MyTEAM Developer Diary

Hello everyone!  Erick Boenisch, Senior Producer for NBA 2K19, back one more time to give you an inside look at what you can expect in MyTEAM this year.  The incredibly talented team here at Visual Concepts has been working hard to craft a completely new MyTEAM feature set for you in NBA 2K19.  Fortunately for me, I get the privilege to tell you all about what they have done!

As a kid growing up, I was an avid collector of basketball cards.  I’ll never forget the feeling of pulling card #1b from the 1992-93 Upper Deck set, one Shaquille O’Neal.  Or the 1989-90 Hoops David Robinson rookie card.  As a lifelong collector, those fleeting moments when you have pulled something special can be feelings and emotions that stick with you throughout your life.  Unfortunately, for physical basketball cards, into the case they go at that point.  The fun generally ends there.  Conversely, this is one of the many beauties of MyTEAM.  When you get that card you have been coveting, the fun is only just beginning.  This year, we are really all about showing you a good time, and giving you more opportunities than ever to enjoy your collection!

Ok, now that I’ve successfully aged myself with that anecdote, who’s ready to hear about our all-new MyTEAM experience?


Philosophy

The team here took a really hard look at MyTEAM following 2K18, to truly dissect what made it tick.  In doing so, we identified a number of things that we could do a lot better at.  I’d like to be open and summarize those findings, along with how we are going to correct them in NBA 2K19.

Packs: As a collective, we didn’t feel like you were pulling the cards you wanted at a pace we were happy with.  This is something that is going to be improved in NBA 2K19.  I’m definitely of the belief that playing with the latest and greatest cards is a lot of fun!  The team here wants you to have more of those experiences this year.

One change I really like to pack design this year is that packs are now tiered, giving you a wider array of options when making your selections.  Let’s use last year’s Throwback packs as an example here.  The pack did not guarantee you a Throwback player, as the name might imply.  This year, there is a Throwback pack option that will guarantee you a Throwback player in every single pack!  This level of thoughtfulness has been applied across the entirety of the mode.  I’m finding the experience this year to be more satisfying than ever before!

General Content Releases:  After a year-end review, we really felt like the content release cadence was too sparse last year.  There were too many periods of time where the consensus in the community was that you were ready for new content, when there was none to be had.  In NBA 2K19, we are going to feature more compelling content (which I will detail below) along with a dynamic content release schedule bustling with activity.  That activity will come via new packs, new exclusive insert cards into existing packs, a new design for Moments cards, and a dramatic increase in Locker Codes to fill the days when there isn’t necessarily new content planned.

Content Cadence:  We don’t really feel like the best content was dropping at an appropriate pace last year.  For the longest time, you were Amethyst starved.  You were definitely Diamond starved.  And you had no idea what a Pink Diamond even looked like!  In NBA 2K19, it will be possible to pull Amethyst cards on day 1 at launch.  There will be Diamonds available (way!) earlier.  There is even a Pink Diamond planned for September (September!).  We’re all going to be playing a different mode this year!

The next set of items I want to talk about are all of the new Game Modes we have created for you inside NBA 2K19’s MyTEAM.  To make way for these all-new modes, we have decided to retire Pack & Playoffs and Supermax so we could focus all of our efforts towards creating these truly dynamic experiences.  We are completely confident that you will love these new additions.  Let’s get to it!

 

MyTEAM Unlimited

New to NBA 2K19, MyTEAM Unlimited is a brand new competitive online mode that allows you to bring your best lineup of 13 players to take on players from around the globe.  MyTEAM Unlimited is a very easy to understand experience, yet offers many different layers of rewards for your time spent here.

Brand new in NBA 2K19, MyTEAM Unlimited is a competitive online mode that allows you to play with all of your best cards without restrictions.  Earn MyTEAM Points, free card packs, Reward Tokens, and if you are good enough, the incredibly exclusive Player of the Month cards!

