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NBA 2K18 Offensive Tendencies, AI Execution & Motion Blog From Da_Czar

NBA 2K18

NBA 2K18 Offensive Tendencies, AI Execution & Motion Blog From Da_Czar

What’s happening 2K Hoop fans? I am Nino Samuel aka Da_Czar and I am an AI producer for NBA 2K18. I am so excited to be able to share a little of what we have in store for you on the offensive AI side of NBA 2K18.

I have the benefit of working with an incredibly talented and dedicated group of producers and engineers. At this point in the year we have put so much into the game that it is honestly difficult to narrow down the best way to relate the impact of our changes to your game-play experience.

I will take you through the 3 key areas of improvement: Tendencies, AI execution and Motion. First, here are a few general improvements I want mention before we jump into the deep end.

Play Calling & Subs

We have moved the selection of plays and substitutions from the right stick back to the buttons. To bring up the dynamic play menu you now press the d-pad to the left. And make your selection by pressing the corresponding button.

From the dynamic play menu use you can toggle over to freelance style and freelance sets with LT/RT.

Your current selection will he highlighted in red

Tapping RT again will take you from freelance style to freelance set selection. This year we added the ability to display the name of the default freelance for the selected team.

To select game-plan items like rebounds, tempo, focus and play through press d-pad right and toggle using LT/RT.

You can call a smart play using the dynamic play menu we showed you earlier by pressing d=pad left and then pressing LB. Or you can simply press d-pad up to access a smart play.

To call player specific plays you tap the LB/L1 button then select the icon over the player you want to call a play for. The first page will display player specific quick plays.

Toggle LT/RT to access plays for the player selected from the team’s playbook. Select the play you want by pressing A, X, Y, or LB.

Press d-pad down to bring up the substitution menu press the button of the player you would like to sub out of the game.

Then select the icon of the player you want to sub in.

TENDENCIES

Almost nothing can enhance a game-play experience vs the AI like clearly defined tendencies. Last year you may recall we deployed a massive tendency updates to signal a new found commitment towards giving the tendencies their proper place in the spot-light.

Traditionally, video game tendencies can sometimes suffer from what I call tendency overlap. This occurs when you have one front-end tendency that may be controlling more than one outcome or situation.

One such tendency in NBA 2K17 would be the shot three tendency. A high value here would make the player more likely to shoot threes. However, just because a player has a high 3 point tendency doesn’t mean that I want them to shoot three’s in every situation. It became clear that these tendencies needed more context.

So with that mindset we took our first step towards situational tendencies.

Spot-ups

Instead of a single three point shot tendency, this year we have situationally specific tendencies. One of the first situations I wanted to cover was spot-ups. This year when a player catches a pass in a spot-up situation we check the following tendencies to determine what this player is likely to do.

–        Spot-up

o   Shot Midrange

o   Shot three

o   Drive

When a player catches the ball in a spot-up situation in NBA 2K18 we first look to determine if the pass was caught in mid-range or three-point territory. Then we compare the shot and drive tendency to determine if this player is likely to drive or shoot in this situation.

The same calculation is made when the ball is caught in a spot-up behind the three point line.

Off-screen

Next we looked at Off-screen situations. Similar to spot-ups we make a determination on what range the player is at when he receives the ball after running off a screen. If it is mid-range we compare the shot mid-range with the off-screen drive tendency to determine the most appropriate course of action. Same logic follows if the catch was made behind the three point line.

–        Off-screen

o   Shot midrange

o   Shot three

o   Drive

Transition

We already account for general shot three tendencies as well as the AI’s desire to shoot from three in a spot-up and off-screen situation. So it only made sense to also account for players that like to pull-up for three in transition.

–        Transition

o   Pull-up Three

This tendency measures how likely a player is to pull up for three off the dribble in transition.

Step-backs driving pull-up

To deliver even more control into our users hands we broke out our step-back tendencies to allow for even greater player differentiation. We can create AI opponents who only step-back from mid-range, the three point line, or both.

–        Step-back

o   Midrange

o   Shot three

We also reduced a value in code that had the AI attempting to reduce long 2 point shots by stepping back to shoot a three. This caused users to become frustrated with the AI stepping back when wide open, and then being too well defended to get a shot off in time.

Contested shots

Additionally, we broke out our contested shots in the same manner so you can feel the difference between the mid-range contested shots that Carmelo might take vs Chef Curry cooking up defenders from deep.

–        Contested

o   Shot midrange

o   Shot three

Driving pull-up

If in a spot-up, off-screen or isolation opportunity and the appropriate Drive tendency determines that a drive should occur, we’ve included pull-up tendencies for both mid, and three point range.

–        Driving

o   Pull-up mid-range

o   Pull-up three

Isolation

While scouting the league this past year I noticed something I wanted to replicate in our game. When elite scorers have a matchup with an inferior defender they tend to be more aggressive offensively.

So this year we introduced new isolation tendencies that measure the AI players aggressiveness in relation to the quality of the defender.

This is essentially code that allows the AI to stare at your digital bench and yell to your coach, “They are going to need some help tonight. They can NOT guard me!”

At any step of our choosing during a play or freelance action, we can run a check for the current ball-handlers tendency to isolate. This value is determined by comparing the offensive players scoring ability against the defenders ability to guard him.

Each player falls into one of four categories as an on-ball defender. Defenders are rated as poor, average, good or elite.

–        Isolation

o   Iso vs poor

o   Iso vs average

o   Iso vs good

o   Iso vs elite

This is a subtle layer of sophistication that enables scorers to be more aggressive and increase their touches even for plays that were not initially ran for them.

Don’t be surprised to see the top scorers in the league wave off a play because they like their chances of scoring against their current match-up.

We also use this to run a check for non-isolation players, who may have a decided post-up advantage, and allow them to break a play to go beast mode on their matchup.

AI Execution

Although we have added incredible tools these past three years for the users, our AI has lacked an ability to execute at an equally high level. This year we made a number of improvements that on their own don’t sound all that impressive. However, when you take them all as a package this is easily our finest effort yet in giving the AI the ability to execute. We touched and improved on many systems but this is a listing of a few of the major system improvements you can expect to see.

Transition

Last year was phase one of the upgrade of our transition engine. In year one we established a foundation that we were able to build upon this year to bring you our finest effort yet.

Last year in certain situations the system struggled with choosing the correct player to fill the lanes vs cut to the basket.  So this year in addition to multiplying our coverage, we also added a new tendency to help control this behavior.

Transition spot-up vs Cut.

Once in a fast-break situation our transition operates in three phases, all of them editable and updateable through an ACE roster update.

At each phase the system is looking for offense vs defense numbers advantages. The advantage or disadvantage may change as the ball is advanced up the floor.

Once the finishing stage is reached, many of our finishing transition sets have branch-able options that check the transition spot-up vs cut tendency to determine if a player should stop at the three or cut to the basket.

In some formations we don’t check for the tendency. We choose whether a player cuts to the rim or stops at the three based on spacing. One example is a 3 v 1 tight transition formation where the two perimeter wings are very close to the ball in the middle of the floor. In this instance both perimeter players go to the rim and then continue out to the corners.

Another addition for transition this year is that once we identify the trailer, we slow him down to increase spacing and allow for opportunities to walk into open three’s when opponents are clogging the paint.

Motion

Our AI’s ability to run an offense is greatly enhanced by the new motion system. The system can stitch together any applicable movement in our extensive library of motion capture to allow us to have basketball specific movement while maintaining the flexibility to be able to, at any point in the route, change direction based on stick input.

The offensive flow in NBA 2K18 would not be possible without the benefits offered by this new motion system. We can now run more complex actions in less time. In previous games there were many small tweaks we had to make in order to complete more complex actions. Each of these tweaks added minute delays that when added all together, would increase the time it took for plays and actions to complete. With all of those tweaks removed our game has a dynamic flow and pace that it has never had before.

Tempo

Another area we really worked on improving our AI execution is the tempo that teams play at. In NBA 2K18 you will see a definite difference between top and bottom ranked teams in their pace of play.

In AI vs AI 12 min quarter games I have seen the AI score as few as 80 and as many as 136 point in a single game.

The difference between Phoenix and the Jazz has never been this noticeable in our game. Slower paced teams will walk the ball up the floor and look to score later in the shot clock.

While teams who prefer to play at a higher tempo will advance the ball quickly, and on misses, look to score out of their early offense sets.

Flow Tech

If you are a person who loves the X’s and O’s of basketball like I do, then Flow Tech will easily be the most exciting information in this blog. My main AI Engineer and I have had a vision we’ve been trying to replicate since I first arrived at 2K. Each year we continued to add the technical pieces that were necessary to one day get us to this point.

Flow Tech is a series of technical improvements to our play and freelance systems that give NBA2K18 unparalleled AI execution potential on the offensive side of the ball.  Flow tech allows us to implement intelligence at the point of resistance in very specific areas of our game.

The best way to explain Flow Tech is by showing you. Let’s begin with an action in NBA 2K17 called Floppy Fist.

This is a high ball screen followed by a double high off-ball screen; this has been one of my favorite NBA actions for some time now. With limited exceptions, once a user knows the route of this play it is easy to shut down.

As a user defender vs the AI, after I have seen this play a few times I am free to totally disrupt his route with few discernable consequences.

We did provide a stationary defender location read branch once the offensive player was under the basket.

Even if the pass is not stolen, there is limited opportunity for a shot using this action once a user is aware of the branch options.

Now let’s look at a similar play in NBA 2K18 with the same action as floppy fist in NBA2K17, except this play does not start with a ball screen.

To get this example of the play to show to you in its original form I had to turn Flow Tech off. As you can see Redick runs off the double high screen, stops outside the block and then runs off the double screen for an open three.

Remember this is Redick’s designed stopping location.

Now let’s re-enable Flow Tech and try to disrupt the play las a user defender like we were able to do in NBA 2K17.

Here you see Redick takes an alternate route and forces a defensive switch, then reads the switched defenders location at the basket branch point and continues off the opposite down screen. Now that I see I can’t overplay, let’s see if I can just meet him under the basket.

As I attempt to meet him at the rim Redick fades the screen (his screeners adjust their screen for the flare). Since we can’t deny him and we also can’t cheat the screen now, we are forced to trail him and fight through the screens.

This time he fakes the curl gets me out of position and goes backdoor. Let’s try that again.

If you noticed, because Redick knows we trailed him he passed the original stopping location which was outside the paint and went directly to the branch read under the basket. Then continued off the opposite down screen.

Now let me see if I can bait him into taking that opposite screen and jump the passing lane.

Finally, as a user defender it takes more than just knowing the play. Now, like in the NBA you still have to guard the actions.

