NBA Ballers: Phenom PlayStation 2

  • Publisher: Midway
  • Release Date: Apr 5, 2006

Mixed or average reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 19
  2. Negative: 1 out of 19
Buy On
  1. Phenom has also added a two-on-two mode and a free-roaming story mode to its repertoire, but underneath those additions is a game design that hasn't changed much and a graphics engine that is beginning to show its age.
  2. Two-on-two mode is hampered by poor AI, but it's good for a quick pickup game if you can get a couple simians with opposable thumbs to join in.
  3. For the die-hard hoops fans this is of interest, mostly for the story aspect. The gameplay can be a bit… awkward at times, but veteran players of basketball games shouldn’t have much of a problem.
  4. For my money I want a completely overhauled game and not something that feels nuked. Don't give me some cheesy unlockables and a few new modes and call it a new game. This isn't a new game. It's like an expansion pack for a PC game.
  5. 70
    If you like a little more meat to your basketball games, this is surely a great game with plenty to keep you occupied both online and off, but when pit head-to-head against a full field of competitors, what Phenom offers is different, but not quite in a league of its own.
  6. 70
    Whether you are looking for the story driven single-player or simply want to fool around with the multi-player this game will satisfy your hunger for over-the-top style street ball.
  7. Even the online mode feels lacking, supporting only one-on-one matches using either your custom character or an unlocked NBA star, rather than the two-on-two match ups available offline.
  8. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    Too bad it doesn't quite execute in the clutch though. [May 2006, p.98]
  9. PSM Magazine
    At the end of the day, Phenom is essentially a beefed-up NBA Jam: the one-on-one gameplay isn't significantly deeper than that of the original Ballers, and the "extras"--the open world and custimizable lifestyle--aren't really anything we haven't seen before, even in other genres. [May 2006, p.80]
  10. 70
    Don't buy it expecting a complete remodel -- it's just a fresh coat of paint on an old frame.
  11. 60
    But with so many better looking and better playing b-ball games available, it's tough to recommend NBA Ballers: Phenom for anything beyond a kitschy weekend rental or a late night study break.
  12. 60
    If you liked the original, or are intrigued at the notion of dominating the one-on-one world, there's ample reason to pick this one up.
  13. I just hope both companies come up with something big when making the transition to next-gen, as this genre needs a shot in the arm…but please no performance enhancing substances.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 8 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Mark
    Mar 29, 2006
    The gameplay still shines in this second installment, with all kinds of new *bling* added, such more customizeable create-a-player parts, moreThe gameplay still shines in this second installment, with all kinds of new *bling* added, such more customizeable create-a-player parts, more nba players and legends, a very surprisingly amusing story mode, and the biggie - 2v2 ballers style :) Rags-to-riches is still as unique as ever. Graphics are great for this gen. Love the little added mini-game distractions and the roaming mini worlds! Full Review »