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Why NBA 2K20 and UnitedMasters is a good look for artists and gamers

NBA 2K is already an industry leader in the gaming community for influencing and representing aspects of basketball and general American culture.

Now, the company is doubling-down on its vision, partnering with UnitedMasters, a music industry alternative for independent artists looking to distribute their music and market themselves.

2K will feature new artists of their choosing, creating a fluid and dope environment for new sounds, rhythms, and possibilities for talented artists to get their names out there. I can’t be the only one that always looks up songs from video games.

Ronnie Singh, the marketing director at 2K, posted on his Instagram that artists can submit their music for entry into the NBA 2K20 Soundtrack now on the United Masters app.


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You can’t front, when you’re in the loading screen for 2K, picking your team, ready to talk trash and dunk on your opponent’s head, you’re either bumping OD or thinking “wtf is this nonsense.”

Yes, 2K, we remember you guys putting in Macklemore.

Now, 2K has the chance to swap in and out new hot music that people may have not heard before. SoundCloud has shown us how hard new artists can hit, and it has also shown us how quickly music can grow stale (when lame people start listening and making videos).

2K gives itself the opportunity here to be ahead of the curve in the gaming industry, while also becoming a platform to put new, talented musicians on.

UnitedMasters was founded by Steve Stoute in 2017. The company lets users distribute music anywhere, anytime, through its app, and users always keep 100 percent ownership of their music.

2K is going to be awesome, especially after all the movement around the NBA over the offseason. The Nets, Jazz, and Rockets just got more fun. The Clippers are going to be a powerhouse and the Lakers with LeBron and AD? Crazy.

New poppin’ music can only up the ante on the success this game will generate. It’s an exciting time in the gaming and basketball industry.

How you’ll lose more bread than ever in NBA 2K19 with virtual currency

The deluxe version NBA 2K19 dropped earlier this month, officially kicking off 2KSZN.

With LeBron James gracing the cover for NBA 2K’s 20th Anniversary, this year’s installment is groundbreaking for more than one reason.

With this release, NBA 2K19 is bringing you new game modes for story mode featuring ‘The Way Back’ where you go undrafted and have to grind your way into the league. Its gameplay has also improved defensively, giving players more turnover opportunities so your opponent isn’t repeatedly posterizing you at the rim.


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Who you runnin with? The #NBA2K19 20th Anniversary Edition and Standard Edition are out now 🔥

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NBA 2K19 also incorporates celebrities into the mix adding Michael Rapaport, Anthony Mackie from The Avengers, and Aldis Hodge from Straight Outta Compton — the story mode is way too lit. Couple this with a handpicked Travis Scott playlist, NBA 2K19 will be a game you’re going to have a hard time putting down.

With how innovative NBA 2K19 is I hope you pre-ordered the deluxe version because those who did will receive 100,000 Virtual Currency (VC). This will come in handy for those MyPlayer and ‘The Neighborhood’ lovers who want to boost their virtual player’s ratings from the jump. However, this does lead to an interesting debate in regards to VC.

Over the years, NBA 2K fans have been complaining about how long it takes to accumulate VC for their virtual player. As a result, this has left gamers with no other choice but to directly buy VC through 2K after initially purchasing the game. Nevertheless, microtransactions as such have always been a part of the game, but have always been cooked.

2K Games has taken heed and plans on being more cost-effective in this year’s edition of NBA 2K19. Even though VC can be earned by playing offline against your friends, in head to head online competition, in ‘The Neighborhood’ and in MyCareer modes, without purchasing VC, saving it up isn’t an easy task.

VG24/7 sat down with senior producer Rob Jones and he had this to say about VC.

“Every game, at some point, in some way has currency and they’re trying to get additional revenue from each player that plays the game. We know nowadays that most people don’t have the patience to work their way to the top.

They just wanna be there right away. So, you know, we look at it as, ‘oh it’s an opportunity for us to allow you to skip the grind’, but then if the grind is too long, like some people felt last year, they’re gonna sit there and they’re gonna go ‘well, you knew the grind was too long to begin with.’”

