NBA 2K21’s hub world, “The Neighborhood” will expand into “The City” on its PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, adding driveway basketball, quest-giving NPCs, and four factions to its slate of lifestyle and off-the-court features.
NBA 2K developer Visual Concepts outlined the enhancements and upgrades in a blog post Wednesday morning, noting that the series’ first hub world “The Park” was introduced in the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One launch version of NBA 2K14.
Newcomers will start civic life in “Rookieville,” an onboarding area where they have to check off several activities before the rest of the city unlocks. In The City, players can align with four factions, North, South, East, and West, and play basketball on a new Warehouse Court in each area, which delivers more player progression features to their characters.
Each faction will be represented by a “Mayor,” who is hand-picked by Visual Concepts from among the NBA 2K community. (The blog post says “they will be some of the biggest names,” and “you know all of them.”) These Mayors will serve six-week terms, with NBA 2K players at large voting by in-game poll. Mayors set the aesthetic tone for each area, including such things as court and uniform designs.
As for the driveway hoops, that is part of a walking-while-balling activity change that encourages folks to explore the area, basketball in hand. Garage hoops will be available around the city, where users can stroll up and compete in HORSE and other half-court games of up to three on a side. NPCs and their quests will rotate every 4 to 6 weeks, offering things like flashier dribble moves for completing them.
There is a ton more detail about life in The City in today’s blog post. The high-level view: Visual Concepts is adding more diversions and curiosities to keep folks engaged with the game in ways other than stepping on a court in your career, or going into a matchmaking lobby.
NBA 2K21 launches for PlayStation 5 on Nov. 12, and Xbox Series X and Series S on Nov. 10. The next-gen versions of the game will deliver a plethora of sophisticated gameplay upgrades, as well as give WNBA players a career mode for the first time.