‘NBA Live 18’ gameplay must have accurate athlete facial renders to be taken seriously

‘NBA Live 18’ gameplay must have accurate athlete facial renders to be taken seriously
Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs sits in a white dome as he is photographed.
Source: Handout/Getty Images
Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs sits in a white dome as he is photographed.
Source: Handout/Getty Images

After an impressive showing at EA Play, the NBA Live franchise finally has some positive momentum. However, inconsistent player representation could curtail the brand’s resurgence. A full-featured demo is scheduled to release in August, and while no official retail release date has been set, September seems like a logical month for the game to hit stores.

The first-week impressions will be huge. Because its recent history has been marred by a low quality product and series instability, it’s crucial the game get off to a good start with consumers. Unlike games like NBA 2K, Madden and MLB The Show, NBA Live doesn’t have a large and dedicated fan base that will suffer through major issues shortly after release.

When NBA Live 16 was released there were a number of players in the game who weren’t scanned with the high-tech photo rig that developers use to generate the most accurate renders. This has become standard in AAA sports titles, but EA Sports was only able to get the time with a portion of the players to generate the best renders. Almost none of the incoming rookie class was scanned and several veterans were left out as well.

To make matters worse, the renders put in to replace the photo-realistic versions looked nothing like the real person. Take a look at the render for Luke Babbitt when the game was released.

Luke Babbitt in NBA Live 16
Source: Pasta Padre

The Utah Jazz’s Rudy Gobert took to Twitter to ask what happened to his render in the game.

NBA 2K Community Manager Ronnie Singh took this as an opportunity to show Gobert NBA 2K16’s higher quality render in their game.

This is just one aspect of the game and it’s true, the entire product shouldn’t be judged by this singular area. However, we live in a visual world and as long as eyes are one of the primary organs used to enjoy a video game, graphics matter.

Furthermore, in sports video games, accurate representation is king. Hopefully, NBA Live 18 doesn’t have to fight an uphill battle because of missteps on these kinds of details.

More sports gaming news and updates

Love sports games? Check out more content from Mic, including tips for leveling up your MLB The Show RTTS playerthe new story mode in Madden 18a wish for the WWE 2K18 release and a detailed sports video game release calendar.

How much do you trust the information in this article?

MORE FROM

Fans searched for years for aliens in 'Grand Theft Auto 5' – here's who finally found them

The story of how a group of determined individuals finally found aliens in 'Grand Theft Auto 5.'

'The Burning Crusade' private server Felmyst is the latest 'World of Warcraft' fanmade project to receive a takedown notice from

Blizzard has stepped in to shut down a fanmade 'World of Warcraft' legacy server called Felmyst.

Walmart set SNES Classic preorders live unexpectedly last night, and some customers are complaining of cancellations

Walmart suddenly set preorders for the SNES Classic live last night, and left us with a lot of questions.

Take advantage of this 'Pokémon Go' gift box sale to stock up on essential items

There's a big sale going on in 'Pokémon Go' right now, so you should get in on it!

‘Pokémon Go’ Fest plagued by connectivity issues as players boo Niantic CEO

'Pokémon Go' Fest in Chicago's Grant Park is being plagued by mobile connectivity and game server issues. Here's what fans have to say.

Is 'Final Fantasy 16' coming out anytime soon?

When might we see more on 'Final Fantasy 16?' Is the game on its way out?

Fans searched for years for aliens in 'Grand Theft Auto 5' – here's who finally found them

The story of how a group of determined individuals finally found aliens in 'Grand Theft Auto 5.'

'The Burning Crusade' private server Felmyst is the latest 'World of Warcraft' fanmade project to receive a takedown notice from

Blizzard has stepped in to shut down a fanmade 'World of Warcraft' legacy server called Felmyst.

Walmart set SNES Classic preorders live unexpectedly last night, and some customers are complaining of cancellations

Walmart suddenly set preorders for the SNES Classic live last night, and left us with a lot of questions.

Take advantage of this 'Pokémon Go' gift box sale to stock up on essential items

There's a big sale going on in 'Pokémon Go' right now, so you should get in on it!

‘Pokémon Go’ Fest plagued by connectivity issues as players boo Niantic CEO

'Pokémon Go' Fest in Chicago's Grant Park is being plagued by mobile connectivity and game server issues. Here's what fans have to say.

Is 'Final Fantasy 16' coming out anytime soon?

When might we see more on 'Final Fantasy 16?' Is the game on its way out?