Hit the Pass

Sports games of today, yesterday and tomorrow

The Feature Room

The Stephen Curry Predicament

By on @pastapadre

What would happen if a player ever came along who was so good, and did things so unimaginable, that they wouldn’t be a fit in a simulation video game? Where representing the individual properly might result in breaking the video game? Steph Curry is that player and he’s created a unique conumdrum for developers of NBA video games.

What Curry is doing is no anomaly and as such it’s something that can’t be ignored. He just won a game with a 38 foot jump shot that looked all too routine. He broke the single-season record for three pointers of 286 on February 27. He’s on pace to make 400 this season!

Curry is already rated as the best shooter of all-time in NBA 2K16, with 99 ratings in both standing and moving three-point attributes. That’s simply not good enough to represent what he’s doing on the court. All this is true while carrying a 97 Overall rating that leaves him only trailing Michael Jordan for the best season ever according to 2K.

The most remarkable statistic of all is that he’s knocking down just about 70% of shots from 28 to 50 feet out, on an average of right around one attempt per game. Even in the most ideal conditions in NBA 2K16 – shooting in the practice gym, with no defenders, and no fatigue – he struggles to make any shots from that distance.

To be a true simulation Curry would need to be able to make those shots at a frequent rate. But how do you do that for him only, and how does that affect the balance of the entire game when one player can do things no one else can?

The NBA 2K series may require a whole new attribute for shots from longer distances rather than just having the single 3pt category, or an exclusive badge that gives Curry such ability. Hot Zones should maybe extend out there, at least for him.

Even once Curry can make those shots there has to be some way to limit them. There’s a reason he only attempts about one per game from that deep. Closer looks should still be preferable.

In a video game, to keep things realistic, the success rate can’t remain the same as the number of attempts rise. Maybe there’s coding put in place where Curry’s first attempt or two from 28-50 feet out is made around 70% of the time but then after that it drops to 30%. It would give people reason to consider what shots they really want to take, when to take them, and prevent Curry from being used as an exploit by launching absurdly deep shots all game long.

Then there’s how Curry would affect the modes in the game. He would be the player everyone wanted in MyTeam. The Warriors would be used even more frequently in online games. What about improving one’s MyPlayer – could they ever get to Curry’s level, and if so then won’t everyone decide to be a point or shooting guard?

There’s no simple solution here of just making Curry “better.” The parameters currently in place in these video games don’t allow for it, and when the time comes that they will, there are considerable ramifications that will be felt throughout the games.

Stephen Curry is a character straight out of an arcade game that developers are now faced with having to fit into a simulation game.

Amazon Prime Video Game Discount