Flow tech is only enabled for current teams. Some actions offer tons of counters and some don’t offer any. It all depends on the action and speed of the play. Each play in 2K18 has custom Flow counters designed to make it more difficult for users to deny the AI entry passes.

If you know me I could drone on and on about this all day long but I have already kept you too long. As per usual I will be breaking down the ins and outs of my favorite sets all season long. So, here’s one final read that the AI can make out of this set.

That’s right family. It’s REAL NOICE! So this time he reads curl to curl to curl. We didn’t even go over every AI read for each action for this one play!

Hopefully I have been able to show why we believe NBA 2K18 is our best effort to date as far as offensive AI is concerned.

In closing,

I would like to remind you to not forget about our Isolation vs defender quality tendencies. Otherwise, while you are working hard to prevent an open perimeter shot, the AI ball-handler might feel like your team-mate just can’t guard him!

Until next time, it’s your man Da_Czar wishing you a merry 2K Holiday!

#SimNation bonus footage

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Discussion
  1. The AI (both CPU and your own teammates) finally being able to read and properly use an off-ball screen will be pretty killer. Playing HUM vs HUM you can use the play art all you want and let your opponent try to cheat on a screen and nail them with a fade or a backdoor. Hopefully this works well, if so it'll be a big step in the sim direction and a kick in the nuts to cheesers.
    Maligx
    uh site getting hammered?

    Rip4ever
    Error 502 bad gateway.......

    For those having issues, click on the link, copy the link, open a new browser tab, and paste the link in the google search bar.
    Situational Tendencies...
    Isolation check... guys waving off a play because of a mismatch....
    Updated Transition tendencies
    3 on 1 filling the lane correctly... and hell, 3 on 1 breaks in period!
    Secondary break with the trailer!
    Motion... plays and players look so much quicker, more explosive.
    Still reading. lol
    Flow Tech looks legit. Absolutely sick. That flare by JJ catching him cheating was excellence.
    I've got to say, this is shaping up to be the best 2k yet. Its all in the execution of course, but everything shown here looks and sounds phenomenal.
    Also, the Bonus clips of Kyrie and Harden, the quickness of the dribbles and moves, looks like we finally have our control back, which has long been one of my major complaints. I may be spending a lot of time with 2k this year finally.
    Czar,
    Great job on the blog! I have a few ?'s if you can answer
    1. When determining the substitutions will the CPU AI take into account player positions when subbing? I ask b/c based on the screenshot guys like James Johnson are listed at SF when they should be subbed as a PF. Will there be an adjustment to player positions to help with that sub pattern etc?
    2. How often will the tendencies be updated?
    3. Have play types been revised this year? Many bigs last year in 2K17 needed an update of their play type and then they played like themselves. Hopefully you've been able to reconfigure that for this year?
    4. Are classic teams getting playbook and tendencies edited too?
    5. Will coach points of emphasis have any affect on the AI offense this year? Will those POE be updated this year?
    Èverything sounds amazing. Just hoping 2k doesn't derail the gameplay with patches this year. I want the game that I purchase at launch, to be the same game I play throughout the entire year (like the good ole days)
    This thread has me now going to re read OGs one, as I am not as clear or sure how does the AI will defend/handle/fare against this new jump on O.
    ffaacc03
    This thread has me now going to re read OGs one, as I am not as clear or sure how does the AI will defend/handle/fare against this new jump on O.

    That's my concern as well. I have faith that OG won't let us down though.
    Seriously though, watching how quick things develop, and the CPU realizing how you're defending and keeping you on your toes will be a breath of fresh air. No longer playing passing lanes because you know the actions coming will be awesome. You'll have to play honest this year.
    While everyone throws a party as usual for all the hoopla,,nobody and i mean nobody ever talks about the BIG PROBLEM...FOULS..All this stuff sounds good, but  what happens when the game starts,,,you will have Deandre jordan body slamming jordan clarkson who for some reason gets into the lane and attempts a hook shot...WHY,,every game mode, the same freaking game breaking problem happens year after year with not even a glimpse of discussion about it.  It's the insane and unrealistic amount of paint fouls by players who should just be playing D.  And the foul is committed by our A.I. or if you are playing h2h and you are winning, your team will just foul for non good reason other than the game to be kept close, and its utter nonsense.
    Hello 911. Yes i would like to report an emergency. NBA2K Dev, Da Czar has just burned my house down lol
    Czar you told me i would like the inclusion of an "isolation" tendency and mannnn did you ever deliver. Strong work
    Also those catch and shoot vs drive tendencies are game changers in terms of ai player differentiation. Transition pull up vs drive. Transition spot up vs cut. Man i couldnt be more happier as a roster editor
    I am eager to see the different levels of the first year of Flow Tech as well. JJ reddick was smooth off of those screens. Question...does player IQ have an effect on guys making the right read in those situations? Cause we all know some guys are better at setting up off ball screens than others
    Cant wait to get my hands on this game
    The write-up's promising and we all know that Czar does all he can to improve the game for simheads. I think we're going to have to play the game to get a real sense of how much better AI behavior is, in terms of the situational reads as well as the improvements to motion (and, presumably, collision and lack thereof).
    On in-game player subs, I'm curious: why do we still not get any indication of player Stamina in the in-game sub menus?

    • Is this just oversight? Not thinking players would want this? A UI design issue, thinking it would make things too cluttered?
    • Or is this a conscious decision to hide information? If so, what's the rationale? I've theorized that 2K doesn't give us Stamina "readout" in the game menu because they're trying to be realistic: a coach doesn't really know if a player is tired, or how tired, by some sort of quantified metric. He has to infer from visually watching the player's performance.
    • It's not unreasonable that, in the Timeout substitution menu, we got coloring indication of fatigue. Maybe this simulates players talking to coaches during timeout...giving them an approximation of how they feel.
    • But the problem is, in the Pause menu, we get the exact, quantified Stamina readout. Not just "brownish green," but..."76." Why give us the most precise information in the menu that can be accessed at almost any time, doesn't require a realistic break in play, but which does actually cause a disruptive break in play for the opponent?

    I'm really looking forward to, hopefully, a future blog by Czar on plays and freelances.
    Specifically, I'd really like to see us being given the ability to manually call for Pick'n'Roll/Fade during plays and freelance actions that will not break the action, if the screener is not involved in at least the first branch of the action.
    And all kinds of other things. But, no matter what, very much appreciate all the thought and energy that Czar puts into the game for us.
    I'm curious, why doesn't a player have a pass tendency upon receiving a pass?
    What determines the decision to pass? The next action in a play or something else?
    It sounds like players simply decide to either shoot or drive. But that can't be true.
    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-N920A using Tapatalk
    Still diving in but I'm really glad to see sub menu switched back. But one question...
    It says we're supposed to choose who we want to sub in via button press but I only see five options on the screenshot. Is it correct to presume the game just gives you the five best sub options for your given position? So subbing for Steph Curry likely wouldn't bring about an option for JaVale McGree by default, correct?
    This blog could have stopped right after the new subs/play-call menu and I would have been happy.
    The rest of it was just more patties on the already delicious cheeseburger.
    I'm appreciating the basketball IQ level from the people who actually make the game... Casual fans may not notice this while playing but this is the stuff I always wished I could get my CPU teammates do..
    Aahh so good
    Still didnt finish but have a question for Czar
    Thoses AI specific change will be seen in MC? I mean if you play with Westbrook as a teammate or as an opponent, will he have the tendancies to Iso and attack hard to score ?
    Cause it was something really annoying to see westbrook or others being calm and playing as a facilitator (as a teammate or opponent, both)
    Thanks for the job
    W O W... Music to my ears as a guy who plays primarily offline. The tendencies are a very big deal and Flow Tech is crazy. I would hope that the AI counters are driven by ratings and not just available irrespective of them. Hopefully it can be extended to Legends at some point because this will significantly impact the challenge of the AI opponent.
    I also must comment on how the play motions look SIGNIFICANTLY better. Players get into their actions quickly and move with purpose. This is seeming like the type game you really need to play to understand how much improved it is.
    Junior Moe
    My first game is gonna be against CPU Westbrook. I can't wait to see how aggressive he his in game.
    And makes sure you play against a weak defender so he can wave every play off like, "I got'em don't worry about it"
    Sent from my SM-N920T using Tapatalk
    Man....am I the only one that liked the tempo tidbit? I will finally have a variety of scores. I hated how each team played the same....
    Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk
    Running plays looks like it'll be a delight this year which has been one of my biggest issues with this franchise the last few years.
    BTW, this was taken from a build older than the GameStop Expo build. As Kawhi doesn't have a beard so I'm hopeful they'll give the Morris twins and LaVine their beards, and give Julius Randle the same exact hairstyle Clint Capela has.
    GSW
    Not sure words can do it justice how happy and excited I am right now. I'm taking two days off for 2k day!!

    Definitely calling in *sick*. :59:
    Will this fix the CPU making players cut to the basket even though they are great shooters that are wide open? I just lost a game because wide open Paul George cut to a crowded paint when he was open from 3 in the corner and by the time the pass got to him it got tipped.
    The AI needs to recognize who they are (e.g. someone like Redick knows he's a 45% 3pt shooter) and also the context of the floor. The above scenario happens far to often, of the AI blindly cutting to the paint when they are open in the perimeter, ignoring the fact that there are 3-4 teammates and opposing players standing in the paint already clogging it. It makes floor spacing so difficult when trying to pass as a ball handler
    Netsfan76
    Czar,
    Great job on the blog! I have a few ?'s if you can answer
    1. When determining the substitutions will the CPU AI take into account player positions when subbing? I ask b/c based on the screenshot guys like James Johnson are listed at SF when they should be subbed as a PF. Will there be an adjustment to player positions to help with that sub pattern etc?
    2. How often will the tendencies be updated?
    3. Have play types been revised this year? Many bigs last year in 2K17 needed an update of their play type and then they played like themselves. Hopefully you've been able to reconfigure that for this year?
    4. Are classic teams getting playbook and tendencies edited too?
    5. Will coach points of emphasis have any affect on the AI offense this year? Will those POE be updated this year?