Let’s talk about how it works, using the above screenshot as your reference.  While competing head-to-head against other users, you are going to be playing a block of (up to) 12 games.  The goal is to get as many Wins as possible (within those 12 games) before you get 3 Losses.  Once you get 3 losses, you are out and must start over.  When you crash out with your third loss, you are awarded with the prize listed in the Prize Board!  For those of you who finish the 12-game block with a record of 10-2 or 11-1, you will receive some pretty great prizes including MyTEAM Points and free packs of cards that will change during the course of the year.

For those of you who put the effort in and go 12-0, you will be rewarded with the ultra-exclusive Player of the Month card.  Every calendar month, we will put in a new Player of the Month card for you to earn.  These are extremely high-end cards that are exclusively available within the MyTEAM Unlimited experience!  If you have the skills to complete the Player of the Month collection by collecting all of the cards in the set, you will receive the truly unique GALAXY OPAL Isiah Thomas card!  GALAXY OPAL?!?!  An ultra-rare card type, Galaxy Opals are the BEST cards in NBA 2K19’s MyTEAM.  You absolutely want one of these on your team, trust me!

 

Triple Threat

Triple Threat is a brand new single player experience available within NBA 2K19’s MyTEAM!  In reviewing 2K18’s feature set, we really felt like it was missing that 3-on-3 gameplay action that has quickly become a defining piece of the Neighborhood experience.  Year after year, Mike Wang and the gameplay team have made that experience better and better.  Triple Threat is a showcase of the work they have done to 3-on-3 gameplay.  we think you are going to love it.

New for NBA 2K19, Triple Threat is a single player experience that finally brings 3-on-3 basketball back to MyTEAM!  Using a creative new ‘ball drop’ mechanic, you will leave your opponents and the prizes for defeating them up to chance as you work your way through every team in the NBA!

You are probably looking at the above screenshot and wondering what we are up to!  In Triple Threat, your goal is to defeat all 30 NBA teams, one division at a time.  Before every game, you will have the ability to drop a ball to randomly determine which team you will play against.  If you beat the team the first time you play them, you will receive the MyTEAM Points bonus shown alongside the team logo (if there is one)!  Every time you complete a division, you will earn a select amount of Reward Tokens (shown in the center of the above screenshot).  I’ll discuss more later what those are, and what you can do with them!

Once you have defeated all six NBA divisions, a 7th Triple Threat board will unlock.  This 7th board is an endless experience, but one that offers some of the best prizes in Triple Threat.  To get those prizes, you will need to defeat teams containing the best players from each franchise (think of a 3-man team of Shaq, Kobe, and Magic).  In addition to earning MyTEAM Points, this board can also gift you with Reward Tokens, custom Triple Threat card packs, and exclusive limited release cards that will make an appearance during select times of the year.  In short, Triple Threat is an experience crafted to capture the off-the-hardwood basketball that we know you all enjoy.  The entire experience is packaged up in a fun wrapper that allows you the chance to have a semi-direct influence on who you play and what prizes you will be playing for. 

 

Triple Threat Online

Triple Threat Online retains the same 3-on-3 gameplay experience I described above, but as the name implies, is an online-based mode that will find you challenging your skills against players from all over the world.

The setup of the mode is quite simple.  After every played game, you will return to the prize drop experience where you will get an opportunity to drop one (or more) balls for the chance at some very nice prizes.  The number of balls you get to drop depends on how many games you have played.  In Triple Threat Online, you continue to play head-to-head against others until you have either played 10 games or have received 3 losses, whichever comes first.  If you can make it all the way to the end and win that 10th game, you will get to drop 5(!) balls, which means 5 prizes!  When you get high enough on the ladder, you will even earn the ability to perform prize ball drops after losses!  Losses do matter in this experience.  If you get 3 losses before you get to play 10 games, you are eliminated and will need to start over. 

Also new for NBA 2K19, Triple Threat Online allows you to take your 3-on-3 skills online and challenge players from all over the world!  Wins equal ‘ball drop’ changes in Triple Threat Online.  Prizes will be completely dynamic and can include MyTEAM Points, Reward Tokens, custom Triple Threat card packs, and on occasion, some truly unique MyTEAM cards that won’t be found anywhere else in the game!