Like anything in life, if you cheat the game, it’s going to cost you. At the end of the day 2K Games knows fans just want to hit ‘The Neighborhood’ and ball out on NBA 2K19’s open world. In hopes of finding a solution, 2K plans on gifting gamers more by so they don’t feel like their only hope is to purchase VC.

When speaking with VG24/7 Rob Jones explains how they’re resolving this issue.

“So we’re hoping that by rewarding you more that, A: you won’t need to go in and get as many things [VC] and B: you won’t feel like you know, ‘oh this is how they’re getting me.’ You can now participate in other things to get what you want.”

But if you are really nice at 2K, you shouldn’t need to trick off your money on VC.

If you are trash at 2K, grind it out and stack your VC. It’s imperative to hone your skills in the game with your virtual player and other teams so when you play against an opponent, you’ll have a high chance of winning.

There’s no point wasting your money to max out your player and still be garbage because you haven’t mastered the art of 2K.

LeBron low key doesn’t own the rights to his tattoos, now there’s a lawsuit

This is a weird one. There exist a copyright infringement lawsuit over LeBron James’ tattoos.

Solid Oak Sketches, a single member LLC, is suing Take-Two Interactive over their digital rendering of LeBron James in ‘NBA 2K’ specifically the recreation of LeBron’s tattoos.

Solid Oak owns the rights to LeBron’s tattoos, as well as former player Kenyon Martin and Suns point guard Eric Bledsoe’s tattoos. Apparently this is a thing you can do?

Copyright cases involving tattoos have apparently popped up more and more recently with companies buying the rights to celebrity’s tattoos.

In response to the suit, Take-Two is arguing that this would create an environment in which celebrities would have to ask permission every time they appear publicly or are photographed for magazines. Artsy broke down the lawsuit further,

“Take-Two balked at the idea it must pay to license images that are permanently inked on the bodies of basketball players, celebrities whose tattoos frequently appear in advertisements and the pages of glossy magazines. Solid Oak’s argument would require public figures to “seek its permission every time they appear in public, film, or photographs,” according to Take-Two’s August motion, currently under review, for summary judgment in its favor.”

In turn, Solid Oak is claiming that Take-Two is trying to profit off the use of LeBron’s tattoos with their digital recreation of the Cavs superstar.

I’m completely lost in all of this. How does one buy someone else’s tattoos? Why would you do that? How is 2K trying to profit off LeBron’s tattoos? NO ONE IS COPPING 2K TO EXAMINE THE ACCURACY OF LEBRON’S TATTOOS.

I don’t know, whole thing seems incredibly sketch and pretty weird. LeBron himself isn’t involved in the suit whatsoever despite the fact that these tattoos are on his own body.

Companies buying celebrity and athlete tattoos is truly peak capitalism. Apparently, the ruling in this case will set a necessary legal precedent for the intellectual property of celebrity tattoos.

I guess that’s a ruling we need now.

Anyways, who’s tryna get the paws in ‘2K’?


2K finally explains how they rate players for pissed off NBA stars

Why is Kyrie Irving only a 90 overall?

Every year 2K has the responsibility of giving each NBA player a rating based on their previous season. You have players on opposite sides of the spectrum from LeBron at a deserving 97 overall to Melo’s 84 (FOH).

NBA 2K is the highest selling sports game out and for good reason. If you’re a fan of basketball you’re a fan of 2K and athletes are no different.

It’s no surprise then athletes get a little in their feelings when they discover their 2K rating. Playing ball is their livelihood, to play all year to end up a 77 overall has to hurt a little.

The way 2K decides these ratings has always been a mystery. Is it all relative? Does Westbrook’s 94 overall equal Steph Curry’s 94? How do you make sense of it all? Well thanks to a recent interview with Complex, 2K has revealed just what goes into their decision making when rating an NBA player.

Contrary to popular belief, the 2K team doesn’t hand out ratings based on their favorite team or who’s popular. Instead they use a deeply specific system that in turn balances players with accurate stats.