    CPU Subs might be slightly better but it is going to need a full redesign to get it working like you guys expect. I pushed for advanced subs to hold you guys over in the mean time last year. With all we did this year this just wasn't time to get to that. So you may not see a great improvement there. It is on the master list the dope engineer that works on that does a lot of heavy lifting on major parts of the game.
    At some point we will get to it.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    both blogs (OGs and Czars) seems to have addressed things ive seen guys wanting for at least 2 years if not longer. if all works as intended and played as intended (no cheesing), #simnation should be pretty happy.
    Anything different in the post up game? Do the bigs have their own sets of tendencies? Face up, back down, Shaq move outta the way tendency?
    Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk
    Baebae32
    Hello 911. Yes i would like to report an emergency. NBA2K Dev, Da Czar has just burned my house down lol
    Czar you told me i would like the inclusion of an "isolation" tendency and mannnn did you ever deliver. Strong work
    Also those catch and shoot vs drive tendencies are game changers in terms of ai player differentiation. Transition pull up vs drive. Transition spot up vs cut. Man i couldnt be more happier as a roster editor
    I am eager to see the different levels of the first year of Flow Tech as well. JJ reddick was smooth off of those screens. Question...does player IQ have an effect on guys making the right read in those situations? Cause we all know some guys are better at setting up off ball screens than others
    Cant wait to get my hands on this game

    With a feature this large first you have to get the AI to be able to do it. Then as you progress you can get fancy and start adding nuance. It will probably take a couple years to get this right where we want it before we start adding IQ checks and stuff like that. But we have the infrastructure to do it.
    That is the exciting part. As OG said we set ourselves up this year to do a lot in the future. But as you said it is a year one feature similar to how freelance grew and expanded and added depth after the first year I would like to think this would follow suite.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Man... When I started reading, I was excited.
    The more I read, the more I was like

    Then I tried to post how I felt about what I was seeing, flares, secondary Dirk's and triple curls, I tried to type but ended up like

    Then I heard Damian Lillard played it already so I texted him and asked him what he really thought about it, and if it was real, just between us and he just responded with this
    CMH
    I'm curious, why doesn't a player have a pass tendency upon receiving a pass?
    What determines the decision to pass? The next action in a play or something else?
    It sounds like players simply decide to either shoot or drive. But that can't be true.
    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-N920A using Tapatalk

    Find open man tendency takes care of that.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    The question I have is what determines when a player is in foul trouble? A lot of time in 2k last year players are left in the game with 4 fouls in the 3rd quarter or 2 fouls in the 1st quarter has there been an ACE update for how players are sub out when in foul trouble? I ask because it made it easy to foul out stars when they got into foul trouble because CPU coaches would leave them in.
    *Sorry read the post about subs hope it can get in next year great read tho
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Dear D_Czar,
    So, low or high IQ ratings (or any ratings) aren't taken into account for players knowing more than one branch ?
    I mean, lets say someone like Dunn faces the same situations presented on the videos of Reddick, is he equally efficient on doing all those reads and actions that Reddick did ?
    How does the AI defense adjust and try to counter all those scenarios or is it solely a human task ? If it can, do IQ ratings (or any ratings) are accounted for how well should a player execute a given task or read branches ?
    YannisLB
    Aahh so good
    Still didnt finish but have a question for Czar
    Thoses AI specific change will be seen in MC? I mean if you play with Westbrook as a teammate or as an opponent, will he have the tendancies to Iso and attack hard to score ?
    Cause it was something really annoying to see westbrook or others being calm and playing as a facilitator (as a teammate or opponent, both)
    Thanks for the job

    MC is a different beast fam and honestly a difficult one for me. Some users want the AI to be dominant and others want to live out their fantasy of being dominant. It is a tricky line.
    That said we don't turn off the iso tendencies for MC so they should be more aggressive from that alone. I will be interested to hear your feedback once you have played the game awhile on if you feel we did enough for guys like yourself or if you would want more from your AI teammates.
    I don't necessarily have a great answer for this.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Great blog as usual, I love this stuff much more than watching gameplay videos...
    Congrats on the effort Mister president, those new tendencies and the Flow Tech looks really dope.
    Netsfan76
    Czar,
    Great job on the blog! I have a few ?'s if you can answer
    1. When determining the substitutions will the CPU AI take into account player positions when subbing? I ask b/c based on the screenshot guys like James Johnson are listed at SF when they should be subbed as a PF. Will there be an adjustment to player positions to help with that sub pattern etc?
    2. How often will the tendencies be updated?
    3. Have play types been revised this year? Many bigs last year in 2K17 needed an update of their play type and then they played like themselves. Hopefully you've been able to reconfigure that for this year?
    4. Are classic teams getting playbook and tendencies edited too?
    5. Will coach points of emphasis have any affect on the AI offense this year? Will those POE be updated this year?

    2. There is no defined schedule on that. If someone is playing drastically different than they have historically then we will look at that. For the most part these guys are who they are but new guys on new teams may play differently so we won't be hasty but we will keep an eye on it.
    This year I am working with an as yet unnamed tendency master from the community so he will advise me when he feels changes need to be made and I will factor that into my decision.
    3. LAst year the ACE system demanded that some players have certain play-types in order for the dynamic post-up and isolations to work. We changed that on the back end so this year they may appear a little different.
    One thing though we don't just copy paste synergy values for play-types. When you watch those possession those don't always equal actual plays ran for that type. Also it really depends on what plays we have for a particular team.
    Yes classic teams will have tendencies edited and updated the week of release.
    I don't understand your last question the AI does not use poe's the AI uses ACE.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Gotta say this isn't some static run a play thing.. these freelances are the next level in basketball games, and in general all sports games.
    I don't think people realize the magnitude of what they bring to the table.
    It's akin to just playing another shooter vs one with destructible environments, enterable buildings, non linear paths and more than one way to complete a mission....
    This dude deserves a freaking raise! I feel sorry for OG having to keep up with this :lol:
    VDusen04
    Still diving in but I'm really glad to see sub menu switched back. But one question...
    It says we're supposed to choose who we want to sub in via button press but I only see five options on the screenshot. Is it correct to presume the game just gives you the five best sub options for your given position? So subbing for Steph Curry likely wouldn't bring about an option for JaVale McGree by default, correct?

    Correct
    Livingston
    Macaw
    Iguodala
    N.Young
    Casspi
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    harryl
    The write-up's promising and we all know that Czar does all he can to improve the game for simheads. I think we're going to have to play the game to get a real sense of how much better AI behavior is, in terms of the situational reads as well as the improvements to motion (and, presumably, collision and lack thereof).
    On in-game player subs, I'm curious: why do we still not get any indication of player Stamina in the in-game sub menus?

    • Is this just oversight? Not thinking players would want this? A UI design issue, thinking it would make things too cluttered?
    • Or is this a conscious decision to hide information? If so, what's the rationale? I've theorized that 2K doesn't give us Stamina "readout" in the game menu because they're trying to be realistic: a coach doesn't really know if a player is tired, or how tired, by some sort of quantified metric. He has to infer from visually watching the player's performance.
    • It's not unreasonable that, in the Timeout substitution menu, we got coloring indication of fatigue. Maybe this simulates players talking to coaches during timeout...giving them an approximation of how they feel.
    • But the problem is, in the Pause menu, we get the exact, quantified Stamina readout. Not just "brownish green," but..."76." Why give us the most precise information in the menu that can be accessed at almost any time, doesn't require a realistic break in play, but which does actually cause a disruptive break in play for the opponent?

    I'm really looking forward to, hopefully, a future blog by Czar on plays and freelances.
    Specifically, I'd really like to see us being given the ability to manually call for Pick'n'Roll/Fade during plays and freelance actions that will not break the action, if the screener is not involved in at least the first branch of the action.
    And all kinds of other things. But, no matter what, very much appreciate all the thought and energy that Czar puts into the game for us.

    When you get to menu's and those decisions I really have very little to do with how they look and what is included. So I don't have any good answers for you. My main concern was getting it back to buttons since so many of you disliked the Rstick for subs.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Da_Czar
    MC is a different beast fam and honestly a difficult one for me. Some users want the AI to be dominant and others want to live out their fantasy of being dominant. It is a tricky line.
    That said we don't turn off the iso tendencies for MC so they should be more aggressive from that alone. I will be interested to hear your feedback once you have played the game awhile on if you feel we did enough for guys like yourself or if you would want more from your AI teammates.
    I don't necessarily have a great answer for this.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    I say if they want to be a dominant MyPlayer just make it easy to get on court coach and they can easily make that happen while #simnation can play it properly.
    I'm not big on X's and O's, but I love me some MyLeague and playing 12 min quarters. While I won't understand or comprehend all these changes it should make each game a completely different experience. I can't wait to find new and different ways to defend and score. Czar and OG's blogs have added exponential value to ML for me.
    GF: "You ready for some action tonight baby?"
    Me: "Yeah but not with you. Czar put enough freelance action in 2K18 to keep me aroused for months. *Pops in 2K18 disc*. I'll call you in a week hun."
    GuwopGeezus
    Will flow tech work in MyLeague/MyGM and MyCareer once you advance to future years?
    Could someone answer this?
    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
    tcnumba10

    Not as far as I know. That is more of a myleague feature so maybe leftos would know for sure.
    The AI has a lot of calculations it has to make to account for subs. Right now the advanced subs is a manual tool. It has no AI attached to it. That would be a project someone would have to take on to get that working in that manner. In essence they are two separate systems.
    Guard-ian
    Great blog as usual, I love this stuff much more than watching gameplay videos...
    Congrats on the effort Mister president, those new tendencies and the Flow Tech looks really dope.