I have a feeling Triple Threat Online is going to be one of the most popular modes in MyTEAM this year.  Internally, I can tell you the team is having a ton of fun playing these games and trying to get as many prize ball drops as possible!  Prizing for these drops will be completely dynamic and can include anything from MyTEAM Points, Reward Tokens, custom Triple Threat card packs, and exclusive limited release cards that will make an appearance during select times of the year (like I explained above in the Triple Threat section).  You never know what kind of cards we may drop into the prize pool for limited runs in Triple Threat Online!

 

Challenges (Single Player AND Multiplayer)

One of our most popular experiences in MyTEAM last year was the Challenges content.  This is a very dynamic aspect of the mode, where new game experiences are added to MyTEAM every single week.  In NBA 2K19, Challenges are back, and are bigger and better than ever!

Like last year, you will be receiving up to 5 new Single Player Challenges every single week.  One major difference from last year is that the content will never expire/go away.  What this means is that those of you who choose to not get the game at launch (what are you thinking?!), will still be able to play the Week 1 challenges, the Week 2 challenges, the Week 3 challenges, and so on, no matter when you purchase the game.  Over the course of the season, this feature is going to build up some serious content!

New this year, as a mainstay feature, is the concept of Multiplayer Challenges.  We dipped our toes into the water here a couple times in 2K18, and the response was overwhelming.  You all loved these challenges!  In NBA 2K19, we will be delivering new Multiplayer Challenges every single week, all season long.  Unlike Single Player Challenges, these special experiences will expire after their week is over.  Multiplayer Challenges are a great opportunity for you to test your online skills against others, while playing in our custom designed scenarios…and you’ll be earning great rewards for participating in these.

To all of us here, MyTEAM is a mode that needs to be re-invigorated at regular intervals during the season.  It is a living, breathing, ever-changing experience.  Our implementation for the evolution of the Challenges feature will no doubt keep that fire lit inside you as you log on each week looking for something new to do.

But wait there’s more!  We are doing Schedule Challenges completely different this year.  Last year, at launch, there were 30 game schedules available for all 30 teams.  That was 900 games…hello grind!  To top that off, we came to the conclusion that the rewards were not really sufficient for your time and effort.  In NBA 2K19, we will be releasing two 15-game Schedules every two weeks, all season long.  15 really feels like the sweet spot, compared to the 30 per team you were made to play last year.  This is particularly true as the majority of the games are shortened scenarios, rather than full games.  To further drive your interest, the rewards along the way are definitely going to be worth your time.  You’ll be earning piles of MyTEAM Points, high end Free Agent Cards, and when you beat the 15th and final game in the Schedule, you will earn both 3 Reward Tokens as well as a free pack of Throwback cards that will give you a guaranteed Throwback player to add to your collection.  We’ll talk more about Throwback players down below.  They will be the hotness this year!  Well, one of the many hotnesses!

Lastly, Moments Challenges will be making their return to NBA2K19 as well!  These Challenges are  dynamically created during the season when a player showcases his talents with an exceptional performance, and as you can expect, are a great way to earn some MTP to build up your team’s roster.  At launch, we are going to have one of these ready for you to go.  You will have to beat Deandre Ayton and the Suns to spoil his NBA debut.  If you can pull off the feat, you’ll earn 2,000 MyTEAM Points!  I’m telling you, prizing is better this year!

 

Domination

Even our trustworthy Domination mode couldn’t avoid getting a complete refresh for NBA 2K19!  This mode is an absolute fan favorite, and has been for many years.  This year, instead of playing the games in a singular fixed order, you will have the ability to play through any Division you want.  You can even start working through the Pacific division, and later decide you want to switch and start working on the Southwest division.

We encountered a lot of feedback from our newer users where they would reach a point in their progression only to find certain teams very difficult to defeat.  This year, if you run into a team you are struggling with, you can just hop over to another division and continue making progress.  This progress will ultimately allow you to upgrade your team so you can return later and give that original team  another shot. 

When you Dominate all six teams in a division, you will earn yourself a pile of Reward Tokens (I promise I will explain these immediately below this!).  As in the past, Domination comes in three flavors this year:

- NBA Domination: Take your MyTEAM and Dominate every current NBA team as you work to build up your roster.

