EA Sports World & 2K Community

Posted September 16th, 2008 at 9:29 am

EA Sports World has now been up for over a year. Essentially it is the community hub for the EA Sports games offering features such as video and screenshot uploading and original content. 2K Sports recently launched their own community destination which has some of the same features. Using the two NHL titles (09, 2K9) I wanted to assess EASW and the 2K community site. Continue on to read my thoughts on what both sites offer.

Site look
EASW is cluttered and takes a long time to load. I like the access to game pages at the top though and how that is done. There is just so much going on that it is almost intimidating. 2K’s page is a little more basic which allows it to load faster. Both are visually appealing and probably just depends on individual tastes as to which is preferred.

Lots of people have had issues linking their EASW with their gamertag or PSN names. This is due to the convoluted process of including EA Sports names and logins. It really isn’t a simple process unfortunately and many people have had issues with it. It is much easier with 2K which just uses your gamertag or PSN logins.

I found it much easier to grab the screenshots from NHL 09 than 2K9. Quality is good on both but could still improve. Differences in the look of them would mostly be attributed to just the style each one presents graphically. The ease of taking the screens and being able to upload them without even leaving the replay mode in the game gives the edge to EASW here.

EASW videos are very easy to upload as you can now send them to the site without even having to save the video or leave replay mode. Some basic editing options are available such as changing the camera angle and speed. It isn’t simple to figure out how to edit them though. There also is no sound in the uploaded videos. This will be changing with NBA Live 09 which will have sound (Facebreaker highlights also had sound). Quality is good for NHL 09 and much better than the two football titles which look stiff and unnatural. Uploads take a couple minutes.

2K offers many more options for editing the videos using ReelMaker. There are a ton of things you can do with them such as changing the speed, adding sound effects or music (2K Beats), trimming, freeze frame, graphic stamps (though only a handful), and changing the camera. There is even more than that available. Unfortunately only the visual changes carry over to the uploaded videos which don’t have sound. ReelMaker is effective but takes time to get comfortable with. I’m far from being an expert with it but did mess around a little to create one below (there are far better ones on the 2K site). Video quality is very good. Uploads take a couple minutes.

EASW has some basic game stats tracked and match history. What is tracked though really doesn’t seem like anything people would go out of their way to view on there because they are just simple stats. No game stats to be found on the 2K site.

This one goes to EASW which has news, blogs, and video content such as the top 10 highlights of the week from the Thompson Bros. The 2K site doesn’t really offer any original content.

Both sites allow you to have avatars. With EASW you gain points to spend on your avatar through playing EA Sports games. There are a lot of options as far as look, accessories, clothing, and backgrounds. The 2K site has some pre-made generic avatars wearing a shirt of your favorite NHL, NBA, or MLB team. EASW offers blogs and groups. Both allow the adding of friends.

2K has the league pages of which EASW does not. In the works for EASW is the ability to view NCAA Football online dynasties and Madden online leagues but that functionality has yet to be made available. Uploading replays in 2K9 that come from a league game automatically get attached to the box scores in the league which is a nice touch.

Other features
Photo Face is a big feature for some EA Sports games (Tiger Woods, Facebreaker) so it should be mentioned that pictures can be uploaded to EASW and then it is grabbed from there within the games. The 2K site really pushes Team 2K which has been met with general apathy in the community but does track the status of it prominently.

Loading time
This is where EA Sports World really falters. The 2K site loads quickly but the same can’t be said about EASW. It literally takes well over a minute, and sometimes several minutes, for the My Sports World or My Profile pages to load. It is so frustratingly slow that I have not visited the site nearly as much in the past few weeks than I would have otherwise.

EASW offers a lot more than 2K’s community site does. However for what 2K does it is slightly better. This is especially due to page loading speed which to me can offset some of the cool aspects of EASW as well as a potentially less frustrating registration process. Both are definitely worth checking out as an extension to the enjoyment that the games provide.