    Respect Guard-ian!!!
    lhanstracy
    Could someone answer this?
    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

    Pretty sure baked in covered that.
    My reading of that is it is a core function built into all parts of the game.
    No reason for future years to affect that.
    One thing that I wanted to include in the blog but it just slipped my mind was another new tendency called play-discipline.
    Depending on the tempo setting each AI team has a time range where they stop just moving the ball and the begin to look for a shot. A player with a low play discipline tendency will disregard the coaches tempo desires and look to score when they have the ball.
    Neat little addition that I think we can expand upon in the future.
    23
    Gotta say this isn't some static run a play thing.. these freelances are the next level in basketball games, and in general all sports games.
    I don't think people realize the magnitude of what they bring to the table.
    It's akin to just playing another shooter vs one with destructible environments, enterable buildings, non linear paths and more than one way to complete a mission....
    This dude deserves a freaking raise! I feel sorry for OG having to keep up with this :lol:

    Seriously unreal man. Other sports games are still trying to get down some of the basic and fundamental qualities of their respective sports. The intricacies and nuances in this game are on another level.
    So many things I'm looking forward to once I sit down and play the game but I'm very excited to see how different teams and players play. This really should make each opponent and game (even with familiar opponents) feel like unique experiences.
    Da_Czar
    One thing that I wanted to include in the blog but it just slipped my mind was another new tendency called play-discipline.
    Depending on the tempo setting each AI team has a time range where they stop just moving the ball and the begin to look for a shot. A player with a low play discipline tendency will disregard the coaches tempo desires and look to score when they have the ball.
    Neat little addition that I think we can expand upon in the future.
    After watching Redick, I can only wonder and lament at how the hell any of us will be able to beat GSW if they do all that?
    I love the mismatch mechanic. Hopefully that also applies to a big who can take us down to the block when we're controlling a guard. Combined with the motion stuff Mike told us about, it seems like we will be able to feel good and bad defenders.
    The worth of the tendency contexts speak for themselves. Looks like we won't have guys who only take stand still 3s (Dirk/KP/KAT) shooting them off the dribble anymore. Brilliant. And that stupid looking stepback shot is gone.
    Da_Czar
    Yes, Flow tech is baked in ACE makes no changes to it.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    Wow. This is huge!
    Last year I sort of shied away from plays due to the constant player collision breaking down the plays but this Flow Tech feature combined with the new motion system is going to add another layer of depth to the game.
    The AI can only be as smart as the people who work on it. Thankfully, 2K18 is blessed with the best people working on it.
    Great job, Czar and co!
    Watching that Dirk clip did 2 things
    Showed me nice spacing...
    and reminded me of how he used to play in Dallas with Steve Nash. Same spot and all
    23
    Watching that Dirk clip did 2 things
    Showed me nice spacing...
    and reminded me of how he used to play in Dallas with Steve Nash. Same spot and all

    And the pull up animation was buttery smooth. I was sick of being slid/dragged forward 4 foot so an open 3 became a contested 2. That looks gone...maybe, based off that clip.
    It seems like players will finally run into position during plays instead of just casually jogging! I can't stress enough how happy I am that this legacy issue has been fixed.
    Also, I loved reading about Flow Tech. It was so easy to shut down some plays in 2K17 because of how predictable they were, and the AI couldn't score against me from them unless my defender got caught in a long screen animation and couldn't close out in time. Well, it appears that will no longer be the case, and gone are the days of predictable AI. :)
    Da_Czar
    One thing that I wanted to include in the blog but it just slipped my mind was another new tendency called play-discipline.
    Depending on the tempo setting each AI team has a time range where they stop just moving the ball and the begin to look for a shot. A player with a low play discipline tendency will disregard the coaches tempo desires and look to score when they have the ball.
    Neat little addition that I think we can expand upon in the future.

    Awesome, so we can count on Nick Young and JR Smith to be more like their shot chucking selves.
    :freddy:
    Smirkin Dirk
    And the pull up animation was buttery smooth. I was sick of being slid/dragged forward 4 foot so an open 3 became a contested 2. That looks gone...maybe, based off that clip.

    True. The Shot Stick has become more and more the Animation Stick - you pull the stick and you can't be sure how fast your player would take a shot. It might just go back to being the Shot Stick, at last, this year.
    Czar, got a question. Is flow tech also tendency and ratings based? Or is it driven by the play type and all counter options are available to all players regardless of ratings?
    NINJAK2
    All this information....Can't process it fast enough...System Overload

    10/10 for this GIF. I literally laughed out loud.
    I will have some substance posts.....its just that.....I'm still....just.... umm.... (see above).
    UnbelievablyRAW
    Will this fix the CPU making players cut to the basket even though they are great shooters that are wide open? I just lost a game because wide open Paul George cut to a crowded paint when he was open from 3 in the corner and by the time the pass got to him it got tipped.
    The AI needs to recognize who they are (e.g. someone like Redick knows he's a 45% 3pt shooter) and also the context of the floor. The above scenario happens far to often, of the AI blindly cutting to the paint when they are open in the perimeter, ignoring the fact that there are 3-4 teammates and opposing players standing in the paint already clogging it. It makes floor spacing so difficult when trying to pass as a ball handler

    If the spot-up shot 3 tendency is high enough the player will not cut. If it is low he will. If it is in the middle he is 50-50
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Goffs
    Anything different in the post up game? Do the bigs have their own sets of tendencies? Face up, back down, Shaq move outta the way tendency?
    Sent from my SM-G930T using Tapatalk

    Ha. Nothing tendency wise but Zach really beefed up the post game this year.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    We also reduced a value in code that had the AI attempting to reduce long 2 point shots by stepping back to shoot a three. This caused users to become frustrated with the AI stepping back when wide open, and then being too well defended to get a shot off in time.
    THIS !!!!!!!
    GuwopGeezus
    Will flow tech work in MyLeague/MyGM and MyCareer once you advance to future years?

    Yes. Flow tech is not something that get's turned off as it were. The classic teams plays dont have it but if you are using current team plays in your My whatever mode it will be on.
    As I said some actions have a lot of counters and some have none. It depends on the speed of the other actions. If we can get you open with the default actions were not going to stack a bunch of useless stuff on just so it is there.
    The general motion has improved enough that it is not as easy to see everything coming.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Wow. The different in the new motion system is incredible. They look alive, and they aren't standing around waiting for their next instruction for that particular play anymore.
    Czar, quick question that I hope you can elaborate on. When it comes to the Pace that teams play at during games, what dictates that? Is it based off the Coach's offensive system? Is each franchise hard coded to play at a certain pace based off last year or something else?
    Great work on the game!
    Da_Czar
    When you get to menu's and those decisions I really have very to do with how they look and what is included. So I don't have any good answers for you. My main concern was getting it back to buttons since so many of you disliked the Rstick for subs.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Thanks for taking the time to reply, anyhow.
    The issue of Stamina indicators in subbing menus is odd and discordant: no indication in the in-game menu, color gradient approximation in timeout menu, and precise number in pause menu.
    Unless 2K has some philosophic reason for the variation, it would be best for players for this to be uniform and precise: numeric display of Stamina in all menus.
    Also, and I know this is not possible at this point, but for the in-game sub menu, there's a problem that one cannot sub out a player on the floor for someone else on the floor. Only guys on the bench.
    I think it's not possible, without calling timeout, to do something like shift C to PF and vice-versa. Have to stop the game and burn a timeout.
    harryl
    Thanks for taking the time to reply, anyhow.
    The issue of Stamina indicators in subbing menus is odd and discordant: no indication in the in-game menu, color gradient approximation in timeout menu, and precise number in pause menu.
    Unless 2K has some philosophic reason for the variation, it would be best for players for this to be uniform and precise: numeric display of Stamina in all menus.
    Also, and I know this is not possible at this point, but for the in-game sub menu, there's a problem that one cannot sub out the Center on the floor for someone else on the floor. Only guys on the bench.
    I think it's not possible, without calling timeout, to do something like shift C to PF and vice-versa. Have to stop the game and burn a timeout.

    Totally on your side. Give us numbers for the stamina in each menu!
    Your last point seems to be possible in 2k18, at least from what I've seen in Da_Czars Blog.
    What I honestly don't understand quite yet: Your coach has a specific system proficiency, which controls offensive and defensive behaviour. Some of these systems are the same as freelance offenses (e.g. 7 Seconds or less, Pace and Space, Triangle).
    What happens if I for example choose triangle as my "system" and choose swing as my "freelance offense". How does this play out?
    Amaaazing stuff!! Release the game tomorrow please!
    Gotta say, I quickly watched the videos first and then read the blog. I saw Giannis in the one vid and saw he still had the malnourished body type. I was about to shed a tear for every Buck fan out there. The I realized it was from 2K17. :lol:
    Da_Czar
    If the spot-up shot 3 tendency is high enough the player will not cut. If it is low he will. If it is in the middle he is 50-50
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    Da Czar aka the originator rockets hate lol. Glad you guys fixed play motion. It was tiring running a play that took 19 seconds to complete leaving me with no room to adjust quickly to defense and readjust
    Da_Czar
    Yes. Flow tech is not something that get's turned off as it were. The classic teams plays dont have it but if you are using current team plays in your My whatever mode it will be on.
    As I said some actions have a lot of counters and some have none. It depends on the speed of the other actions. If we can get you open with the default actions were not going to stack a bunch of useless stuff on just so it is there.
    The general motion has improved enough that it is not as easy to see everything coming.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    This is greatness man...just greatness!!!
    :cheers:
    Not much else to share in regards to opinions and sentiments. I appreciate what you're attempting to deliver here @Czar especially in regards to motion continuity within the sets.
    Sent from my SM-T330NU using Tapatalk
    I don't know if you can pass this on to whoever is the UX designer? Why aren't we able to view the player's stamina in the sub menu? It was in past games and seems like a super easy feature to implement(or put back in because it was taken out for no reason).
    Just checking, but that highlights vid at the end, I know it may be implied but was that all AI?
    If so.....I am (for the first time ever) both scared and aroused at the same time......
    EarvGotti
    GF: "You ready for some action tonight baby?"
    Me: "Yeah but not with you. Czar put enough freelance action in 2K18 to keep me aroused for months. *Pops in 2K18 disc*. I'll call you in a week hun."
    .....annnnd you're single lol
    Im kidding bro. But this is an entirely different conversation with a wife, trust me.
    Sent from my SM-G935P using Tapatalk
    Da_Czar
    One thing that I wanted to include in the blog but it just slipped my mind was another new tendency called play-discipline.
    Depending on the tempo setting each AI team has a time range where they stop just moving the ball and the begin to look for a shot. A player with a low play discipline tendency will disregard the coaches tempo desires and look to score when they have the ball.
    Neat little addition that I think we can expand upon in the future.