- Fantasy Domination: A personal favorite of mine, this setup allows you to take your MyTEAM against some fantastical, yet fun, team creations.  You’ll be facing off against the 2018 All-NBA Team, the 2004 Draft Class, a team of ABA Greats, a team made up of Finals MVPs, and on and on.  This is definitely a challenge and one that rewards you handsomely.  The first Diamond player of the year awaits you as a reward if you can defeat every team!

- All-Time Domination: Play against the all-time greatest players from every NBA team in the ultimate Domination challenge.  If you can Dominate every All-Time team, you will earn yourself a Pink Diamond.  Do I have your attention now?  I’m telling you, Rewards are significantly better this year!  Let’s go!

 

Reward Tokens

You’ve no doubt seen me mention Reward Tokens above as I’ve been talking about prizing and what you can earn this year.  This is something we’ve added this year that I have absolutely fallen in love with.  No matter where you are in MyTEAM, completing content will earn you Reward Tokens.  Once you have earned a few tokens, you should absolutely head over to the Reward Market to view what we have on offer.  The Reward Market is how you will be building up your team this year.

When you first enter the Reward Market, you will be eligible to trade in your Reward Tokens for Emerald players.  When you are first starting out, these will be very solid upgrades to your lineup.  You should get these players as quickly as possible!  Once you have acquired enough of the Emerald players, you will open up the Sapphire market, then the Ruby market, and so on.  With enough Reward Tokens, you will eventually tier-up into the exclusive Diamond, Pink Diamond, and yes, GALAXY OPAL markets.  These are where the absolute best cards in MyTEAM live.  This is your goal.  The best way to get there is to venture out and play all of our MyTEAM experiences.  No matter what your favorite game mode ends up being, we’ve got you covered as you’ll be earning Reward Tokens there!

No matter where you play in NBA 2K19’s MyTEAM, you will earn Reward Tokens for your progress.  Earned Reward Tokens can be redeemed for players that will build your lineup into a highly formidable team.  With enough effort, you will be unlocking Diamond, Pink Diamond, and even Galaxy Opal level players!

There is one more element inside the Reward Market that should offer no shortage of intrigue as the year goes on.  That intrigue would be the Token Market.  The Token Market is a place where you can spend your surplus tokens on some truly unique content.  While its contents will be ever changing, it will be a place where you can sometimes purchase currently available card packs with tokens instead of VC/MTP.  It will be a place where you will able to purchase new and upcoming packs BEFORE they get released in the Pack Market for sale.  It will be a place where you can purchase limited edition runs of cards that will only be available in the Token Market.

If you can’t already tell, we are flipping the MyTEAM model on its side this year to create an experience that is catered to you, our fans.  We are genuinely excited about how your team will progress through MyTEAM this year with all of the earning and upgrade options that will be available!  We have a lot more to see.  Let’s get going…

 

Daily Trials

Speaking of earning things that help you to build up to your team quicker, new to NBA 2K19’s MyTEAM is the Daily Trials feature.  Every single day when you log in, we are going to give you three stat-based objectives for the day.  When you first start out, the Trials will be very simple.  Score this many points in a game with a player.  Get this many assists with a player.  As you complete these Trials, we will be rewarding you with MyTEAM Points to help build up your collection!

The system is designed such that the Trials will become progressively harder as the talent pool on your team increases.  Fortunately for you, the amount of MyTEAM Points you can earn becomes significantly higher as the degree of difficulty increases on these.

Our philosophy when creating the Daily Trials feature was to passively reward you for logging on each day and playing.  We didn’t want them to be designed in a such a way that required you to alter the way you play and ‘game’ the system to complete them.  That isn’t fun for anyone.  In the end, they are exactly what we all wanted; a fun little system that will keep the MyTEAM Points flowing into your account so long as you just log on and play.  Enjoy!

