Review by RyanVG

Reviewed: 07/10/18

A Fair Attempt at 16-Bit Basketball

Tecmo Super NBA Basketball could be best summarized as a fairly good attempt at making a 16-bit basketball game. But the overall game design looks like it was made by a group of people with Aspergers' Syndrome. The sound effects sound like something off the Sega Game Gear, the characters look slightly blocky and the music is annoying. I thought the melody of the music being played during the game sounded like a really bad interpretation of a Jimmy Buffet song; particularly Cheeseburgers in Paradise. During the regular season mode, you can insert win-loss stats in order to either simulate the current season or to create a kind of alternate sports history.

Once you get past the cheesy music and the horrible graphics, passing the ball and shooting the ball takes a precise level of time that is easy to remember once you have played a few games. The basketball makes a nice swish sound once it goes into the basket and the referee actually attempts to make actual words if there is a personal foul on the play. The default quarter length is good for casual games but people like Chris Smoove would probably like playing with 12 minute quarters.

While I preferred the SNES version of NBA Showdown, this game was the only game that my mother could afford me for Easter 1994 because she wasn't able to find work in her chosen profession. It helps to satisfy my need to play NBA Jam on days when my mother couldn't drive into town or she couldn't afford to drive me to a video arcade. I wasn't much of a fan of basketball on TV during this time and I used this game to learn about players like David Robinson, Dominique Wilkins, and Grant Hill. This game got me hooked on basketball so badly that I saw a Toronto Raptors versus Miami Heat game sometime back in 1995-96.

While I would never play this game on an emulator, it was good during the mid-1990s when it seems like a lot of the video game developers were focusing on 32-bit systems instead of making really cool sports games for the 16-bit systems that weren't rehashes of the older games. Compared to NBA 2K11 for the PlayStation 3, it's a masterpiece but NBA 2K11 had a My Player option that would have really helped this game become more than just an inferior version of every SNES basketball video game ever released.

Rating: 6

Product Release: Tecmo Super NBA Basketball (US, 12/31/93)

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