What Type of OTP Do You Prefer?

Posted October 13th, 2008 at 9:26 am

With the recent releases of NHL 09 and NBA Live 09 we’ve had two different forms of Online Team Play provided. NHL brought the EA Sports Hockey League which allows for the use of a created player in the club games. It is MMO style in that performance and experience lead to the development of the player. With NBA Live it is more of the standard take over of an NBA Player OTP that was introduced last year.

There was some level of disappointment when the realization came that Live would not have the EASHL style of OTP. There is reasoning why that may not work as well in a basketball game though. In hockey it is easier to disguise low ratings. You don’t really feel as though you’re at much of a disadvantage even starting off with a newly created player. But if you start with a player from scratch in a basketball game and they have trouble dribbling, or miss practically every shot, or are too slow to compete, or get dominated over and over that could lead to a great deal of frustration. Ultimately the experience has to be a fun one and there is no question that the EASHL achieved that. There may need to be different elements involved and some more planning in order to provide the same with an NBA game.

Looking at the two types of OTP it was much more important for NHL 09 to have the EASHL than it was for NBA Live 09 to have similar. Most people don’t know the majority of NHL players which would make it hard to identify with them or have an understanding of their skills. With the NBA though most fans can recognize a team’s starters and know how to utilize them.

There is no denying that having your own name on the player’s jersey and being in control of the development makes for a much more intimate and involved feel. That was an overriding impression I had when first getting into the EASHL. That alone could make people take more responsibility for their style of play and contribute to a better overall online experience. Not having particular real life players to control would eliminate any potential arguments over who controls who, though despite that concern I’ve never actually seen materialize as a problem.

A downside now being seen with the basic OTP in NBA Live is that only a handful of teams are used. It will quickly become stale because of that. With the EASHL every club has a different build and different strategy and skill levels. I’d just like to see the ability to create the club’s logos and uniforms added. That would make the club experience even better.

So vote in the poll and leave your thoughts in the comments. What type of OTP do you prefer? And would you like to see NBA Live 2010 adapt the MMO style of OTP?