 

Locker Codes

Right now, you are either cringing or smiling ear-to-ear.  One of those is certainly true.  Locker Codes are so, so satisfying if you are lucky enough to get a card.  If you are met with the message that we have all seen about the card having ran out, it can be downright frustrating.  We have seen so much feedback on this subject.  We have seen it from students who are in school when the codes are dropped.  We have seen it from upstanding adults who are at work when the code is dropped.  We have even seen it from our Australian fans who will tell you that our normal time to drop codes is in the middle of the night for them.  We hear all of your feedback, and have made some changes!

While it is true that we will continue to drop the limited quantity lockers codes from time to time just to keep you on your toes, we have a NEW type of Locker Code for NBA 2K19 that I know you are going to love.  This NEW type of Locker Code is one that EVERYONE can put in and try and earn prizes with.  Each code will have a usage limitation of 1 on it, meaning you can take your shot at getting the featured prize (usually a card) when you get home from work, or school, or the gym, or wherever your daily life takes you.  How cool is that?

Here is how it works.  Every Locker Code of this type comes with one redemption per person.  This will entitle you to one free drop of a prize ball that will essentially give you a theoretical 1 in 10 chance of winning the featured prize (with some practice, you will learn that the odds are actually much better than 1 in 10).  This will look and feel just like playing the Triple Threat prize ball drops that I described above.  The entire process couldn’t be smoother, and it couldn’t be simpler.

And hey, prizing doesn’t have to be limited to cards now, like in years past.  We can have Locker Codes that can give you varying levels of MyTEAM Points.  They can give you chances at earning Reward Tokens.  They can of course still give you cards.  They can even give you a combination of all of the above!  It’s going to be a very fun year for Locker Codes, so buckle up!

I can’t think of a better way to show off the new system than to go ahead and give you NBA 2K19’s very first Locker Code!  I’m not going to tell you what it is for, but I can tell you this code will be there waiting for you when you purchase the game.  Have at it, friends!

GETIT-DUWW7-AN5F3-FPEZB-9VMWC

This is a great time to remind you of how you can stay in touch with us to make sure you hear about the latest Locker Codes, pack releases, and other general updates to MyTEAM.  So make sure you follow @NBA2K_MyTEAM on Twitter and @NBA2K on Facebook!

 

Collector Levels

After taking a year off, Collector Levels will be making their return in NBA 2K19!  Personally, I’m a big fan of this feature, as it truly promotes the concept of collecting cards.  Collecting ALL of the cards!  For those unfamiliar with what this feature is, allow me to explain.

The size of your collection is defined by the number of non-consumable cards (Players, Coaches, etc.) you currently own.  Your Collector Level is defined by the number of these cards you simultaneously have in your collection.  As your collection size increases, we are going to reward you with prizes: MyTEAM Points, Reward Tokens, Diamonds, Pink Diamonds…the works.

One of the reasons I like this is that I am rarely disappointed when I am opening packs.  If I get a card that I don’t already own, I get excited and view that as one step closer towards hitting the next tier and getting another of the exclusive prizes.  The other reason I like this is it encourages me to deep-dive right into the Auction House seeking out cards that will enhance the size of my collection.  Expect a much livelier Auction House this year as I surmise you will all be out in full force doing whatever you can to work towards that final prize.  It’s a fun one…

 

Heat Check Cards

For those of you that pre-ordered the Anniversary Edition of NBA 2K19, you may have noticed that one of the items included with your pre-order was 10 MyTEAM Heat Check packs.  These brand new card types will be unveiled in MyTEAM just before the start of the NBA season (this is when you will start receiving your weekly packs if you pre-ordered).

The gist of this feature is simple, but it adds such a tremendous amount of dynamism to your lineup, that you will love collecting as many players as possible.  Every NBA player will have a Heat Check card.  It will have the exact same ratings as their base collection card (that you can pull from League Packs).  The special thing about these cards is that when the player has a great game in real life, their Heat Check card within MyTEAM will activate for a period of 48 hours.  Now what does that mean?

New to NBA 2K19, Heat Check cards look at real-life performances from NBA players.  When a player has a great game in real life, his Heat Check card in MyTEAM will activate and give him a boost to his ratings.  This screenshot shows what Giannis Antetokounmpo’s base Heat Check card looks like, and what it looks like when it is triggered (yes, the flames animate!).  Look for Heat Check cards to drop in the Pack Market at the start of the NBA season!

