Again when NBA 2K16 launched, I ended up having a ton of enjoyable with it at the same time as somebody who didn’t actually watch basketball a lot. After consistently listening to about mediocre sports activities video games again then, NBA 2K16 felt nice to play, and more-importantly was enjoyable. Since then, I’ve been making an attempt to play 2K’s NBA video games annually. NBA 2K21 on PS5 was a spotlight for me, however I used to be curious to see how the sport scaled on different platforms. I began enjoying it on Swap and no matter latest console model was accessible. I had by no means truly performed one in all these video games on PC earlier than. With NBA 2K24, I needed to cowl it on each Steam Deck and on any present console for the “next-gen” expertise. Since round launch, I’ve been enjoying NBA 2K24 on Steam Deck and Xbox Sequence X. This evaluation will give attention to the previous, nevertheless it has been fascinating and disappointing to see how completely different the sport is throughout PC and Xbox Sequence X.
I hardly ever discover a yearly sports activities sport that justifies a full-priced buy annually. NBA 2K24 is fairly comparable in that regard, so that you may be questioning why I’m reviewing it? I needed to see the way it feels on Steam Deck since I by no means performed these video games on Valve’s handheld, and in addition needed to see how that model compares to the Xbox Sequence X (and PS5 model. I additionally needed to focus on who should purchase it proper now, and who ought to wait on a sale. On this NBA 2K24 Steam Deck evaluation, I’m going to give attention to the sport on Valve’s handheld gaming system, but additionally cowl the sport and the way I discovered it within the time I’ve performed throughout platforms.
Since NBA 2K18, each sport within the sequence has been Steam Deck Verified. Realizing that, I anticipated NBA 2K24 to work properly, and it performs with out points on Steam Deck out of the field. I’m stunned it hasn’t gotten verified but, and my solely actual criticism with this launch barring it being primarily based on the last-gen model (which I’ll get to), is the set up measurement. NBA 2K24 at the moment occupies 146.33GB on Steam Deck. That is smaller than the 170 or so GB on Xbox Sequence X, however nonetheless huge. I wouldn’t even have the ability to match this into the inner SSD on my 256GB Steam Deck due to shaders and different information put in on it.
I put in NBA 2K24 on my SD card, and it ran completely. I didn’t change any settings initially, however settled on tweaking most issues to medium or excessive and I turned shadows right down to see if I may make it look crisper on the Deck’s show by sacrificing shadows. You received’t have to hassle with any of this, however the sport scales very properly. It even has shader preload choices and 16:10 assist for a lot of elements. I don’t know if NBA 2K23 supplied all this, however NBA 2K24 feels and appears nice on Steam Deck. I additionally tried it with my DualSense controller.
In terms of sport modes exterior the default play modes, the Mamba Moments problem mode right here is kind of good, however I’d have appreciated to see extra of a give attention to Kobe Bryant’s legendary profession on this sport. The content material on this mode is superb, however I hoped for extra principally. One space the place NBA 2K24 does really feel like a step again, is its MyCareer mode. On PS5 and Xbox Sequence X, there’s a whole set of WNBA content that isn’t accessible on prior platforms together with MyCareer content material and extra. Barring that, the lacking characteristic I’m disenchanted by essentially the most is the Eras fast play choices that replicate the TV viewing expertise with filters on Xbox Sequence X. These non-obligatory filters add quite a bit to the expertise and this appears to be absent on PC. Take a look at the screenshot from Xbox Sequence X beneath:
Evaluating NBA 2K24 on Steam Deck (or PC) with the Xbox Sequence X model, exterior of visuals, the large variations are with sport modes, motion, and general content material. The spotlight is unquestionably cross play, which is feasible with the NBA 2K24 PS5 and Xbox Sequence X|S native variations. The others don’t have cross play which is a big deal in a sport like this. NBA 2K24 is the primary time cross play has been added as properly to an NBA 2K sport so far as I’m conscious. Different variations embrace the shortage of ProPLAY on PC. ProPLAY makes use of NBA footage translated in-game. Extra info on that’s here. Even the sport menus really feel simply superb on PC whereas the Xbox Sequence X model is quite a bit nicer.
Whereas menus aren’t an enormous deal for the gameplay, it principally seems like a illustration of the general product accessible on each platforms. NBA 2K24 on PC is an excellent basketball sport that has points and is missing in comparison with the brand new consoles, however NBA 2K24 itself additionally has an excessive amount of of a push in the direction of digital forex in its numerous modes. If you happen to ignore all that and simply need a sport to play casually or with associates, NBA 2K24 on PC is nice on Steam Deck, however that’s an enormous caveat.
Excited about the chances of NBA 2K25 bringing the brand new options and visuals to PC additionally may find yourself being problematic on Steam Deck. If stated potential model relies on new consoles, it won’t run and look as properly on Steam Deck. That is all hypothesis after all, however the potential of NBA 2K25 doing extra on PC has me excited. If it’s the identical last-gen model although, I seemingly received’t be bothering enjoying it on Steam Deck and stick to simply PS5 or Xbox Sequence X. Having not performed an NBA 2K sport on PC earlier than, I loved my time with NBA 2K24 on Steam Deck. That is positively getting Steam Deck Verified quickly with how good it appears to be like and performs.
Whereas NBA 2K24 does have on-line play, I needed to see if it was playable by way of Steam’s Distant Play Collectively. I invited a good friend who doesn’t personal the sport to play on my Steam Deck with me. It labored very well regardless of the space between us. One factor to notice is that I’d suggest sticking to 800p on Steam Deck as a result of 1080p with excessive and medium appears to be a bit an excessive amount of for Steam Deck to keep up a locked 60fps. If you wish to play on a 1080p show by the dock or one thing, take into account turning extra results down.
Proper now, I’d solely suggest NBA 2K24 on Steam Deck in the event you skipped the final yr or two of video games. If you happen to haven’t performed these video games shortly, NBA 2K24 runs and appears nice on Steam Deck, and is a enjoyable basketball sport to play. The push to digital forex in particular sport modes positively holds this again, alongside the shortage of recent modes and options on PC. Hopefully NBA 2K25 on PC will see it lastly get the complete characteristic set. Proper now, I’d suggest NBA 2K24 extra on Xbox Sequence X (or PS5) than PC, however the PC model performs nice on Steam Deck in the event you’re after an awesome transportable expertise.
NBA 2K24 Steam Deck evaluation rating: 3.5/5
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