Metascore
68

Mixed or average reviews - based on 18 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
  1. May 11, 2017
    80
    If you dig arcade basketball then NBA Playgrounds is a great addition to the genre. Ballers of all skill levels can find something to love in its enjoyably cartoony take on the sport although your b-ball career may be over well before you'd expect it to.
  2. Jul 19, 2017
    75
    NBA Playgrounds is not the new NBA Jam replacement. It adds just enough complication to the basic mechanics so it isn't a game that anyone can pick up and play without experiencing one or two matches. The game is fun once you get used to the quirks, and even if the roster unlocking process isn't optimal, it ensures you'll have a reason to keep coming back. For arcade sports fans, NBA Playgrounds is worth a look.
  3. May 23, 2017
    73
    The presentation won’t wow you, but it gets the job done, especially given that it’s made by an indie developer who’s never done a sports game and it’s priced at $20. The price is worth pointing out because this isn’t a AAA game, but it does fill a niche that has been needing some attention since NBA Jam a few years ago. 2K has clearly dominated and done an amazing job with NBA simulation, but if you’re like me, when it comes to sports and racing games, you always want a go-to arcade type to enjoy in addition or instead of the sims. NBA Playgrounds does alright for itself coming off the bench, hopefully we see Saber continue to refine this and perhaps we’ll see some kind of semi-annualized franchise here that gets progressively better.
  4. May 13, 2017
    72
    NBA Playgrounds is not perfect, at this moment the game could offer us a deep variety of game modes and there are some mechanics like precision in perfect shots that are difficult to understand. On the other side, is a very fun experience when you are challenging other player on your own platform or in the competitive online matches.
  5. May 23, 2017
    70
    NBA Playgrounds aims at nostalgia and almost succeeds. It lacks content, for one, and while it's easy to learn, it's perhaps a little too hard to master. Other than that, however, there's no reason to leave this one at the roadside.
  6. 70
    NBA Playgrounds is fun, frantic and friendly. The scoring system can seem a little unbalanced and there are some curious omissions that stick out in an otherwise well-realised product. It’s thin on modes and online multiplayer seems somewhat half-baked but it feels fundamentally enjoyable. There’s a nice sense of progression as you acquire new cards and improve existing ones. If you fancy a new jam, this will provide.
  7. May 15, 2017
    70
    All gripes aside, I’ve had less fun with games that were full price. This is a 2-on-2 arcade basketball game with some replay value for $20. NBA Playgrounds attracts you on the surface but brings a different yet inconsistent experience to the table that somehow still manages to be fun. Leveling up player cards and playing as legends while landing some awesome dunks are the main attractions. There’s enough nostalgia combined with an entertaining aesthetic to make NBA Playgrounds worth a look for basketball fans.
  8. May 12, 2017
    70
    Despite of having some gameplay issues, NBA Playgrounds is a very entertaining and funny game that will make us play for hours thanks to its 2 vs. 2 matches.
  9. May 12, 2017
    70
    NBA Playgrounds may not revolutionize arcade basketball, but it’s a welcome newcomer. If Saber Interactive tightens its gameplay shortcomings and introduces more ways to play, the game could have a healthy run as an alternative for those who don't want the heavy investment of a sports sim.
  10. May 11, 2017
    70
    NBA Playgrounds is a good modern take on the old-school arcade basketball game genre. It brings enough new ideas to the court to keep things feeling fresh, but at heart, it still retains the charm and accessibility that made NBA Jam such a beloved franchise. There are a few kicks with the shooting mechanics and rebounding is less than ideal, but the gameplay is strong enough in other areas to ensure it's still an overall slam dunk.
  11. 70
    From the shockingly feature poor online play to a single-player campaign that can be completed in a few hours, there just isn’t enough content to support the gameplay. It’s exciting to think about what a potential sequel could offer, but what’s currently being sold is a good, but definitely not great, arcade game that doesn’t manage to outdo its fantastic predecessors.
  12. May 14, 2017
    68
    Quotation forthcoming.
  13. May 22, 2017
    65
    On the one hand, it can be a genuinely fun game of digital basketball with cool animations and many playable characters to choose from, and the addition of local multiplayer is a welcome feature. On the other hand, however, many of the game’s mechanics simply don’t work as they should and the lack of creative modes is disappointing. Maybe in the future, with some tweaks and new content, NBA Playgrounds can blossom into something great, but for now, it doesn’t quite hit the mark.
  14. Jun 1, 2017
    60
    The best analogy for NBA Playgrounds is that it’s like a leaky ship. The exterior, with its charm and aesthetically pleasing look, hides an interior rife with small missteps and annoyances.
  15. May 18, 2017
    60
    NBA Playgrounds is an NBA-Jam-version wannabe. It is not as intense as the basketball classic, not as agile, not as brilliant, but it is a nice appetizer for the ballers out there.
  16. May 15, 2017
    60
    NBA Playgrounds scratches that arcade basketball itch we’ve had since NBA Jam. The gameplay and progression are simple and fun to mess around with but unbalanced power-ups and a shallow online multiplayer offering keep it from being as consistently fun as the classics.
  17. May 12, 2017
    60
    At first, NBA Playgrounds may seem like a wonderful title, but at the end of the day it's an unfinished product. Fun and engaging to play, it's the perfect filler for a night with friends, but there's not much else.
  18. May 12, 2017
    60
    With proper support NBA Playgrounds could become a great series in the future. It's just not quite there in this, its rookie season.
User Score
6.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 31 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 31
  2. Negative: 9 out of 31
  1. Aug 26, 2017
    9
    Fun, fun, FUN! A game that doesn't take itself seriously and it can offer you hours of entertainment. It can be a bit repetitive after aFun, fun, FUN! A game that doesn't take itself seriously and it can offer you hours of entertainment. It can be a bit repetitive after a while, but in general it's a simple game which becomes highly enjoyable if you play it with a friend. Lots of players and I liked that there are many legends like Larry Bird. The graphics are very good. Especially the cartoonish player models are very funny. You should definitly check it out. A game which differs from all the AAA games but it's so much fun. 6.1 user score is just not representative of this title, especially when other games like Fifa and CoD get really high scores while they give you the same product every year. Full Review »
  2. May 21, 2017
    1
    This is a terrible game. I was hoping for something fun like NBA Jam but gameplay is so clunky, players get tired easily, but its just plainThis is a terrible game. I was hoping for something fun like NBA Jam but gameplay is so clunky, players get tired easily, but its just plain boring. I don't see where they get so high reviews. I have bought some games lately and they haven't been very good either but this one has really stolen my money. Full Review »
  3. May 20, 2017
    0
    Shooting is glitched and getting piece of shots do not effect whether go in or not. Meaning there are shots in the game that will go in noShooting is glitched and getting piece of shots do not effect whether go in or not. Meaning there are shots in the game that will go in no matter what even without the power shot and there are plays you play that make every single shot they take. With tremendous disappointment I am telling you the game is broken. Full Review »