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NBA Live 06 Review - PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PC

About.com Rating 4 Star Rating


NBA Live 06 Review - PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PC

NBA Live 06

Big dunks ain't free in NBA Live 06

The Bottom Line

Well it's here, and it does look sharp. The new and improved NBA Live 06 is the choice of pros for a number of reasons, this time because they look better than ever. The improved player models and physics bring a much needed visual update to the game. It still doesn't look as smooth as the NBA, but it's certainly better. The new Freestyle Superstar system is a mouthful to say, but it's heaven on the court, bringing new depth to NBA Live 06.
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  • NBA Live 06 has gotten a face-lift and the players look sharp
  • NBA Freestyle Superstars brings much improved player specific control
  • Much improved fast break and transition playing


  • Bumped up difficulty means that button mashers face a frustrating experience
  • Animations still lack smooth linking, thus players sometimes look jerky


  • Graphics: 4 Big improvement, but player's still look doe eyed
  • Sound 4.5 Excellent play-by-play and solid a solid hip-hop soundtrack bring the NBA feel to life
  • Concept: 3 It's the same sports sim story, lots of options and a deep dynasty mode
  • Control: 4.5 The new Freestyle Superstars control brings a new level of depth and fun the NBA 06
  • Difficulty: 4.5 Easy to pick up, but if you want to win you need to spend some time with NBA Live 06
  • Replay: 5 Like most good sports sims the multiplayer and dynasty mode make it a high value title
  • Multiplayer: 4 It's an amazing one on one game, but get four people together, and it's on
  • Rated: Everyone, No language or violence, unless you are offended by hip-hop it's fine for all

Guide Review - NBA Live 06 Review - PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PC

Basketball is a great TV sport. Five on five, small courts, big dunks, lots of games, it's no wonder the NBA has seen such a fan surge in recent post-Jordan years. EA has pickled up on what makes the NBA hot and revamped NBA Live 06 to match.

Alright, the visuals are better. Players look ripped and the moves are smooth. Unfortunately, the sheer number of moves make it nearly impossible to create clean animation between all of them, thus moving from blocking to running or stealing to defending sometimes looks jerky. It's a vast improvement over last year, but still leaves us begging for the next-next-gen systems.

The biggest improvement of the year is the Freestyle Superstars control system. Yup, the skill stick is still there, but now certain players can show off their specific skills with a new L1 and button combo. Thus, someone like Chauncey Billups gets labeled a 'stopper' with a small hand on his indicator circle. This means that he, like all special characters, can access special, improved moves to steal, score, block etc. I do feel bad for the large number of players who didn't get special treatment though.

With improved graphics, improved transition game and the new Freestyle Superstar system it's quite easy to recommend NBA Live 06, even if you have last year's. NBA Live 06 still isn't perfect, and may be a bit difficult to some, but it's still the deepest NBA videogame out there.

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