More NBA Live ‘Guaranteed’ Despite Series’ Struggles and Delay
EA Sports intends on releasing at lease two more annual entries of the NBA Live franchise despite the downward spiral of events that have plagued the franchise for the past few years.
With just eight days left until the release of NBA Live 15, longtime series executive producer Sean O'Brien spoke with Polygon about the franchise's current state. For over 20 years, NBA Live has been the frontline basketball video game -- it was what the Madden game series is to football. Recently, 2K Sports' NBA 2K series has taken most of its spotlight. In 2010, the series was rebranded to become NBA Elite, and it was cancelled. NBA Live 11, 12 and 13 never happened. While the series returned with NBA Live 14 last year, there was no debating that NBA 2K14 was the superior b-ball game. Earlier this year, NBA Live 15 was delayed from Oct. 7 to Oct. 28. Ironically, NBA 2K15 debuted on Oct. 7, meaning both competing NBA games were originally set to launch head-to-head next to one another.
When asked about how much NBA Live 15 improved over last year's iteration, O'Brien raised his hand to show the difference. O'Brien then raised another hand higher, adding that NBA Live 16 would rest up there. When prompted about a guarantee there would even be an NBA Live 16, O'Brien didn't hesitate. "Guaranteed. We've already started development on [NBA Live] 16," O'Brien said. "We're staffing up. We're actually increasing investment on what 16--and 17--look like."
NBA Live 15 will be launching exclusively for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One next week. Whether we'll be talking about NBA Live 16's launch this same time next year remains to be seen. At least the development team is confident, even if fans waiting for this year's game are skeptical of its chances.