How To Improve NBA 2K's MyGM Mode

Many NBA 2K17 fans prefer MyLeague to MyGM, so what can 2K do to improve on their longest-running current-gen mode?

Welcome to basketball season.

To a majority of NBA fans, Christmas day is the 'true' start of basketball season -- though the season has been going on for two months -- because we already have a good idea of our contenders, our pretenders, and the what started off as a crawl essentially becomes a race to the finish

As is expected with the Christmas season, a popular game like NBA 2K17 will be under plenty of X-mas trees this year. But, while players will immediately hop into MyLeague and MyCareer, don't expect too many to hop on the MyGM train.

While MyLeague is more of a focus on the NBA itself -- total customization, 30-team control, etc -- MyGM is more about being a general manager. The truth is, this mode should be enjoyable in year four of MyGM, but even simming through for a couple of test runs felt like a major chore.

I understand that this is supposed to be a general manager simulator, so people are going to come into your office every day; however, I don't see the appeal in how 2K managed this to where I'd rather be doing anything else.

Today, let's look at some fixes and additions that we'd like to see incorporated in NBA 2K17's MyGM mode to make it more palatable to the average (or even hardcore) player. 

Revised Goals

Simply put, goals are how you know what needs to be done. As soon as you start MyGM, your owner -- who will have their own unique personality and wants -- will give you goals that range from winning a certain amount of games to keeping the team morale above a certain number.

I'll give 2K credit here because the varying goal system is great, but I want more. With how much of a role analytics and advanced stats play a role in the NBA (or all of sports, for that matter), I'd love to have goals given -- whether by an owner or someone else in the front office -- pertaining to advanced stats.

Casual fans may get turned away by "math and super stats," but analytics are just so important to today's game. This could also be a feature that gets turned off, but as a sports nerd, I want some harder goals.

Also, I wouldn't mind a feature where I could sit down with a player -- since I did the Rockets for my main sim, let's say Ryan Anderson -- and work out some season goals with him. Whether it's something simple like "shoot over 45 percent" or "finish in the top three on the team in win shares," give us some more goals other than "I want to win X games" or "I want a bigger role."

Contractual Control

In defense of MyGM, this is also a problem with MyLeague, so this is more of a "2K issue." First off, we need a return of the D-League and ten-day contracts, especially given that players like Seth Curry and Tim Fraizer -- both of whom were D-League All-Stars just two years ago -- are in the process of cementing themselves as NBA mainstays thanks to the ten-day deal that came after development.

A big part of this is licensing and the D-League being willing to appear in NBA 2K18, but why wouldn't they? It's more money all around!

Sticking with ten-day contracts, being a general manager should mean the ability to do more unique contracts, including adding things such as clauses and incentives. Given that we live in a time in the sports world where players like Kevin Durant and Yoenis Cespedes are signing contracts that allow them to opt-out after a year, adding this to NBA 2K18 might be an interesting way to handle the offseason

During a run I did with the Chicago Bulls, I brought Yi Jianlian in as a free agent during the season for some negotiations. Currently, the screen looks like this:

Why not add an incentive that pays Jianlian more money if he makes a certain number of his shots? How about an opt-out clause to that deal if he wants to pursue other interests? I'll talk more about other options for contract talk in a bit, so keep this on your mind.

Improved Trade Logic/Control

I get it, MyGM means I'm only supposed to control my team, but there needs to be an option that lets me approve or deny the CPU's trades. I don't want to see Tony Parker and LaMarcus Aldridge getting dealt to the Brooklyn Nets for Brook Lopez and Anthony Bennett, nor do I want to see the Celtics dealing Isaiah Thomas for a couple of veterans with big contracts that Boston doesn't need.

Free agency? Fine, that I can live with because there are some major surprises every year. But to give us a true general manager experience, then the trade logic needs to be improved majorly and we need to be able to approve or decline CPU trades. 

Some MyGM fans may argue, "Well, that takes you out of the experience as a general manager," but if you're playing for realism, do you really want to see a trade where the Lakers deal Brandon Ingram and Julius Randle for Greg Monroe and Matthew Dellavadova? Maybe you do want to see those crazy trades, but for the rest of us, it's a major turnoff. 

Just give us the option to manage CPU trades, 2K. Please?

Make Work Pay Off

You know what, I get it. Some people don't have all of the time in the world to grind their guy up so they just want to buy their way to the top. 

Truth be told, I'd rather everything in MyGM be dependent on your level and your "respect" when it comes to pitches and interactions, not how much VC you have. Why is a superstar going to easily trust you based on a simple 'promise' you make with VC?

The more good you do as a general manager should determine your interactions with players and other general managers. I can't say it any easier than that. Contacting the Warriors, offering some players in the high 70s to low 80s, and being able to acquire Draymond Green just by way of a "Jedi Mind Trick" is ridiculous.

Maybe I'm just being a purist and anti-fun. Maybe I like it when my games present me with a challenge. But please, 2K, enough of letting us buy our way to the top through daddy's credit card and VC. 

Make MyGM A Proper GM Sim

Honestly, this is what 2K should have probably done once they introduced the concept of MyLeague for NBA 2K15. With how well text-sims like Out Of The Park have done in recent years by focusing on the business side of things rather than the actual gameplay, NBA 2K should have done the same with MyGM.

Now, I'm not saying to entirely forgo the gameplay, but I am saying that the gameplay should take a backseat to the things that really make MyGM 'MyGM.' In a way, they did by putting that bigger emphasis on morale, meetings, and more.

The problem is that the mode is just so poorly executed that if this is what being a general manager is like, I think I'd rather just be the lowest guy on the food chain. 

Other Stuff and Things:

2K, add these things ... please! 

  • Introduce international ball and the threat of players leaving, as well as players coming back. 
  • Contract buyouts. 
  • CPU trying harder to keep 'icons' and not let them slip through free agency. Dirk Nowitzki could leave the Mavericks, but we're talking about an organization not even trying to keep the greatest player in history.
  • Draft interviews/a live draft war room. 
  • Improved free agency system during the offseason, including more desires from the player and an ability to actually talk with them.

What do you want to see added to NBA 2K's MyGM mode? Make sure to let us know in the comment section below!



Published Dec. 23rd 2016

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