Classic NBA arcade action is back! Take your “A” game to the playground and beat the best in high-flying 2-on-2 basketball action. Practice your skills offline, play with up to three others, or take your talents online to posterize your opponents with acrobatic jams and ridiculous displays of skill.
Players fill up their roster of players by playing different modes to earn packs. Tournament mode is a mode where they play four games with challenges on each court. Once the tournament is completed, they unlock the court and a gold pack. There is online mode and exhibition where players can play to upgrade the players from bronze to silver and gold. Players also get a pack for leveling up their offline level and their online level. (Offline play requires an internet connection on PS4)
NBA Playgrounds includes a roster of both active and former NBA stars; both local and online multiplayer modes are included in the game (Although local mode requires an internet connection to function on PS4). The game has a digital-only distribution.
Online Features – Delayed for Nintendo Switch
The online feature was not ready at launch day for the Nintendo Switch version due to technical issues, but the developer initially promised it would be ready in a few days. Despite that, two weeks have passed before the developer was questioned on Twitter about the online status of the Nintendo Switch version without getting a definitive answer. However, the developer later told Nintendo Switch players to expect a “huge announcement” on June 1.
Ultimately, the developer announced anyone who purchases NBA Playgrounds on the Nintendo Switch prior to implementing the online feature will receive a complimentary copy of the upcoming beat ’em up title Shaq Fu: A Legend Reborn as compensation for their continued patience, re-iterating the online feature is coming soon. Online features finally arrived on the Nintendo Switch with the next update in the following month, which also added extra free content including 15 new NBA stars on all platforms. Additional free content is expected later in the summer.
On October 4, 2017, Saber Interactive announced and launched the game’s first premium DLC package, titled “Hot ‘N Frosty”. The DLC introduces three new courts for players to compete on: Rio de Janeiro, Toronto, and Miami. Each playground comes with its own tournament and single-player mode. Hot N’ Frosty also contains eight new rookies for players to use.
This arcade-like basketball game may be fun with friends, but if you’re playing by yourself, it’s not as fun. NBA Playgrounds is an arcade basketball game at heart and it doesn’t set out to do much more. It feels like a game you can just pick up and play for an hour and move on. It can get boring playing against the AI so having some human players will definitely bring in more fun. Kids are sure to love this game because of the cool arcade-like graphics. In all, it’s a fun game and for the price you just can’t go wrong. Why not play as a family? Go for it!
Developer: Saber Interactive
Platforms: PlayStation®4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Windows PC
Players: Single player, player local multiplayer, online multiplayer
ESRB Rating: E for Everyone
Release Date: May 9, 2017