EDIT: Woah, it just occurred to me that I forgot to mention one thing - during game settings you're allowed to select "Game Style" which I change the sliders. I changed the style from "Default" to "Simulation" thinking I'd get better results. There is also an option for "Casual". Looks like I'm going to need to test this on multiple slider sets to see if anything changes, because what follows is completely unacceptable (especially since I was supposed to be on the Sim setting!).
EDIT#2 - Upon review, "Simulation" slider set is the problem. DO NOT USE IT!
OFFENSE: Shot success is lower (5-8 pts) across the board.
DEFENSE: Driving/Inside contact goes from 50 to 100! While steal success goes from 50 to 25! What the hell are these idiots thinking? No wonder the bigs were having a field day!
ATTRIBUTES: No change except +20 On-Ball Defense and -15 Clutch Factor
TENDENCIES: +30 Look for Post Players, -45 Go for On Ball Steals
FOULS: +20 for Charge/Block/Reach, +8 Over Back, +5 Shooting Foul
Simulation slider set WILL NOT provide simulations. I can stop panicking now. At least we know now that the style is totally and utterly broken. Here's my original post.
I let the CPU battle each other out on Hall of Fame while I took a nap. I awoke to find results I never quite expected - especially with all the glowing gameplay reviews this game has gotten.
FG: 47-84 (55%)
3PT: 4-12 (33%)
FT: 34-42 (80%)
Rebounds: 39 (11 Off)
Paint Pts: 40
Bench Pts: 22
2nd Chance: 8
Fast Break: 4
FG: 40-77 (51%)
3PT: 3-10 (30%)
FT: 44-49 (89%)
Rebounds: 30 (7 Off)
Paint Pts: 50
Bench Pts: 13
2nd Chance: 10
Fast Break: 10
2K really spent time on the physics of the game, and players have no trouble at all drawing fouls now. However, a number of problems stem from this.
1. Shots still go in way too frequently, and this is driving up the score immensely! I can tolerate NY being a poor defensive team, but Portland?
2. While the Points in Paint were low in relation to the score, this is because most forays into the paint led to the FT line! The CPU is still paint pounding you to death and it remains to be seen whether this is a player tendency issue or a team tendency issue at this point (I have yet to adjust either). There were simply way too many FTA compared to FGA.
3. Forget FTA to FGA, how about FTA compared to 3PT!? The Knicks barely got to the line last year, and while they now have Amare/Randolph, they are still going to launch more than 10 threes per game! Only 13% of their shots were threes in this game, compared to 30% for their season (2nd in the league) last year.
4. What's REALLY scary about all of this is I lowered shot ratings (including Inside shot) for most players. I shudder to think of what would have happened if I didn't.
5. Another less pressing issue but still a concern: TURNOVERS! There were barely any turnovers for either team! It seems the improved defensive AI only applies towards human players (which confirms we were right about it being a "cheese factor".
6. Actually, on second thought, lack of turnovers might be the problem! There were only 9 turnovers in this game despite the fact that both teams recorded well over 100 possessions. They did ANYTHING THEY WANTED on offense with little resistance from the supposedly improved defense.
BLAZERS BOX: Pts-Reb-Ast-Stl-Blk (FG, 3PT, FT) Mins-TO-Fls
Oden: 18-14-2-3-3 (8-9 FG, 2-2 FT) 35-1-4
Aldridge: 35-2-6-0-0 (12-12 FG, 11-15 FT) 23-0-6
Batum: 3-1-0-0-0 (1-2 FG, 1-2 3PT, 0-2 FT) 17-0-5
Roy: 35-2-6-0-0 (13-25 FG, 3-3 3PT, 6-7 FT) 39-0-4
Miller: 19-2-4-3-0 (5-11 FG, 0-1 3PT, 9-10 FT) 34-0-3
Camby: 4-7-2-0-1 (2-8 FG), 26-0-2
Matthews: 6-1-1-0-0 (1-6 FG, 0-3 3PT, 4-4 FT) 23-0-2
Bayless: 2-1-2-1-0 (1-4 FG, 0-3 3PT) 22-1-0
Cunningham: 4-3-1-0-0-0 (2-4 FG, 0-2 FT) 14-0-3
Pendergraph: 2-1-0-0-0 (0-0 FG, 2-2 FT) 5-0-1
Babbitt: 2-1-0-0-0 (1-1 FG) 4-0-0
Williams: 2-0-2-0-0 (1-2 FG) 3-0-0
I cursed when I saw Aldridge's FG success... and then just shook my head when I saw he scored 35 points in a mere 23 minutes. That he fouled out is of no consequence to me. He was on pace for a 52 point game. Between he and Greg Oden (who was named Player of the Game) they combined for 53 points on 20-21 FG and 19-24 FT. Oh, and one turnover between them. That is simply inexcusable. I feel like I'm looking at a box score from 1963, with LaMarcus Aldridge starring as Wilt Chamberlain. Except Wilt never fouled out of a game in his life, of course.
