Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 26
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 26
  3. Negative: 0 out of 26
  1. The all-new Control Stick system highlights this year's gameplay improvements, allowing more precise ball handling through the Right-analog stick. [Dec 2012, p.82]
  2. Oct 22, 2012
    95
    Without a doubt, one of the best sports games of the year.
  3. 95
    This game is massive. It will easily keep even the most hardened player busy until next season. Suffice to say, this is the new bar that any future basketball title is going to be gauged against.
  4. Oct 23, 2012
    93
    A noticeable step-up in class from 2K12, especially on court and in the My Career mode. Only poor navigation spoils an otherwise incredible sport sim. [Dec 2012, p.100]
  5. This year it isn't just about your basketball skills, it's also about how popular you can become. A Twitter feed will let you know what fans are saying about your last game and you can capture some hearts by showing up at charity events. [November 2012, p.74]
  6. Oct 17, 2012
    92
    NBA 2K13 again delivers by far the best presentation of all sports games. The realistic animations let you think one could really see a live NBA game. The commentators and the great audience are also a big part of the game's atmosphere. The change from the shot-stick to a dribble- and shot-stick is amazing and gives the player the chance to play like a real NBA pro. 2K Games and Visual Concepts again deliver the sports game of the year.
  7. Sep 28, 2012
    91
    Even when left with a clear, unobstructed path to the basket, 2K13 throws down a monster jam with this year's edition – probably the last one developed solely for this generation of consoles.
  8. Controls have been upgraded to include a more intuitive feel, with the right stick now used for ball control as well as shooting. The old button controls are still applicable, it just depends if you want to keep up with the times, as well as how much flare you want to add to your floor game. [December 2012, p80]
  9. Nov 7, 2012
    90
    Aside from the confusing user interface and the quite ridiculous Jay-Z branding, there are no failures in NBA 2K13. Sure it's not very welcoming to new players and takes a while to get in to, but there is no doubt that EA hesitates to bring out a basketball game of their own when this simply beautiful, realistic and deep simulation of basketball is the competition.
  10. Oct 28, 2012
    90
    NBA 2K13 is the unrivaled (literally!) champion of NBA action despite some struggles with implementing a user friendly interface. Jump right in with you own player or run the court with any of the dozens of legends included.
  11. Oct 25, 2012
    90
    True to the series, NBA 2K13 is even better, in terms of production value, content, gameplay, all the while managing to gain in accessibility. It also boasts a new career mode and the Ultimate Team mode. It's probably the best sport simulation ever.
  12. Oct 24, 2012
    90
    Despite introduction of micro-transactions and the lack of a proper tutorial NBA 2K13 is a must-have for every basketball fan. [12/2012, p.66]
  13. Oct 22, 2012
    90
    NBA 2K13 proves that soccer games are not the only ones nearing perfection. This game offers a great virtual basketball experience, with smooth controls, a strong graphical presentation and an enormous amount of content.
  14. Oct 16, 2012
    90
    Even though authenticity-wise Visual Concepts seems to have maxed out this console generation a couple of games ago and big new additions are scarce, NBA 2K13 sits firmly amongst my favorite games this year. I'm excited to see the makers shed the shackles of the old consoles and lead the way into the new generation next season.
  15. Oct 12, 2012
    90
    You couldn't get closer to the real game if you had Spike Lee's seats at MSG. The labyrinthine interface, lack of tutorials, and obnoxious Jay-Z production form a barrier when first warming up to the game, but the enhanced right-stick controls, depth, and sheer realism of everything will hook you after logging a couple of hours on the hardwood.
  16. Oct 12, 2012
    90
    As the years go on, NBA 2K remains the best basket-ball game in the video game industry. With its partnership with Jay-Z as an executive producer, NBA 2K13 is able to offer a lot of new gameplay features and new intuitive game controls that make us think we are facing a different game, compared to previous episodes.
  17. 90
    A terrific recreation of the sport, where everything comes together brilliantly. The new controls are sharp, and you'll find yourself wanting to play just one more game in order to master a certain drible or improve your personal score record.
  18. 90
    With no real competition in the NBA video game arena, 2K Sports could have phoned this one in and still dribbled away with a boat load of cash. Instead, they took a well designed NBA 2K12 and polished it up, threw in a few more needed additions, added some bells and whistles, and finished what could possibly be the Sports Game of the Year.
  19. Oct 10, 2012
    89
    Once you get used to the new controls it is hard to get away from this excellent, incredibly intensive basketball experience.
  20. Nov 27, 2012
    88
    Physical, fast and brutal. [Issue#224, p.82]
  21. Oct 9, 2012
    88
    NBA 2K13 is another high quality entry into a franchise that continues to find ways to improve and get fans excited from year to year.
  22. Oct 3, 2012
    88
    Niggling complaints aside, NBA 2K13 puts in another solid performance with its unrivaled broadcast-style presentation, improved online experience, and the best single-player mode in sports. None of its new features revolutionize sports simulations, and cutting out the historical mode was a poor decision, but it's still a polished experience NBA fans should enjoy.
User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 84 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 22
  2. Negative: 5 out of 22
  1. Oct 3, 2012
    10
    NBA 2K. Where amazing happens. Even online this year. Yes, Ladies and Gentleman, the greatest sports game ever made has the best online netcode the series has ever had in this years game. Finally. Finding matches is a breeze, lag is virtually non existent, and the experience is grand. The remarkably fluid gameplay (grabbing a rebound and taking off with Lebron happens instantaneously and flows like water, no canned animations, so life-like and real), impeccable commentary, and insanely good soundtrack immerse you into the game in ways that cannot be explained. Jay-Z's involvement is felt the moment the game boots up when and incredibly video compiling performance footage (of one of the greatest and most iconic songs of all time 'Public Service Announcement) from Jay-Z's concert with in game 2K footage is so sick. I watch every single time I boot the game up. And I probably always will. I love that track. But the truly amazing thing in this year's game to me, is the inclusion of Signature Skills. Which I think is laying the foundation for another revolution by 2K in the sports video game genre. There are like 50 Sig Skills. Players can possess multiple and the skills have varying ways to effect gameplay. For instance, Kobe, DWade, Durant have a Sig Skill called The Closer. In the 4th quarter, they get a ratings boost across the board and you can literally feel there intensity level go up in the final minutes. Its incredible. Lebron's iconic Chase Down Blocker is one of his Sig Skills and you can see him speed up to reach a fast breaking opponent to get the block. It's uncanny. Others include, Hustle Man, which gives the entire team and energy boost which someone with the skill makes hustle plays. Skills that give percentage boosts or drops depending on situation that can effect gameplay in ways only the deepest players will respect and love equally. For anyone who is a die hard b-ball fan and gamer this is an incredibly deep gameplay mechanic that can only get better over the years once its expanded on. The guys over at 2K Sports are collective enclave of brilliant minds and have the utmost respect of this gamer. This game is the holy grail of Sports Gaming. It gets no better. This is my Game of the Year. Full Review »
  2. Oct 12, 2012
    6
    This is better than 2K12 but this has disappointed me almost as much.