When a Heat Check card is activated, his player ratings will experience a jump across the board for the entire 48-hour window that the card is said to be hot for.  The jump in attributes will depend on how well he performed in that game.  A tremendous effort will result in a nice jump in the player’s attributes, while a “really good” performance will see the player go on fire, but with a smaller boost to his attributes.  There are three levels of activation for every player, both on offense and on defense.

In playing with this internally (and using stats from the 2017-18 season to test with), I have had a lot of fun hunting for the perfect lineup of triggered cards to try and get as many of them in my team at one time.  This feature has really challenged me to change my lineup each and every day to make sure I am playing my best players, because my best players change every day as cards activate and deactivate!  It’s a very fun feature that will have you thinking and re-thinking about your lineup.  If you are like me, it will re-shape your shopping habits in the Auction House as you will constantly be on the lookout for a set of players that balance out your lineup when they are on fire!

It’s not too late to pre-order the Anniversary Edition of NBA 2K19 to get your 10 MyTEAM Heat Check packs (along with all of the great items you get with it!).  Click here to get a head start: [PRE-ORDER LINK].

 

20TH Anniversary Collection

NBA 2K19 is a monumental milestone for the team here at Visual Concepts.  This will be our 20th edition of NBA 2K; a game that somehow has managed to get bigger and better every single year.  And we have no intention of ever slowing down!

In MyTEAM, we wanted to celebrate this milestone by putting together an elite collection of cards that honors every player that has ever graced the cover of NBA 2K.  That collection has been dubbed the ‘20th Anniversary Collection’.  Starting shortly after launch and continuing all throughout the upcoming season, we will be releasing a new 20th Anniversary card into packs every few weeks.  These cards are going to be some of the most powerful cards available within MyTEAM, period.  In fact, the first 20th Anniversary Collection card out of the gate will be the very first pullable Pink Diamond card in NBA 2K19.  You are going to want this one when it drops shortly after launch, so keep an eye out!

The entirety of the 20th Anniversary Collection is comprised of 18 of some of the best cards in MyTEAM.  We are breaking these 18 cards down into Series I (6 cards), Series II (6 cards), and Series III (6 cards).  When you collect all 6 cards in a Series, you will be rewarded with an incredibly rare and powerful GALAXY OPAL card that can’t be obtained anywhere else!  These 3 Galaxy Opal collection complete cards are incredibly desirable, so I would encourage you to make every opportunity to get the 20th Anniversary cards as they become available. Good luck and happy hunting!

 

Throwback Collections

One of my favorite concepts behind MyTEAM is how it can be used to truly highlight some of the greatest players in NBA history.  As a user, it also gives you the chance to answer the question of, ‘What would it be like if I could play this player alongside this other player?’  The fantasy aspect of the mode is just so unique and compelling to me.  As an NBA history junkie, I can’t enough of these players in MyTEAM.

The team here really wanted to do something a little different with Throwback players in NBA 2K19.  The plan we came up with for this year was one that allows us to put the spotlight on specific teams and players.  At launch, we are going to have our Grizzlies & Hornets Throwback Packs available for your perusal.  The only Throwback players available in these packs will be from the Grizzlies and Hornets franchises.  Every two weeks, we are going to remove the old pack and add a completely new Throwback pack highlighting two more teams.  It’s a design that will allow us to introduce the younger generation to some of the players that really shaped and defined what the NBA is today.

Right on Day 1 of the game’s release, there are going to be Amethyst Throwback cards that you can pull from these packs.  Who doesn’t want an Amethyst on Day 1?  Spoiler alert, one of those Amethyst cards coming from these packs will be a Hornets-era Baron Davis.  Simply put, you want this card!  And the ones I didn’t even mention here!

Re-imagined for NBA 2K19, brand new Throwback Packs will be released every two weeks, featuring two new teams.  At launch, we will be featuring the Grizzlies and the Hornets.  You can pull this Amethyst Baron Davis card (among many others) on DAY 1 this year.  Amethyst right out of the gate!  Let’s go!