2K Games Producer Michael Stauffer spoke about the rating system,

“We have to balance the statistics. For example, a guy like Kyrie Irving has great lateral movement. We don’t want him to feel slow, but at the same time, we don’t want him to be overpowering on defense.”

By analyzing a player’s specific stats, 2K is able to break down their skills to a correlating number. For example, a player’s steals per game or 3 point shots made will factor into those respective attributes.

Certain attributes will even work in tangent with each other like passing accuracy and passing consistency. As the NBA increases their analysis of players, NBA 2K will be right behind them collecting that data.

Ratings don’t tell the whole story behind a player either. 2K revealed that player types also make a difference during actual gameplay.

In terms of Westbrook vs. Curry, 2K has a different approach. A playmaking (secondary) defender (primary) point guard is going to be evaluated differently than a defensive (secondary) playmaker (primary) point guard.

All this means is that 2K ratings have a lot of thought put into them. Melo’s 84 rating happened for a reason I guess. Not much anyone can really complain about anymore, but it’s still fun to argue.

8 brazy NBA 2K mods that take the game to a whole other level

NBA 2K18 is out and to be honest it’s the same damn game.

Major props to 2K Sports though for innovating with features like the 2KTV, classic teams and this year’s Run The Neighborhood mode but realistically if you want a new user experience, you may need to spice it up by using some slight hacking.

NBA 2K mods are an insane way to get shit poppin’ and pretty much anything is possible when it comes to putting your favorite NBA players in compromising positions.

Just look what Bleacher Report did with #HoodieMelo. Shit is genius and who wouldn’t want to play the same damn game they’ve been playing with a little tweak like this?

Hoodie Melo is coming. 👀 (via @bleacherreport, cc: @cbrickley603)

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Over the years, we’ve seen epic mods and collabs that make the game exactly what it should be — a video game. People getting too caught up with the realism and it being a simulation forgot what video games are supposed to be.

Who doesn’t wanna play in some David vs. Goliath situation where Steph Curry is 1-foot tall or use Space Jam characters? Realistically I’m tryna play with Obama so someone holla at me with that.

I have no idea how these gamers are able to do mods like these but maybe 2K should hire some of them! It doesn’t really hurt the actual gameplay and this way we can play with the entire Ball family NOW.

At the end of the day, if you’re smoking a gram Backwood to the face and playing 2K tonight just like half of America (shouts out to you), then figure out how to get some mods poppin’ and take your game to the next level.

Watch Kobe f*ck around with Shaq in new NBA 2K18 commercial

When it comes down to it was there really ever a more legendary duo than Kobe and Shaq? Sure, Jordan and Pippen were up there but the Lakers in their 2000s prime was the best in my opinion, FOH.

While the two stars always had their differences, it’s good to see them put all that petty shit behind them and enjoy retirement together.

First Kobe, showed up to Shaq’s statue unveiling at Staples Center recently and now he appeared in his NBA 2K18 cover debut trailer above where he low key roasts him. It seems as if the two finally f*ck with each other but the bigger news here is that Diesel is gonna be on the cover of this year’s 2K again.

This isn’t Shaq’s first time on the cover of 2K, in fact it’s his third. He was the first cover athlete to get the back-to-back honor on 2K6 and 2K7. Now over six years after officially retiring in 2011, the O’Neal brand is still stronger than ever.

With his son Shareef committing to Arizona to play his college ball, it’s only a matter of time before he gets his own 2K cover too!

Of course, the 2K series is known for their amazing gameplay and super realistic broadcast presentation. With Shaq appearing as a digital announcer on last year’s game, who knows what the team over at 2K has in store for this season?

Surely there will be more emphasis on Shaq’s legendary status and with throwback teams, maybe we’ll finally see more of his classic rosters. Don’t forget that this man was also on the Suns, Cavs and Celtics after he had dominated on the Magic, Lakers and Heat! We better just see some crowd diving animations.

While I’m sure we’re all ready to cop, the craziest part is actually the price point as the Legend Gold Edition will sell for $149.99 and the standard Legend Edition will go for $99.99. What happened to 60 cash games?! Sheesh! Either way this shit comes out on September 19 so in the meantime keep playing your 2K17.