But wait, there's moreeeeeeeeee!
KNICKS BOX: Pts-Reb-Ast-Stl-Blk (FG, 3PT, FT) Mins-TO-Fls
Randolph: 34-10-1-1-2 (12-20 FG, 10-12 FT) 38-0-3
Stoudemire: 48-6-3-0-1 (16-20 FG, 16-17 FT) 31-1-5
Gallinari: 12-2-2-0-1-0 (4-7 FG, 0-1 3PT, 4-4 FT) 36-0-4
Chandler: 16-1-3-0-0 (3-4 FG, 1-2 3PT, 9-10 FT) 35-2-2
Felton: 4-1-12-0-0 (2-7 FG, 0-1 3PT) 33-3-5
Douglas: 10-1-3-0-0 (2-4 FG, 2-2 3PT, 4-4 FT) 20-1-0
Walker: 2-0-2-0-0 (1-8 FG, 0-4 3PT) 16-0-1
Turiaf: 1-4-0-0-3 (0-3 FG, 1-2 FT) 15-0-3
Mozgov: 0-3-2-0-0 (0-1 FG) 11-0-1
Mason: 0-1-0-0-0 (0-0 FG) 5-0-0
Ewing: 0-1-0-0-1 (0-3 FG) 5-0-0
I can't form the words.
I knew when writing this up that Amare scored 48. I didn't see 31 minutes. Holy ****.
This game is broken.
I'm calm. Okay, scratch that. What the ****?
ANTHONY RANDOLPH JUST DROPPED 34 ****ING POINTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Doubt begins to settle into my mind. Am I doing the right thing? Am I screwing the gameplay up with my ratings edits? No. There's no way. We've seen these stats before. In every NBA 2K game there has been to date. There are still so many BS animations around the hoop that lead to uncontested shots, and too many dunks around the basket that should never be happening.
I need to dig deeper. Let's go to GameTrack.
10:58 - Aldridge posts Amare, draws contact, hangs, and puts the shot in and the foul. Hits the 10:58 - Made FT
9:21 - Aldridge posting Amare from 20 feet away. Miller and Felton are congested, right next to them. Aldridge goes up for a 20 foot turnaround fadeaway. Miller goes around Aldridge, which causes Felton to get in front of Amare. Both Felton and Amare contest the shot, though Felton was essentially in between Aldridge and Amare (perhaps leading to Amare's defense not counting, and the "Post shot" being uncontested. (I would upload a photo, but 2K Sports server is not available at this time. Groovy.)
8:28 - Made FT (Aldridge scored the Blazers first 6 points of the quarter, but with Dante Cunningham scoring at 6:39, it's clear Aldridge was in foul trouble at this point.
11:50 - Made FT
11:50 - Made FT
10:53 - Made FT
10:11 - Made FT - Okay so to open the 2nd quarter Aldridge drew 3 shooting fouls in 2 mins
9:36 - Aldridge posting on Amare. Aldridge faces up and goes up for the jumper. Amare contests EXTREMELY late, not even jumping until the ball is 10 feet directly over his head.
8:59 - Aldridge posts Amare again. Hook shot that the CPU offers little resistance towards. You all know exactly what that looks like by now.
11:46 - Aldridge posting on Amare. Faces up, goes up for the jumper with the exact same result as before (a late contest by Amare). Amare might as well not even be defending him, and that's exactly why all these shots are going in - the CPU is putting zero effort into their defense.