 

Notifications

This is another addition that will make a big difference in ensuring you aware of what is going on within your MyTEAM.  The concept is simple.  Whenever there is something that might require your attention, we are going to create a passive notification alert on our MyTEAM Main Menu.  Here are some examples of when an alert will be created for you, so you can choose if you want to act on it:

- If you have been Outbid on a still-active auction in the Auction House, we will alert you in the event you want to get back in there and increase your bid.

- If an auction has come to its end and you are the winner, we will make you aware so that you can go claim your new card!

- If you have collected enough cards to move up to the next Collector Level, we will make sure you are aware of that so you can head into that menu and collect your reward!

- Whenever you have a new Prize Pack waiting for you (e.g. when one of your packs from the pre-order are ready to be opened), we will immediately let you know so you don’t miss out on your content!

- When you have completed a Goal, we will immediately let you know so you can head into that menu to get your reward!

And so on.  Notifications are a seemingly minor addition, but one that does a very intelligent behind-the-scenes job of ensuring your MyTEAM experience is as smooth and efficient as possible.  We really spent a lot of time this year discussing HOW people play MyTEAM and what things are important to their experience.  We are confident you will appreciate this little hidden gem.

 

Card Glossary

New for NBA 2K19, the Card Glossary is a one-stop shop for those of you who may be reading this, are interested in what you are hearing about, but are feeling a little unsure how you will learn the ins and outs of the mode.

This feature will teach you a little bit about each card type.  What do I do with Badge Cards?  What benefit does a Coach give me?  How do Heat Check cards work?  All of these answers and more can be found within the Card Glossary.

 

Completely New Interface

Let me start off with this bit of information.  Every single menu in MyTEAM has been redesigned/optimized for NBA 2K19, to ensure that your user experience is as optimal as possible.

One of the things the team really wanted to address was how uneventful entering the mode was.  You would land on a navigation menu, with little direction as to what’s new in the mode, or even what you should be playing for that given day.  This needed to be addressed.

With NBA 2K19’s new MyTEAM landing, you will always know when new content is added to the game!  It will also provide you a seamless access to your Daily Trials, Reward Market, and your Goals progress.  Navigating and playing within MyTEAM has never been easier!

The first menu we wanted to tackle was the main menu of the mode.  This is where you land every time you enter the mode.  As you can see from the above screenshot, the menu has a large panel that will feature a rotating set of images that will allow us to make sure you know what new content (cards/packs, new single player/multiplayer Challenges, new Schedule Challenges, etc.) is available for you to play with inside MyTEAM.  Beyond that, you will also have quick access to what your Daily Trials are for the day, progress on your Goals, and access to the above-mentioned Reward Market, where you will build your team.

All-New Pack Market

The completely redesigned pack market provides a much cleaner looking interface that allows us to better describe what kind of cards you will get from each pack.  Another improvement I really like is that Packs and Boxes of the same card type are now all grouped together.  You are no longer required to visit different screens to see your purchasing options.  Plus, it looks fantastic now too!

All-New Auction House

This is another complete visual redesign based on feedback from you and what our own experiences have taught us.  There are two additions that stand out to me this year that have made huge quality of life improvements:

- When viewing your search results, you will now see an icon on cards that you already have in your collection.  It sounds like a small thing, but you will never again sit on that menu looking at that Amethyst LeBron card while asking yourself, “I want to bid on this card, but do I already have it?  I think I might.”  Never again.

- You can now see all of the critical information (number of badges it has, shoe equipped, etc.)  for each card shown on the screen without having to move your cursor and highlight each card individually.  A usability win!

In the spirit of trying to cut this diary short for you guys, because we appreciate you reading this far, I am going to briefly go over a few other changes this year that really stand out to me before we wrap this thing up.

Redesigned Collections Menu

Every time I pulled a new card last year, it was nearly impossible for me to find it in the Collections menu.  That wasn’t just me, right?  The team has made a number of improvements to the experience this year to help you out.  These are my favorites:

-In NBA 2K19, you can now SEARCH for cards within your Collections menu.  Did you just pull a new James Harden card, but have no idea what collection it is in?  No worries. Just do a search for ‘Harden’ and all James Harden cards in your collection will be shown in one simple view.

