In a case of both good and bad news, EA Sports President Peter Moore has announced today (via his blog
) two key bits of info for Xbox 360 NBA fans.
First, the good news: NBA Jam will be getting its own standalone release on the 360. When it was originally confirmed
back in July, EA announced that the only
way to get the game would be to pick up NBA Elite 11, with a one-time use download code for Jam included in the box.
While no substantial information has been revealed yet (like whether it'll be a retail or XBLA game, a release date or a price), Moore stated that EA are "going to ship NBA JAM as a standalone product on the Xbox360 in time for the holidays."
The second bit of good news: EA will continue to offer free roster updates for NBA LIVE 10
throughout the 2010-11 season, including all players and Dynamic DNA updates, free of charge.
Now the bad news: the reason that Jam is getting a standalone release is because NBA Elite 11 has been delayed until next year. Previously scheduled for release in October, it seems bad feedback from the recently-released demo has encouraged EA to work on the game some more before shipping it. Which is actually good news, in a way.
Moore summed up the decision best:
We are creating a game that will introduce several breakthrough features that have been missing from the basketball genre. Unfortunately, NBA ELITE 11 is not yet ready and we have made a decision to delay next month’s launch. We are going to keep working until we’re certain we can deliver a breakthrough basketball experience.
As with all of our titles, we continue to evaluate and improve the code right up until launch. Feedback from consumers is a very important part of the process . NBA ELITE had the benefit of play-testing, a demo and a lot of our own research. All that feedback revealed some concerns about gameplay polish, so we’ve listened to your feedback, and made a judgment that the game would benefit from more time in development.
Personally, I'm not much of a sports fan, but I do enjoy arcade-style sports games like NBA Jam, so this news is pretty awesome! And for fans of the more authentic NBA game experience, just know that the delay will be worth it, and that the game will no doubt hugely benefit from the additional development time. Good news for all gamers!