Every Sunday, we will get you caught up on the sports gaming news you might have missed, during the busy week. This week it’s all about NBA 2K23, UFL, Madden 23 and more.
Sports Gaming News
- Michael Jordan NBA 2K23 Cover Athlete For Jordan & Championship Edition – Jordan Challenges Return, Release Date September 9
- Madden NFL 23 Mobile Releases on August 18 – Twitch Stream Schedule Revealed
- NBA 2K23 WNBA Edition Cover Athletes Are Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi
- Diamond Dynasty – June Monthly Awards Lightning Yordan Alvarez
- The Crew 2 Patch Adds 60 FPS Support, Gameplay Improvements, 20 New Vehicles and Much More
- Matchpoint Tennis Championships Available Now For PC and Xbox Game Pass Subscribers
- Devin Booker NBA 2K23 Cover Athlete For Standard and Digital Deluxe Editions
- F1 22 Patch 1.05 Address Some Gameplay Issues, Reduces ICE Wear Rate, Improves VR & More – Patch Notes
- GRID Legends Patch 3.2 Adds Photo Mode, Bug Fixes and Improvements – Patch Notes
- F1 Manager 2022 Gameplay Video – Recruiting, Scouting and Developing a Team
- FIFA 22 Patch 14 Features Some Gameplay Changes – Available For PC, Soon For All Other Platforms – Patch Notes
- Action Arcade Wrestling Reigning and Defending Update Available For Nintendo Switch
- Diamond Dynasty – Home Run Derby X, Moonshot, and More
- MLB The Show 22 Patch #11 Available Today – Patch Notes
- Diamond Dynasty – Lightning Craig Biggio Highlights July Monthly Awards
- EA Play Member Only July Rewards Available in FIFA 22, Madden NFL 22, NHL 22 & GRID Legends
Operation Sports Featured Articles
When we last saw Strikerz Inc’s UFL back in May of this year, we were finally treated to a brief glimpse of actual gameplay. The team over at Strikerz Inc. has been fairly transparent with information on the UFL as they build their soccer title from the ground up. Through their developer diary series, fans of the beautiful game and video game development get to see insights into how a game is made. While information was certainly delayed due to events taking place in Ukraine, their team is back at it, this time with a new revamped developer diary series that focuses on different areas of the game while laying down a roadmap for what’s to come. With that in mind, let’s look at some key takeaways from this most recent Developer Diary.
MLB The Show is the one true king of baseball video games. Not because it reigns above the competition but because it simply has no competition. For nearly a decade now, MLB The Show has been the only simulation baseball game on the market and there’s been no one to challenge SDS. Competition breeds innovation and without it, inevitably there is only stagnation.
That stagnation can be seen in various parts of the game (whether it be franchise mode or the pitcher-batter duel), but one that has come up a lot this year relates to online ranked games. The ultimate battleground in Diamond Dynasty is Ranked Seasons. Full 9-inning games featuring everything about baseball that we love. The cat and mouse game of picking up on your opponent’s pitching tendencies. The mental battle of picking apart your opponent’s hitting in an effort to slice and dice their entire lineup. Ranked Seasons is the ultimate test of not only your skill, but your patience and fortitude.
The window to test the Madden 23 beta has now closed for those lucky enough to procure a code through any means necessary, and we’ve moved abruptly into those awkward days of trying to play Madden 22 again after already having glimpsed the future. Since the beta was extended an extra week, there was more than enough time to grow accustomed to all of the subtle upgrades and changes and these only become more apparent when you go back to the older game. We’ve already written quite a few words on this site covering some of the biggest improvements that look to be in store from Madden 22 to Madden 23. Perhaps the biggest takeaway from the Madden 23 beta is that we can expect, as with most years, the same kind of incremental progress and innovation that will have the game playing a little more smoothly and realistically than it has in years prior.
Future Stars Nolan Gorman might be a fresh face in real life, but MLB The Show veterans should already have some fond memories of the minted prospect. He has been hitting dingers for some time, and that is reflected with the excitement around this card (albeit that excitement will now drop after seeing the ratings). He can play 2B and 3B, and he’s going to give you adequate fielding from those spots while hitting for major pop. That said, I still will feel more comfortable with him at 3B, but there he faces some stiffer competition and becomes a trickier add to the starting lineup.
He’s obviously much better against RHP, but I would also say he generally plays above his ratings. The speed will hurt his range at 2B, and it’s also disappointing that this card is generally worse overall than his one last year. He becomes more of a platoon player than the prior version, and he’s just not been given the same “benefit of the doubt” as some of the other Future Stars cards from recent weeks. He certainly does struggle against LHP, but rosy projections for some of the other Future Stars with less of a track record make this Gorman card a little more shocking. Regardless, I’m still excited to use him, but he does appear to be more of a bench bat in many lineups.
We should get the full details on July 7 in terms of the full list of what comes with these versions of the game and the prices of these editions, but let’s talk about what we know right now. We know the Championship Edition comes with a full year of NBA League Pass. At first, I assumed this would be the version of League Pass that is a Team Pass. Basically for $120 USD, you get to see all games from a single team that you select. However, by the NBA’s own marketing jargon (and 2K’s details related to the asterisk next to League Pass in their own press release about the Championship Edition), this seems to be a “full” version of League Pass. This could be either the “normal” $199 League Pass, or the $249.99 Premium League Pass, or the $279.99 Premium League Pass + NBA TV.
Let’s assume it’s just the “normal” League Pass for $199, and so basically the normal retail price for something like this should be at least $260 here in the US since you also get a copy of NBA 2K23. I have a hard time believing the NBA 2K23 Championship Edition is going to cost $250, but even at that price, it would technically be a fair deal (and I would probably buy it).
We mentioned yesterday that it looked like the NBA 2K23 Championship Edition that comes with NBA League Pass would potentially be the cheapest way to get NBA League Pass for the 2022-23 season, and today 2K has confirmed that as you can pre-order the NBA 2K23 Championship Edition for $150. I don’t want to scream in my Don West voice too hard because ultimately it is not our job to be hype men for 2K or the NBA, but this seems like a great deal even if you will never play NBA 2K23.
Again, a “normal” NBA League Pass subscription costs $199 on its own as of last year in the US, and so it’s already cheaper to just buy NBA 2K23. On top of that, the NBA 2K23 game costs $70 so the math alone is clear here.
The animation catalog is deep in MPTC and played well consistently throughout my time with the game. Reaching deep corner shots occasionally and realistically is a telling factor for tennis games and their movement system, and Torus did a fine job in that department. Not once did I fail to get into position for a shot that visually I felt I should have, and the ball’s reaction off the racket felt authentic both in terms of physics and response.
There were some minor gameplay issues that I encountered, mainly in terms of AI manipulation and AI warping. The warping and disjointed movement from the AI or my character happened little enough for it not to warrant complaints and frustration, but it did happen. In the end, Torus has created a solid foundation on the court both in terms of gameplay and tennis physics that makes me excited for what a second iteration could deliver.