    I have been a fan of 2K games since 2K7 and I have found that the
    games have improved every year up until 2K12 which was my least favorite in the series, I thought the gameplay was close to terrible and the removal of crew game and a few other modes ridiculous. I think of myself as a gamer, I also play amateur basketball and I'm a huge NBA fan, anyway let's get on with my review of 2K13.

    The things I like about the game are the additions of the Allstar Weekend which is suprisingly good and the dunk contest was miles better than I expected. I also like the VC points system which means every game you play including against friends allows you to earn points which are used for a mode called MyTeam which is simlar to Ultimate team in Fifa, It is not as good as Ultimate team but is a great addtion to the 2K series. I like the new shot stick and signature skills which make the in game experience a fluid and less generic.

    Things I don't like about the game, the first thing I don't like is the rebouding which a lot of people have complained about, basically players have a tendency to just gaze at the ball and watch it go out of bounds, also since when could 6'0 PG's beat Dwight Howard to a rebound. Anyway they are releasing an update for this which they always seem to do, I don't understand why don't they give the game to us when it's finished, personally I'd rather wait. Also the automatic game sliders are unrealistic as usual and after a roster update there are players they forgot to add to teams and players that are still still in the Free Agent pool that have retired or gone overseas.

    The last major thing I dislike is the soundtrack, the news that Jay Z was going to do the soundtrack seemed like great news at first. What we get is Kayne West - Amazing which I personally don't like and it was on NBA 2K10, about 3 or 4 tracks I like and then the rest bored me after listening to them once or twice, there isn't much tracks and I thought someone like Jay Z had better taste in Hip Hop.

    I would say get this game If you can't wait until next year as it will keep you entertained but being a huge basketball fan I feel let down, also the players ratings are terrible too. I think people who know about basketball should be hired and features like wingspan, leg length and more realistic customizaton.

    2K9 - 80/100
    2K10 - 84/100
    2K11 - 92/100
    2K12 - 67/100
    2K13 - 83/100
    Full Review »
  3. Oct 4, 2012
    5
    NBA 2K had some good tradition, but this time it just goes down. Jay Z might have deep Basketball knowledge, but that doesn't mean that he can be a good managing director. User interface is really really bad (it never was the best in series, especially if we compare it to Fifa 13 or Football Manager). Each screen has very few menus which keeps you lost, the loading screens gets you nuts and even the start of the game pushes you to fill a lot of information before you can play. Sorry I'm not here to fill my CV but to play basketball. One of the new features is that when you create your player you can pay credits and buy Adidas clothes, shoes and various other accessories. The more matches you play, the best for you to earn credits. That reminds me of Fifa 13 tactic with the Shop. Basically Konami started it with PES, and all the others followed.

    In terms ot gameplay, NBA 2K13 does well. It has realistic defending (manual to be honest), shoots must have accuracy in jumping and counter-attacks by pressing the buttons corresponding to players are a good way to score. All rules are strictly applied like 3-second violation under the basket so pure realism here.

    But in terms ot graphics NBA 2k13 gets a merely 7/10. Textures have a bad design, dynamic lighting doesn't even exist, physics might seem ok, but anti-aliasing is awful. Moreover, career mode gets boring due to the number of questions asked which need reply (and can't be avoid) among with events which can't be skipped, like the Draft event.

    About Online, good news is that you can play without lag (especially one on one) with the well known online modes. That's one of the biggest tweaks this year. But in overall, NBA 2K13 fails to fullfil the needs of an experienced basketball players. It's more than an overall change to the "Jay Z pattern" then a serious change to the series.
    Full Review »