    I'm thinking......JR Smith..... Haha.....
    This is amazing.
    Everything is amazing.
    Now of course, after having it for 3 months, people may start pointing out things (hopefully constructively). Things I am sure big Czar is already aware of and has on his list (remember - 1 year dev cycle).
    But this 1 fact remains.
    2K18 will offer a gameplay experience that is 100% ahead of anything we have ever played - in terms of AI ability (based on what we know).
    I won't ask any questions. I will read this entire thread (Qs and As) and I am sure I will be satisfied.
    You said in another thread "high risk, low reward". But I can safely speak for everyone here when I say we 100% appreciate the risk taken to try and enhance our playing experience. 200% even.
    Thank you Czar, OG and the guys in the background who grind.
    I.N.C.R.E.D.I.B.L.E
    Yo, Da_Czar  I know you're busy and mad respect to you for takin the time to address a few concerns. If you don't mind I'd like for you to address mine about the foul problem that has plagued the game.  I've actually talked about it some time ago with last 2 versions of the game and on your YT before you were with 2k. I'd argue its one of the biggest problems plauging the game besides the overall catchup mechanic,,pardon my typos folks, im a little under the beverage tonight.
    HERE'S  WHAT I SAID      While everyone throws a party as usual for all the hoopla,,nobody and i mean nobody ever talks about the BIG PROBLEM...FOULS..All this stuff
    sounds good, but  what happens when the game starts,,,you will have
    Deandre jordan body slamming jordan clarkson who for some reason gets
    into the lane and attempts a hook shot...WHY,,every game mode, the same
    freaking game breaking problem happens year after year with not even a
    glimpse of discussion about it.  It's the insane and unrealistic amount
    of paint fouls by players who should just be playing D.  And the foul is
    committed by our A.I. or if you are playing h2h and you are winning,
    your team will just foul for non good reason other than the game to be
    kept close, and its utter nonsense.
    Dang it, I so, so want to pre-order now, but Amazon STILL doesn't have physical copies listed--just digital codes!
    My connection's so slow, it'll take 48 hours to download a game of this size!
    Get those physical copies listed already!
    Big Czar in the house! What's good, fam?
    Awesome insight, as always. Flow Tech sounds and looks like a great addition.
    Keep up the great work and tell Big Momma I appreciate the RT, haha.
    I aint gonna lie, prior to these last 2 blogs coming out, I wasn't going to preorder 2K this year. Was even on the fence for waiting awhile before getting it after being burnt last year by them.
    These last 2 blogs have changed that after they addressed most of my concerns. Just need to get that Presentation/Audio Blog to find out if the Crowd Noise and chants(more specifically the timing)has been corrected. They fix that and I'll be in heaven with this game.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Da_Czar
    One thing that I wanted to include in the blog but it just slipped my mind was another new tendency called play-discipline.
    Depending on the tempo setting each AI team has a time range where they stop just moving the ball and the begin to look for a shot. A player with a low play discipline tendency will disregard the coaches tempo desires and look to score when they have the ball.
    Neat little addition that I think we can expand upon in the future.

    Off the Henny JR is officially in 2k18! :lol:
    whatitisinsports
    Yo, Da_Czar* I know you're busy and mad respect to you for takin the time to address a few concerns. If you don't mind I'd like for you to address mine about the foul problem that has plagued the game.* I've actually talked about it some time ago with last 2 versions of the game and on your YT before you were with 2k. I'd argue its one of the biggest problems plauging the game besides the overall catchup mechanic,,pardon my typos folks, im a little under the beverage tonight.
    HERE'S* WHAT I SAID***** While everyone throws a party as usual for all the hoopla,,nobody and i mean nobody ever talks about the BIG PROBLEM...FOULS..All this stuff
    sounds good, but* what happens when the game starts,,,you will have
    Deandre jordan body slamming jordan clarkson who for some reason gets
    into the lane and attempts a hook shot...WHY,,every game mode, the same
    freaking game breaking problem happens year after year with not even a
    glimpse of discussion about it.* It's the insane and unrealistic amount
    of paint fouls by players who should just be playing D.* And the foul is
    committed by our A.I. or if you are playing h2h and you are winning,
    your team will just foul for non good reason other than the game to be
    kept close, and its utter nonsense.

    Lets not double post questions.
    If Czar is able to get to them, he'll get to them.
    Czar,
    Good looking out fam for showing the Sixers some love in these AI improvement videos. Imagine playing the Warriors with the Flow Tech and Steph is doing all of this man! It seems like this is possible
    stillfeelme
    Czar,
    Good looking out fam for showing the Sixers some love in these AI improvement videos. Imagine playing the Warriors with the Flow Tech and Steph is doing all of this man! It seems like this is possible

    Yep..... excellent point. I am sooooOOooOoo not playing the Warriors in 2K18.
    Ever.
    But seriously, I will try one day. Shrink the lineup a little with stretch 4, switch everything (on and off ball) and HOPE TO GOD for the best haha.
    Awesome stuff Czar, the fastbreak logic and the Reddick breakdown was on point!
    I know you said classic teams won't have flow tech, however, if i pick the 02 Nets and use with them a current team playbook in MyLeague or something, will the Flow Tech then be applied to them?
    MarkWilliam
    Yep..... excellent point. I am sooooOOooOoo not playing the Warriors in 2K18.
    Ever.
    But seriously, I will try one day. Shrink the lineup a little with stretch 4, switch everything (on and off ball) and HOPE TO GOD for the best haha.

    Do we want a realistic game or not ? loool
    So Warriors are almost impossible to guard
    Still confident that user talent can overcome this online
    But daammn on Mygm I can imagine the grind to beat this Warrior team, and I like that
    Lets just hope that simulator will not put us again with a Warriors team eliminated by the Nuggets in the first round
    stillfeelme
    Czar,
    Good looking out fam for showing the Sixers some love in these AI improvement videos. Imagine playing the Warriors with the Flow Tech and Steph is doing all of this man! It seems like this is possible

    That's what I said earlier.
    Man after looking through what these guys do, you have no idea.
    My head was swimming and I just had to stop. I know their opponents have nightmares trying to stop these guys.
    Watch the Lakers run some of the same sets very ineffectively, but the Warriors have their style on lockdown.... You can't even be sure what they'll do because they cross your vision up and before you know it boom.
    is there also a transition midrange pullup tendency, or do we only have 3pt tendency right now?
    great write up, so many new and exciting things.
    The positive by far outweighs the negative in this blog, but one thing that worried me is in the final bonus clip. When Harden kicks out to the open corner three, neither Kings defender makes an effort to close out. This does happen in real life sometimes where a player can get a literally 100% uncontested shot, but it's rare, and in 2K17, it was very common.
    Maybe a dev can shed some light?
    BDM313
    Excellent blog but the substitution format is iffy...why not just let us use the D-Pad...what about a menu to determine a player's stamina..
    Sent from my SM-G930T using Operation Sports mobile app

    I carefully looked over the substitution menu and personally, I think what they currently have developed for 2k18 would ultimately make substitution much faster than the simple d-pad scroll method if it actually works the way I think it works.
    Few concerns:
    (1) Lack of stamina indicator is absolutely a concern.
    (2) How do we make position changes on the fly. Hypothetically, if I wanted to move Klay Thompson to point guard and Draymond Green to the shooting guard, can that be done on the fly during the substitution menu/
    (3) The other concern is that it seems as though there are only 5 available bench substitutes at any one time. If there are 12 active roster spots, with 5 already on the floor (starters), then I would hope that I am not restricted to only the "top" 5 bench players the computer deemed is appropriate. What if I wanted to bring in my 11th or 12th man off the bench? Can a "more" button be implemented so we can toggle our entire bench and see which person we want substituted in?
    The following is my assumption to how the on the fly substitution menu works. And something like having some type of color coded stamina indicator would be great to have.

    strawberryshortcake
    Before jumping the gun, try to first get an understanding of the reasoning behind why it was done. I've looked at both sub menu screen captures and it's suppose to make things intuitive in the sense that you can do it with your eyes closed.
    Diagram below shows the corresponding position placement and it looks to be fixed to those buttons. Instead of pushing the right analog stick in the direction of the center in 2k17, we're simply using tactile dedicated buttons. We know exactly where each button is; we can now essentially do it by feel as opposed to sight. It should make the substitution more of a reflex.
    The only problem is that we have absolutely no clue about the player's stamina/fatigue. We still don't know if there will be stamina color indicators. Currently the number next to the player only indicates their OVR rating, which is kind of pointless in a substitution setting.
    =============================
    ((RB)) is designated always for the center position.
    ((X)) and ((A)) always as guards
    ((LB)) and ((Y)) always as forwards.
    =============================

    Spoiler contains two substitution screenshot from Da_Czar's offensive AI blog.



    I'm late to this party but WOW! Great stuff Czar! You know I've been talking about the read and React stuff for years. That was incredible to see fades, curls, backdoors, and all the reads a player is smart enough to make in how he is being guarded! WOW WOW WOW!!!
    Loved this...
    The offensive flow in NBA 2K18 would not be possible without the benefits offered by this new motion system. We can now run more complex actions in less time. In previous games there were many small tweaks we had to make in order to complete more complex actions. Each of these tweaks added minute delays that when added all together, would increase the time it took for plays and actions to complete. With all of those tweaks removed our game has a dynamic flow and pace that it has never had before.
    That motion video looked amazing! It's always bugged me in how long the plays tookand the jerky jerky stuff.Last year it just became stale to me. But that video seemed so smooth and seemless in transitions! I can't wait to get my hands on this and dive into these X's & O's!
    I'm officially SOLD on this game!
    harryl
    The write-up's promising and we all know that Czar does all he can to improve the game for simheads. I think we're going to have to play the game to get a real sense of how much better AI behavior is, in terms of the situational reads as well as the improvements to motion (and, presumably, collision and lack thereof).
    On in-game player subs, I'm curious: why do we still not get any indication of player Stamina in the in-game sub menus?

    • Is this just oversight? Not thinking players would want this? A UI design issue, thinking it would make things too cluttered?
    • Or is this a conscious decision to hide information? If so, what's the rationale? I've theorized that 2K doesn't give us Stamina "readout" in the game menu because they're trying to be realistic: a coach doesn't really know if a player is tired, or how tired, by some sort of quantified metric. He has to infer from visually watching the player's performance.
    • It's not unreasonable that, in the Timeout substitution menu, we got coloring indication of fatigue. Maybe this simulates players talking to coaches during timeout...giving them an approximation of how they feel.
    • But the problem is, in the Pause menu, we get the exact, quantified Stamina readout. Not just "brownish green," but..."76." Why give us the most precise information in the menu that can be accessed at almost any time, doesn't require a realistic break in play, but which does actually cause a disruptive break in play for the opponent?

    I'm really looking forward to, hopefully, a future blog by Czar on plays and freelances.
    Specifically, I'd really like to see us being given the ability to manually call for Pick'n'Roll/Fade during plays and freelance actions that will not break the action, if the screener is not involved in at least the first branch of the action.
    And all kinds of other things. But, no matter what, very much appreciate all the thought and energy that Czar puts into the game for us.

    On your wish to have call manual pnr's without breaking the play or action. How would you propose to handle the spacing ? That is the main reason we have to break the actions unless I'm not understanding what you are proposing.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Hey Czar i have a couple questions.
    1. End of shot clock ai.
    Will the ai look to make a play beyond swinging the ball around the perimeter frantically if there is not a player on the court with a high "touches" tendency? In 17 it seemed like the ai didnt know what to do once it got past its initial action and it didnt have its "go to" players on the court. Maybe the could run high screen and roll or throw the ball in the post.
    2. Iso plays differentiation
    Has there been a differentiation between "isolation post up" and "isolation post up" play types. Take for example the new look Cavs. If lebron and i. Thomas both have the isolation play type. Then you could potentially have the case where i.thomas would have the same isolation plays called as lebron and could result in him playing in the mid post area. Again i think separation iso post up and iso perimeter plays would help this
    3. More play types
    Will we be able to assign players more than 4 play types this year?
    coachcolbert
    both blogs (OGs and Czars) seems to have addressed things ive seen guys wanting for at least 2 years if not longer. if all works as intended and played as intended (no cheesing), #simnation should be pretty happy.

