NBA Street Showdown

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NBA Street Showdown
Game: NBA Street Showdown
Platform: PSP
Studio: EA Sports
Rating: 8/10

GAME STUDIO DESCRIPTION: Take your skills to a new level and challenge the greatest basketball icons to ever hit the court. With NBA STREET Showdown for the PSP™ handheld entertainment system, tip off against the greatest old-school legends and today’s hottest players to rise above the rim with bigger-than-life moves. Defeat the best the streets have to offer with an arsenal of dunks, passes, dribbles, and tricks. Begin your journey to become a street legend with NBA STREET Showdown.

Key Features
* Rule the Streets
Take on the biggest stars of the NBA in full street-style, battle it out with a three-on-three game, or go on the ultimate quest to become a street legend in the King of the Court mode.
* Create Your Own Baller
Add your personal style to your created street baller and hold your own against the greatest legends in King of the Court mode.
* Two Unique Game Modes
Earn style points in Shot Blocker and Arcade Shootout modes and enhance your status as the game’s newest street legend.
* Wireless Head-to-Head Gameplay
Play one-on-one against a friend in the original Pick Up game mode.
* Party Play
Up to four players can compete in two high-flyin’ game modes: Shot Blocker and Arcade Shootout using only one PSP.
* EA™ POCKET TRAX
Listen to the rockin’ game soundtrack via EA™ POCKET TRAX, the built-in player designed exclusively for the PSP.

PLAY: You can take your three-on-three skills to the court with current players and some old-school legends like Magic Johnson and Julius Erving. Some of the rosters are dated—however it doesn’t hurt gameplay much. It would have been nice if players could be traded. Like the console versions players can hit the blacktop in Harlem’s Rucker Park and other famous street courts.

Anyone familiar with NBA Street won’t have a hard time adapting to Showdown. This is freestyle basketball just like you and your friends play—with the exception of the tricked-out dunks and everyone being over six foot. There is a lot of showboating and it’s rewarded with points.

The controls are downsized on the PSP which takes the turbo to the right and left shoulder buttons. It’s a minor change that does compromise gameplay. The main issue is trying to do the combination of buttons with holding down the shot and trick button simultaneously. That can pose a problem with game reaction.

GRAPHICS: Surprisingly the players are similar to their real-life counterparts. The animation is smooth. It’s easy to distinguish your player and leave no doubts as to who is Shaq or Magic or any of the other ballers that you might be familiar with. The courts are well detailed. This is one example of the abilities of the engine running in the little PSP.

SOUND: There is a decent soundtrack with some old school hip-hop. The commentary by DJ Bobbito is here and still annoying. The sound effects are very good—especially with headphones on. It’s a shame with the ability to put in a memory card that you can’t load your own soundtrack. That would be a nice addition.

FRANKLY: Career mode is fantastic and as addicting as any of the console releases. There are also minigames such as Shot Blocker and Arcade Shootout. There is also wireless head-to-head game play which means you can take your friend to the hole from twenty feet away.

+ Richie Wright

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