10:39 - This one seems to be a diagrammed play. Aldridge runs from the left elbow to the right elbow, catches a pass from Miller, and pulls up for a jumper. Amare contests late and the shot goes in.
9:29 - Aldridge posting Amare again on the block. Aldridge goes for a turning fade. Amare kinda contests this one, putting his hand up flat flooted, but it sure doesn't bother Aldridge in the slightest.
8:55 - Roy drive and kick to Aldridge for an open jumper.
7:56 - Roy pulls up for a jumper. Chandler contests. For some reason, Amare is 10 feet away but he's contesting too. The shot was actually a pass to Aldridge though. Maybe Amare was trying to deflect the pass... but he wasn't even close to it. Aldridge hits an easy jumper.
6:17 - Made FT
6:17 - Made FT
5:42 - Another post hook on Amare. He might as well be 6'2".
5:10 - Made FT
5:10 - Made FT
8:26 - Post hook on Anthony Randolph (a new victim!). Randolph actually defends it pretty well and in real life Aldridge likely misses the shot - he shot it lefty. Btw, I'm still trying to figure out the point of "Off-Hand Dribble" rating if there is no "Off-Hand Shot" rating.
7:55 - Aldridge posting Patrick Ewing Jr (who is getting 4th quarter minutes in a tightly contested game, for some reason). This can't be good. Yup, post fadeaway on the much smaller Ewing.
2:49 - Made FT
Aldridge did the vast majority of his damage in this post, pulling off moves against a helpless like he was Hakeem Olajuwon.
Here are the ratings changes I made to Aldridge that would affect this part of his game.
That's what's scary about this. The changes I made were actually nerfing Aldridge! The problem wasn't that his ratings were too high - it's that so many of his shots were completely indefensible! This isn't a ratings issue - it's one that needs to be forwarded to the gameplay department. Sure, we could continue to nerf his post game, (and based on how utterly dominant it was we might have to - for ALL players), but there are major issues regarding animations and defense regarding the post.
There is one light at the end of the tunnel though - while posting up may be broken, we CAN limit them with proper tendencies.
For instance, if you'll notice, Aldridge scored primarily from postups... but never once on an Isolation or a Pick and Roll. Synergy showed me that while Aldridge does most of his scoring on postups, his second most frequent form of scoring (25%) comes from the Pick and Roll 25%.
An examination of Aldridge's tendencies provides us with some insight.
Aldridge Tendencies (Difference from the PF average)
Shot: 71 (+8)
Inside: 46 (-11)
Close: 38 (+17)
Mid: 40 (+16)
2pt: 2 (-5)
Drive: 10 (-23)
Dunk: 75 (+23)
Touch: 80 (+19)
Putback: 67 (-4)
Nothing out of the ordinary here. Not sure if Touch tendency is too high or not, would need to make some comparisons. Lets continue to Aldridge's Freelance tendencies.
Use P/R: 5 (-3)
Set P/R: 95 (+12)
Isolation: 99 (+50)
Use Screen: 35 (+12)
Set Screen: 55 (-6)
Post Up: 99 (+33)
Spot Up: 10 (-16)
Kinda odd that Aldridge didn't Isolate at all since the tendency is just as high as his post ups. Ditto for the P/R's. Clearly there's another factor, perhaps a team tendency (such as "Look for Post Players"). However, I think I found the culprit just below.
Self Post: 84 (+49)
WOAH! Have we got a game breaker and a half here or what!? The average starting PF has 35 Self -Post. The average starting C has 21 Self-Post. Aldridge has a whopping 84! Combined with that 99 Post-Up tendency, it's no wonder Aldridge spent the entire game posting up.
So perhaps this game is fixable. It's going to take a ton of work, but I think I'm up to the task. I was hoping that I wouldn't have to work on tendencies this year, praying that 2K had fixed it's tendencies from last season since they prided themselves on adding so many more of them... but that doesn't seem to be the case. Fortunately... the majority of the tendencies they added were merely cosmetic, not the ones that affect gameplay... my Synergy work SHOULD transfer over seamlessly.
It's going to be a longer season than I thought. Fortunately, I'm much further ahead of schedule than I was last season. I will change some tendencies around and run another simulation of this matchup.
Besides that, I will also be releasing my first roster tonight. Keep your eyes peeled.
The Real 2K Insider