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NBA Jam 99

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Reviewed by Stryker I used to have NBA Jam for Super NES, and I needed sports games cheap for my system. I'm at Best Buy, strolling around, and I see a bunch of really cheap Nintendo 64 unused games. NBA JAM 99 is there, for (get this) $6.99! I decide that no game could be bad enough to not justify seven dollars. I buy it and bring it home. Right away, I see why this game was so cheap and unwanted. Honestly, it wasn't that bad, but it is barely tolerable. NBA Jam's unique, two-on-two gaming experience has been turned into a complete clone of all the other five-on-fives out there right now. They have the audacity to stick Keith Van Horn on the cover! There is a Jam Mode, but it is still five on five and not as fun. All the teams are here, and again, Michael Jordan is not included in favor of R. Guard for the Chicago Bulls.


Ewww. This stinks. All the memory to put standard pictures of players in the menus must have taken a lot of badly needed RAM. The graphics are ugly. The game's court is ugly bright colors, the players are messy chunks of polygons, the camera angle is terrible. Try chucking a baseball pass down the court, and then having to wait for the camera to catch up, therefore compromising your player to either lose the ball to charging or to a steal. Try dunking. The camera zooms in and the game slows down, and if it is stuffed the outside court is obscured. There is nothing good about it. The players do celebrations sometimes after scoring, but all this does is compromise their teams. The instant replays are able to be switched off, thankfully, because they are a view from a dreadfully jerky camera view and you have to see the polygons up close.

Music and Sound

There is only one song, which plays on and on as you are in the menus. They play a few stereotype ballgame songs, like "Charge!" and "Defense!" that add a little. Two announcers argue and bicker, claiming "That was a terrible call!" and "Knock him down and send him to the line!" There is nothing bad about this, it's rather decent, but nothing special.

Game play and Controls

The controls are rather simple. The free throw device, a hoop with a ball that does not want to stay in it, and you have to get it in and press A, is rather good, even though I only miss with Shaq. Oh yeah, and the AI is ridiculous. The opposing team never takes up the chance for a fast break, instead moseying on over to the top of the key and dribbling as all the other players converge on them. Your computer will assign Shaquille O Neal to guard someone on the three point line as Vin Baker drives in for the easy two. Your computer will assign Shaquille O Neal to guard your opponents inbound after scoring, AND he'll go into a seizure-like celebration. Your computer will not allow your players to jump up to contest any shot outside the three point line. The computer will try plays over and over, most likely the one where the guard passes to someone on the outside three point line from the top the key, with a pick, and shoots a three. After this happened for a while, I easily learned to guard him twice, then steal the ball and run down for two. The play calling was never something I could get to work, because as I called a play a crafty computer player would come out and yank the ball from you. Very frustrating. The season options are very good, as my Bulls traded Toni Kukoc straight up for Shaq. The problem is, I went crazy after playing 25 games and couldn't continue.


This has plenty. The Three Point Contest is very interesting. There's a Free Throw Practice. This is the kind of game you come back to every three months, play for a week, and chuck away out of boredom. Besides, there are so many better games on N64 alone, not even talking about NBA2k and NBA2k1, the greatest basketball games of all time.

Overall: 61 of 100

A really boring, crappy game with entertainment value enough to keep your attention for weeks at a time, then to throw away quickly. This game will be irrelevant very soon, if not already, because there are so many better basketball games. Out of kindness, I give it a passing grade.

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