I experienced with NBA Street Showdown is indicative
of what we can expect with most PSP games copied from
PS2 versions, which is a re-creation that is somewhere
between 60-70% of the original. It's great for a portable
handheld but it's never going to come close to a top-shelf
with this in mind that we should review future games,
although comparisons are realistically unavoidable.
NBA Street Showdown for the PSP is good enough to
make it as a stand-alone game. It still manages to
pack a lot of features and modes while not forsaking
the gameplay. Obviously the control system has been
simplified but with less buttons than the PS2 controller
that's a given, although the developers assigned some
of the buttons for double duty. More on that later.
Street is an arcade, three-on-three basketball game
that is a very simplified form of hoops. All you need
to do is get and keep control of the ball and attempt
to score as many points as possible by dunking or
shooting it into the net. There is only one net for
both teams. Moves include dribbling, running, passing,
shooting and dunking.
is an assortment of juke moves available that you
can access from the interface but you can only use
a few of them in each match. Throughout a tournament
you might be able to use them all but due to the limited
amount of buttons there is only one trick and two
turbo buttons. The shoot and trick meter can be tapped
to access one move and held down to access another.
This makes good use of limited space but it comes
at the price of instant response. There is a slight
delay when you hold down one of the buttons which
can throw the timing of your game off. At times it's
a debate if this even should have been included as
it does tend to hinder some of the gameplay especially
when you're surrounded by aggressive AI.
together combos with passes, jukes and dunk moves
will increase the juice in the Gamebreaker meter.
Once filled you can use it to blaze a trail up to
the backboard to score a point and take away a few
of your opponent's points in the progress. It's a
way to win and make your opponent lose at the same
can create your own player and outfit him with bling
bling and other sports accessories but it's the ability
to purchase new moves and skills that really makes
a difference. In this Career mode you'll play on a
variety of real-life urban courts that look incredibly
realistic. Pick-up games let you play with some actual
NBA stars as well as legends such as Magic Johnson.
A Showdown mode lets you play against three other
players with a couple of turn-based mini games. You
just pass the game system around from player to player.
wireless, two-player mode is offered for head-to-head
play. Things can get a blurry onscreen at times but
the framerate and animation are smooth. The players'
numbers are enlarged and easy to read.
Street is not without its limitations. You can't trade
players, you can't update the roster and the one that's
included isn't up-to-date either. The commentary repeats
quickly and it doesn't have all the same features
and modes as the PS2. In it's defense it's got some
nice graphics, good sound effects and music in addition
to a save-anywhere feature that lets you get right
back to where you left off when you shut the game
down. The multi-player modes add replay value.
the basketball game that street hoops is based on,
NBA Street Showdown is a simplified version of the
next-gen console game that it was based on.