Last year, NBA Jam came back due to a weird unfortunate turn of events. The game was supposed to come packaged with NBA Live, though NBA Live did not come out last year. EA just ported over from the Wii to put it on both the PSN and Xbox Live marketplace. This year it is different coming straight online for both PS3 and the XBox 360 and no word on a Wii version.
There are a lot of changes from the past NBA Jams to this version. One of the greatest changes comes in the online mode. New to this year’s version is JamNet. JamNet integrates all leaderboards that will constantly track and compare stats to people on friends list and around the world. JamNet tracks stats like 3-pointers, total points, how many times the backboard breaks, and many more.
Like showboating? Another new feature is the use of razzle-dazzles. While playing on offense, holding both triggers and pressing the spin button the player will stop and start dancing. An example of the different type of dancing is the Dougie. Want to do a razzle-dazzle while shooting? Razzle-dazzling while shooting will pull off a granny shot or shooting backward. Be warned that using the razzle-dazzle could often end up in a turn over, but they are fun to watch even if there are not that many different ones included in the game.
Career mode sets up different challenges, by offering bronze, silver and gold playthroughs for each team increasing the difficulty at each challenge. Players will be able to choose any team and play against any other team. The percentage of each region beat will be displayed on JamNet so that the world can see just how much the game is beaten. While players are able to log on to the JamNet server and not play against others, they will be able to accept or decline challenges from people going through matchmaking.
In sports games, gameplay is one of the most if not the most important thing. In NBA Jam:OFE Gameplay is as fast as ever. Passing to teammates are a breeze and dunking and shooting can be very fast paced.
Last year the ability to control both teammates were not in the game. This year they are brought it back with a new addition, team fire. Successfully alley-opping three balls in a row will set the team on fire. All the gameplay elements that are normal in a NBA Jam title is still there; fancy dunks and knocking players on the ground. Shooting, passing and stealing has also been tweaked. However, shooting seems to be too easy in this game has everytime a player shoots a 3-point shot it goes in. This is very evident when playing online. Opponents often shoot from the 3-point line instead of going to the basket.
The A.I. does help out in situations. The other teammate steals, blocks, shoots. When the A.I. is open and has a lane expect them to run to the net and try to dunk for an alley-opp. On the defensive side opponents will do the same to you and they will not hesitate to go to the rim. Also, they will make 3-pointers if left open on the 3-point line.
NBA Jam: On Fire Edition is a great addition to the NBA Jam franchise. A new online foundation, career modes and the ability to razzle-dazzle opponents are welcome and bring a new outlook to the game. Great A.I. can be hard to find in games, but this game does not have a problem with it. 3-pointers are a major downside especially since it can lead to teams running away with games especially those with good 3-point shooters. NBA Jam: On Fire Edition is great and perfect for anyone who is a fan of basketball, arcade system games and people who just want to enjoy themselves with a fun game.
NBA Jam: On Fire Edition is rated E (Everyone) by the ESRB. This game can also be found on PlayStation 3.