Review of Street Hoops
The graphics are really what pops out big-time in this game. The renderings are so crisp, so clear and have such nice shadowing that you get a real sense of 3-D in this 2-D world. Since this is street ball, you have different lighting and environmental effects in every place you play. The graphics do a great job of capturing the shadowing and everything else that take the graphics on the PS2 to a new standard. You see no polygon tearing or “blockiness”. The player movement is very true and realistic. There are very few times where the player looks stiff and robotic, like we see in many games.
The backgrounds and playing surfaces are very detailed and rich. Just by changing camera angles to the many you have to choose from, you can see how detailed the developers got in rendering the backgrounds.
This game is full of options for different playing types. Full-court, half-court; pick-up game, World Tournament, Lord of the Court. Of course, pick-up game is the quick start option for this game. Jump right into the game and you play by street rules. There are no refs, so hard fouls are OK, but be careful, paybacks are a mother.
If you have any experience with the NBA or College Hoops games out there, then you know how to use the controls in this game. Pass, crossover dribble, hand-check, do what comes naturally. One thing youll find is the level of play is true to street ballers. They can get overly excited and overthrow a pass, so be careful when passing, trying not to go for the home run every time. The real challenge that I found was finding a camera angle that worked best for me while playing. The traditional side TV-style angles give a nice view of the whole court, but make it harder to control individual players. Other modes are too close-up of the players and you cant see whos around for the outlet pass. This, of course, is a matter of personal preference, but do play around with it, a change of aspect can make a difference.
The mode where you get to unlock new players and new courts, is World Tournament. This is pretty self-explanatory. Keep winning and get some cash and new courts & players start flooding in. This is a one-player mode, but you can have teammates control the other players with additional controllers or mutli-tap. Lord of the Court is where you as a team defend your home court against all challengers.
Pick up is the only mode that you can go against another live player or just the CPU.
The options are pretty easy to navigate and set the various modes, rules, etc.
Activision got a huge bevy of hip-hop tunes to set the mood for the games and create more atmosphere. The sound effects for this are really excellent and even the metallic swish of the chain hoops is there. The only weak area is in the trash talking. There is not a lot of variety in the clips, so some seem to get used way too much. Also, sometimes the trash talk wont fit the situation too well.
All in all, this is a simple, yet very rich game that you can have a lot of fun with. Early on, there will be frustration with getting used to the play and getting back on defense after scoring, but the learning curve is pretty low, especially if youre used to basketball games on the PS2.
OUR PLEDGE: We promise that we have fully played 'Street Hoops' before writing this review. The scores given above are our honest opinion and were not influenced in any way by the manufacturer or distributor of the game.
This review was written by Tom Downey © Absolute PlayStation
Click here to view our 6 Street Hoops in-game screenshot slideshow
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