- The Collections menu will now show you notification icons that lead you all the way to your new card(s).  For example, if I just pulled a Signature Series Kobe Bryant, upon entering the Collections menu, the ‘Signature Series’ collection will have a notification on it.  When I enter that, the ‘Lakers’ team logo will have a notification on it.  When I select to view the cards in the Lakers collection, my new Kobe Bryant card will also have a notification on it.  I have to admit, it’s pretty clever how the menu walks you directly towards your new content.  No more being confused!

 

All-New Pack Opening / Player Reveal

Opening packs is a lot of fun!  There is just no way around that.  What isn’t fun is mashing the primary button on your controller a thousand times because the pack opening animation is soooo slowwww.  In NBA 2K19, pack openings in MyTEAM will be a much more streamlined experience that will get you through your packs in a significantly quicker fashion!

 

All-New Edit Lineups Menu

This is a menu I REALLY struggled with when playing 2K18.  For NBA 2K19, we have given it a complete facelift with the sole intention of making it easier to use.  The first change you will notice is that you can now see your entire 13-man lineup on the screen, not just the five starters.  Swapping out a player is as easy as highlighting said player and pressing a button.  Last year’s sequence of events to build your lineup is all gone!  Here are a few more of my favorite improvements to the feature this year:

- Do you want to put your new Galaxy Opal LeBron James from the 20th Anniversary Collection into your lineup, but have no idea where the card is in the collection?  No problem!  This year, you can just search for any player you want and easily insert the exact one you want into your lineup.

- If you are the type of player who really tries to maximize your System Proficiency bonuses (these have made significantly more understandable this year!), you now have the ability to set a different Head Coach for each lineup you create this year.

- The ability to customize your Franchise and make Coach/Minute adjustments is much more streamlined this year and is built directly into the Edit Lineups menu.

The presentation team here at Visual Concepts has been hard at work making MyTEAM look and feel incredible this year.  This is an example of one of the MANY integrations they have done; here the player introduction has been re-created for MyTEAM to showcase the specific card(s) being used.  We couldn’t be happier with the thoughtful touches they have provided to the experience this year!

 

Presentation Integration

The incredibly talented Presentation team here at Visual Concepts spent a considerable amount of time integrating custom assets into MyTEAM this year to make the new game modes look and feel special! 

One of my favorite integrations is when substitutions are made during gameplay.  When you are playing anywhere else in the game (outside of MyTEAM), the on-screen graphics will often show headshots of the players getting substituted in/out.  In MyTEAM, you will see full card renders of the player(s) getting substituted in/out.  When a very high-end player (think Pink Diamond / Galaxy Opal) enters the court, you will see a more focused presentation on that player.  This was done so silky smooth that it all just becomes second nature as you play through the new modes!  This is just one specific example; you will find so many more as you play through the all-new MyTEAM.

 

Closing Thoughts

We have a unique vision for MyTEAM and how it can evolve over the coming years.  For NBA 2K19, our focus was pretty clear.  We needed to establish a new philosophy, a new look, and a new feel that really places an emphasis on quality features that will keep NBA 2K19 on your mind whenever you need to be away from the game.  With our completely new game modes in MyTEAM Unlimited, Triple Threat, and Triple Threat Online (among others), I feel like we have done that…and more!  There is just so much new this year!

We understand the importance of having a passionate community that is continually providing feedback on what they want and need from the game.  If you have ever read any of my other Developer Diaries over the years, you would know that I am a huge proponent of the community being a key component of the development of the game.  My request is that you continue to use your voice to tell us where you want the mode to go.  The MyTEAM group is out there observing and listening, always!

I couldn’t be more proud of the team that developed all of these great features for you this year.  Their tireless work resulted in what is easily the best MyTEAM we have ever created.  To Abe, Peter, Robby, Scott, Kathy, Kijin, Yu, Zeleng, Ian, Ivan, Zongye, Evan, and Jesse, thank you so much for your hard work this year.  We got this!

Until next time, my friends.  We can’t wait for you to get your hands on NBA 2K19!

Erick Boenisch
aka SimBaller