    This first year Flow tech is more for people who like to play basketball rather than "video-games". So Flow Tech is not yet an anti cheese measure. Guys who do basketball things on offense/ defense will get the most fun and execution out of it.
    I design the counters based on what a hoop head might do to cheat a play.
    We will see how the cheesers try and break it this year and look at mitigation more in the future.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Czar kills it yet again! Everything looks so beautiful and smooth in motion. The level of intelligence from the computer looks off the chain.
    Speaking of cheesers, our number one fear here at OS are the dreaded patches that seem to cater to what the cheese heads wanted last year.
    What you guys have achieved this year, you seem to be getting back to your simulation roots. OS is on a 2K basketball high right now, PLEASE don’t patch the game and give into the cheeser complaints. I can already seem them saying it’s too hard, or they don’t make enough shots. Put your foot down this year, 2K!
    This game has a chance to be the greatest of the series.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    The 24th Letter
    That entire JJ sequence should go in the Czar blog HOF....amazing stuff man
    Sent from my SM-G955U using Operation Sports mobile app

    Thank you 24. Really appreciate that fam.
    My engineer whom I call the master is really that dude. He has added a ton of capability each year. Like I have said before even if on the consumer end the game didn't feel or play better. "Technically" each year the AI has been expanded a great deal.
    All that work culminated in what you see in Flow Tech. We tried sooooo many iterations I almost thought we would never get it LOL.
    So I am happy where we are for year 1. But I have a whole notebook full of things I want to get to.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    ffaacc03
    Dear D_Czar,
    So, low or high IQ ratings (or any ratings) aren't taken into account for players knowing more than one branch ?
    I mean, lets say someone like Dunn faces the same situations presented on the videos of Reddick, is he equally efficient on doing all those reads and actions that Reddick did ?
    How does the AI defense adjust and try to counter all those scenarios or is it solely a human task ? If it can, do IQ ratings (or any ratings) are accounted for how well should a player execute a given task or read branches ?

    Was not an option in year one. Sometimes you have to crawl before you can walk.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    ronyell

    What up Yells ?
    I think ( would have to look at the code to verify so I could be wrong here) ACE is tied to the coach and for certain we control tempo using ACE.
    If I get what you are asking there is nothing dynamic this year that looks at your personel and then says oh let's run now or let's slow down.
    For this first year there isn't a tie-in between system proficiency and ACE. Right now they are two separate systems. But your line of questioning would definitely seem like a natural progression.
    What I'd like to know from you is what criteria would you like to see considered for a more dynamic tempo adjusting AI in terms of coach philosophy etc ? Maybe start another thread on that so I can find it if needed.
    On the subs front I don't feel comfortable saying really how much anything has been improved because I have a good idea what you guys want from that and we definitely are not there yet. They cleaned it up a bit but I can't say if it's enough to appreciate yet. Especially from someone who looks at it as closely as you would.
    Currently there is, in general, very little progression with any of our tendencies.
    So think of it as this year we expanded the tendencies on the player level and it will take time for that design to flow through to the coach in terms of his ability to influence or tamper down the player tendencies in regards to new tendencies in the blog.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    ronyell

    Shot IQ is how soon a player recognizes he has an opportunity to score.
    So a player catches a pass wide open. IQ is how long it takes him to recognize they are open and shoot.
    Play discipline is coach wants a slow tempo and we are in a play for someone else. On the catch I decide to go 1 v1 or self post or just shoot it.
    They cover two different scenarios.
    With play discipline the AI is decided to try and score with Shot IQ the opportunity is there is just how long it takes him to realize it.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Smirkin Dirk
    After watching Redick, I can only wonder and lament at how the hell any of us will be able to beat GSW if they do all that?
    I love the mismatch mechanic. Hopefully that also applies to a big who can take us down to the block when we're controlling a guard. Combined with the motion stuff Mike told us about, it seems like we will be able to feel good and bad defenders.
    The worth of the tendency contexts speak for themselves. Looks like we won't have guys who only take stand still 3s (Dirk/KP/KAT) shooting them off the dribble anymore. Brilliant. And that stupid looking stepback shot is gone.

    Stepback is not gone just reduced. If a player catches it right on the line he still may attempt one. I don't see them nearly as often but I do see them.
    If it is still too much this year next year I will completely remove them, where you catch is where you will shoot. Except late game and you need a three. But i will keep my ear out. I dont expect that to be an issue but I've been wrong before.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    antdoggydogg
    Czar, quick question that I hope you can elaborate on. When it comes to the Pace that teams play at during games, what dictates that? Is it based off the Coach's offensive system? Is each franchise hard coded to play at a certain pace based off last year or something else?
    Great work on the game!

    For pace my stats guy grabbed the end of season pace of play for all teams and we adjusted the coaches ACE or adaptive coaching engine accordingly.
    Because it is dynamic we don't have absolute control over it. so if a slow tempo team get a ton of stops obviously they will be in transition more and they could have inflated scores.
    The hardest teams to regulate is that sloth of teams right in the middle it is hard to differentiate between the teams that score 98 and the teams that score 99 right ?
    So that is why in the blog I mentioned you will see a difference between the top and bottom teams in terms of pace.
    So it's not an exact science but we put some time into it and I verified by watching a ton of AI vs AI this year to see how the scores shook out.
    There are still more designs I have for how to improve this in the future to give me more granular control over tempo. If you have suggestions throw em out on what you would like to see or control.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Impetuous65
    Flow Tech sounds like dynamic decision points from 2K16

    Your really don't like us do you fam ? LOL.
    I can't help what it sounds like but there are big differences between the two. DDP is still there and it is a key driver for FLOW and allows us to do some dope stuff.
    We couldn't have flow without DDP that is what I tried to convey in the article. Flow is not just what we worked on this year but a culmination of everything plus all the new tech = Flow.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    MarkWilliam
    Just checking, but that highlights vid at the end, I know it may be implied but was that all AI?
    If so.....I am (for the first time ever) both scared and aroused at the same time......

    Yes, I probably should have said that with one exception. Unfortunately that was me guarding Kyrie when he hit me with that stepback. I was sooo glad my icon didn't show up in that replay. LOL.
    Other than that Yes i was all AI on both sides of the ball.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    hanzsomehanz
    Not much else to share in regards to opinions and sentiments. I appreciate what you're attempting to deliver here @Czar especially in regards to motion continuity within the sets.
    Sent from my SM-T330NU using Tapatalk

    Respect Hanz. Always great to see OS old heads still keeping up with the game!!!!
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    MarkWilliam
    Just checking, but that highlights vid at the end, I know it may be implied but was that all AI?
    If so.....I am (for the first time ever) both scared and aroused at the same time......

    Man I think this was one more slept on aspects of what Czar and Co. have been building....
    as far as one on one...the A.I has been getting better and better at cooking like a human since 2K16...
    This was a thread I made last year...
    http://forums.operationsports.com/forums/nba-2k-basketball/907820-nice-i-moves.html
    expecting it to be even better in 2k18
    MarkWilliam
    I'm thinking......JR Smith..... Haha.....
    This is amazing.
    Everything is amazing.
    Now of course, after having it for 3 months, people may start pointing out things (hopefully constructively). Things I am sure big Czar is already aware of and has on his list (remember - 1 year dev cycle).
    But this 1 fact remains.
    2K18 will offer a gameplay experience that is 100% ahead of anything we have ever played - in terms of AI ability (based on what we know).
    I won't ask any questions. I will read this entire thread (Qs and As) and I am sure I will be satisfied.
    You said in another thread "high risk, low reward". But I can safely speak for everyone here when I say we 100% appreciate the risk taken to try and enhance our playing experience. 200% even.
    Thank you Czar, OG and the guys in the background who grind.
    I.N.C.R.E.D.I.B.L.E

    Thank you Mark. Very much appreciated and I am always down for constructive feedback. I know you guys know the game is not perfect but that is always to goal man to get better every year.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    BDM313
    Excellent blog but the substitution format is iffy...why not just let us use the D-Pad...what about a menu to determine a player's stamina..
    Sent from my SM-G930T using Operation Sports mobile app

    Once again I don't handle design of menus that is a completely separate team. But if I had to guess, consistency, the plays need buttons as a selection tool so everything that uses dpad was mapped to buttons.
    To have one of four options use something different would probably be inconsistent. Doesn't mean it couldn't be done but I didn't go to menu design school so I don't know.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    I would love when we get to a point, just like when you have Kobe in the post, he can see where the doubleteam is coming from with those red circles.
    Imagine on a fastbreak/transition a high IQ Guard or Point Forward(Lebron) has the ball and icons pop over the head of players momentarily showing what they are good at, like the 3 point icon pops over the head of a good 3 point shooter or a basket pops over the head of a good finisher. This only happens in Transition. Sometimes you just forget when you're playing what some of these dudes are good at, especially when you're in your late 4th decade...LMAO.
    Appreciate your constant communiciation with the SIM community here Czar! Hopefully the twitter kids don't influence you guys to make the game more arcady for their Mypark purposes.
    Quick question, will all CPU PGs or ball handler walk up the ball after you score on their team? Or just teams who play with slow tempo? Thanks!
    whatitisinsports
    Yo, Da_Czar* I know you're busy and mad respect to you for takin the time to address a few concerns. If you don't mind I'd like for you to address mine about the foul problem that has plagued the game.* I've actually talked about it some time ago with last 2 versions of the game and on your YT before you were with 2k. I'd argue its one of the biggest problems plauging the game besides the overall catchup mechanic,,pardon my typos folks, im a little under the beverage tonight.
    HERE'S* WHAT I SAID***** While everyone throws a party as usual for all the hoopla,,nobody and i mean nobody ever talks about the BIG PROBLEM...FOULS..All this stuff
    sounds good, but* what happens when the game starts,,,you will have
    Deandre jordan body slamming jordan clarkson who for some reason gets
    into the lane and attempts a hook shot...WHY,,every game mode, the same
    freaking game breaking problem happens year after year with not even a
    glimpse of discussion about it.* It's the insane and unrealistic amount
    of paint fouls by players who should just be playing D.* And the foul is
    committed by our A.I. or if you are playing h2h and you are winning,
    your team will just foul for non good reason other than the game to be
    kept close, and its utter nonsense.

