2K Sports' NBA 2K franchise is the king of video game basketball, at least on consoles. That said, the publisher hopes to dominate the mobile scene, and released NBA 2K14 for iOS devices.
For $7.99, NBA 2K14 comes with a variety of features. Along with quick match-ups with teams around the NBA, you can tackle Path to Greatness. This mode lets you guide superstar LeBron James through his continued destiny with the Miami Heat, or with another team of your choosing, with plenty of objectives to complete.
In addition, you can play a number of seasons in the Multiseason mode, work on your skills in Practice or take on friends in either Game Center or Bluetooth multiplayer. The first two are great, but Multiplayer needs work, as it takes quite a while to get a session going. Even then, it skips from time-to-time due to lag.
At least NBA 2K14 remains a peak performer with its classic gameplay. Your players handle well on the court, and you can pull off a number of moves, including spins, steals and alley-oops. The only downside is that the action buttons are crammed in the corner, and every once in a while you'll hit the wrong one by accident. Still, it works better than the one-touch control option, which limits you to simple touchscreen gestures. Skip it.
NBA 2K14 looks a little bit better than last year's iPhone and iPad title, with more effort put into player design and animation, as well as the awesome replays. There are still occasional frame rate stutters, but overall, this is one of the best looking sports sims you'll see on smartphones and tablets.
The audio is equally satisfying, with plenty of crowd noise, arena announcements and organ music to make you feel like you're at the game. Unfortunately, aside from a few comments by LeBron, there's no running commentary to speak of, leaving a somewhat stark silence during play. It's understood that some limitations had to be made for the mobile version, but we miss it all the same.
Considering you don't have too many basketball games to enjoy on mobile - save for the always-enjoyable NBA Jam - NBA 2K14 is a good choice, especially if you're a fan of LeBron and want him back in Cleveland. Fans can dream.
Download NBA 2K14: iOS
What's Hot:Terrific LeBron's Path to Greatness mode, classic gameplay despite limited controls, splendid visuals and replays, authentic arena crowd noise.
What's Not:Lack of running commentary, visual glitches and hiccups from time-to-time, multiplayer takes forever to get started, gimmicky one-touch controls, default control scheme places buttons too close together, defense is a little too good at times.