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A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn about the sport of basketball and the value of exercising and teamwork. They are exposed to the rules, strategies, and terminology related to basketball, and they only win by working together as a team. NBA Live 14 teaches the basics of basketball and a little about team sports.
The game is a simulated portrayal of the NBA, featuring all the league's teams and players. The sport is the focus, and it's presented in a fun, positive light.
Positive Role Models
The game features popular superstars from the NBA, including LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and more.
Ease of Play
Fans of basketball video games such as NBA 2K14 should find the controls familiar, but the game doesn't really offer much instruction other than simple guides for reviewing the controls displayed on loading screens. There's no tutorial, either.
Products & Purchases
Advertising is confined to spots in the arena where sports fans would normally see them, such as along the court. Most of the ads are by the NBA, while ESPN anchors the "broadcast" coverage featured during games.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that NBA Live 14 is a family-friendly simulation of the National Basketball Association. The game is a real-world depiction of pro basketball, as players compete to win a championship as a team or guide an individual athlete toward a superstar career. Aside from some advertizing in the stadiums, parents biggest concern will be the open chat available when kids are playing online; families can avoid exploring this option.
Is It Any Good?
NBA LIVE 14 is a difficult game to recommend, especially when the more stellar NBA 2K14 is available. Although developers smartly incorporate real-world NBA moments through mini-games, it's the on-court action that suffers most. Players are stiff, moving awkwardly around the court. There's an overall lack of natural body movement, whether a player is shooting, rebounding, or running a fast break. Certain moves such as the hop step are easy to exploit for scoring easy baskets. If you must buy a pro hoops game, consider NBA 2K14 instead; NBA Live 14 requires a lot more practice time.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.