    I saw your initial post but to me it seemed like you were trying to make a statement more than ask a question. LOL.
    And I am not in here to guarantee everyone that all their issues are resolved. That is a bad practice. There are some things in a yearly released video-game some people are not going to like.
    When people really have something up their craw I don't like telling them x has been improved because undoubtedly it is not fixed like they wanted and i think we know how that ends...
    With stuff like that I say get the demo and see if it is where you think it needs to be.
    I work on the AI the foul system is a separate system on which I have no direct influence.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Da_Czar, I know you don't handle menus, but will there ever come a time when we can customize our Priority 1 or Page 1 where we can plug in plays without them being Action oriented? What I mean is I would love to have P1 have my favorite floppy play, horn play and on down the line. Instead of cycling over from page 1 to page 4 to get to some frequently used plays.
    LionsFanNJ
    Awesome stuff Czar, the fastbreak logic and the Reddick breakdown was on point!
    I know you said classic teams won't have flow tech, however, if i pick the 02 Nets and use with them a current team playbook in MyLeague or something, will the Flow Tech then be applied to them?

    Yes since I had to rebuild everthing for the new motion system it was too large of a task to put flow tech everywhere.
    The priority was offscreen plays and flowed down from there. But yes to answer your question current plays have flow tech enabled.
    Also the new classic teams don't have thier own playbooks. They use another teams playbook for this year. Just was not enough time.
    You may notice the play count is down as well. another by product of the sheer amont of time it takes to implement this on a new engine.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    jlaz
    is there also a transition midrange pullup tendency, or do we only have 3pt tendency right now?
    great write up, so many new and exciting things.

    No, If he doesn't pullup at the 3 and he drives he is in our drive behavior, Once in drive behavior we would check the mid-range pullup tendency once he is in that range and that is how we would cover if a player should pull up in mid-range.
    So the midrange pullup tendency is not specific to the transition because once he drives past the 3 he will still check the drive mid range pullup tendency.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Da_Czar
    Yes since I had to rebuild everthing for the new motion system it was too large of a task t put flow tech everywhere.
    The priority was offscreen plays and flowed down from there. But yes to answer your question current plays have flow tech enabled.
    Also the new classic teams don't have thier own playbooks. They use another teams playbook for this year. Just was not enough time.
    You may notice the play count is down as well. another by product of the sheer amont of time it takes to implement this on a new engine.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    so in modes like MYGM or my League , how does this work over the years as teams change players and coaches
    RyanFitzmagic
    The positive by far outweighs the negative in this blog, but one thing that worried me is in the final bonus clip. When Harden kicks out to the open corner three, neither Kings defender makes an effort to close out. This does happen in real life sometimes where a player can get a literally 100% uncontested shot, but it's rare, and in 2K17, it was very common.
    Maybe a dev can shed some light?

    Check the demo Fitz stuff like that is best experienced to know if it is still an issue for you.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Da_Czar
    I saw your initial post but to me it seemed like you were trying to make a statement more than ask a question. LOL.
    And I am not in here to guarantee everyone that all their issues are resolved. That is a bad practice. There are some things in a yearly released video-game some people are not going to like.
    When people really have something up their craw I don't like telling them x has been improved because undoubtedly it is not fixed like they wanted and i think we know how that ends...
    With stuff like that I say get the demo and see if it is where you think it needs to be.
    I work on the AI the foul system is a separate system on which I have no direct influence.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    Just a question regarding the demo/prelude. You said it's not the final build right? The most complete up to date game we will get to play will be the day one patch on 19th, i think someone said it, could be you. Will all these changes, upgrades from your and OG's blog be included in the demo or we can expect full effect after the day one patch? Thanks in advance
    Hi Czar,
    Quite the write up (Expected no less from you)!
    Even more appreciated os the amount of information and candidness (is that even a word? LOL) of your answers here.
    I wanted to ask if there is an individual "walk the ball" tendency beyond team pace. I would ideally expect, for example, williams to bring the ball up slower than rose (not the best example but got a brain freeze) . also if it is tied to fatigue or to the score (e.g. protecting a lead vs. Trying to catch up).
    Thanks
    All of this is great stuff Czar.
    One thing I'm really wanting to know on the offensive side is Layups with contact.
    2k has been notorious for letting a player like 5'7 Isiah T effect a player like LeBron 's shot and body him.
    Will height and weight finally play a factor this year?
    This will create another chest match with the awesome system you all created, Having to switch say IT on the pick n roll from Curry to Durant would force the D to change their gameplan.
    Wow, the info and analytic precision here is staggering, amazing work Czar.  I have one question....are the 1v1 interactions improved to the point where the isolation drive tendencies can be utilized realistically?  It's really been my biggest gripe with the game the past few years, just not feeling like I could really go at mismatched (or just inferior) defenders because they were able to bump me back so easily just by making a little contact.  The same for defending, I've just never found the elite rim drivers in the game to feel as threatening as they should when I'm playing on-ball defense.  Sounds from everything I've heard and read like the "mouse in the house" is a very real thing this year, but I'm hoping that the bigs can be equally punished by trying to guard smaller players on the perimeter.
    Thanks again, you guys have all but talked me into a purchase the past 2 days.  Spectacular presentation.
    Coming from Fifa and Pes blogs to reading one of these blogs is truly eye-opening. You guys don't realize how lucky and spoiled you all are. 2k is literally LIGHT YEARS ahead of every sports game except maybe The Show
    talucchesi
    Coming from Fifa and Pes blogs to reading one of these blogs is truly eye-opening. You guys don't realize how lucky and spoiled you all are. 2k is literally LIGHT YEARS ahead of every sports game except maybe The Show

    This is (ONE OF) the reason why NBA2K breaks all records in copies sold throw the entirely sport game panorama.
    Developers continuously listen the feedback to the community and they give us answer.
    I'm still drooling over Transition and Isolation parts of the Blog.
    And Flow Tech, in the words of Kevin Hart, "Look look look at this! Look at this! Somebody look at this!"
    goma76
    This is (ONE OF) the reason why NBA2K breaks all records in copies sold throw the entirely sport game panorama.
    Developers continuously listen the feedback to the community and they give us answer.
    Indeed! I've been in this forum since the late 90's (99), and I see these young cats that are pseudo challenging the developer, trying to play the gotcha game, makes me smh. This is a gift, Big Czar, Ronyell, DC, WTF, all of us now these dudes are working hard, and to have one of our own come back answer questions from nearly each poster is a gift!
    Sent from my SM-N920T using Tapatalk
    DBMcGee3
    Wow, the info and analytic precision here is staggering, amazing work Czar.* I have one question....are the 1v1 interactions improved to the point where the isolation drive tendencies can be utilized realistically?* It's really been my biggest gripe with the game the past few years, just not feeling like I could really go at mismatched (or just inferior) defenders because they were able to bump me back so easily just by making a little contact.* The same for defending, I've just never found the elite rim drivers in the game to feel as threatening as they should when I'm playing on-ball defense.* Sounds from everything I've heard and read like the "mouse in the house" is a very real thing this year, but I'm hoping that the bigs can be equally punished by trying to guard smaller players on the perimeter.
    Thanks again, you guys have all but talked me into a purchase the past 2 days.* Spectacular presentation.

    ProfessaPackMan
    I'm still drooling over Transition and Isolation parts of the Blog.
    And Flow Tech, in the words of Kevin Hart, "Look look look at this! Look at this! Somebody look at this!"

    Yes, the Isolation and Transition improvements are super intriguing, but if getting by a poor CPU defender off the bounce still requires a Herculean effort, or great drivers being controlled by the CPU still seem passive and pedestrian, then all will be for naught.
    jfsolo
    Yes, the Isolation and Transition improvements are super intriguing, but if getting by a poor CPU defender off the bounce still requires a Herculean effort, or great drivers being controlled by the CPU still seem passive and pedestrian, then all will be for naught.

    To me, they're separate issues. For example, I'll be extremely happy about the Iso Updates if for example I have CPU Melo/Harden/Kyrie being guarded by a poor defender(controlled by HUM)like a IT/Dragic/Hardaway Jr and the former 3 clear out and have their way with me. Or basically with poor defenders, I should have to put in "more work" with them to slow those guys down compared to using the elite defenders in this scenario.
    In Transition, the videos Czar used would be perfect since I've been asking for that since 2k10. Shoot, it feels like it's been a minute since the AI in Transition did exactly what they should be doing in situations like 2 on 1 or 3 on 2.
    talucchesi
    Coming from Fifa and Pes blogs to reading one of these blogs is truly eye-opening. You guys don't realize how lucky and spoiled you all are. 2k is literally LIGHT YEARS ahead of every sports game except maybe The Show

    2k is pretty far ahead of the Show as well for a complete game
    Sent from my HTC Desire 626 using Operation Sports mobile app
    Impetuous65
    I would love when we get to a point, just like when you have Kobe in the post, he can see where the doubleteam is coming from with those red circles.
    Imagine on a fastbreak/transition a high IQ Guard or Point Forward(Lebron) has the ball and icons pop over the head of players momentarily showing what they are good at, like the 3 point icon pops over the head of a good 3 point shooter or a basket pops over the head of a good finisher. This only happens in Transition. Sometimes you just forget when you're playing what some of these dudes are good at, especially when you're in your late 4th decade...LMAO.

    I really hate that idea (no offense of course). It's so arcadey. It's so typical of today's games where the hud is overloaded with icons and unnecessary info that aren't anything but a crutch designed to make the game more and more accessible. You have 5 players on the court it's not like it's rocket science who does what.
    Good work off course Czar. My only issue is that I probably won't be able to play 2K this year.
    Edit : Thread is great not gonna derail it to answer you. We just disagree on things.
    Da_Czar
    Was not an option in year one. Sometimes you have to crawl before you can walk.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    Czar just wanted to jump in and say how much I REALLY appreciate all this engagement. I also wanted to call out for everyone the courage it takes in an industry like this to do this kind of detailed work that doesn't lend itself to big marketing back of the box call outs. Those updates you describe are really big, even if only a minority of players really get that.
    I'm too busy this week to be deep in these thread but the questions are getting asked. But I didn't want to not show up and show my mad respect when you get to show up like this.
    Vni
    I really hate that idea (no offense of course). It's so arcadey. It's so typical of today's games where the hud is overloaded with icons and unnecessary info that aren't anything but a crutch designed to make the game more and more accessible. You have 5 players on the court it's not like it's rocket science who does what.
    Good work off course Czar. My only issue is that I probably won't be able to play 2K this year.

