NBA Live 10 Live Run Impressions

Posted October 3rd, 2009 at 1:53 pm


Adidas Live Run enters NBA Live 10 as an evolution of the Online Team Play that has been so successful the last two years. 10 people connect into a single online game with each controlling their own player. With Live Run instead of  OTP taking place in a standard game each person gets to select their position and then player of choice in a game of 21.

Live Run has EA Sports World integration which gives each squad their own page. Here is the page for the Pastapadre squad. The site shows record, stats, results, awards, and members. The ability to join or send requests is also offered from the website. Feel free to send a request if you’d like to be a part of the squad as I’ll be setting up some nights to meet up in the near future.

When creating the squad there are a few options to select from including the logo. Hopefully in the future they let you design your own. A Teambuilder like feature for use in Live Run for logos and jerseys would be very welcome. The limited number of logos that are offered are all fairly generic.

Rooms have been added from within your Live Run squad so that you can filter participants into more than one team if necessary. So if you have nine people ready to play, five could go to one room and four to the other so multiple games can go on at once and allows for everyone to decide who they want to play with too.

At the start of the game each member of the team selects their position, a list of players at that particular position then pops up to choose from. Once the player has been determined then comes the selection of what shoes and what practice jersey they’ll wear. I don’t really understand the need for picking shoes here. There are no replays or close-ups in Live Run so you never really see them during gameplay anyway.

The gameplay experience can feel a little dry given the isolated nature of the pick-up game in the empty gym. I like that they have the soundtrack playing during the games but if you’re on the mics you probably won’t pay much attention to it.  As always the case in OTP type games it can get a little sloppy so communication with teammates is essential.

The rules for Live Run games have been adjusted to keep the flow throughout. There are no fouls, so you won’t see any hard foul animations either. Rather than passing the ball in if it goes out of bounds you’ll start with a check situation at the top. There is still a 24 second shot clock and three seconds in the key will be called though that is sometimes inconsistent.

One thing that seemed to be overly effective in Live Run is a cherry-picking strategy. If someone hangs back a bit they can usually beat the other team back once they get the pass for an easy score. Also Yao Ming is dominant. Our group determined if the other team has Yao then we had to counter with a Yao of our own.

In the games I played in there were between 7-10 users connected in. There was only a very slight delay that took a minute to adjust to after having been playing offline. After that point it was consistently smooth. Not a surprise given how well the online performance has been the last two years.

Something I always found with OTP was a sense of responsibility primarily when playing with people you’re familiar with. You don’t want to be seen as a ball hog, you want to avoid taking crap from your teammates because of poor play. At the same time the sense of satisfaction is magnified when making a good play and contributing. That continues here even though the environment of a pick-up game is less intense. Once the squads are formed and competition picks up I think it’ll hold more weight.

Unfortunately you are limited to being a part of one squad. You can’t be in two or run a squad and just be a member in another. For some people it will be a dilemma as to what squad they want to participate in. It would be much better even if they kept a limit but let people commit to two squads. More chances to play that way since you’re always going to be relying on at least a few others to show up.

The idea behind Live Run was to reduce some of the problems that arose naturally from the OTP environment. Instead of people getting stuck with players they have no interest in controlling, now everyone gets to pick the guy they want to run with. And rather than be stuck in what could be a poor experience for 35+ minutes in a standard game, with Live Run the commitment is more like 20 minutes. It’s a more compact offering and I feel that every game should have some sort of abbreviated online mode.