NBA Live 18 upsets NBA 2K18 by having done a better job with player faces

Posted October 16th, 2017 at 11:45 am

Three years ago NBA 2K head a clear advantage in representing player faces but the gap between it and NBA Live has completely closed in the time since. With this year’s contest NBA Live 18 has surprisingly topped NBA 2K18 by winning 13 of the 24 matchups. It was an incredibly close contest however with a number of NBA Live’s winners finishing within just a few percentage points of flipping to the other side. 

Over 52,000 votes were collected throughout the process and what’s been seen again is that both games have players they absolutely nail and both games have players that look atrocious despite utilizing the most advanced scanning technologies available. Ultimately it’s the access to the players that is the biggest asset any game can have for recreating their likenesses.

The biggest upset from this year’s crop of selections is Kyrie Irving. The NBA 2K18 cover athlete was won by NBA Live 18 by a 3-to-1 margin. Irving has remained a familiar face for EA Sports after appearing on the cover of NBA Live 14. Just two years ago James Harden was an NBA 2K guy which helps to explain why NBA Live 18’s cover athlete was a toss-up. Dirk Nowitzki is still the most high-profile player to never look even decent in a basketball video game. Voters struggled to determine a winner in his case, finishing with the slimmest of final margins.

NBA Live 18
Russell Westbrook (84%)
Dennis Schroder (80%)
Hassan Whiteside (79%)
Kyrie Irving (76%)
Kawhi Leonard (73%)
Stephen Curry (72%)
Lonzo Ball (66%)
Giannis Antetokounmpo (62%)
Kristaps Porzingis (54%)
Ricky Rubio (54%)
Myles Turner (52%)
James Harden (52%)
Dirk Nowitzki (51%)

NBA 2K18
Nikola Jokic (88%)
Kevin Durant (86%)
Blake Griffin (86%)
Kemba Walker (83%)
Kevin Love (82%)
DeMar DeRozan (78%)
Karl-Anthony Towns (71%)
Joel Embiid (63%)
John Wall (61%)
Damian Lillard (60%)
Rudy Gobert (56%)

  • MoneyMayweather

    LOL at that dirk face winning.

  • Hoops

    A couple of years ago, nobody was talking about Live. 2K laziness and lack of respect for their costumers is turning things around… Hope Live keep the pace and let’s see next year if we are gonna get better games. I bet so.

    • Just a guy

      Had 2k not screwed the pooch with the VC this year, nobody would even be playing attention to Live. 2k’s game is THAT much better on the court. Like, it’s not even close.

      • George

        What ever, 2k is trash and U know it

      • mr morgan

        What ever, 2k is trash and U know it

  • Good breakdown & article @pastapadre
    Now if you so happen to see this comment is it possible you can unblock me on Twitter I would appreciate it @Prime_76

  • Skopin

    Keith. is going to have a conniption.

    I am a little surprised at a couple of the winners. I thought Durant and Love looked better in Live, while Kawhi, Porzingas, and Ball looked better in 2k.

    • Keith.

      I couldn’t care less about EA’s participation ribbon. I didn’t even vote. I’ll take notice when they start winning the gameplay, animations, presentation, and modes categories.

      • jbstoner44

        Well said Keith.

      • Skopin

        They already have better presentation, and there are a few areas in the gameplay department that are better than 2k.

        • Bigman

          Yea it’s called one on one defense and less fouls called.

  • Just a guy

    Well, they did a slightly better job on the big name players you picked.

    I’d love to see a comparison with middle of the road vets and obscure rookies.

  • banks

    This is one big lie. Live has some horrible faces on alot of the players. N not only that. But the game is horrible. Shit should be named nba jam because its not simulation bball. Feels more like an arcade game.

    • Rich

      Yeah but the ones that look horrible have way more realism than the gummy looking 2K sports. I don’t care who wins but it is clear that EA has better scanning tech based on the detail in their scans. Accuracy…I honestly don’t care because I hardly know any of these NBA players any more 🙂

  • Moondog

    great but too bad u cant play online for more than a minute without being stopped by auto-timeouts, nice one guys. Oh but the players faces look good