    You see it as arcadey, I see it as information, that is why we have those things called options. We already have the icons pop up in the game anyway so you have been playing with the icons for damn near 10 years and now you draw the line?
    I´m also just here to say how much I appreciate the work you, OG and all the other guys are putting in this game and on top of that, being here and answer our questions and listen to feedback (from guys who really love to play SIM-Basketball).
    That Redick videos are looking awesome.
    I can´t even imagine how good this game will become years from now if you guys keep up this pace from year to year.
    And I love the new tendencies - the more separation between players, the better.
    *Sees Kyrie kill the play to iso-dribble attack Parker, blows by him and could have a layup only to see him push off to a step back jumpshot...*
    "Oh my gentle Jesus..."
    Baebae32
    Hey Czar i have a couple questions.
    1. End of shot clock ai.
    Will the ai look to make a play beyond swinging the ball around the perimeter frantically if there is not a player on the court with a high "touches" tendency? In 17 it seemed like the ai didnt know what to do once it got past its initial action and it didnt have its "go to" players on the court. Maybe the could run high screen and roll or throw the ball in the post.
    2. Iso plays differentiation
    Has there been a differentiation between "isolation post up" and "isolation post up" play types. Take for example the new look Cavs. If lebron and i. Thomas both have the isolation play type. Then you could potentially have the case where i.thomas would have the same isolation plays called as lebron and could result in him playing in the mid post area. Again i think separation iso post up and iso perimeter plays would help this
    3. More play types
    Will we be able to assign players more than 4 play types this year?

    Great questions. First before I get into splaining let me say with no alpha scorers in the game you are bound to see some ugly and unintelligent possessions.
    So it won't be totally negated this year regardless of what I am about to type.
    Now one of several things we didn't talk about in the blog our freelance player archetype system was cleaned up in a major way this year. Out side of plays each player is ID'd based on his ratings and tendencies on what type of player he is in freelance.
    This is separate from freelance offenses and their branches etc ok.
    These are freelance player archetypes.
    Iso,
    Scorer
    Pnr
    Cutter
    Shot mid
    Shot three
    High post
    Low post
    Screener
    Ball mover.
    Each player on the floor identifies as UP TO FOUR of these archetypes and this is a hidden system it has been there for a few years but it is for the AI so that as they are moving the ball the game knows what type of player this is outside of his play-types.
    So what you should see is ball movers moving the ball to one of the scoring archetypes and then them going to work be it through quick pnr or Iso.
    In the past the system wasn't correctly identifying players and thier archetypes. This year that is really cleaned up well. So you will see more pnr's when actions don't complete as they move the ball.
    Last year they were only looking for scorers and with none on the floor... Well there ya go. Again don't forget what I said earlier. Still bound to see some poor clock management at times.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Baebae32
    Hey Czar i have a couple questions.
    1. End of shot clock ai.
    Will the ai look to make a play beyond swinging the ball around the perimeter frantically if there is not a player on the court with a high "touches" tendency? In 17 it seemed like the ai didnt know what to do once it got past its initial action and it didnt have its "go to" players on the court. Maybe the could run high screen and roll or throw the ball in the post.
    2. Iso plays differentiation
    Has there been a differentiation between "isolation post up" and "isolation post up" play types. Take for example the new look Cavs. If lebron and i. Thomas both have the isolation play type. Then you could potentially have the case where i.thomas would have the same isolation plays called as lebron and could result in him playing in the mid post area. Again i think separation iso post up and iso perimeter plays would help this
    3. More play types
    Will we be able to assign players more than 4 play types this year?

    Now we added all new plays for our end game plays and we tightened up our clock management for those as well so end game we should be solid but because our plays branch so much it is hard to time end game plays correctly. Last year we had really simple end game plays because of that and they were well timed but easily guarded.
    This year we have Iso Point and Iso wing play-types if a player does both you just give them Isolation which includes both. Point plays obviously the player starts and finishes the play with the ball.
    Iso wing are plays where someone else has the ball and passes to the iso player.
    We did not add ability for you to have more than 4 play-types. For the AI you are rarely going to see the 3rd and 4th playtype called anyway adding more wouldn't necessarily help the AI at this point. however I could see the benefit for users.
    Not sure we will ever breach 4 though.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Da_Czar
    Great questions. First before I get into splaining let me say with no alpha scorers in the game you are bound to see some ugly and unintelligent possessions.
    So it won't be totally negated this year regardless of what I am about to type.
    Now one of several things we didn't talk about in the blog our freelance player archetype system was cleaned up in a major way this year. Out side of plays each player is ID'd based on his ratings and tendencies on what type of player he is in freelance.
    This is separate from freelance offenses and their branches etc ok.
    These are freelance player archetypes.
    Iso,
    Scorer
    Pnr
    Cutter
    High post
    Low post
    Screener
    Ball mover.
    Each player on the floor identifies as one of these archetypes and this is a hidden system it has been there for a few years but it is for the AI so that as they are moving the ball the game knows what type of player this is outside of his play-types.
    So what you should see is ball movers moving the ball to one of the scoring archetypes and then them going to work be it through quick pnr or Iso.
    In the past the system wasn't correctly identifying players and thier archetypes. This year that is really cleaned up well. So you will see more pnr's when actions don't complete as they move the ball.
    Last year they were only looking for scorers and with non on the floor... Well there ya go. Again don't forget what I said earlier. Still bound to see some poor clock management at times.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

    Ohhhh, I like the sound of that. Follow up question on that front:
    If the AI happened to roll out five of the same archtype, would a secondary archtype kick in for one (or some or all) of the players? For instance, five ball movers are out there on the floor -- the AI (hopefully) wouldn't pass the ball around until the shot clock ran out.
    I'm going to assume that, if five ball movers are out on the floor, even if their inclination is to pass, one of their tendencies would kick in if an opening presented itself and they'll take a shot if they're open.
    Unrelated question: is the Day 1 patch on Day 1 the game is playable, 9/15 (Early tip-off) or Day 1 it's technically releasing for everyone 9/19?
    bigmike0077
    any answer for the stamina question people are asking?
    everything else looks amazing

    I have answered this a few times. Not sure where but in short I don't work on the menu's etc. That is a different department.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Da_Czar
    On your wish to have call manual pnr's without breaking the play or action. How would you propose to handle the spacing ? That is the main reason we have to break the actions unless I'm not understanding what you are proposing.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    I was thinking of situations in which the screener is not dynamic at that point in the play, so standing in the corner or posting up.
    Take Quick Swing 2.
    After reversing the ball to, ballhandler waits there for the double pindown screen to spring the shooter at top of arc. Whenever I run that play, and am faking ISO behavior while I wait for the double pindown, I look at the teammate who is posted up on the low block and think: it would be cool to run P&R with him while that double pindown is brewing.
    Or let's say in the Elevator play: midway through, ballhandler is at a wing, waiting for shooter to run back up to top of the arc, through the "doors." (After shooter may have set screen for wing who has run baseline from weak corner to strong corner.)
    There are a few seconds, again, pretending to wind up for a Hero Ball drive while I wait for off-ball action to develop, that I wish I could run P&R with that wing who is now static in the corner. Or maybe do a dribble handoff with him, and if the play's main action continues, then it's the wing who will pass to the shooter running through the closing doors.
    Generally, I'm thinking about times when one is waiting for off-ball screening that may involve 3 teammates, but during which there is a 4th teammate who can screen without disrupting the play's actions at that moment, at least.
    Undoubtedly there are factors I just don't understand, and compromises that y'all have agonized over and we players fixate on what we want and lose sight of what we've been given.
    I thought it might be possible to do something ad hoc during a play and for the play to only "break" when and if that ad hoc action has put someone out of position for next action, if any.
    But the two examples above concern the final stage of their plays, and doing a manual P&R as described doesn't actually break the play.
    Hopefully I've made sense here, in my description. Even if my suggestion is non feasible or short sighted.
    Thanks, again, for having such an in-depth dialog with us here.
    tcnumba10
    Appreciate your constant communiciation with the SIM community here Czar! Hopefully the twitter kids don't influence you guys to make the game more arcady for their Mypark purposes.
    Quick question, will all CPU PGs or ball handler walk up the ball after you score on their team? Or just teams who play with slow tempo? Thanks!

    Mostly just the slower teams. This is another one of those it's a game not real life scenarios. To get the higher scoring teams to score above 120 we couldn't allow them to walk it up because on average they would walk it up too many possessions. I don't have that type of granular control yet to allow them or limit them to x amount.
    The only way I could get their AI vs AI scores up with to allow them to run it up.
    So on the top scoring teams you will barely see them walking and the slowest teams will walk alot if the opposition is scoring, on misses, everyone runs.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Impetuous65
    Da_Czar, I know you don't handle menus, but will there ever come a time when we can customize our Priority 1 or Page 1 where we can plug in plays without them being Action oriented? What I mean is I would love to have P1 have my favorite floppy play, horn play and on down the line. Instead of cycling over from page 1 to page 4 to get to some frequently used plays.

    What I do with plays and freelances has a really low usage rate as far as our total customer base so it is harder to give priority to things like this, that would definitely be cool but almost no one would use it in terms of our total install base.
    So considering that I would say this is not very likely but it could happen. I get the need i just have to do a lot of coordinating with other areas and they are usually swamped and it comes down to how many people will this affect and ...
    I get clowned all the time internally because some of the stuff I want takes a lot of time and they like man less than 0.1 percent of our users even use that LOL!
    I totally understand the want though and I will keep fighting the good fight.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Toaster
    Hi Czar,
    Quite the write up (Expected no less from you)!
    Even more appreciated os the amount of information and candidness (is that even a word? LOL) of your answers here.
    I wanted to ask if there is an individual "walk the ball" tendency beyond team pace. I would ideally expect, for example, williams to bring the ball up slower than rose (not the best example but got a brain freeze) . also if it is tied to fatigue or to the score (e.g. protecting a lead vs. Trying to catch up).
    Thanks

    I like how you are thinking, at this point no we do not have that but I added your suggestion as something to think about.
    What type of variance would you expect if Deron was on an uptempo team ? Is the coach more important than an individual players tendencies in regards to pace ?
    Is there a big enough difference between a low walk up tendency player on a fast team and a fast walk up tendency player on a fast team to justify the work of putting that in ?
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports
    Johnnythelegend
    Just a question regarding the demo/prelude. You said it's not the final build right? The most complete up to date game we will get to play will be the day one patch on 19th, i think someone said it, could be you. Will all these changes, upgrades from your and OG's blog be included in the demo or we can expect full effect after the day one patch? Thanks in advance

    It depends on what you notice when you play. If you like the demo the day 1 patch is more of what you saw there. It is really hard to quantify.
    Sent from my iPad using Operation Sports

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