Your Daily McMaster: getting technical

, | Features

On launch day for the XBox One, I picked up two games – Dead Rising 3 and NBA 2K14. I absolutely love Dead Rising 3, but that’s not what we’re going to talk about. Oh no. We’re taking this motha down Kurtis Blow style.

After the jump, I’m talking basketball

NBA 2K14 has a career mode and I, if nothing else, am a sucker for this feature in games. I love the nerdier side of sports games that comes along with building a character. The game itself is frantic and fast-paced, but underneath all the commotion is the cold heart of a processor crunching through lines of code, rolling virtual dice and making me hit or miss my shots.

I haven’t played an NBA 2K game in quite some time, so I was in the bushes pretty quick on this one. Gone are the days of “hit X to shoot the ball.” Now I have to maneuver through a field of very realistic defenders, make a bit of space and then take a shot that maybe I hit. The shots you can take are varied and all have bonuses for different situations, and all require a different movement of the right stick. Not knowing what you’re doing in a very technical game can become frustrating in no time. After a missed shot and a turnover, I end up fouling another player accidentally while trying to prevent his fast-break goal. Sometimes you just gotta foul a guy.

As the opposing player was about to take his shots, I got another whistle. A technical foul! For those of you who aren’t into basketball, a technical foul is a foul that isn’t caused by physical contact. So, as an example, a coach can get a technical foul by back-talking a referee. The foul was resolved, as all technical fouls, by the opposing team taking a free throw shot with all other players behind the half-court mark. I was kind of dumbfounded by the call, but I moved on and quickly forgot about it.

Later that day, I get hit with a personal foul and another technical. Not sure what’s going on at all, I stare at the screen. The only thing out of the ordinary is a microphone symbol at the top right corner. Curious. Later on I foul again and get yet another technical foul. I’m starting to get a bit irate by this point so I concentrate on the series of events that led up to the foul. Opposing player fast break that leads to the other side of the court. I chase him down and jump to try to block the shot. I get called for a foul. I get called for a technical. Something is missing.

I racked my brain. Nothing I could come up with made sense to me. I didn’t hit any buttons. I didn’t get angry. I just said, to myself, “oh bullshit,” then I get a technical foul. That’s when it hit me.

You see, since NBA 2K13 came out after Microsoft released the Kinect, they put a fun bit of code to make the game slightly more realistic. If you get fouled in the latest 2K basketball games and let slip a curse, the game will slap you with a T.

While really cool in a fun, novel sort of way, I immediately disabled this feature in the options. It’s good this is a recent thing. I’m pretty sure I would have scarred my PS2 for life during the San Andreas RC missions.