Electronic Arts released a statement yesterday announcing the digital title NBA Jam: On Fire Edition for this October on XBLA and PSN. They also shoehorned in the announcement that the company will not be releasing another simulation style basketball game until 2012. This revelation was thrown in the very last paragraph of the press release, as the publisher clearly wants to downplay the cancellation of a realistic NBA game for the second year in a row (this time before it was ever officially announced). Fans will recall that the 2011 iteration was delayed to provide some time to add more polish before eventually being canceled outright due to quality concerns.
As planned, our next NBA simulation title is in development at our Tiburon Studio in Orlando,” said Peter Moore, President, EA SPORTS. “We have top talent on the game, and we’re giving the new development team time to deliver a superior experience. We’re making great strides and looking forward to launching a new game next year.
Tiburon seems to be having trouble developing a new NBA game that EA feels can compete with the 2K series, so the company has decided not to release anything rather than put out a poor product and sully their image. I applaud this move, which is surely costing EA quite a few dollars, and hope other companies follow suit in waiting until the game is ready rather than continuing with the annualized sequel approach regardless.
In the interim, EA hopes that a handful of new features for their Jam franchise will keep basketball fans satisfied. EA Sports will be upgrading the AI to the “Real AI” used in the Fight Night series. This AI has the ability to learn your tendencies and change its tactics accordingly. There will also be some new elements to the multiplayer portion of the game. Jam Arena is a new online competitive mode that can be tackled solo or in cooperative mode. The game will also feature a brand new set of online co-op challenges in a mode called Road Trip. Other additions include the ability to swap in players on the fly, updated rosters and animations and more unlockables.
Source: Electronic Arts
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