NBA 2K22 new trailers reveal new gameplay features and mechanics

2K Sports released a new gameplay trailer for the upcoming NBA 2K22, while details were shared about the changes.


2K Games has received mixed reactions to its recent NBA 2K entries over the past couple of years. But the upcoming NBA 2K22 may be finally addressing the feedback that players have been sharing, and include massive improvements to overall gameplay.

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Michael Jordan in NBA 2K22. (Images: 2K Games/NBA)

Check out the details revealed about the newest NBA 2K game arriving this September with the release of two new trailers, including specifics shared by the game developers.

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NBA 2K22 gameplay reveal trailer

The new trailer shows off the graphical improvements of the NBA 2K series, showcasing player likenesses and texture work, as well as the motion capture animation. This is probably the most fluid basketball simulation for next-gen gaming consoles. Character facial sculpting for the player models, including their facial expressions, are quite accurate.

The trailer presented both the current roster of NBA superstars such as Tim Curry and LeBron James, while also providing brief shots of the legendary player rosters, including Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, and the late Kobe Bryant, among others.

Further into the trailer, the WNBA representation is given its due attention. NBA 2K22 boasts the addition of the women’s league in the main game. And the animation and gameplay shown is just as good as for the male dominated NBA. This is a huge stride with inclusion and providing a wider appeal to the player base.

A look at the changes to NBA 2K22

While the NBA 2K22 trailer displayed the graphical improvements, information of the changes to the game itself can be found elsewhere.

Erick Boenisch, executive producer at Visual Concepts elaborated the specifics the changes being made to the gameplay mechanics. For instance, changes to to the blocking and shot contest features on NBA 2K22:

The shot contest and blocking systems were completely rebuilt, leading to several new snatch blocks and volleyball spikes that never happened before.

Some changes were also made with the removal of problematic effects under the hood with regard to shot contests:

The shot contest rewrite removed the “ghost contests” that many complained about, and this year, being out of position or not getting a hand in the shooter’s face will lead to some easy buckets for the offense. On the other hand, properly crowding shooters with good contests will result in plenty of bricks and airballs, as they should.

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NBA 2K22 will update mechanics, including dribbling, post, shooting, and other gameplay features.

Defensive maneuvers are not the only aspect of the NBA 2K mechanics that are changing. Dribbling and shooting in the game are also updated. As Boenisch continued:

This year, the goal was to marry the Basic Size-ups and Signature Size-ups together and give each player a unique feel and rhythm when sizing up, while also giving the gamer complete control over how the series plays out.

As far as shooting is concerned, NBA 2K22 will update the shot meter to accommodate quality shots and being heavily defended:

Shooting has undergone many changes for NBA 2K22. There’s a new shot meter with a dynamically resizing make window. This window will expand when you’re taking high-quality shots with good shooters, but will shrink when heavily contested, shooting with a low-rated shooter, or fatigued.

The intention with these updates to shooting mechanics is to have a broader range of skill levels, letting players of lower skill be able to keep up, while still giving more dedicated players have an advantage:

The major emphasis for shooting success this year is Shot IQ. The teams that work for open looks and take smart shots are going to see much more success than the teams that force up bad shots. We’ve heavily focus-group tested the new shooting mechanics with players of all skill levels and believe this is the best that shooting has ever felt in NBA 2K.

More information and details can be found at the 2K report at nba.2k.com and the official Playstation blog.

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NBA 2K22 MyTeam trailer

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Customizations will include personalized player jerseys and shoes (some of which need to be unlocked).

The other trailer released recently focuses more on NBA 2K22’s MyTeam features. This trailer gives snippets on constructing your own Dream Teams, including drafts and customizations. Seasons are updated every six weeks, Triple Threat mechanics, and minutiae of team creations, down to the card collections, team jerseys, and even shoe selections, which the players can unlock upon getting to level 40.

One thing the NBA 2K22 trailers did not reveal as of yet are the changes to the MyCareer mode with the open-world and sandbox framework to the story mode. With the reported quest-style in developing players, the enhanced MyCareer gameplay has piqued the interest of players who like the simulation and roleplaying aspects. But that might be the focus on a later trailer before the game launches.

Will these changes be able to address the previous criticisms that the 2K series of NBA games have received these past entries? They do look promising, with significant updates to the core gameplay and accessibility for newer players while still giving veterans some elbow room.

NBA 2K22 is dunking its way to Epic Games, Steam, and 2K Games stores for the Microsoft Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch, Sony Playstation 4 and Playstation 5, and on Windows PC platforms this September 10, 2021. Pre-orders of the standard and deluxe editions for digital and physical release with bonus content are being offered until September 9.

Geoff Borgonia
Geoffrey "Borgy" Borgonia is a veteran writer, artist, journalist, gamer, and entrepreneur based in the Philippines. When not contributing to some of the top pop culture sites on the planet, he spends the rest of his time running his business, practicing martial arts, working on and developing books, comics, and games. In his man-cave, his only luxury is sleep. Borgy on Linkedin.