Once you’re out of Rookieville, you’ll pick one of four Affiliations to join: North, South, East and West. Each faction calls a different borough of The City their home and has its own mayor.
Visual Concepts will handpick the game’s first mayors from the NBA2K community to serve an initial term. Afterward, each Affiliation will vote for their representative through an in-game poll — in case you haven’t had your fill of elections in the last week. Each term lasts six weeks, and as a mayor, you’ll have the power to define your faction’s visual identity. Visual Concepts will allow mayors to customize their Affiliation’s uniforms, court designs and more.
As you explore the hub, you’ll find basketball hoops attached to the side of some buildings. Here you’ll be able to challenge other players to games of HORSE and half-court games that feature up to six players total. Along the way, you’ll also stumble upon NPCs who will give you quests to complete. Like their counterparts in almost every other MMO, they’ll have an exclamation mark above their heads to let you know they have an assignment for you to complete. Naturally, there are also in-game stores throughout the world where you can customize your character’s appearance.