NBA 2K23 has proven a favourite among fans of the noble sport of basketball. Praised for bringing layers of realism to the 2K franchise via endless hours of gameplay—including playing with ballers, from Michael Jordan to Kobe Bryant to Devin Booker—the latest instalment continues to find new ways to endear its diehard followers and first timers in equal measure. Among the many highlights is 2K23’s unconquerable soundtrack, embracing UK talent such as Jnr Choi, Kofi Stone and a trio responsible for one of 2022’s biggest anthems: rappers Dreya Mac and FelixThe1st, and producer Finch Fetti.
Linking up on the skippy, addictive heater “Own Brand Freestyle”, Dreya, Felix and Finch scooped the 2022 MOBO Award for Song Of The Year, crystallising its momentous impact. To celebrate the track’s inclusion in the game, they got together to enjoy a gaming session with 2K where they experienced all that the game has to offer. Each brought varying levels of expertise, from Dreya having never played the game to Felix being a fully-fledged fan. “Even if you don’t like basketball, I feel like you can play NBA 2K23 because it’s more than just a basketball game,” Felix says. “I know it’s levelled up—I can tell just by looking at it,” Dreya chimes in.
They took full advantage of 2K23’s immersive MyCAREER mode, utilising famed feature ‘The City’ to explore the game’s incredibly detailed multiverse. Travelling through a respective city— on a skateboard, no less—they shopped for brand new garms, customised their basketball gear and sneakers and participated in side quests such as completing a TikTok challenge with a fan! Such is the jaw-dropping accuracy and variety of 2K23, Dreya, Felix and Finch lived vicariously through their characters as they began building the blocks for incredible gameplay. “I love when I’m immersed in a game!” Felix says.
Next was a whistle-stop tour of 2K’s expansive features, including the ability to create their own fantasy league via the game’s MyTEAM mode. Thus, creating bespoke experiences that could seldom only live in the heads of fans imagining multiple basketball generations competing against each other. On queue next was the Jordan Challenge, in which gamers can play through every aspect of Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer Michael Jordan’s illustrious career, from his college basketball days to winning six NBA championships with the Chicago Bulls.
The main event would follow, where the Own Brand crew played a 3v3 street basketball game, picking b-ball legends young and old such as Jordan, Lebron James, Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant and Dirk Nowitzki. Competitive spirits were high, especially as Dreya perfectly executed a dunk. “You have to understand, I started [playing] TODAY!” she exclaims, basking in her own glory. “The game has knuckled down on the realism, in terms of defence, attacking and mannerisms,” Felix explains. “KD walks like KD, Steph Curry is chewing his mouthguard like he does in real life.”
It is this attention to creating experiences that all can enjoy that ultimately unites gamers and fans of all disciplines around 2K23. No one is left behind and a newfound appreciation for the sport is gained, as Dreya summarises: “2K23 is a very good game. I’m not a gamer but I can appreciate a good game. I’m learning more about basketball just by playing.”
NBA 2K23 is available now at nba.2k.com.