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Game Reviewed: NBA JAM
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Developer: EA Canada
Platform: Wii (coming soon for PS3 and Xbox 360)
ESRB Rating: E
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Basketball returns in the ultimate two-on-two match-up in this reinvention of NBA Jam. Choose your team from either NBA conference and then slam your way through Classic Tournament or Remix Tour unlocking special characters or options. Or test your skills in games like Domination and 21. You can even battle against iconic greats like Larry Bird.
This edition of JAM has all the signature one-liners from the original announcer of the first NBA JAM as well as a few more up-to-date sayings, with the exception of the notorious “He’s On Fire.” However, the ball and rim still catch aflame and the dunks become super-incredible when the “flame is on.”
No fouls, no penalties, and incredible moves offer a great combination of competitive basketball with mad skills, special tricks and legendary characters. Compete against greats like Spud Webb, Isaiah Thomas and Patrick Ewing (sorry, no Michael Jordan.) Unlock more star players and special features through Remix Mode with power ups to outperform your opponents, the classic and self-explanatory Backboard Smash, and heart pounding Domination.
What Parents Need to Know
Violence is minimal. Throwing elbows and shoving are allowed and some dunks are unblockable throwing the opponent to the floor.
There is not any bad language in this game.
Sexual content is limited only to cheerleaders at the ends of the courts.
No spiritual content.
Anyone who has played the original arcade or console version of NBA JAM will love this remake. With a current roster of players and the opportunity to unlock legends, gameplay becomes exciting and action packed. There is plenty of variety for testing one’s skills on the court in 2 vs. 2 including the all-time hoop game, “21.”
While not a follower of the NBA, I found JAM entertaining and excellently balanced between difficulty and playability with the options to increase difficulty through four levels and choose or switch-up players with different skill sets. This also offers the chance to strategize as some players do better running the court while others excel at passing off, allowing you to pair your players to what suits your style best.
With the inclusion of classic characters and original features, NBA Jam is a great edition to any sports gamer’s library, or any gamer's library.